I’ve been in Colorado since January 10th, visiting my parents for Christmas. Traveling from Singapore, adjusting to the the 15-hour time difference is a challenge. I finally got some good sleep last night and feeling like myself this morning, so thought I’d bang out this report. If you’ve been waiting, my apologies for the delay.
We’re finishing up the pre-practicum this week and it’s my aim to post a milestone review before going off grid the day after Christmas. Stay tuned for that.
Art & Practice of Coaching
There wasn’t a lot of APC content in November. In week 21 we had some lessons from Robert Biswas-Diener on learning capture, the idea being that we should encourage our clients to summarize their takeaways at the end of sessions and take notes throughout in order to solidify what they’re learning.
In week 23 we had a lesson from Ken Kraybill on sustain talk and discord. Sustain talk is language that a client uses to maintain their personal status quo and resist the change process. Discord is pretty much what it sounds like and is usually the result of the coach’s failure to really listen and connect with the client. Kraybill, in his pragmatic style, offered ways to work with discord and sustain talk when they arise.
There was no new APC content in weeks 23 and 24 aside from the usual mindfulness lessons. We’ve since finished up the mindfulness track in week 25, much to my relief. I’ve written about my disappointment with the Mindfulness track in my September report. I’ve also published a blog post titled The Irresponsible Promises of the Mindfulness Movement. It won’t be my last word on the subject.
In week 21 we had lessons on environmental toxins, what they are and how to deal with them. In week 22 we had lessons on the importance of pleasure, connection, and play.
The highlight of the month was a series of lessons in weeks 23 and 24 on lab testing. Chris Kresser provided an inside look at what tests he typically runs in his clinics and how they differ depending on the circumstances of the client. We also received a couple of useful handouts highlighting the differences between what Kresser considers optimal functional health ranges and conventional lab ranges.
Aside from looking at desirable ranges, we didn’t get much into how to interpret lab results. But we’ve been informed that our TA sessions during the practicum will center on case studies. My feeling is that weeks 23 and 24 have laid the groundwork for incorporating lab results in the analyzing of said studies.
To be clear, Chris Kresser has made a strong point that the ordering and analyzing of lab tests is beyond the scope of practice of a health coach. Nonetheless, the ADAPT model is a collaborative model. Kresser wants ADAPT coaches to be prepared to work in cooperation with licensed providers. We should be able to both interpret and understand a client’s lab results as well as explain them to the client when necessary.
November was something of a transitional month, with an eye toward the practicum. Part of that was a kickstarting of the Business Development track. We had an instructor session in week 22 with Keith Rhys on finding one’s niche and had a series of lessons from Chris Kresser in week 23 on starting a coaching business and client interaction and in week 24 a series of lessons on client interaction and management. We received a lot of very useful handouts to be used when setting up contracts with clients.
Part of the transition to the practicum has been that we’ve started the process of reaching out to practice clients. We have the option of offering practice sessions pro bono or charging a nominal fee.
I’ve decided to charge a discounted rate for my practice sessions for a few of reasons. One is that I believe that people are much more committed to the coaching process when they are paying for it, even when the amount is nominal. Two, I believe that the quality of the training I’ve received thus far justifies payment. And three, I think receiving payment will make the whole thing more “real” for me. It raises the stakes, so to speak, creating an expectation that I provide quality coaching.
If you are reading this and are interested in being a practice client, you can contact me here. My plan, which is subject to change, is to offer the initial session free of charge, with no obligation to go further. Initial sessions will be one hour long, during which time we will craft a wellness vision along with a plan to implement it.
After that, if you want support implementing your plan, I will be asking US $20 for weekly or bi-weekly follow-up sessions, which will be 30 minutes in length.
I’ll start taking clients after January 11th, when I return to Singapore. See my home page for more details.