Hire Coaches, Not Therapists

Hire Coaches

I’m broken. That’s what I used to tell myself. And now it’s so clear to me that I’m not. That I never was.

My friend Asho changed my mind. I was coming clean to her about my bulimia when I met her a few years ago and telling her how broken I was. She said, “ you’re perfect.” It was the last thing I expected her to say. But for some reason, I believed her. 

Zen monk, Shunryu Suzuki, said: “Each of you is perfect the way you are…and you can use a little improvement.”


“It is easier to act yourself into a new way of thinking, than it is to think yourself into a new way of acting.” Millard Fuller

Over Christmas, I decided to write my own 12 Rules For Life instead of making New Year’s resolutions. (h/t to Jordan B Peterson). 

Rule 6 is: Hire coaches not therapists. I don’t believe this is a universal rule. I know that therapy can be wonderfully beneficial and effective for many people. But for my temperament, coaches are a more healthy choice. And that’s because I’m not broken…and I could use a little improvement. 

I’ve had a couple of therapy sessions. The therapists were very supportive. They said that I had good reason to feel sorry for myself. But that just made me feel like I was damaged goods. Coaches make me feel like a champ.

Therapy is great for working out why you experience life the way that you do. But it is very hard to think your way from there into different patterns of acting. With coaching, you demonstrate to yourself that you can act more competently and change kicks in from there.

If I was wealthy, I’d have a strength coach, a vocal coach, a writing, meditation, business and movement coach, and that’s just for starters. Coaches are great because they’re experts in the exact thing you need help with. You isolate the problem, make a plan, follow the plan and fix it. Then you move onto the next problem. There’s no naval-gazing, no retrospective and little by little you get better at all the things that are important to you. 

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