What is the Personal Coaching Field? 
How did this all start?

Many psychotherapists have begun to immerse themselves in the evolving field of personal coaching, reinventing themselves as combination mentors, creativity consultants, strategic planners and sounding boards for clients with intensely felt, as-yet-unrealized dreams. Enthusiasm for this new arena of service is at a high pitch: The International Coach Federation (ICF) reports that the number of coaches has jumped from 5,000 to more than 15,000 over the last 3 years; ICF's own membership has shot up 50 percent in the last year alone. The media, not surprisingly, have caught on: Oprah and CNN have recently showcased coaching as a cutting edge human-potential profession, while publications as diverse as Time, New Age Journal, The New York Times and USA Today have prominently featured articles on the coaching boom. U.S. News and World Report has christened coaching the "second-hottest consulting field in the country," just behind management consulting.

Because coaching is so squarely aimed at self-empowerment, some culture watchers predict that coaching is poised to become a pivotal human services profession of the 21st century. According to William Rowley, M.D., of the Institute for Alternative Futures in Alexandria, Virginia, today's consumers are increasingly concerned with maximizing health in the most encompassing sense yet, they often falter in the follow through. "We've committed ourselves to staying well in our emotional, physical, spiritual, family and community lives, but the choices and resources out there are proliferating at a bewildering, even overwhelming rate," says Rowley. "To help guide us toward our new vision of health, our first line of defense may become the 'life coach.' "

Moreover, the coach of the future is likely to appeal to people at all stages of life development, Rowley predicts. "Baby boomers, who suddenly come to realize they are mortal, will hire coaches to help them create lives with more depth, meaning and personal time," he says. "For younger folks Generations X and Y and the Millennium Generation there's likely to be a natural comfort with coaching as a more egalitarian and holistic route to a healthier life than can be found in more traditional, hierarchical, helping relationships."

Coaching is already evolving in the direction of broadly defined health enhancement. Ten years ago, coaching was largely still a business perk for CEOs who wanted to boost their profit margins; today, perfectly ordinary people are seeking out coaches to help them pump up their creativity, lose weight, increase their emotional intelligence, learn to meditate, attract a life partner. Ben Dean, Ph.D. 



Melissa L. Thornton, MBA, LMFT
Marriage and Family Therapist
Personal and Professional Coach 


5 Poplar Street, Trumbull, CT 06611 
24 hr. confidential voicemail and FAX: 203-268-5437
802 Back River Road, Boothbay, ME 04537
24 hr. confidential voicemail and FAX: 207-633-6566

HOME / Psychotherapy / Personal Coaching / Professional Coaching / Alpha Female / FAQs Presentations / Websites / AccomplishmentsHEAVEN / Self-Assessment / Bold Colorful Life /  Bold Colorful Life Retreats
The Maine Adventure 
Contact Melissa
/ Related Links / Bulletin Board 

Website Design and Maintenance: Melissa L. Thornton, MBA, LMFT             Copyright 2002      Last Updated: 09/15/2010