Could you benefit from coaching to achieve your goals in life and work? Are you looking for coaching solidly grounded in research and experience? I’m a psychologist in London who coaches self-directed people towards better lives, by teaching skills from recent research in psychology. I offer coaching in a range of life and performance skills that have been shown in studies to enhance performance, success and life satisfaction. I coach those skills as part of a structured coaching process to ensure that you can achieve tangible results in a clear timeframe.
Life and performance coaching take their lead from sports coaching, where athletes use a trainer to focus and hone their efforts so that they achieve superior performance in the competitive arena. Like sports coaching, the coaching I provide is largely directed towards future goals, and just as a sports coach doesn’t treat injured athletes, whilst coaching I aim avoid focusing on areas of past pain and injury. However, my background in Clinical as well as Occupational Psychology allows me to go there if the client wants and needs help. Each of us has weaknesses as well as areas of untapped potential. My broader expertise allows me to help you to achieve sufficient strength in your areas of weakness to sustain your drive in your areas of strength.
Life and Performance Skills
Just as Sports Coaching has replaced custom and hoopla with systematic methods validated by research, so Life and Performance Coaching has started to adopt an evidence-based approach. Psychology has made great strides in helping people improve their performance and life satisfaction. Sports psychology is an essential part of sports. Positive psychology has grown into a force that shapes government policy. Here are some of the skills drawn from that body of knowledge, which I can teach you and which have been shown to be effective in improving people’s lives. ^Top
Life rushes by and our best moments fade from memory, unless we take the time to relish those moments as they happen. Surprisingly, however, people vary in how much attention and skill they apply to savouring the moment. By assessing the way you savour positive experiences I can show you how you could get more out of them. ^Top
The ability to remain mindful of what we’re doing and what’s going on around us has become an important skill in improving task focus and reducing the over-arousal that can inhibit performance. Originally a Buddhist practice, mindfulness has crossed over into the mainstream and is now taught shorn of its religious trappings. I have completed two courses of mindfulness training and can introduce you to the practice of mindfulness skills. ^Top
Some people are just born optimists, whereas others seem to always find the glass half empty. And although it’s the pessimists who may be more realistic, it’s the optimists who both achieve more success and show more resilience in hard times. Fortunately, optimism isn’t just a trait: it’s a skill that can be learned, and when learned, put into practice with stunning results. One study found that insurance salesmen taught Learned Optimism significantly improved their sales. Learned Optimism advocates a balanced blend of optimism and caution: this is not Pollyannaish positive thinking, but a measured assessment of likely outcomes and how to cope with them. I teach my own blend of Learned Optimism as a skill which is quick to learn but can last a lifetime. ^Top
Forgiveness and Gratitude
Our ability to press on with our journey depends in part on our ability to let go of the past, and to carry with us positive memories. By learning to forgive others for past transgressions we release ourselves to focus on the future, and by learning to be more grateful for what we have received, we come to recognise the possibility of more good things ahead. I help people to find and practice moments of forgiveness and gratitude. ^Top
Setting achievable goals has been recognised in research as a key technique for enhancing motivation and achievement. It has even been enshrined in management training with the “SMART” acronym. However, as it turns out setting the right goals and pursuing them turns out to be a trickier proposition than it first appears. I teach a method of goal setting and scaling which recognises the need for flexibility, prioritisation and frequent updating of goals. ^Top
Time management is life management. Problems with time management fill our heads with unnecessary worries, and stop us from doing the things which we value most. So over the years many time management programmes have come and gone, each assuring us that only if we follow the prescribed regime will we reach time management nirvana. The truth is that each of us is different in our personalities and what we have to manage. So good time management is best tailored to the individual and introduced gradually so that we take on new habits fully without trying to overhaul our entire life at once. I can do a thorough assessment of your time management needs and suggest changes that you will feel comfortable introducing in your routine. ^Top
Habits and Rhythms
Good habits make life so much easier, yet they seem so difficult to get into. Bad habits can cause so much trouble, yet they seem so hard to get out of. Fortunately, behavioural psychologists have been studying habits for nearly a century, and recent advances have pinpointed how habits can be learned by each of us in our daily lives. I can show you the simple rules of making and breaking habits, and how to put good habits into a daily rhythm so that you feel that you’re in-tune with yourself and with other people. ^Top
The ability to exercise willpower and maintain self-control is one of the strongest predictors of success in childhood and adulthood. Conversely, lack of willpower can prevent even the most talented individual from reaching their potential. Now Science has uncovered some of the mechanisms behind willpower, and realised that it is a skill that can be learned. Willpower is like physical strength: you can increase it by exercise, but you need to conserve it because once you’ve used it up, you will be unable to exert it until you have recovered. The skill is in learning how to exercise, use and conserve willpower. I can teach you these skills and help you reach new levels of mental strength and endurance. However, I do this without asking you to exercise totalitarian levels of control over yourself: that is a recipe for disaster just as it was for the totalitarians of yesteryear. Democratic self-control involves listening to different sides of ourselves and negotiating agreement between warring motivations. I can show you how to get inner agreement so that you can go forward and exercise your will as a unified personality. ^Top
Happiness and Positive Psychology
Contrary to folklore, happiness is not found but made. Some of us may have by nature a sunnier disposition than others, and many of us may live in unhappy circumstances, but much of our happiness remains in our control. Science has shown that there are practices, like the skills listed above, which can reliably and consistently increase people’s happiness. You can learn those skills, and I can teach them. The time and money you spend learning the skills of happiness is likely to give you more in return than anything else you could do. ^Top
A Structured Coaching Process
Here’s the Coaching Process I use. If life is a journey, then this is a way to make successful journeys in three steps:
If you’d like some coaching, why not get in touch with me using the form on the right. I’d be happy to tell you how I can help. And if you’d like to know how successful I am, read what some of my clients say about me here.