Years ago, I began my career as a Clinical Psychologist doing traditional therapy face-to-face with clients who had issues such as depression and anxiety. The in-office setting made the most sense for me at that time and it was important for me to physically be present with them and to offer support (and tissues!) as needed. However, once I obtained my professional coaching certification, I began to specialize in life and career coaching which drew different types of clients to me. While they expressed some transient anxiety or depressive feelings about not being in their dream career or living their best life (which would be expected), they did not have those symptoms at a clinical level. My coaching clients also were well-versed in mindfulness and the law of attraction which fit well with my own style and I felt an intuitive nudge to try something different.
Back when I first made the switch to distance coaching, either by phone or online, I have to admit that I was initially hesitant about meeting with people that way. Would we still be able to establish a strong working relationship? Would the sessions be as helpful as in-person? Would it be awkward looking at a camera or talking on the phone with someone instead of being face-to-face with them? Now that I’ve been doing online and phone coaching for years, I’ve seen some great benefits to this method:
- I can help way more people! Whereas I used to be limited to serving clients who happened to live in my general proximity (Denver), I now have clients all over the U.S. and the world—including Europe, Canada, New Zealand, and South Africa. Working with such a diverse population of clientele is not only incredibly rewarding but has greatly enriched my knowledge of other cultures which allows me to be a well-rounded coach. It’s amazing how similar people are in terms of wanting to live their best possible life!
- It’s convenient. I’ve had people do sessions in their office on their lunch break, outside on a street in Dubai, at an airport terminal while waiting for a flight, from their car (parked of course!) and in their living room while their kiddo was napping. You can do it (almost) anywhere.
- It takes less time. Whereas an in-person session means the client also has to allot time for traffic time with driving to and from the appointment, parking the car, checking in with the receptionist, finding a baby sitter, etc., online coaching is easier to fit into a packed schedule—and my clients are very busy people.
- It’s flexible. Sometimes, my clients want to see my smiling face so we do Skype or Zoom; while other times, they may be traveling and so phone works better on certain weeks. Or technology blips happen (because life) and we just switch from one mode to another.
- It’s effective (which I think is the most important factor for my clients). Developing a strong working relationship has been just as easy, and I’ve even found the session time to be more effective because we are laser-focused during those 45 minutes. I had multiple local clients whom I initially saw in my office who decided to switch to online coaching due to their busy schedules. An interesting outcome of that was that most ended up preferring the phone even over Skype/Zoom. Why? Many told me that they can better process ideas and think more while they walk around, so the phone allows them to do that during our session.
If you’ve never given online or phone coaching a try, I think you will find the process engaging and rewarding. Changing your life for the better is definitely an investment of your time, energy, and resources but living your best life is worth it!
Make sure to check out plenty of other tips on the blog such as 5 Questions to Help You Determine Your Ideal Career. Already know you’re ready to invest in making your ideal future a reality? Schedule a free coaching consultation today with Dr. Kristi to see if coaching is a good fit for you!