Setting achievable goals and developing a plan to reach them is a stepping stone for self-development, productivity, and wellness. At the beginning of the year, some of us feel a boost in motivation as we turn to a fresh page in the calendar. It is important to utilise this motivation in a productive and health-oriented way.
Reflecting on what was missing last year from our lifestyles and the habits we would like to introduce (or re-introduce) can help us plan our wellness goals.
But how do we get motivated and kickstart wellness goals and healthy habits?
If you want additional support and advice on your wellness journey, you can consider working with a health coach.
What does a health coach do?
A health coach works to support and empower clients to achieve their health and wellness goals. They look at the individual using a holistic approach. Health coaches can advise on diet and exercise planning, but they can also manage other vital factors that play a significant part in getting, and staying healthy. This can include stress, sleep and even time management.
Health coaches work with clients to cover a broad area of issues. For example, a health coach can help with weight loss, stress reduction, or management of chronic health issues, among many others. They aim to help busy people identify their health goals and learn how to prioritise their well-being while making wellness goals feel attainable and feasible. Because of that, the changes put in place and the results achieved are more likely to be sustained in the long run. A health coach also acts as a sponsor to keep the clients motivated and hold them accountable.
More often than not, we know what we have to do to achieve our goals but the system we have in place, namely our habits, may need to be aligned with these goals. Changing habits can be easy with the right support, and this is where many find working with a health coach impactful.
What is the difference between a health coach and a nutritionist?
While both professions deal with helping individuals achieve healthier lifestyles, the scope of work varies between them. The area of speciality and the approach taken are also unique to their field. Nutritionists are experts with respect to food and diet, and they will assist with advice on what to eat, what supplements to take, and how to devise meal plans.
The health coach, on the other hand, takes a holistic approach and looks not only at the food we put on our plate but also the other factors that nourish our well-being. They focus on goal-setting, use coaching tools to create self-awareness, help with behavioural change and hold the clients accountable. Who you choose to work with very much depends on where you are in your journey to health and what issues you would like to tackle!
In summary, health coaches:
- Partner with their patients to identify health and wellness goals.
- Work alongside a functional medicine practitioner to give patients a more comprehensive support system.
- Help patients make lasting lifestyle and dietary changes to prevent and reverse chronic health conditions, through increasing self-awareness and working on behaviour change.
- Educate patients on topics related to health and wellness.
- Support, motivate and hold patients accountable for reaching their goals.
Help at OT&P
Our clinic provides a wide range of functional medicine services that can help explore many factors that affect our health and wellness.
1. Australian Journal of General Practice (AJGP) 2019. Health coaching as a lifestyle medicine process in primary care. [online] Available at: <https://www1.racgp.org.au/ajgp/2019/october/health-coaching-as-a-lifestyle-medicine> [Accessed 12 January 2021]
2. Harvard Health Publishing. 2020. Health coaching is effective. Should you try it? [online] Available at: <https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/health-coaching-is-effective-should-you-try-it-2020040819444> [Accessed 11 January 2021]