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istock_000002376434smallThe Essence of the Coaching Relationship

As wellness and health coaching grows and organizations look for more and more cost-efficient ways to provide these services the quest is for that elusive optimal combination of efficiency and effectiveness.  How to make wellness coaching scaleable to a large population remains a quandary.  How long does wellness coaching take?  How many sessions?  How many minutes?

The temptation is to down-size.  The mistake is to “dumb-size”.  Bottom line is, like always, you get what you pay for.  If a coaching program is not careful at maintaining quality it may degenerate into the information-based programs that coaching was designed to supplement and replace.  The computer-assisted programs are just that…assistants to the real-live coach who is working with their client.  Let’s remember why we went to coaching in the first place…we discovered that people change more effectively when they go through the change process with an ally.  What makes that ally effective?  For that I propose a small stretch over to the world of counseling psychology, which has been studying what facilitates behavioral change since it’s inception as a professional discipline.

I am a counseling psychologist and the foundation of my training was in the research that looked at what it was that allowed therapists of many different theoretical schools to get effective results.  In the late 1960’s and early  1970’s, Three academics, Robert Carkhuff, Bernard Berenson and Charles Truax took the work of Carl Rogers and made it objective enough to study through behavioral science.  What they found was that regardless of what approach to therapy someone took (psychoanalytic, behavioral, gestalt, client-centered, etc.), their effectiveness came down to their ability to provide what Rogers called “the facilitative conditions of therapy”.  When a therapist provided empathy, unconditional positive regard, and was authentic and genuine in their interactions with the client, the therapy worked, regardless of theoretical orientation.  Since those days we have seen other research substantiate this and point to the “therapeutic relationship” as the key determinate of therapeutic effectiveness (In 2001 Hazler and Barwick summarize much of this in their book, The Therapeutic Environment:Core Conditions For Facilitating Therapy.)

As the field  of coaching evolved the term that has often been used to describe this way of being as opposed to the techniques of doing is coaching presence.  However even the ICF definition of coaching presence comes up short “Ability to be fully conscious and create spontaneous relationship with the client, employing a style that is open, flexible and confident.”  When I have been complimented about my coaching presence from a piece of coaching I have done in a public demonstration it felt like what was coming through was largely what I would call the facilitative conditions of coaching.

To me “coaching presence” is about providing through your own way of being with your client, the conditions which allow them to maximally open up to their own growth process.  To do that your client needs to feel safe, to feel heard and understood.  They need  to feel in connection with, accepted by and receiving compassion from the coach.

“When we come into contact with the other person, our thoughts and actions should express our mind of compassion, even if that person says and does things that are not easy to accept.  We practice in this way until we see clearly that our love is not contingent upon the other person being loveable.”

Thich Nhat Hahn

Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hahn provides a powerful description of unconditional positive regard.  We meet our client where they are at without judgment.  We notice, we observe but we don’t judge, even in our own minds.  This is the separation between who a client is, and what they do.  We may challenge them to look at how a particular attitude, belief or behavior is working for them or against them, but we are still accepting them as a person on the journey of growth.

Empathic understanding is a very direct way to express this unconditional positive regard.  Empathy is conveying to the other person that you know, at least to some degree, what it is like to feel what they are feeling.  You may have never had their exact experience (e.g. having a heart attack, being obese, etc.) but you know what it is like to feel fear, loss, shame, regret, etc.  You put yourself in their place and see the world from their perspective tapping into your own feelings so as to connect with them deeply.

Authenticity and genuineness are not techniques, they are ways of being.  Sincerity cannot be faked.  If your heart is not in the coaching process, don’t coach.  Take a day off, or if it’s not just a temporary experience, look for a new career.  Most people, including all of our clients, have terrific “BS” detectors and know when someone if just going through the motions of being a helper.  Likewise when they experience you being your authentic self it gives them someone they are attracted to working with and feel safe enough to trust with their feelings, hopes, dreams  and fears.

In wellness coaching our clients have often tried and failed at lifestyle improvement before, sometimes many times.  For them to go further towards success they have to feel like they can truly trust the ally that is journeying with them.  They have to feel like this ally genuinely cares about them, completely accepts them as a person, understands their experience and is not afraid to go wherever the journey takes them.  The coaching relationship is the heart and soul of the coaching process.  A competent coach has skills, techniques, tools and methodology to help their client on their journey, but it is their way of being that is the crucial difference.  The client/coach connection is omnipresent and foremost in the client’s mind.  For the coach it is as easy as just being real, it is as tough as Tich Nat Hahn says, loving what appears unlovable.

“The most precious gift we can offer others is our presence. When mindfulness embraces those we love, they will bloom like flowers.”

-Thich Nhat Hahn

Michael Arloski, Ph.D., PCC

Craft

We are passionate about providing the highest level of wellness coach training delivered with integrity in a high touch manner that honors each persons uniqueness. we are excited about growing the craft of Wellness Coaching and supporting its uses in Wellness & Lifestyle Medicine.

Community

We are committed to creating and supporting a community of wellness & health coaches and all the people interested in health and wellbeing and encouraging their professional and personal development.

Cause

We persevere to bring coaches and organizations together to affect positive health outcomes, positive healthcare change, and to support positive lifestyle change at all levels. We are dedicated to actively creating Allies For A Healthy World!

Helping You Succeed as a Certified Health Coach !

The Real Balance Wellness Mapping 360º™ ”Wellness & Health” Coach Certification program is one of the top-rated health and wellness coach certification programs, offering the best value and greatest support for students and graduates seeking to become health coach professionals.

 During training, you’ll receive an unparalleled, interactive learning experience. Training sessions are led by highly qualified instructors who provide ongoing feedback and support. Our approach is very personal.

After receiving your certification, our team will continue to provide unlimited support, access to our private Coach Center and Distance Learning membership site. We provide the latest lifestyle and health topics and more. You become part of our learning community - Allies For A Healthy World!

The demand for certified health coach professionals has never been greater.

As a Certified Wellness & Health Coach, you’ll play a key role in helping clients develop healthier lifestyles, enriching their lives with encouragement, expertise, and support. Our health coach certification courses provide tools and resources to make it easy to implement the Wellness Mapping 360°™ method of wellness & health coaching. You will learn a holistic approach that is very practical to implement. 

CLASS CALENDAR

In this area you will find  a listing of all our class offerings!

MEMBERSHIP

Become a member and gain access to valuable education, connection, research, and our "Find a Coach" network. 

RESEARCH

We all need to keep on top of the ever growing and ever changing world of health coaching. The research continues to add up and we will do our best to keep you in the know.

For Information or to Register 866-568-4702

  Free Webinar
      Join Dr. Michael Arloski and deepen your skills!

      Topic:  "Two Years Later: How One Coaching Session Led to a Successful Weight Loss Journey"

Join Jennifer Bleck in a discussion on Impactful Coaching: How One Session Can Change Everything.

Bio

Jennifer Bleck is a National Board Certified Health and Wellness Coach, Associate Professor, and Real Balance faculty. Jennifer teaches Health & Wellness Coaching courses to students at the University of South Florida. She specializes in program evaluation and conducts research on coaching through her role as the Co-Director of the College for Applied Lifestyle Medicine. After completing a demo foundation coaching session with Dr. Arloski in May 2022, she began a weight loss journey, during which she lost 130 pounds to date. This webinar will discuss the impact of coaching on her journey.

 

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.  The webinar will be recorded.  Afterwards those registered will receive a link to the recording.  1 day after the webinar you will be emailed a short summary / evaluation to complete to gain CE's. Once submitted you will be emailed a Certificate of Attendance. If you are interested in 1 hr. of NBHWC CE’s you may petition.

      Friday, July 26, 2024     12:00pm - 1:00pm Eastern time

     

1 day after the webinar you will be emailed a link to an evaluation to complete to gain CE's. Once submitted you will be emailed a Certificate of Attendance.CEU's Are no longer provided directly for the NBHWC.

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      Dr. Michael

Effectively Coaching People with Health Challenges

In this self-paced, 5-module (6 hour) class participants will learn about specific lifestyle-related health challenges, the lifestyle changes needed and how to support a person as they make lifestyle changes needed to be healthy and well. In particular the course covers coaching people to live well with Heart Issues, Diabetes and Pre-Diabetes, Hypertension & Stroke and Asthma & COPD.

Register Here!!

 

Short Continuing Education and Professional Development Webinars

Learn from the Masters and gain CEU's in a self-paced manner. Grow as a Welness Professional and Coach!

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Resilience To Thriving Coach

 

5/16, 5/23, 5/30, 6/6, 6/13, 6/27 2024 - (6 Thursdays) 7:00 - 8:30 Eastern time and 7pm - 9pm ET on 6/27/2024

Course Purpose

This certificate training is for those professionals within either a human resource, wellness, health, or coaching related profession to learn about and acquire skills and tools for assisting individuals and organizations to enhance their resilience and thriving capacity.

Research from participants who completed this course has shown significant pre-to-post increases in several coaching competencies. This includes being more present for clients, the ability to develop plans for thriving, and how to work with one’s own resilience story in the context of coaching.

Read More Here!

Wellness Coaching News

Books by Dr. Michael

 

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Health Coaching Books

All books can be purchased through wholeperson.com or Amazon.com

 

Dr. Michael Arloski

Advancing the Craft of Health & Wellness Coaching

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