7 Reasons why Coaching doesn’t need no stinkin’ Insurance

No Insurance, Fantastic


7 Reasons why Coaching doesn’t need no stinkin’ Insurance

“Opportunity will always meet you exactly where you stand.” –Bryant McGill

Recently I had a discovery session with a potential new client and the all too common question came up, “Will my insurance cover our sessions?” I always feel like I slip down into a dark cavernous pit of shame when clients ask me this question. The short answer is no, coaching is not covered by insurance.

The next question invariably is why. Logically you would think that coaching is a round-about, scenic route, well-being form of therapy and it should fit into the guidelines of therapy but it doesn’t. Finding a place for coaching in the healthcare system is like navigating a mine field. There is no true road map for coaching beyond the coach becoming a certified coach. Warning: Always make sure the coach you work with is ICF (International Coaching Federation) certified.

So here is the plain text answer to why coaching is not covered by insurance…..

Think of coaching like an interior decorator. The construction of the house is in place and now we need to make the inside as beautiful and unique as the outside.

According to the ICF and Eric Harris, J.D., Ed. D and my coaching ethics instructor, “Coaching is defined as an on-going professional relationship that helps people produce extraordinary results in their lives, careers, businesses or organizations. Coaching is aimed at helping clients discover their goals for self-improvement, define specific action steps and strategies for reaching these goals and then enabling, empowering the client, through regular meetings with the coach to achieve these action steps and overall goals. Coaching assumes the client is the expert in his/her life and work and that he/she is a generally well-functioning person. Coaching helps maximize personal development and navigate transitions in the client’s life.”

Although coaching is a specific psychological/mental health distinction, it is not covered by health insurers. Coaching is considered a choice. Just like there is no health insurance coverage for taking a vacation or buying an outfit or getting a hair-cut that helps you feel more attractive or self-assured.

According to an article written by Deah Curry, Ph.D., CPC in 2011( www.noomii.com/blog/1928-why-your-health-insurance-wont-pay-for… )

“There are reasons why you wouldn’t want to be diagnosed with a mental disorder in order for coaching to be covered by health insurance. Despite the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPPA) which is supposed to protect privacy of medical records, there are a number of situations in which your records can be accessed or compromised – to your detriment.”

When I signed my son up for therapy with a LMFT a year ago, he had to be diagnosed with a coping disorder by the therapist in order for his sessions to be covered by our insurance. He had an intake session and then he was labeled and then he was granted 12 one hour sessions to be broken up during the course of one year’s time. When those sessions ended there was an outtake evaluation done. Should he need to make use of a therapist again we would have to do this whole process over and now in his medical history it will say that he sought treatment for a coping disorder. The situation with my son was prompted by suggestions from his school counselors and I felt it was enough of a scare for me to go the therapy route. I was not satisfied completely by his therapy session and in the future I would definitely encourage him to seek coaching but only if he is ready to take action on his own and wants to make strides in creating more balance, a better sense of well-being. Coaching says, “When you are ready to face your inner critic, when you are ready to take control of your life transitions, when you are ready to boldly move forward toward your dreams one step at a time, one breath at a time, I will be here ready to help.”

If you work for a corporation or organization where coaching is part of their human resource offerings please consider taking advantage of this offering. Providing employees with all around mental health wellness is a terrific perk for everyone at that corporation and the results extend well into life outside of the working environment.

There are many reasons to consider coaching regardless of it not being covered by insurance.

1)      In the same vein of the credit card commercial, “Getting right with myself inside and out, priceless.”

2)      It is a fantastic gift you give to yourself that extends far and deep into every aspect of your overall well-being in life and the people in your life.

3)      What you discuss with your coach is up to you. No one fits you into a mold of time or category. Coaching can be for however long you decide. There is no one looking over your shoulder saying, “Times up.”

4)      You attach to you a lifelong cheerleader, life guide, and/or mentor unlike anyone else you have ever known.

5)      The power to take control of your life and your issues; to champion yourself is unlike anything you will ever feel again. A coach can help you not only get to that championship place but help make it permanent.

6)      Confidentiality is number one. Once trust is established be prepared to discover your greatness and all the success characteristics that naturally exist within you.

7)      A coach stands with you in the moment that you are in. Going back into your past is for therapy. Moving forward from where you are is coaching.

Are you ready for coaching?

1)      What would you like to discover, uncover, or move toward?

2)      Coaching can help you get to your most treasured dream, how would that feel?

3)      What would it take to invest in you?

soaring“You have to decide what your biggest priorities are and have the courage, pleasantly, smilingly, nonapologetically, say “no” to other things. And the way to do that is by having a bigger “yes” burning inside.”—Stephen Covey

It’s never easy to choose yourself first. But just like in an airplane when the stewardess instructs the passengers to put the oxygen mask on themselves first in order to then be able to assist others, so does coaching work from that principal. In order for you to be all that you were meant to be everything needs to start with you first, your well-being, your strengths, and your peace of mind.

If you have any questions regarding coaching please give me a call 203-560-3061 or email your questions to lisa@journeyoncoaching.com.


Lisa has been featured in Parent Magazine and in the book Stay-At-Home Mom’s Guide to Making Money by Liz Folger. Please visit her website at www.journeyoncoachingservices.com

Coaching is a great vehicle to help navigate through those sticky tough, tumultuous times of parenting, career and life itself. All it take is a spoonful of sugar. If you would like to see how coaching can supercharge your spirit please call or write to me and let’s discover your creativity and resourcefulness in a judgment free, empowering, uplifting space. Your personal discovery awaits….









“Fake it ’til you make it…”

fake it 001Whispers from my Wallpaper


          Fake it ‘til you make it….

Have you ever heard this phrase? What does it mean to you? I think it takes on different meanings depending on who is applying it. For me it calls to something deep inside, confidence and attitude. It asks me to challenge myself and dare to live “as if…”.

My oldest son is leaving home next month to test his independence and his self-confidence by moving far away from home, away from his safety net, his foundation, his comfort zone. As his mom it is hard for me to come to terms with his decision, but if I step back and put myself in his shoes I can almost taste the excitement of the adventure and feel the energy of ownership of making his own decisions, his own space, and his own time. Who among us doesn’t remember the feeling of wanting to take life into their own hands? He always imagined himself a leader, a doer. He is now faced with faking it ‘til he makes it; to dare and live “as if”; putting on the mask of the person he wants to one day become.

“The thing that is really hard and really amazing is giving up on being perfect and beginning the work of becoming yourself.” Anna Quindlen

And boy oh boy is it ever hard work to become yourself. Are you even there yet? Can you remember when you were little and dressing up for Halloween? The costume you chose, whether to be a superhero or a princess? Each costume came with a mask or make-up that allowed you to transform into the idea of who you wanted to be. Can you remember what you felt like once the mask and costume were in place? There was a sort of empowerment, ownership of this imagined you. Maybe grown-ups didn’t really believe who you were imagining yourself to be but you felt encouraged to go on and be your Batman self or your Little Mermaid self. You would never know that the grown-ups could see right through because they always greeted you as if you were the superhero or the princess. You were emotionally invested in the persona. Faking it at a young age gave you the freedom of your imagination and creativity to keep on putting on masks and trying them out as you got older. What stuck? What did you ultimately believe about yourself?

Emotions play a big role in all of our life pursuits. Emotions are our fuel. In his book, Happier, Dr. Tal Ben-Shahar writes, “Emotions cause motion; they provide a motive that drives our actions; emotion, motion, motivation are intimately linked.” It is absolutely emotion that is driving my son to seek his independence and declare his abilities to himself and the world. Whenever I try to talk to him about this big step he gets emotional just trying to talk to me. It is emotion that drives the idea of “fake it ‘til you make it.” It is with emotion that we chose the costumes that we did when we were little. Emotion feeds our determination to conquer whatever we choose to do in life.

I have to wonder what his personal questions were:

1)      What motivates me to consider this move?

2)      What is the opportunity?

3)      Who do I need to be in order to become who I want to be?

The philosopher and founder of American Psychology, William James believed that  ”acting a certain way could make you feel that way.” In the thought processes of “fake it ‘til you make it” that is exactly the case. Hundreds of experiments have proved this theory correct. For example, a Clark University study showed that smiling, whether on purpose or naturally induced, made people feel happier. Try this experiment when you don’t really feel like smiling, smile wide and hold for 20 seconds. Take notice of how you feel during the experiment and at the end. Keep trying it and you will start to believe in the emotional effects of smiling.

Perhaps you are not taking a leap of faith and going out to conquer the world in the way my son has decided to do. Perhaps you are or will be a new college graduate and wondering what now? We live in tough economic times and finding a job in your field of study is not easy. You may and probably will have to take a job way outside of your degree in order to start paying back those student loans. Will you fake it ‘til you make it? Will you have the self-confidence and positive attitude to push forward no matter what? What mask will you choose to wear so that people outwardly will believe in who you are trying to become inwardly, but more so that you will start to believe in who you are trying to become? In every job experience you will have you will always need to ask yourself these questions:

1)      What gives my life a sense of purpose?

2)      What do I enjoy doing?

3)      What am I good at?

Answering these questions might guide you toward a calling or help you get through each phase of your life in general. Staying true to who you are and how you answer these questions will always lead you to doing good work. You might not yet know the answers to these questions because you are about to test them all out in the real world. Fake it ‘til you make it. Try on different masks and costumes until you find what fits.

DO smile always. People are attracted to smiling people.

DO stand up straight and tall and proud whether you feel like it or not. People will believe in your inner strength if they see it outwardly.

DO contribute where and when you can. Talk to people and be part of conversations. Make an effort to believe that you have something to say because you know what, you do have something to say, you do have worth and substance; you are enough.

DO know that you are not alone. There is a world full of people faking it until they make it; practicing to become the person they want to be.

DO know your own strengths. Take time to discover all the great success characteristics about yourself. It will empower you to smile more, stand taller and contribute endlessly.

DON’T hide in corners or find distractions like using your cell phone too often in social situations. Make people see that they matter to you and you will matter to them. People like to feel validated (and so do you).

DON’T gossip. Don’t tell tall tales and don’t talk about others behind their backs.

Dr. Ben-Shahar writes, “Happiness at whatever level, does not require a constant experience of ecstasy nor does it require an unbroken chain of positive emotions. To be happy, we have to feel that, on the whole, whatever sorrow, trials, and tribulations we may encounter, we still experience the joy of being alive.” There was pure joy in wearing those costumes so long ago. There can be joy in allowing life to be the teacher now. Putting on the fake it ‘til you make it mask has a more positive impact on the overall experience.  Despite feeling frustrated or let down by not getting that all important job in your field of study right away, smiling anyway, choosing to take each experience for all it’s worth goes a long way to help you and everyone around you believe that you are right where you should be. I know that my son will have no choice but to fake it ‘til he makes it because as far as the real world is concerned he is a newbie and at the same time doesn’t want his inexperience to shine brighter than his determination.

At the University of Rochester, researchers gave subjects an unsolvable problem. Those people that folded their arms in a stubborn pose persevered twice as long as the people that did not display any body language. A study in Singapore revealed that clenching your fist powers your willpower. Try some experiments to see if you can empower yourself to get through some tough moments.  Turn your have-to situations into want-to situations by readjusting your confidence and your attitude. Live “as if” this is exactly where you want to be, “as if” you are experiencing exactly what you hoped to experience. How we perceive the work we do, how we perceive the situations we are in matters more than the work or the situation. My son perceives his life’s journey to be in a different location from where he grew up, with different people surrounding him and influencing his perspective. He is approaching this with zest and humor and courage. What more could a mom ask for?

“Every thought you produce, anything you say, any action you do, it bears your signature.” – Thich Nhat Hanh

What thoughts will you produce? What actions will you take to make your moments uniquely you? Will you smile anyway, will you laugh anyway, and will you allow for gain in the experience? What words will you say to start living “as if…?” What about you will you allow to bear your signature? Fake it ‘til you make it and enjoy the ecstatic experience. Journey On…


If you would like to explore how coaching can help move your life forward powerfully and purposefully, email Lisa for a complimentary 30 minute coaching consultation at: lisa@journeyoncoaching.com

Journey On Coaching Services would like to extend condolences to the victims and their families of the tragic Boston Marathon Bombing. I encourage all my clients to give to the American Red Cross or any charity in support of a stronger, happier, healthier America.