What is Coaching?

Coaching is a partnership between a professional coach and the client.  Through this partnership a  plan is developed, implemented and altered to ensure the client has the tools necessary to make meaningful and sustainable change in their life.  Coaches assist clients self-exploration and development, identifying support systems, accessing resources,  learning new skills, and developing new coping strategies to establish a healthy and fulfilling life.

What can I expect in my Coaching sessions?

The process will begin with an assessment (including a biopsychosocial evaluation).  Once the assessment phase is completed, coach and client will collaborate in devising a personalized plan for establishing change and meeting goals.  Future sessions will involve goal setting, assessing progress, problem solving, and relationship building.  Typical sessions are 50 minutes long and will involve coach and client.  On occasion family sessions may be necessary, they are typically 80 minutes long. 

Coaching appointments are generally in person appointments, but phone or Zoom appointments can be scheduled as necessary. 

What is the difference between a professional Recovery Coach ( Sober Coach) and a peer recovery coach?

A professional recovery coach is a trained professional with post baccalaureate education and training in working with people in varying phases of recovery.  Professional recovery coaches are not invested in a particular program or model of establishing recovery, rather their goal is to provide support, education, and guidance in navigating the world without the use of substances.  

Peer recovery coaches are mentors in recovery who help people struggling with addiction get into recovery or provide support in sustaining recovery.  Peer recovery coaches have personal experience in recovery, but may not have a formal educational background in the science or psychology of  Substance Use Disorder and recovery. 

How is working with a professional Recovery Coach different than working with a sponsor or sober companion?

Recovery coaches are not affiliated with a fellowship or specific program to support recovery.  Recovery coaches understand that each person has their own path to recovery and believes that the wellness and long-term recovery are achievable.  Inherent to the coaching relationship is the understanding that both the coach and client bring areas of wisdom and expertise.  It is in this relationship of mutual respect and collaboration that change is made.  

Sponsors or sober companions are peers that have demonstrated successful long-term sobriety.  Sponsors and sober companions usually represent a particular fellowship or program and draw from their own experience with sobriety to provide support, encouragement, and friendship while navigating the recovery process.  

What is the difference between Recovery Coaching and Therapy/Counseling?

Recovery Coaches provide specialized support and interventions with the goal of helping clients sustain long-term recovery.  Recovery Coaches work collaboratively with other health, wellness, occupational, and social services in accessing services that may be helpful in building new skills and support structure necessary to establish a meaningful life in recovery. 

Therapy/Counseling is a process in which a licensed clinician (with a masters or doctoral level degree) provides a space to explore emotional or psychological pain.  Therapy/Counseling is based in a medical model and assumes that there is an illness that requires treatment.  Therapists are trained in diagnostics and are therefore equipped to make a diagnosis and provide treatment.  Recovery Coaches and therapists/counselors often work together to support clients in the journey to recovery.  

​​What happens if I relapse while I am meeting with my Recovery Coach? 

Relapse can happen when one has a Substance Use Disorder.  The role of a recovery coach is to assist in devising a plan to avoid a future recurrence of symptoms and exploring what lifestyle factors led to the relapse, and assist the client in devising a strategy  to re-establish recovery. This can include a referral to a medical or mental health provider who specializes in addictions, detox, treatment, or sober fellowship.

How many sessions of Recovery Coaching  will I need?

Every client is different and therefore it is impossible to offer a set number of sessions any one person will need.  However, most clients meet with their Recovery Coach once a week  for three to a year after establishing recovery.  Research suggests that support for the first year after addiction treatment is essential to maintaining sobriety, and that the chance of establishing  long-term recovery are improved with the use of  on-going recovery based interventions for two years post treatment.