Have you been thinking about making wellness changes such as losing weight, exercising regularly, learning to better manage stress, eating more healthfully or stopping smoking?
Perhaps you have been on a merry-go-round year after year with plans to make these same changes that never quite materialize or don’t last too long. It may be time to consider using the support and guidance of a wellness coach.
Aynsley Anderson Sosinski, RN, Certified Mayo Wellness Coach
Are you curious about what a wellness coaching session consists of? Come and sample an abbreviated coaching consultation on Saturday at Speed Drop-in Wellness Coaching. Drop by the LMH Performance and Wellness Center, Suite 100, Sports Pavilion Lawrence, 100 Rock Chalk Lane, from 9 to 11 a.m. Consultations are free and limited to 15 minutes each. No appointments will be taken. Please note: Speed Wellness Coaching is not to be considered a therapeutic wellness coaching session but rather a “taste” of what you can expect should you decide to pursue coaching in the future.
A wellness coach differs from a life coach in that a wellness coach works with clients to help them focus on staying well, or helping those who have not been as well to work toward discovering their “best self” with a new emphasis on wellness. Wellness coaches may work in tandem with other practitioners from a client’s health and wellness team. A life coach typically works with clients on improving relationships as well as career and other life goals.
It is important to know that in any coaching relationship, a reputable coach will respect the client as the expert in his/her own life and support the client’s choices as to what they wish to work on. The coach is not there to “fix” a client but to guide them along the path to get to where they want to be by using motivational interviewing and a strength-based focus.
Martin Seligman, a psychologist known for his expertise in positive psychology, a tool in effective coaching, said, “It’s not about fixing what is broken, it’s nurturing what is best within ourselves.”
With the recent explosion of coaching, there is concern that some practicing as health and wellness coaches may not have been adequately trained in the many skills and the knowledge base required to be a professional in this field. Whatever type of coaching you choose, make sure you are working with a coach who has been trained and even certified by a reputable organization. The National Consortium for Credentialing Health and Wellness Coaches (ncchwc.org) has recently established standards for practice, and later in 2016 will offer a national wellness coaching certification exam.
Lawrence Memorial Hospital is pleased to offer wellness coaching services for both the business and general community. If you are an employee of a business contracting with LMH WellCare for annual employee health screenings and health risk appraisals, you may be eligible for visits with one of the Advanced Practice Registered Nurses who are also health and wellness coaches.
In addition, LMH will soon be offering wellness coaching for the general public at the new LMH Performance and Wellness Center at Sports Pavilion Lawrence. A registered nurse who is also a Mayo Clinic-certified wellness coach will begin seeing clients by appointment in late January.
In the near future, LMH WellCare will launch a wellness package for the general community that will include blood work, a computer health risk appraisal and follow-up coaching.
At this time, wellness coaching for the community through LMH will be fee for service. It is hoped in the future many health insurers will begin covering wellness coaching services. Most clients who see a wellness coach require two to six sessions of coaching.
Consulting a wellness coach is ideal for those who have a strong willingness to improve their health and well-being and are ready to work toward behavior change.
For more information about wellness coaching services for businesses, please call LMH WellCare at 505-3112. For information about health and wellness coaching services for the general public offered at the LMH Performance and Wellness Center, call 505-3066 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
— Aynsley Anderson Sosinski, MA, RN, is community education cordinator at Lawrence Memorial Hospital, which is a major sponsor of WellCommons. She is a Mayo Clinic-certified wellness coach. She can be reached at email@example.com.