Guest Article from Mark Brandenberg, who specializes in coaching men.
Some men have trouble asking for help, and calling a coach is asking for help. Coaching men is useful because it is private. However, men don’t call coaches until they have a crisis. Men often call a coach when they are on the verge of a divorce. They are no good at picking up a wife’s signals that she’s tired of the marriage. They are often in shock about what is happening.
As a parenting expert coaching men, some clients will come with a crisis. A situation is imploding. How does a divorcing Dad converse with his son? A mother phones to say that her son wants to quit high school and join the Marines, and she does not like that idea.
Sometimes the crisis is low-key but still essential to the client. For example, a child needs to be potty-trained within a few weeks, or he will not be accepted into nursery school. Both clients want help! Both scenarios will impact your process of coaching men and the relationship with your client.
If the client is not in crisis, you will be able to establish your coaching sessions in a smoother way. If the client is in crisis, the focus of your first sessions will be helping the client through the rough spot and then establishing a vital goals in the coaching relationship.
Let the client talk it out.
Encourage your client to share deeper feelings. You have to listen. You listen actively and soulfully. Take notes. Hear your client’s concerns. Be aware of what the client says and what he or she is leaving out.
Listen to words, feel out the emotional content, and focus.
Stay in a listener’s role. You may be tempted to jump in with suggestions and practical information, but it is better to hold back and listen.
When coaching men, you may observe vulnerability and be tempted to take over the problem. At this point, remind yourself that you are coming from the coaching perspective, not a therapeutic one.
You are a coach, and as such, you believe that:
1. This client is a whole, healthy, and resourceful person.
2. This client has the inner resources to handle this problem.
Allow the person to talk through whatever is troubling him or her.
Ask questions so that you truly understand what is going on. The first session may be entirely about letting the client tell his story and vent emotions. You may do very little talking.
If a problem is fundamental and life-changing, you may have to refer your client for psychotherapy. When necessary, schedule more than one session per week in the first weeks of coaching. The thrust of your work will be to calm the person and determine how you, as a coach, can work with the person’s strengths to get her past the crisis mode. After a few sessions, the client will feel more in control.
Parent coaching has all the right stuff. As a career, it offers flexibility, personal satisfaction, and unlimited earning potential. It is also one of the fastest growing home based businesses today. This makes it ideal for parents, career switchers, and retirees, but is it right for you?
Parent coaches come from all walks of life. They are teachers and therapists. They are mothers, fathers, and grandparents. They are former corporate leaders and nine-to-five refugees. They have in common an intense desire to help parents get the most out of family life. “Coaching is solution-oriented,” says seasoned parent and lifestyle coach Natalie Gahrmann. “It is not someone just guessing. It is, ´Tell me about the problem, then tell me what you are going to do about it.´ If you don´t know what to do about it, I can help you with that, but don´t tell me there is nothing you can do about it and you are stuck here as a victim.”
Characteristics of a Good Parent Coaching
A successful coach/client partnership is built from the ground up and is essential to the entire coaching process. To help parents reach their personal or family goals, a coach must be able to develop a trusting and respectful relationship with the client. It is at this point that she can begin to chip away at the parent´s insecurity, which gives parents the confidence to handle problems and reach their desired goals. “A parent coach is someone who partners with you to help you remove all your fears of parenting,” says veteran parent coach Peggy Alvarado. “They help you gain the confidence to raise the type of children you always wished them to be.” Alvarado, a former software technology executive, believes that even though each person has a unique coaching style, there are certain characteristics all good parent coaches share. They include: Inquisitiveness. Parent coaches must have an inquisitive nature. They need to be able to ask thoughtful questions that require action-oriented answers. “It isn´t just about listening,” says Gahrmann. “It is also about being provocative and helping people get to a new place. I help people find their solutions, and together we come up with the action to do that.” Objectivity. Parent coaching is about maintaining objectivity when it comes to clients and their situations. Coaches are not friends who are called upon for unconditional support. They are people who you enlist to help you define your goals and help you devise an action plan to meet those goals. They are someone you depend on to see all the picture and support you in the decisions you make. Assertiveness. Parent coaches must be assertive enough to challenge their clients and ask questions that demand answers. “There is a synergy that happens between people that helps come up with other solutions,” says Gahrmann. “Some people say I can do A or B, and they are often opposite ends of the spectrum, but if I say well what if you do this, the next thing you know, they have ten choices in front of them.” Openness. Having an open nature is one of the greatest attributes any parent coach can have. Coaches are open-minded in regards to people, situations, and themselves. Coaches must be open to all people in all stages of life, but they also are aware of their strengths and weaknesses. They must realize that no one person can ever know everything or be the most non-judgmental or objective you can be. Curiosity. Parent coaches are curious people and are interested in learning about their clients, their situations, and what resources and information are available to them. Coaches are continually working to find new approaches and solutions for their clients and themselves. They are always learning and interested in learning because parent coaching is a continuing education field. There are still ways to develop yourself and learn. If you feel a calling to start a new profession as a trained and certified Parent Coach, visit parent-family coaching course page to understand how you can achieve this goal in six to nine months.
A Certified Parenting Coach is a trained professional who works with parents to solve problems, clarify goals, or find solutions to issues relating to parenting and family.
Parenting has never been easy. Among the children, their schooling, your spouse and other engagements, parenting could get complicated or overwhelming. The good news is you can make the best of parenting with the right assistance from a professional parenting coach.
A Certified Parenting Coach has completed professional training in the dynamics of coaching parents through coaching techniques, listening, as well as how to approach problem solving and structuring new situations for success. A parenting coach is not a therapist. He/she is a trained and experienced professional who uses strategy to assist parents in raising their children and maintaining balance in the family.
The bold difference between a parenting coach and a therapist is the status of parents or clients involved. Parents make a conscious and informed decision to receive assistance from a parenting coach. The aim is not to heal any broken spirits of the past, but to work together to develop more suitable parenting style, responses to daily dealings or solve problems in behavior, communication, or issues that arise.
How Does It Work?
The essence of coaching parents is to offer working solutions to families or parents experiencing some frustration. As children mature and become involved in different social circles, most parents experience frustrating times when the old rules or skills no longer work.
Most parenting problems include variations on these themes:
Parents with a short temper
Children who are disrespectful
Children who are stubborn or defiant
Lack of responsibility
Lack of discipline
Dealing with a divorce, separation or loss of a loved one
Whining or throwing tantrums, and so on
The challenges one could encounter as a parent are endless and sometimes take different forms as children grow up.
A parenting coach is a fast and effective way to manage and eliminate these issues. It all begins when you contact a certified parenting coach. Meetings or consultation can take place either through a detailed phone call conversation or a visit to your home to assess the situation.
During this time a parenting coach does two things for a parent in distress:
1. Listens effectively
The solution to every problem begins when shared. Being able to share your challenges with a kind and compassionate listener is the first step to getting rid of the problem. At this time the parent will feel relieved and supported.
2. Offer personalized solutions
After receiving a full brief of the issue, the parenting coach will be able to identify the problem and brainstorm possible solutions and strategies. This process also involves a series of steps.
First, the parenting coach will ask all necessary questions and provide insight into causes, effects and characteristics of the issue.
The next step can be to equip you with new information that will give you a deeper understanding and view a different perspective on the problem. Now, the once confused parents can begin to see new possibilities and solutions.
Finally, both parent and parenting coach collaborate to come up with ideas and strategies that are peculiar to your family and parenting issue.
Typical parent coaching methodology pays particular attention to helping parents regain confidence and authority in their parenting skills.
Within a few weeks of implementing new strategies and suggestions from your parenting coach, you will see some positive results.
In the end, parents become better equipped to perform their role, while children become accountable and responsible for their actions and life choices.
Benefits of a parenting coach
It is an effective way to seek assistance and discuss your parenting problems within a professional framework that eliminates the stigma of psychotherapy.
It is the best option for working or busy parents
It is an opportunity to broaden your knowledge of parenting.
It is an excellent career choice.
Why Does It Work?
Parent coaching is useful because its approach is constructive and personalized.
Remember that parent coaching is a team effort. A parent must be open to discussing the full length of the issue and trying new ideas.
Who Needs a Parenting Coach?
Some think that perhaps this option of a parenting coach is for parents who are failing in their role, and this is untrue.
Parent coaching is a choice made my parents, who know how vital their roles are in the lives of their children. It is for parents who are bold enough to seek help when they meet a roadblock in parenting.
It is for those who desire a focused and strategic means to solve various problems that parents often encounter with their child.
Who Can Be a Parenting Coach?
The thing about parenting is that it belongs to everyone. Professionals who feel called to serve parents and families respond to their calling. Parenting coaches share certain traits like enjoying working with children, youth and parents, crafting conversations, finding answers, and discussing discipline solutions
Also, if you are a parent or a child care provider, you can equally learn how to be more effective in your role.I have always believed in the full benefits of the profession of a parenting coach. The process of learning, practicing or consulting with a parenting coach presents equal opportunities for each of us to gain something profound easily.