9 Really Powerful Truths About Coaching

9 Truths About Coaching

While coaches seem to be everywhere, most people aren’t really sure what coaching is all about!

To be fair, prior to beginning my coach certification program, my concept of coaching was not completely accurate either. In fact, I had some pretty big misconceptions. It’s just hard to have a clear picture of something you’ve never experienced, right?

When people learn that I’m a life coach, I frequently get two responses. There’s the nod and smile response, which makes me think their understanding of coaching is vague. Or I get the spontaneous scoop on Uncle George or some other person in their life who they deem in great need of someone like me.

The Coaching Process

I believe wholeheartedly in the coaching process and that’s why I work with a coach myself. Like you, I have blind spots and funky beliefs. Coaching naturally brings them to light so that I’m able to do something about them. It’s a safe place to process life and work. A result of coaching, I’ve grown, eliminated some unhelpful ways of thinking, and reached goals I previously thought were beyond my reach.

By the way, one of the questions you might want to ask a coach you’re looking to hire: do you work with a coach yourself? That will reveal a great deal about how much they believe in the coaching process!

As a coach, my heart is for you! I want you to get everything possible out of your coaching experience. I want you to excel at your work, live in a life-giving way, and operate in a way that truly glorifies God. More often than not, that’s going to be just outside of your comfort zone!

Until you are able to experience coaching for yourself, here are nine powerful truths:

1. Coaches Don’t Give Advice

Perhaps one of the biggest misconceptions about coaching is that coaches are prescriptive and tell you want to do. That makes sense in light of what coaches do when working with athletes, however, if you are looking for advice, then a consultant is what you are after.

Coaches operate under the assumption that you are smart, resourceful, and creative! Their job is to draw all that good stuff out of you in ways that may elude you. Armed with that information, you are able to make the decisions that are best for you and take action.

Coaches also point out patterns and mindsets, but you get to choose what you will do with those observations. And coaches invite you to switch up your perspective in ways that often lead to powerful new insights and actions.

Not only do coaches not give advice, they also don’t decide what topics you need to tackle. For each session, you set the agenda – you decide what’s most important to focus on.

2. You Still Lead You

Yes, I’m a Life Coach that specializes in helping leaders, professionals, and entrepreneurs excel at what they do, but ultimately whatever role God’s given you in this season, it’s your responsibility to lead you!

In fact, you must still lead yourself first even if your current role requires you to lead others. So, whether your goals are personal or professional, what affects you personally affects your work, and vice versa. That’s why as your coach I view you as an integrated person.

3. Coaching Isn’t Just for the Struggling

You might be surprised to learn that many seek out a coach not because they are failing or in desperate need of change. Nope! Many seek out a coach because they value the safe place to process, the fresh perspectives, and proactively seeking ways to change and grow that coaching provides. That’s part of the reason they are successful!

In fact, in many cases, people with significant problems would benefit more from counseling, which helps people explore and resolve the issues in their past that are hindering them today.

However, for those who want to reach their goals and dreams and move forward in their life and work – coaching is a fantastic option!

4. Coaches Are Human

I hate to burst your bubble, but coaches aren’t perfect – I’m human just like you. I wouldn’t even say that coaches are experts on life. I know I’m not. I’ve made some big mistakes and learned some incredibly valuable lessons. And I am still learning!

To be honest, you wouldn’t want a perfect coach – who relates to that? You want a coach who has survived some challenges and come out on the other side! Someone who actively seeks to grow.

What makes a coach worth hiring? It’s their ability to listen and their expertise in knowing what questions to ask; someone who is able to help you get to the heart of the issue and assist you in creating a strategy to move forward. And guess what? They don’t have to be an expert in whatever it is that you do to be able to accomplish that.

5. The Coaching Relationship Is Unique

My family and friends often share with me aspects of their life and I do the same. These “friendly” conversations are quite different from the ones I have with my clients or with my coach.

Don’t get me wrong, I have a friendly rapport with my clients. As a coach, I’m your advocate. I want the very best for you! I want you to reach your goals and for you to succeed. I’ll hold you accountable and challenge you to stretch and grow in ways that might feel uncomfortable – maybe even more than you believe you are capable of at times. And when you get where you want to be, we will celebrate together! Those are marvelous moments!

My focus is exclusively on you, your challenges, your dreams, and your goals.

6. Coaching is a Worthwhile Investment

There’s no denying that coaching is an investment in both in time and money. The real question: what’s it costing you to not pursue coaching? Moving forward – that’s priceless!

Whether or not you get results – that’s up to you! No matter how amazing and skilled your coach is, if you don’t take action, you won’t get results!

7. The Coaching Process May Be Challenging

Clients often set out gung ho to grow and turn their life or work around. And when it gets hard, some drag their feet and are tempted to space their sessions further apart.

So, I want you to know in advance that you’ll need to be brave and willing to stick with it. When the urge to resist the process and slow down the momentum bubbles up, take heart! The fact that coaching is challenging is a fabulous sign! It means you are close to the big breakthrough you need in order to get where you want to be. I know it might not feel that way, but don’t rob yourself of the good stuff that is just around the corner.

Good things are worth the effort!

8. Coaching Creates Needed Space

Life is demanding. It moves fast. Finding space to pause, reflect, and strategize is hard.

Sadly, you probably spin your wheels unnecessarily because you fail to maintain margin in your schedule or slow down long enough to consider how you might operate smarter or more productively.

Coaching naturally forces you to pause and consider vital areas.

You might think I don’t understand just how crazy your life is. Believe me, I do! I’ve been there. It’s exhausting!

These days, I intentionally work less, yet actively coaching more individuals than ever! I want you to discover the joy of a more balanced and fulfilling life too! When your schedule is jammed and your life is frantic – that’s the perfect time for coaching. Consistently spending an hour focusing on your life and work is just what you need! Plus, because coaching is done over the phone, there’s no transit time!

9. Christian Coaching Points You to God

When it comes to coaching, Christians are often the most skeptical. They are leery that a coach might seek to “play god” in their lives. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, as a Christian coach, my heart is to point you to God and to keep Him at the center of our time together. My coaching sessions begin and end with prayer and as my clients well know, my questions often bring God into the equation. He is the One I rely to guide me during sessions.

Does that mean I only coach those who share my faith? No, I have no problem coaching those who believe differently than I do – I just want to be upfront about my beliefs.

I’m curious…what would you like to know about coaching?

Originally posted on 6/14/17 and it’s been revised and updated just for YOU!

Marvae Eikanas

Marvae Eikanas is an author, entrepreneur, ICF certified coach, Career Direct Consultant, DISC consultant, and HBDI practitioner. She helps her coaching clients sharpen their skills, face their fears, eliminate funky mindsets, hone their habits, and cultivate clarity so they can THRIVE personally and professionally. Schedule a consultation with Marvae here.


  1. Catriona Futter on August 17, 2017 at 9:09 am

    Thanks for this, a great article that I was directed to via the CCNI newsletter. It is such an encouragement to read your words, and enables me to reconnect with why I became a coach and what I am passionate about – enabling clients to live in agreement with who God made them to be, and pursuing Him more and more in my own life and work. We lose focus so easily, and this is a great reminder of what is important in coaching and why we are doing it. Thank you

    • Marvae on August 17, 2017 at 9:37 am

      Delighted you stopped by Catriona, and that you were encouraged! Praying that you are able to focus more intently on the work God has for you so that you can bless others!

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