Get into the game of life
By Steven Olson
For The Coloradoan
Dr. Patrick Williams thinks he may have caught the next big wave in therapy. The
conversion of therapists to quot;life coaches.quot;
A life coach is someone who helps clients change their behavior in order to reach their
own personal goals.
quot;They are not depressed,quot; Williams said, quot;but there is a gap between where they are
and where they want to be. People used to go to priests, uncles, even bartenders and talk
about these problems, but we're a very disconnected society right now. We don't live in
home towns for the most part.quot;
Enter the life coach, a sort of personal cheerleader for the ego and soul. The coach
commands and directs the process of change for the client so that he can achieve his
To be a life coach, a person must have the ability to listen and to know when and how
to speak in private session. The people who already have those skills are 467,000 licensed
therapists in the U.S. This is where Williams comes in.
Williams started the Institute for Life Coach Training (formerly known as Therapist
University) in late 1998 to help therapists adapt their skills to become life coaches. It is
one of only two such companies in the country.
What makes Williams' school so unusual is that business is done strictly by conference
call. Williams currently has 23 students enrolled in his latest class and has trained more
than 200 coaches in the last year and a half.
quot;I give them business and marketing experience,quot; Williams said. quot;The trick is
packaging their skills differently. If you were my client, you and I are partners in
designing the life you want. You come to me because you want to.quot;
Williams says the life coach is becoming more and more popular, especially with
larger companies. Before he started the Institute, Williams was a life coach for companies
such as Hewlett-Packard, Kodak and Water-Pik.
quot;It's really hot in the business world,quot; Williams said. quot;Especially among the dot-com
kids. You know, the young people who've made a fortune with an Internet start up. They
have independent coaches that motivate them.quot;
Williams said the reason coaching has become so popular is that a purpose has become
more important for people than money, especially if they already have the money.
The young dot-com professionals are a case in point. Once a 28-year-old has become a
multimillionaire, what's next in life? Shouldn't it be something more than lounging
around? And if so, how do I get there?
quot;A life coach can help you with a plan for you life, focus on it and stick to it,quot;
Williams said. quot;You will have a guide who will help you design a future, not getting over
a past. Many entrepreneurs want to leave a legacy that will mean something.quot;
If you are interested in life coaching, you can contact Williams at 1-888-267-1206 or
e-mail info@LifeCoachTraining.com for more information.