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The Difference Between Coaching and Therapy is Greatly Overstated | Psychology Today


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I've been working with a lot of executive coaches recently, and have the utmost respect for many of them. They're smart people who help their clients immensely. But they always want to tell me that they're not doing therapy. And they usually offer up a similar story about how coaching and therapy differ. They (coaches) apparently work with the future; I (therapists) work with the past. They work to make healthy clients better; I work with pathology and illness. They work with the conscious mind; I work with the unconscious mind. Their work is time-limited, with specific desired behavioral outcomes, and is often on the phone; my work is open-ended, with understanding as its primary aim, and is in my office. The list can and does go on and on. What these coaches are describing are actually false distinctions that don't make a difference.

But therapists need to be certified right?

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