What is ADHD Life Coaching

Over the last 25 years, coaching has become more popular as a discipline among talking therapies. A client may want to use a coach to help them overcome barriers and also realise how their own thoughts may create self-limiting behaviours.

As a coach, I love analogies to help explain concepts so that they are better understood. So, with that being said. Let me introduce my best friend, BASS. He is my American Bulldog. I have a sneaking suspicion he is ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactive Dog). With his help, I hope to give you a clearer idea of what coaching is.

It’s a sunny day and Bass is giving me that look again. “It’s time for our session!” I grab his lead, then out the door, we go.

Now, as we are walking, I am relaying information to Bass through his lead. When he walks ahead of me, I tug on his lead, which tells him about his pulling behaviour. You can liken this to a client with a particular issue and a therapist giving them the ‘correction’ or the information to adopt a new behaviour.

As we continue on our walk, he pulls again! It seems the information about the pulling worked for a while, but it didn’t stick.

Just like a client intending to do what the therapist said, but the new behaviour doesn’t stick either. We reach Bass’s favourite clearing. It’s an open space with trees, grass areas and paths. He eagerly waits for me to take off his lead.

Now our coaching partnership begins.

Off he goes to sniff and “own” some trees! From time to time during his exploration, he will check in with me. In coaching terms, you could say he is sharing his thoughts with me. “Is he present?” “I’m thinking I may go this way?”.

There is no lead, correction, or judgement. I’m there to make sure he feels safe in this environment. Satisfied, he continues to explore his territory, knowing I am there to support him. My job is just to be present while he does so.

He may face barriers such as another dog or a small child and he’ll stop to check-in with me. I see him thinking about whether to go over and investigate. Now, I won’t assume to know what he will do! I’m just being present and mindful of him.

As the coach, I have no clue where he may go and I don’t even know if he does. I am now there to be a presence while he explores.

Remember earlier on in our walk, when he was pulling on his lead? Well, this time he chose not to investigate (phew!) but seemed to have an AHA moment and came back to walk alongside me, impressively not ahead of me like when he had the lead on.

Research shows that if a person defines their own ‘corrections’ it is highly likely they’ll form it into a habit which they will integrate into their life purposefully.

That’s what coaching is: letting you take the lead and set your own agenda in a safe environment while I am present with you and if you face any barriers, I believe without judgement in your capability to overcome them.