What is Coaching?

One of the most common questions I get asked by those interested in coaching is, “what is coaching?” Many immediately think of sports coaches. Images of men with grey hair yelling or pacing up and down sidelines come to mind. While the grey hair might be slowly emerging on the sides of my head, I generally do not spend my sessions with clients yelling at them to do better or be better. That being said, there are some similarities. Like a sports coach, one of my main joys and jobs as a coach is to find unique ways to motivate clients. This can be done through discovering things like values or what you find important. Life or business coaching, like athletic coaching, is also strategic. I work with clients to come up with the best course of action for them. This could be something like coming up with a weekly routine or finding a “north star” to point them in the right direction daily.

Another question that often gets thrown out there is what kinds of things do you coach on. The answer, almost anything. See coaching isn’t about having all the answers. It isn’t about being a nutritionist, personal trainer, tactician, medical doctor, investor, counselor, or any other professional. Coaching is about asking the right questions and knowing how to help people discover things about themselves that they did not know before. In the last few months, I have had the privilege of helping numerous clients discover what it is they truly value. This has enabled them to achieve more success in business because of their newfound confidence and clarity. I have helped teams get to know each other better and plan for the coming business year utilizing tools like personality tests and simple business plans. I have helped clients prioritize their lives in a way that helps them accomplish things that may have been on the backburner. They have been able to be more productive because they now know exactly why they are putting in the work and can see the results of their action. So often we get discouraged when embarking on a new venture, whether it is a new diet, budget, work out routine or relationship. Coaching can help to keep you focused and motivated when you previously might have given up. So whether you are a million dollar business looking for help in retaining and keeping top talent or you are a middle-aged dad who just wants help to find clarity and direction in life, coaching can help. We all have things that we wished we would have done. Acted kinder, had more patience, been more generous, been smarter with our money. One of the great things about coaching is that it can help you become aware of all of that and give you a plan to actually do it. Wouldn’t it be amazing to lie down at night satisfied that you did all that you could that day!?


Lastly, people are often curious as to what a coaching session would look like. Is it lying down on a couch while you ask about my feelings? Is it running laps around the track while I shout motivational phrases at you? Is it standing in front of the mirror and saying positive quotes to myself? The short answer… no. Coaching is dynamic. Most sessions are done over the phone or in an office. They typically last about 45 minutes. It is a dialogue between coach and client. The client will often bring an issue to the session that they wish to discuss. Maybe something came up at work or at home or maybe you have just been stuck in a certain area of life. The coach and client will dialogue around the topic and come to a place where there is a deep understanding of the issue. Ultimately we want to get to a point where there is a clear action step that can be taken which will enrich your life.
At OnBoard Coaching it is our desire to see people live lives where people are living incredibly fulfilling and enriched lives where they are confident that they can achieve and accomplish all that they feel has been set before them. Nothing excites us more than helping clients become clear about who they are and what they want to go after. The lightness and aliveness that inevitably happens as a result of this work is infectious and is what keeps us hungry for more.

If you feel like this could be for you do not hesitate to reach out! We are always available to talk about what a coaching relationship could look like. If you have more questions please visit our “FAQ” page or email info@onboardcoaching.ca. Ultimately it is up to you! A life full of excitement and peace is just around the corner!


Brad Thiessen




photo credit Kim Norcross photography

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