A History of Coaching

In my studies to becoming a Self-Awareness coach I have learned many things about coaching and it’s origins. Coaching has its roots in ancient traditions when people shared their problems with others who were experienced and wise. Although coaching as a profession and discipline is a product of the 19th and 20th centuries. The underlying principles of coaching are as old as human problems. Tribal communities would assemble and talk, tell stories and share dreams. As our society has become more complex, roles have become more formalized.

We are social creatures, and when we are suffering, we will naturally seek out someone who can hear our story. Or share in our experiences. Seneca, a Roman philosopher who lived around the time of Jesus Christ. Once stated, “One of the most beautiful qualities of true friendship is to understand and to be understood.” We may not all have perfect friendships, but we all need this understanding to heal our problems.

Carl Jung, the father of analytical psychology, put it another way: “We are all in some way or another kept asunder by our secrets.” Meaning that by keeping secrets—especially painful ones—we separate ourselves from others and create problems for ourselves. As Jung observed, the origins of psychotherapy lie in the confessional. Priests would act as the listener and advisor for the troubled individual and still do.

Coaching as a Discipline

Coaching as a discipline has evolved from several other disciplines. To including but not limited to guidance, teaching, law, social reform, and psychotherapy. It is the study of the last that has developed the intellectual framework for coaching. Leading to different niches of coaching such as self-awareness coaching.
In the 1890’s, German neurologist Sigmund Freud developed a method called psychoanalysis. Psychoanalysis allowed individuals to tell their problems to a ‘psychoanalyst.’ An individual trained in interpreting the hidden aspects of the psyche, known as the unconscious. Freud theorized that although we are unaware of our unconscious, its’ nature can profoundly influence our lives.  The work of Freud and his students, such as Alfred Adler and Carl Jung established psychotherapy as a treatment for numerous mental health conditions. The work of these thinkers was based on the relationship between the conscious, unconscious and the external world – psychodynamics.
Behaviorists such as John B. Watson, Ivan Pavlov, and B.F. Skinner developed the behavioral approach. They rejected the unobservable unconscious in favor of a system that believed our behavior is the direct response to external stimuli. Actions followed by reinforcement or reward increase, while actions that are followed by punishment decrease.

Coaching as a Method

Coaching as a method was a result of the work of Carl Rogers and Abraham Maslow. Rogers coined the term “counselling” (or coaching), he lacked a medical qualification and was prevented from calling his work psychotherapy. Rogers and Maslow developed a new person-centered or humanistic approach to psychology. They believed in the innate desire of people to ‘self-actualize’. They proposed that everyone has an inbuilt tendency to self-fulfillment and growth.  The coach’s role is to provide an empathic and facilitative environment in which the client can discover their own answers. While discovering their own self-worth through self-awareness coaching.
Coaching took off after the Second World War, and Carl Rogers was invited to set up a counselling center at the University of Chicago in 1945. The US Veterans Administration funded the training of counsellors, coaches and psychologists by offering paid internships for graduate study.
In the USA, the first coaching psychology programs began to proliferate, and then they spread throughout the world. The therapeutic disciplines have continued to evolve and develop beyond the three schools of psychoanalytical, behaviorist, and humanistic. To including cognitive, gestalt, transactional analysis, and others.
A lot of research has taken place and is still taking place. Alongside the development of counselling techniques, we have also expanded our knowledge of the biology of the brain. In the ways in which it works. We have a growing understanding of heritable or genetic components of mental makeup. Although we are still a long way from a comprehensive understanding.

Self Awareness Coaching

I started my Self-Awareness Coaching career to help women create lives they love. I hope to assist you on your path toward greater self-awareness by teaching you how to understand yourself better and make decisions based on an understanding of what you want. With an expert strategy and tailored development plan, we will set realistic goals that you can achieve and use to continue working toward reaching your full potential.

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