Frequently Asked Questions
What’s a coach?
Whether coaching in sport, life, or business, a coach is there to help and guide you to make, meet and exceed personal and professional goals. Perhaps for you it's about becoming more successful within your professional life, or about becoming happier and more fulfilled in your personal life. Or maybe you wish to seek out something new in order to achieve a life time dream or ambition that has previously escaped you. In providing a supportive environment where you can freely explore who you really are, a coach empowers you to be more confident in your choices and decisions, gaining more control, feel less stressed and allowing you to design a life of your own making.
What’s a difference between a counsellor, a coach, and a mentor?
Whether it's a counsellor, coach or mentor, all three can help provide you with tools to help move you forward in your life. All three should provide a safe, trusting and, above all, confidential relationship to enable you to overcome personal challenges and support you with the changes you want to make, however each has a particular focus :
The emphasis of counselling, one of the 'talking therapies', is to provide a process in a supportive environment to allow you to explore the issues you are experiencing within your life. With the Counsellor's support, you are encouraged to look more deeply at these experiences, uncovering the root causes of any difficult feelings associated with the challenges that beset you. In identifying your own ways of thinking, and how your own role in your life can have both a positive and negative impact, you are then enabled to reconcile your problems. As a result, you subsequently find ways of coping with stress and anxiety, leading to personal healing and, in time, overcoming your difficulties. Counselling provides a tailored approach and uses a variety of counselling formats,
Coaching focuses on moving forward with your life by focusing on the self, as you are today, and your future potential. Through the development of a trusting relationship with the Coach, you are able to articulate your own needs, wishes and desires. This identification, coupled with looking inwards for your own qualities, strengths and abilities, takes you on a journey of self discovery. Self-limiting beliefs, unhelpful thought patterns, a myriad of things that may have previously held you back from creating a life of your own making, are uncovered and alternative strategies considered. Coaching, as with counselling, is about you seeking your own answers, not the Coach sitting you down and telling you what to do. The Coach will work with you in a non-judgemental way, they'll help you to find the answers that meet your needs, sometimes they may even need to challenge you in order for you to gain a clearer picture of yourself. They help you clarify how you want to live your life, and then support you in its creation.
Mentoring, has a slightly different focus as the Mentor has personally had experiences and developed the skills for themselves to deal with the challenges you may be facing. The relationship between the Mentor and the person being mentored, the 'Mentee', as with that of the Coach and the coached, continues to remain one of mutual trust and respect. Where it differs, however, is that whilst the process is still around personal growth and the development of skills to deal with life's challenges, the focus of the support can often be through the dissemination of the Mentor's wisdom and experience to allow the Mentee to rapidly gain skills and overcome the challenges of their own life, creating the change they seek.
Elaine K Sullivan provides a service which combines the best of the Coaching and Mentoring methodologies, enabling clients to overcome any current difficulties, explore personal desires and rapidly move to a place where they feel they have more control, feel less stressed and can create, and live, a life of their own making.
What happens during a coaching / mentoring session?
Before any formal coaching relationship starts, both the Coach and the person being coached, the 'Coachee' need to be comfortable in the knowledge they can work together in a collaborative and, importantly, trusting way. To ensure this happens, Elaine K Sullivan offers an initial complimentary 'Laser Coaching Session' which will last between 30-45 minutes, allowing both you and the coach to better get to know each other. During this time you will get the opportunity to discuss what your particular challenges are, where you would like to be, and, more importantly, decide whether the coach is the best for you, with no obligation to take the relationship further. We like to think that, whatever the outcome of this initial session, you will walk away with some insight into your current life and be able to make some immediate progress. Every person is different, and if either party is unsure as to working together, we can look to either recommending another coach that may be able to help, or perhaps a different modality such as counselling.
Upon commencement of a formal coaching relationship you and the Coach will co-create a Coaching Agreement to support you in getting the most from your coaching. It will look at your goals, dreams and desires, define your coaching objectives, decide the the number and duration of sessions to suit you, and then how your and your coach can work towards creating that life of your own design. And during the time together how you and your coach will celebrate your achievements, and review and overcome your challenges.
Dependent on the type of coaching you take with Elaine K Sullivan, sessions will typically last between 30 and 60 minutes, they'll be conducted with the intention of self-discovery, inquiry and, above all, without judgement. Underlying all this will be the confidentiality agreement which forms part of your overall Coaching Agreement, assuring you that anything discussed will remain between you and your coach.
Do you have a fixed curriculum during your coaching?
At Elaine K Sullivan we believe that everyone is different, there is no 'one size fits all'. Some clients may require help on goal setting and accountability in order to move forwards; at the other end of the scale are others that are looking for meaning and purpose in their lives and as yet haven't any fixed goals. And, of course, there's everything in between.
Elaine K Sullivan seeks to help women figure out for themselves their own way of living; there isn't a 'wrong' way and a 'right' way, just a way that better suits you today. In finding that you can learn how to gain more control, feel less stressed and design, and then create a life of your own making. As a result, we shy away from a 'cookie cutter' approach and tailor the curriculum to fit your needs.
Are there different types of coaches?
There are many different coaching types as well as coaching styles, from coaching activities aimed at enhancing an individuals performance, perhaps in their workplace or in a sporting context, through to careers coaching and team facilitation.
Elaine K Sullivan provides a blend of Personal Development and Mindset Coaching, Empowerment and Life Strategist Coaching and Personal Mentoring. We also focus particularly on enabling women to achieve success on their own terms, to feel more in control, and have less stress. Dependent on your needs and what you wish to achieve, we will assess which style and process works best for you.
How many sessions will I need?
What do you want to achieve? Elaine K Sullivan believes that habits of a lifetime cannot be changed overnight, and agree with the adage "The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step." by Lao Tzu, there is, therefore, a balance to be had between the two. At the onset, the Coaching Agreement, will outline the number of sessions, duration and frequency agreed between you and your coach. There is, however, a minimum of six sessions which we feel is necessary to enable you review your challenges, develop and ingrain good patterns and maintain better ways of livings suited to your new life of design.
Is It expensive, how can it suit my budget?
Any investment in yourself comes with a price tag, however at Elaine K Sullivan we aim to make it as affordable as possible. We say can't negotiate on the 'how much' but if a client is serious in wishing to gain control, feel less stressed and create a life of their own making, we will be open to a discussion on the 'when'. Where appropriate, we can offer a payment plan to assist with your budgeting.
Do I have to come to you?
Not necessarily. Elaine K Sullivan offers both face to face and online coaching and mentoring. We usually prefer to conduct our sessions via an application Zoom as this allows us to record our sessions. Previously clients have found this helpful as they have been able to go back review what was said outside of the coaching / mentoring session itself.
What happens if I have a challenge outside of the sessions?
Dependent on the coaching package agreed, in the event that you have more immediate challenges you can have access to your coach outside of the schedule. Offered within some of the packages are 'Direct Connect' where you can send your coach a question or message via eMail or Messenger, receiving a response within 48 hours. 'Office Hours' provides access to one, or potentially more, SOS calls where you can talk directly with your coach within office hours for an agreed period of time via telephone, Skype or Zoom, or alternatively receive a guaranteed call back within the day.
Additionally, lifetime access to a private Facebook Group is provided for all Coachees / Mentees so that you can reach out to other, like minded individuals should you have a more generic issue that you'd like some assistance with.
Why should I have a coach, will it work for me?
There's no 'should' about it. Engaging with a coach is a very private and personal decision and it's about engaging with the right coach for you, and there is no guarantee the first coach you speak with is that person. It's for this reason that Elaine K Sullivan offers an initial 'Laser Coaching Session' to ascertain if you and your coach can work together. As to whether it will work for you? With the right coach and your commitment, then substantial progress can be made.
By offering you a space away from the demands of day to day life, be it work, family, etc., coaching gives you time to reflect on your own wants and needs, it gives you space to discover deeper insights into who you are, enabling you to become more resilience. Coaching helps you manage change and find new ways to live your life. As a result it will give you a sense of greater control, allowing you to feel less stressed and make new choice which, in turn, will create for you a greater vision for your future and give you the tools to achieve it.
I’m not good at setting goals, how can you help?
All coaches are there not only to facilitate your journey of discovery to move you forward with your life, they are also there to hold you accountable to actions that you have stated you will commit to. By articulating what you want, and where you want to get to your coach will work with you to break these down to the small manageable steps to get you there. Working together with your coach, each step will be designed to fulfil your goals and take you in the direction of a life of your own design.
I work long hours, how can I make coaching work for me?
Elaine K Sullivan offers flexible hours to suit you, whether that be early morning, lunchtime, evening or weekends. This way you can fit the sessions in and around your work commitments.
Is coaching only done on a one on one basis, or is group coaching an option?
To provide flexibility Elaine K Sullivan offers both One-to-One, and Group coaching, both face to face and online.