Life Coaching Sucks

I hate the term “Life Coaching.” Anytime I hear someone say, “I’m a life coach” my impulse for scrutiny kicks in, and I begin testing them. I look for characteristics I respect: a sense of gravity, sobriety, skill, empathy. Realness. Worse, I hate hearing the same words roll out of my own mouth because the term imparts a vagueness I myself dismiss — what does a life coach even do?

Simply put: I help people make upgrades in their life. I do this through compassionate inquiry: Asking questions and then interrupting people’s stories to uncover what’s already there. That answer may underwhelm you, however, I am invariably better at doing this than all of my clients and that’s why they hire me. The process requires finesse, but few people believe life coaching requires any skill or work ethic at all. They’re not entirely wrong.

The stigma against life coaches didn’t happen by accident. Bad coaches have soured people’s experience with personal development for years and in an unstandardized industry, certifications and degrees neither mean much nor save a person from taking spiritual bypasses — avoidance in holy drag, as Robert Masters called it — and sounding woo-woo. I once read in a LinkedIn support group for life coaches that someone qualified herself as a coach by having made “A plethora of mistakes” and possessing “A PhD in life.” I mean, are you kidding me? Being alive on the planet does not qualify someone to coach. Neither does giving opinions or advice.

There is a particular hell I call “A for effort” kind of coaching, which is a form of coddling. Coddling keeps people disempowered and childish. It is usually a result of not telling the client the truth and believing the client is incapable in some way. Good coaching, however, catalyzes maturation — spiritual, emotional, mental and yes, sexual, if you’d at all like to have more gratifying relationships.

Imagine the difference in your life if you continued doing what you’re doing now and if you aimed for what you want with someone who both cares about you and possesses the skill to help you get there. Which would take your further?

I hired a coach so I could go further than the glass ceiling of my 9 to 5; I wanted out of the paradigm that determined my life would be exciting and worthwhile only in increments. I started using all the skills I learned to coach others, first as an intern and now as a lead coach for a compelling new platform called Vent On Demand.

I love Vent On Demand, and I think it’s needed because nothing like it exists. It generates clients — closed and paid — for a vetted cohort of truly excellent coaches. Clients, especially those who are new or have had bad experiences with previous coaches, get to try out venting and coaching sessions as much and as often as they’d like before making any major decisions about interviewing with a coach who would work with them regularly.

Vent On Demand is invaluable for coaches who get results and invaluable for a skeptical world hungry for a fulfilling life. Below is a link to our Kickstarter campaign. We have eight days left and a lot of money to raise. If our aspirations speak to you please back us. If you know someone who would be inspired by our blend of pragmatism and compassion please pass this along to them. Thank you for helping us bring this platform into the world.

Sofia Lloyd
Vent On Demand
Head Coach