85 Coaching Terms Leaders Ought to Know

Imagine you want to reach the top of a mountain but you’re not sure which path to take. A coach is like a guide who helps you find the best way.

In life, coaching is a relationship where one person, the coach, supports and guides another person, often called the coachee, in achieving specific goals or improving certain skills.

Think about it like this: we all have the potential to grow and shine, just like seeds. But sometimes, seeds need a little extra care, water, and sunlight to flourish. Similarly, coaching provides us with direction, feedback, and encouragement, helping us blossom to our full potential.

Whether it’s in sports, work, or personal life, coaching helps us become the best version of ourselves.

Imagine you’re in a foreign country, and you don’t speak the language. Things can get confusing, right? Similarly, if you’re entering the world of coaching, there are some words and phrases that might seem unfamiliar. 

Workshop: Great Coaching Workshop


Coaching Terms

By understanding these terms, you can communicate effectively and make the most of your coaching journey.

Just like knowing a few basic words in a foreign language can make your travel smoother, understanding coaching terms can help you navigate the world of personal development with ease.

So, dive into this glossary, equip yourself with the language of coaching, and be ready to transform your journey to success!


Accountability is a foundational concept in coaching that involves the process of holding oneself or others responsible for commitments, actions, and outcomes.

It emphasizes taking ownership of one’s decisions and progress toward achieving goals. 

Accountability often includes setting clear expectations, monitoring progress, and reflecting on results. Coaches encourage clients to foster a sense of responsibility and commitment, which in turn enhances their self-discipline and determination to follow through on their intentions.

Book: “The 5 Second Rule: Transform your Life, Work, and Confidence with Everyday Courage” by Mel Robbins

Article: “The Power of Self-Coaching and Accountability” by Jef Menguin

accountability partner

Accountability Partner

An accountability partner is a trusted individual, often a peer or coach, who supports someone in staying on track with their goals and commitments. 

The partner helps maintain focus, provides encouragement, and holds the individual responsible for their actions. The accountability partnership fosters mutual growth, as both partners benefit from shared experiences and motivation.


Article: “The Power of Accountability Partners” by Hayley Kraft

Article: “How to Find an Accountability Partner” by Jef Menguin

Action Plan

An action plan is a structured outline that details the steps, tasks, and timeline required to achieve a specific goal. Coaches work with clients to create actionable plans that provide clarity on what needs to be done, how to do it, and when to complete each task. 

The action plan serves as a roadmap, helping clients stay organized, focused, and accountable throughout their journey.

Tool: “SMART Goals” by MindTools

Article: “How to Create an Effective Action Plan” by Jef Menguin

Action Planning

Action planning is the process of developing a detailed strategy to accomplish objectives. It involves breaking down larger goals into smaller, manageable tasks and assigning deadlines to each task. 

Action planning ensures that clients have a clear roadmap for achieving their goals, making the journey more achievable and less overwhelming.


Article: “5 Steps to Effective Action Planning” by Vital Learning

Article: “How do you facilitate reflection and action planning in your coaching sessions?” by Linkedin

Active Inquiry

Active inquiry is a coaching technique where coaches ask thought-provoking questions to encourage deep reflection and self-discovery in clients.

By engaging in active inquiry, coaches help clients gain insights, challenge assumptions, and explore new perspectives. 

This process supports clients in uncovering their values, motivations, and aspirations, leading to greater clarity and informed decision-making.

Book: “Co-Active Coaching: Changing Business, Transforming Lives” by Henry Kimsey-House, Karen Kimsey-House, et al.

active listening

Active Listening

Active listening is a fundamental coaching skill that involves fully focusing on what the client is saying, both verbally and non-verbally.

Coaches practice active listening to comprehend the client’s perspective, emotions, and underlying concerns. 

By actively engaging in the conversation, coaches build rapport, foster trust, and demonstrate genuine empathy toward the client’s experiences.

Read: 10 Ways to Develop Active Listening Skills by Jef Menguin

Article: “Active Listening: The Art of Empathetic Conversation” by Psychology Today


Alignment in coaching refers to the harmony and congruence between a client’s goals, values, beliefs, and actions.

Coaches help clients identify areas of misalignment and guide them toward making choices that are consistent with their core values and aspirations. 

Alignment is essential for personal growth, decision-making, and creating a sense of purpose and fulfillment.


Article: “The Importance of Alignment in Coaching” by Life Coach Hub

Book: “The One Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results” by Gary Keller and Jay Papasan


Authenticity refers to being genuine, true to oneself, and transparent in thoughts, emotions, and actions. In coaching, coaches encourage clients to embrace their authentic selves and explore their strengths, values, and passions. 

This self-awareness fosters a deeper connection with oneself and others, enabling clients to make choices aligned with their true nature.

Article: “The Power of Authenticity in Leadership” by Harvard Business Review

TED Talk: “The Power of Vulnerability” by Brené Brown1


Awareness in coaching refers to a client’s understanding and insight into their thoughts, feelings, behaviors, and circumstances. Coaches help clients develop self-awareness by encouraging reflection and exploration.

Increased awareness enables clients to make intentional choices, break free from limiting patterns, and pursue personal and professional growth.

Book: “The Happiness Hypothesis: Finding Modern Truth in Ancient Wisdom” by Jonathan Haidt

Article: “The Importance of Self-Awareness in Coaching” by

Behavior Change

Behavior change involves modifying actions and habits to achieve desired outcomes. Coaches work with clients to identify behaviors that support or hinder their goals and help them implement strategies to create sustainable change.

Behavior change often requires understanding triggers, developing new routines, and maintaining consistent effort.

Book: “The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business” by Charles Duhigg

Article: “Behavior Change Techniques in Coaching” by Coaching Positive Performance


A breakthrough in coaching refers to a significant and transformative moment of realization or insight that leads to a shift in perspective, behavior, or understanding.

Coaches help clients navigate challenges and facilitate breakthroughs by asking powerful questions, encouraging exploration, and guiding clients toward uncovering new solutions and possibilities.

Article: “Coaching for Breakthrough Performance” by Forbes

Book: “Breakthrough: Stories and Strategies of Radical Innovation” by Mark Stefik and Barbara Stefik

Breakthrough Moments

Breakthrough moments are pivotal instances in coaching where clients experience profound shifts in their thinking, emotions, or behaviors.

These moments often mark a turning point in the coaching journey, leading to increased self-awareness, clarity, and motivation. 

Coaches recognize and celebrate breakthrough moments as they contribute to clients’ growth and progress.

Article: “The Role of Breakthrough Moments in Coaching” by International Coach Academy

Podcast Episode: “The Power of Breakthrough Moments in Coaching” by The Coaching Habit

Career Coaching

Career coaching is a specialized form of coaching focused on helping individuals clarify and achieve their career-related goals. Career coaches assist clients in identifying their strengths, interests, and aspirations, and guide them in making informed career decisions.

They offer support in areas such as career exploration, job search strategies, skill development, and advancement.

Book: “Career Coaching: An Insider’s Guide” by Marcia Bench

Article: “What is Career Coaching and How Can it Help You?” by The Balance Careers


Change in coaching refers to the process of transitioning from one state or condition to another. Coaches recognize that change is a constant in life, and they guide clients in adapting to change, managing transitions, and embracing new opportunities.

Coaches help clients navigate change with resilience, self-awareness, and a growth-oriented mindset.


Book: “Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard” by Chip Heath and Dan Heath

Article: “Navigating Change: The Role of Coaching in Times of Transition” by Coaching Psychology International

Change Management

Change management in coaching refers to the structured approach of facilitating and supporting organizational or personal change initiatives.

Coaches collaborate with individuals, teams, or organizations to plan, implement, and monitor changes effectively. 

They address challenges, provide guidance, and encourage alignment throughout the change process.


Article: “Change Management and Coaching: A Perfect Pairing” by Training Industry

Course: “Change Management Fundamentals” by LinkedIn Learning


Clarity in coaching refers to a state of clear understanding, vision, and focus. Coaches help clients gain clarity by asking thought-provoking questions, encouraging exploration, and guiding clients to articulate their goals and aspirations.

Clarity enables clients to make informed decisions, set meaningful objectives, and take purposeful action.


Article: “The Power of Clarity in Coaching Conversations” by Forbes

Book: “The Power of Clarity: Unleash the True Potential of Your Mind” by Brian Tracy


Coaching is a collaborative and transformative process where a coach partners with a client to facilitate personal or professional growth.

Through open-ended questioning, active listening, and supportive guidance, coaches help clients explore their goals, challenges, and potential. 

The coaching relationship empowers clients to gain insights, develop strategies, and take purposeful actions.


Article: “What is Coaching?” by International Coach Federation (ICF)

Book: “Coaching for Performance: GROWing Human Potential and Purpose” by John Whitmore

Coaching Conversation

A coaching conversation is an interactive and client-centered dialogue between a coach and a client. Coaches use effective questioning, active listening, and empathy to guide clients in exploring their thoughts, feelings, and perspectives. 

Coaching conversations provide a safe space for clients to gain clarity, generate insights, and plan action steps.


Article: “The Art of a Coaching Conversation” by Psychology Today

Podcast: “The Coaching Conversation” by The CoachSource

Cognitive Behavioral Coaching

Cognitive Behavioral Coaching is an approach that combines coaching principles with cognitive behavioral techniques from psychology.

Coaches using this approach help clients identify and modify limiting beliefs, thought patterns, and behaviors that hinder personal growth. 

By challenging and reframing negative thinking, clients develop new strategies to achieve their goals.


Article: “Cognitive Behavioral Coaching: A Practical Framework for Facilitating Change” by ICF

Book: “Cognitive Behavioral Coaching Techniques For Dummies” by Helen Whitten


Communication in coaching involves the exchange of information, ideas, and emotions between a coach and a client.

Effective communication skills, such as active listening, empathy, and clear questioning, are vital for building rapport, understanding client needs, and facilitating meaningful conversations. 

Coaches strive to create a safe and open environment where clients can express themselves authentically.


Book: “Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High” by Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, et al.

Article: “Effective Communication Skills in Coaching” by Mind Tools

Conflict Resolution

Conflict resolution in coaching refers to the process of addressing and resolving disagreements or disputes between individuals or within teams. Coaches help clients develop conflict resolution skills, including active listening, empathy, and effective communication.

By understanding different perspectives and finding common ground, clients can navigate conflicts constructively and foster healthier relationships.


Article: “Conflict Resolution Strategies for Coaches” by Forbes

Online Course: “Conflict Resolution Skills” by Coursera


Confidence in coaching relates to a client’s self-assurance, belief in their abilities, and positive self-esteem. Coaches support clients in cultivating confidence by helping them recognize their strengths, successes, and growth areas. 

Building confidence involves addressing self-doubt, setting achievable goals, and celebrating milestones.


Book: “The Confidence Code: The Science and Art of Self-Assurance—What Women Should Know” by Katty Kay and Claire Shipman

Article: “Boosting Confidence: A Guide for Coaches” by International Coach Federation (ICF)

Creative Problem Solving

Creative problem solving is an approach that involves generating innovative solutions to challenges. Coaches encourage clients to explore diverse perspectives, think outside the box, and tap into their creativity. 

Through creative problem-solving techniques, clients can discover new strategies, overcome obstacles, and approach issues with a fresh mindset.


Book: “Creative Confidence: Unleashing the Creative Potential Within Us All” by Tom Kelley and David Kelley

Article: “Creative Problem Solving Techniques for Coaches” by The Creative Coaching Center

Decision Making

Decision making in coaching involves helping clients make informed choices that align with their values and goals. Coaches support clients in evaluating options, considering consequences, and accessing their intuition.

By enhancing decision-making skills, clients can confidently navigate life’s choices and take ownership of their paths.


Book: “Decisive: How to Make Better Choices in Life and Work” by Chip Heath and Dan Heath

Article: “The Art of Decision Making in Coaching” by Coaching Positive Performance


Development in coaching refers to the continuous process of personal and professional growth. Coaches help clients identify areas for development, set goals, and create strategies to enhance skills, knowledge, and abilities. 

Developmental coaching supports clients in reaching their full potential and adapting to changing circumstances.


Book: “Mindset: The New Psychology of Success” by Carol S. Dweck

Article: “The Role of Developmental Coaching in Leadership” by Harvard Business Review

Emotional Intelligence

Emotional intelligence (EI) in coaching encompasses the ability to recognize, understand, and manage one’s own emotions as well as the emotions of others.

Coaches guide clients in developing EI by fostering self-awareness, empathy, and effective communication. 

High EI supports clients in building strong relationships, making better decisions, and navigating challenges.


Book: “Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ” by Daniel Goleman

Article: “Developing Emotional Intelligence through Coaching” by International Coach Academy

Emotional Regulation

Emotional regulation refers to the ability to manage and control one’s emotions in various situations. Coaches assist clients in developing emotional regulation skills to cope with stress, handle challenges, and maintain emotional well-being. 

Effective emotional regulation leads to improved decision-making, communication, and overall resilience.


Article: “Emotional Regulation: Strategies for Coaches and Clients” by ICF

TED Talk: “The Gift and Power of Emotional Courage” by Susan David

Empathetic Listening

Empathetic listening is a coaching skill that involves actively listening to the client’s words, emotions, and non-verbal cues while demonstrating empathy and understanding.

Coaches create a safe space for clients to express themselves fully without judgment. 

Empathetic listening enhances trust, rapport, and the client’s sense of being heard and valued.


Article: “The Art of Empathetic Listening in Coaching” by Psychology Today

Blog Post: “Mastering Empathetic Listening” by Forbes


Empowerment in coaching refers to the process of enabling clients to take ownership of their actions, decisions, and lives. Coaches help clients recognize their strengths, abilities, and potential, fostering a sense of self-efficacy and confidence. 

Empowerment encourages clients to set goals, overcome challenges, and create positive changes.


Book: “Awakening the Heroes Within: Twelve Archetypes to Help Us Find Ourselves and Transform Our World” by Carol S. Pearson

Article: “Empowerment Coaching: Empowering Clients for Success” by


Feedback in coaching involves providing constructive input, observations, and reflections to clients about their behaviors, actions, and progress. Coaches offer feedback to facilitate self-awareness, growth, and learning. 

Effective feedback is specific, non-judgmental, and delivered in a supportive manner that encourages clients to reflect on their experiences and make improvements.


Article: “The Art of Giving and Receiving Feedback in Coaching” by International Coach Academy

Book: “Thanks for the Feedback: The Science and Art of Receiving Feedback Well” by Douglas Stone and Sheila Heen

Feedback Loop

A feedback loop is a continuous process of gathering, evaluating, and using feedback to improve performance. Coaches guide clients in establishing feedback loops to monitor progress, assess outcomes, and make adjustments as needed.

Feedback loops enhance self-awareness, accountability, and the effectiveness of actions taken.


Article: “Building Effective Feedback Loops: A Guide for Coaches” by Fast Company

Podcast Episode: “Feedback Loops in Coaching” by The Coaching Show


Focus in coaching refers to the ability to direct attention, energy, and effort toward a specific task, goal, or objective. Coaches assist clients in developing focus by clarifying priorities, eliminating distractions, and enhancing mindfulness.

Improved focus enables clients to achieve higher levels of productivity and success.


Book: “Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World” by Cal Newport

Article: “The Power of Focus in Coaching” by The Coaching Tools Company


A goal in coaching is a specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART) target that a client aims to accomplish. Coaches work with clients to define clear goals that align with their values and aspirations.

Goals provide a sense of purpose, direction, and motivation for clients’ actions and decisions.


Article: “Setting and Achieving Goals: A Guide for Coaches” by International Coach Federation (ICF)

Book: “Your Best Year Ever: A 5-Step Plan for Achieving Your Most Important Goals” by Michael Hyatt

Goal Achievement

Goal achievement in coaching is the process of successfully attaining desired objectives. Coaches support clients in planning and implementing strategies to reach their goals.

Goal achievement involves overcoming obstacles, staying committed, and celebrating milestones along the way.


Article: “The Science of Goal Achievement in Coaching” by The Harvard Business Review

Online Course: “Goal Setting and Goal Achievement” by Udemy

Goal Alignment

Goal alignment in coaching refers to ensuring that an individual’s goals are in harmony with their core values, beliefs, and life purpose.

Coaches help clients identify goals that are congruent with their authentic selves, fostering a sense of fulfillment and satisfaction. Goal alignment guides clients in making purpose-driven choices.


Article: “The Importance of Goal Alignment in Coaching” by

Article: “Creating Alignment between Goals and Values” by ICF

Goal Clarity

Goal clarity in coaching involves defining goals with precision and detail. Coaches assist clients in articulating clear, specific, and well-defined goals that leave no room for ambiguity.

Goal clarity enhances focus, motivation, and the likelihood of successful goal achievement.


Article: “The Power of Goal Clarity in Coaching” by Forbes

Tool: “Goal Clarity Worksheet” by The Coaching Tools Company

Goal Review

Goal review in coaching refers to periodically evaluating progress toward achieving goals. Coaches guide clients in assessing their actions, identifying successes, and determining areas for improvement.

Goal reviews help clients stay on track, make necessary adjustments, and maintain momentum.


Article: “The Importance of Goal Review in Coaching” by InnerLifeSkills Coaching

Tool: “Goal Review Template” by Coaching Tools Company

Goal Setting

Goal setting in coaching is the process of defining specific objectives that clients want to achieve. Coaches assist clients in setting goals that are realistic, meaningful, and aligned with their aspirations.

Effective goal setting provides a roadmap for clients’ actions and guides their progress.


Book: “Goal Setting: How to Create an Action Plan and Achieve Your Goals” by Susan B. Wilson and Michael S. Dobson

Article: “The Ultimate Guide to Goal Setting in Coaching” by Coacharya

Growth Mindset

A growth mindset in coaching is the belief that talents and abilities can be developed through effort, practice, and learning.

Coaches encourage clients to adopt a growth mindset to embrace challenges, learn from failures, and persist in the face of setbacks. 

A growth mindset fosters resilience, continuous improvement, and personal development.


Book: “Mindset: The New Psychology of Success” by Carol S. Dweck

TED Talk: “The Power of Believing That You Can Improve” by Carol S. Dweck

Habit Formation

Habit formation in coaching involves helping clients establish positive behaviors and routines that contribute to their goals. Coaches guide clients in identifying habits that align with their aspirations and provide strategies to develop and reinforce those habits over time.

Habit formation supports consistent progress and lasting change.


Book: “The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business” by Charles Duhigg

Article: “The Science of Habit Formation and How to Use It in Coaching” by International Coach Academy

Inner Critic

The inner critic in coaching represents the negative and self-limiting thoughts or beliefs that individuals have about themselves. Coaches help clients identify and challenge their inner critic’s messages, fostering self-compassion, self-acceptance, and a positive self-image.

Overcoming the inner critic promotes confidence and personal growth.


Book: “Taming Your Gremlin: A Surprisingly Simple Method for Getting Out of Your Own Way” by Rick Carson

Article: “How to Silence Your Inner Critic in Coaching” by


Insight in coaching refers to a deep and sudden understanding or realization that leads to increased self-awareness or problem-solving. Coaches facilitate insights by asking thought-provoking questions and encouraging reflection.

Insights help clients see situations from new perspectives, which can lead to transformative shifts in thinking and behavior.


Article: “Facilitating Insights in Coaching Conversations” by ICF

Book: “The Creative Power of Your Imagination: How to Transform Your Desires into Reality with Hypnosis” by J.W. Gittinger

Interpersonal Skills

Interpersonal skills in coaching encompass the ability to effectively communicate, collaborate, and build relationships with others. Coaches help clients develop strong interpersonal skills, such as active listening, empathy, and conflict resolution.

These skills are crucial for building rapport, enhancing teamwork, and fostering positive interactions.


Book: “Emotional Intelligence 2.0” by Travis Bradberry and Jean Greaves

Article: “Interpersonal Skills in Coaching: Building Meaningful Connections” by Coacharya


Intuition in coaching refers to the gut feelings or hunches that individuals experience, often without conscious reasoning. Coaches encourage clients to listen to their intuition as a valuable source of insights and guidance.

Developing intuition helps clients make informed decisions aligned with their inner wisdom.


Book: “Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking” by Malcolm Gladwell

Article: “The Role of Intuition in Coaching” by Coaching Positive Performance

Leadership Coaching

Leadership coaching is a specialized form of coaching focused on enhancing leadership skills, qualities, and effectiveness.

Coaches work with leaders to develop self-awareness, communication skills, emotional intelligence, and strategic thinking. 

Leadership coaching empowers individuals to lead with impact and inspire positive change in their teams and organizations.

Book: “Coaching for Leadership: Writings on Leadership from the World’s Greatest Coaches” by Marshall Goldsmith and Laurence S. Lyons

Article: “The Impact of Leadership Coaching” by Harvard Business Review

Life Coaching

Life coaching is a broad form of coaching that focuses on guiding individuals toward achieving personal and life-related goals.

Coaches help clients clarify their values, set priorities, and make positive changes in various areas of life. Life coaching supports clients in enhancing their overall well-being, fulfillment, and life satisfaction.


Book: “Co-Active Coaching: Changing Business, Transforming Lives” by Henry Kimsey-House, Karen Kimsey-House, et al.

Article: “What is Life Coaching?” by The Coaching Tools Company

Life Vision

A life vision in coaching refers to a clear and compelling mental image of an individual’s desired future. Coaches assist clients in articulating their life vision by exploring their aspirations, values, and passions.

Creating a life vision provides a sense of purpose and direction, guiding clients’ decisions and actions.


Book: “Creating Your Best Life: The Ultimate Life List Guide” by Caroline Adams Miller and Michael B. Frisch

Article: “The Power of Creating a Life Vision in Coaching” by International Coach Academy

Limiting Beliefs

Limiting beliefs in coaching are negative or self-doubting thoughts that hinder personal growth and progress. Coaches help clients identify and challenge these beliefs, replacing them with empowering and positive perspectives.

Overcoming limiting beliefs opens up possibilities and encourages clients to pursue their goals with confidence.


Book: “Mindset: The New Psychology of Success” by Carol S. Dweck

Article: “Addressing Limiting Beliefs in Coaching Conversations” by ICF


Mindfulness in coaching involves cultivating present-moment awareness and non-judgmental attention to thoughts, feelings, and experiences.

Coaches guide clients in practicing mindfulness to reduce stress, enhance self-awareness, and make conscious choices. Mindfulness supports clients in developing emotional regulation and improving overall well-being.


Book: “The Miracle of Mindfulness: An Introduction to the Practice of Meditation” by Thich Nhat Hanh

Article: “Mindfulness and Coaching: Enhancing Self-Awareness and Presence” by


Motivation in coaching refers to the driving force that propels individuals to take action and achieve their goals. Coaches help clients identify and cultivate intrinsic and extrinsic motivations.

Motivation is crucial for maintaining focus, overcoming obstacles, and sustaining effort toward desired outcomes.


Book: “Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us” by Daniel H. Pink

Article: “The Psychology of Motivation and How It Relates to Coaching” by Forbes

Narrative Coaching

Narrative coaching is an approach that focuses on exploring and reframing the stories and narratives that clients tell about themselves and their experiences.

Coaches help clients recognize how these narratives shape their perceptions and behaviors, allowing them to create more empowering and positive stories. Narrative coaching promotes self-awareness and transformation.


Book: “Narrative Coaching: The Definitive Guide to Bringing New Stories to Life” by David Drake

Article: “The Art of Narrative Coaching” by The Ken Blanchard Companies

Needs Assessment

Needs assessment in coaching involves identifying an individual’s requirements, challenges, and opportunities for growth.

Coaches use various methods to assess clients’ needs, such as questioning, self-assessments, and feedback. Needs assessment helps coaches tailor their approach to address specific client goals and circumstances.


Article: “Needs Assessment in Coaching: A Guide for Practitioners” by

Tool: “Coaching Needs Assessment Questionnaire” by The Coaching Tools Company

Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP)

Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) is an approach that explores the relationship between language, patterns of behavior, and subjective experience.

Coaches using NLP techniques assist clients in enhancing communication skills, changing limiting beliefs, and improving self-awareness. NLP can facilitate personal transformation and goal achievement.


Book: “NLP: The Essential Guide to Neuro-Linguistic Programming” by Tom Hoobyar, Tom Dotz, and Susan Sanders

Article: “Introduction to Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) in Coaching” by International Coach Academy

Non-Directive Coaching

Non-directive coaching, also known as client-centered coaching, emphasizes creating a space where clients explore their thoughts, feelings, and goals without the coach providing solutions or advice.

Coaches using this approach ask open-ended questions, actively listen, and encourage self-discovery in clients. Non-directive coaching fosters autonomy and empowers clients to find their own solutions.


Book: “Coaching Questions: A Coach’s Guide to Powerful Asking Skills” by Tony Stoltzfus

Article: “The Benefits and Challenges of Non-Directive Coaching” by International Coach Federation (ICF)

Open-Ended Questions

Open-ended questions in coaching are inquiries that prompt clients to provide detailed and thoughtful responses.

Coaches use open-ended questions to encourage exploration, self-reflection, and deeper conversations. These questions do not have yes-or-no answers and facilitate clients’ self-discovery and insights.


Article: “The Art of Asking Open-Ended Questions in Coaching” by

Tool: “101 Coaching Questions” by The Coaching Tools Company

Outcome Thinking

Outcome thinking in coaching involves focusing on desired outcomes and results. Coaches guide clients to shift their thinking from problems to solutions by envisioning the desired end state.

Outcome thinking supports clients in setting clear goals, identifying resources, and creating actionable plans to achieve their objectives.


Book: “Results Coaching: The New Essential for School Leaders” by Kathryn Kee and Karen Anderson

Article: “Mastering Outcome Thinking in Coaching” by The Coaching Tools Company

Overcoming Obstacles

Overcoming obstacles in coaching refers to addressing challenges and barriers that hinder progress. Coaches assist clients in developing strategies to overcome obstacles, whether they are internal (such as self-doubt) or external (such as limited resources).

Overcoming obstacles requires problem-solving, resilience, and adaptability.


Article: “Overcoming Obstacles: Coaching Strategies for Success” by International Coach Academy

Podcast Episode: “Overcoming Obstacles and Challenges” by The Life Coach School

Peer Coaching

Peer coaching is a collaborative approach where individuals provide coaching support to each other. Coaches engage in peer coaching to share insights, feedback, and guidance with colleagues or peers.

Peer coaching enhances self-awareness, professional development, and mutual learning.


Article: “The Benefits of Peer Coaching in the Workplace” by Harvard Business Review

Book: “Peer Coaching at Work: Principles and Practices” by Polly Parker and Douglas T. Hall

Performance Coaching

Performance coaching is a specialized form of coaching focused on improving an individual’s professional performance.

Coaches work with clients to set clear performance goals, identify strengths and areas for development, and create strategies for enhancing performance outcomes.

Performance coaching supports individuals in achieving peak performance and maximizing their potential.


Book: “Coaching for Performance: GROWing Human Potential and Purpose” by John Whitmore

Article: “Performance Coaching: Strategies for Effective Results” by International Coach Academy

Positive Psychology

Positive psychology in coaching emphasizes fostering strengths, well-being, and positive emotions in clients. Coaches using this approach focus on helping clients cultivate positive mindsets, enhance resilience, and create meaningful and fulfilling lives.

Positive psychology principles contribute to increased life satisfaction and overall happiness.


Book: “Authentic Happiness: Using the New Positive Psychology to Realize Your Potential for Lasting Fulfillment” by Martin E.P. Seligman

Article: “The Role of Positive Psychology in Coaching” by Psychology Today

Powerful Questions

Powerful questions in coaching are thought-provoking inquiries that encourage clients to think deeply and gain insights. Coaches use powerful questions to stimulate reflection, challenge assumptions, and expand perspectives.

These questions help clients uncover new possibilities, develop strategies, and generate innovative solutions.


Book: “The Coaching Habit: Say Less, Ask More & Change the Way You Lead Forever” by Michael Bungay Stanier

Article: “The Art of Asking Powerful Questions in Coaching” by Forbes

Proactive Planning

Proactive planning in coaching involves creating intentional and forward-thinking strategies to achieve goals. Coaches guide clients in developing action plans that anticipate challenges and outline steps to overcome them.

Proactive planning empowers clients to take control of their paths and respond effectively to changing circumstances.


Article: “The Importance of Proactive Planning in Coaching” by International Coach Federation (ICF)

Tool: “Proactive Planning Worksheet” by The Coaching Tools Company

Professional Development

Professional development in coaching refers to activities and processes that help individuals enhance their skills, knowledge, and competencies in their chosen fields.

Coaches support clients in identifying professional goals, acquiring new skills, and pursuing opportunities for growth and advancement in their careers.


Book: “The Art of Professional Coaching: 50 Skills Every Coach Needs to Succeed” by Christine Wilding and Neenan Windy

Article: “The Role of Professional Development in Coaching” by Training Industry

Progress Monitoring

Progress monitoring in coaching involves tracking and assessing clients’ advancement toward their goals. Coaches help clients measure and evaluate their progress, celebrate achievements, and make necessary adjustments.

Progress monitoring supports accountability, motivation, and continuous improvement.


Article: “The Importance of Progress Monitoring in Coaching” by International Coach Federation (ICF)

Tool: “Progress Monitoring Template” by The Coaching Tools Company


Purpose in coaching refers to a sense of meaning, direction, and alignment with one’s values and passions. Coaches help clients explore and define their life purpose, guiding them toward goals that resonate with their deepest aspirations.

Discovering and living one’s purpose enhances fulfillment and well-being.


Book: “The Power of Purpose: Find Meaning, Live Longer, Better” by Richard J. Leider

Article: “Uncovering Your Life’s Purpose Through Coaching” by Forbes

Questioning Techniques

Questioning techniques in coaching involve the skillful use of different types of questions to guide conversations and stimulate client thinking.

Coaches use open-ended, closed-ended, probing, and clarifying questions strategically to deepen understanding, generate insights, and facilitate meaningful dialogue.


Book: “Coaching Questions: A Coach’s Guide to Powerful Asking Skills” by Tony Stoltzfus

Article: “Effective Questioning Techniques for Coaches” by Psychology Today


Reflection in coaching involves a deliberate process of introspection and self-examination. Coaches guide clients in reflecting on their experiences, thoughts, feelings, and actions.

Reflection supports increased self-awareness, insight generation, and learning from past experiences.


Book: “Reflective Practice in Supervision: A Guide for Supervisors and Practitioners” by Daphne Hewson and Michael Carroll

Article: “The Power of Reflection in Coaching” by


Resilience in coaching refers to the ability to bounce back from setbacks, adapt to challenges, and thrive in the face of adversity. Coaches support clients in developing resilience by fostering self-awareness, enhancing coping strategies, and promoting a growth mindset.

Resilience enables clients to navigate change and difficulties with strength and flexibility.


Book: “Resilience: Hard-Won Wisdom for Living a Better Life” by Eric Greitens

Article: “The Role of Resilience in Coaching” by International Coach Federation (ICF)

Feel free to reach out for more terms or if you have any other requests!


Self-accountability in coaching involves taking responsibility for one’s actions, behaviors, and commitments. Coaches help clients develop self-accountability by setting clear expectations, creating action plans, and tracking progress toward goals. 

Self-accountability empowers clients to stay committed, make conscious choices, and achieve desired outcomes.


Book: “QBQ! The Question Behind the Question: Practicing Personal Accountability at Work and in Life” by John G. Miller

Article: “The Power of Self-Accountability in Coaching” by ICF


Self-care in coaching involves practices and behaviors that prioritize physical, mental, and emotional well-being. Coaches guide clients in cultivating self-care routines that support stress reduction, relaxation, and overall health.

Practicing self-care enhances resilience, self-awareness, and overall quality of life.


Book: “The Self-Care Solution: A Modern Mother’s Must-Have Guide to Health and Well-Being” by Julie Burton

Article: “The Role of Self-Care in Coaching” by


Self-confidence in coaching refers to a positive belief in one’s abilities, skills, and worth. Coaches assist clients in building self-confidence by recognizing strengths, challenging self-doubt, and celebrating achievements.

Increased self-confidence empowers clients to take on challenges, pursue goals, and overcome obstacles.


Book: “The Confidence Code: The Science and Art of Self-Assurance—What Women Should Know” by Katty Kay and Claire Shipman

Article: “Enhancing Self-Confidence: A Guide for Coaches” by International Coach Federation (ICF)


Self-discovery in coaching involves exploring one’s values, beliefs, strengths, and aspirations. Coaches guide clients on a journey of self-exploration to better understand themselves, their motivations, and their life purpose.

Self-discovery promotes personal growth, authenticity, and informed decision-making.


Book: “The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are” by Brené Brown

Article: “The Process of Self-Discovery in Coaching” by Coaching Positive Performance


Self-efficacy in coaching refers to an individual’s belief in their ability to successfully accomplish specific tasks or goals.

Coaches help clients develop self-efficacy by building on past successes, setting achievable goals, and fostering a growth mindset. Higher self-efficacy leads to increased motivation and resilience.


Book: “Self-Efficacy: The Exercise of Control” by Albert Bandura

Article: “Fostering Self-Efficacy in Coaching” by International Coach Federation (ICF)

Self-Limiting Beliefs

Self-limiting beliefs in coaching are negative or restrictive thoughts that hinder personal growth and progress. Coaches support clients in identifying and challenging these beliefs, replacing them with empowering perspectives.

Overcoming self-limiting beliefs unlocks potential and encourages clients to pursue their goals with confidence.


Book: “Mindset: The New Psychology of Success” by Carol S. Dweck

Article: “Overcoming Self-Limiting Beliefs in Coaching Conversations” by ICF


Self-reflection in coaching involves introspection and examination of one’s thoughts, feelings, and experiences. Coaches guide clients in reflecting on their actions, decisions, and reactions to gain insights and self-awareness.

Self-reflection supports personal growth, learning, and behavior change.


Book: “The Reflective Practitioner: How Professionals Think In Action” by Donald A. Schön

Article: “The Role of Self-Reflection in Coaching” by

Strengths-Based Coaching

Strengths-based coaching focuses on identifying and leveraging an individual’s unique strengths, talents, and capabilities.

Coaches help clients recognize their strengths and apply them to achieve goals and overcome challenges. Strengths-based coaching promotes self-confidence, engagement, and positive outcomes.


Book: “StrengthsFinder 2.0” by Tom Rath

Article: “The Benefits of Strengths-Based Coaching” by Gallup

Stress Management

Stress management in coaching involves developing strategies to cope with and reduce stressors in one’s life. Coaches guide clients in identifying sources of stress, practicing relaxation techniques, and adopting healthy coping mechanisms.

Stress management enhances well-being, resilience, and overall quality of life.


Book: “The Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook” by Martha Davis, Elizabeth Robbins Eshelman, and Matthew McKay

Article: “Stress Management Techniques for Coaches and Clients” by Psychology Today

Time Management

Time management in coaching is the practice of effectively utilizing time to accomplish tasks and achieve goals. Coaches help clients develop strategies to prioritize tasks, set boundaries, and create productive routines.

Effective time management leads to increased productivity, reduced stress, and improved work-life balance.

Book: “Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity” by David Allen

Article: “Time Management Strategies for Coaches and Clients” by ICF

Transformational Coaching

Transformational coaching is an approach that focuses on facilitating deep and profound shifts in clients’ beliefs, values, and behaviors.

Coaches using this approach help clients challenge their existing paradigms, explore new perspectives, and make lasting changes that align with their aspirations.

Transformational coaching fosters personal growth and meaningful change.


Book: “Transformational Leadership: Conversations with the Leadership Circle” by Richard R. Boyatzis and Annie McKee

Article: “The Essence of Transformational Coaching” by International Coach Federation (ICF)

Values Alignment

Values alignment in coaching refers to the process of identifying, clarifying, and prioritizing one’s core values. Coaches help clients explore their values and align their choices, actions, and goals with those values.

Values alignment enhances authenticity, decision-making, and overall well-being.

Book: “Values Clarification: A Handbook of Practical Strategies for Teachers and Students” by Sidney B. Simon, Leland W. Howe, and Howard Kirschenbaum

Article: “The Importance of Values Alignment in Coaching” by Coaching Positive Performance


Visualization in coaching involves creating mental images of desired outcomes, experiences, or goals. Coaches guide clients through visualization exercises to enhance motivation, focus, and self-belief.

Visualization techniques support clients in manifesting their aspirations and boosting self-confidence.

Book: “Creative Visualization: Use the Power of Your Imagination to Create What You Want in Your Life” by Shakti Gawain

Article: “The Art of Visualization in Coaching” by International Coach Academy

Well-Being Coaching

Well-being coaching focuses on enhancing various aspects of an individual’s well-being, including physical, emotional, social, and spiritual dimensions.

Coaches help clients set holistic well-being goals, adopt healthy behaviors, and create a balanced and fulfilling life. Well-being coaching contributes to overall health and life satisfaction.


Book: “Wellbeing: The Five Essential Elements” by Tom Rath and Jim Harter

Article: “The Role of Well-Being Coaching in Enhancing Quality of Life” by ICF

workplace learning

Work-Life Balance

Work-life balance in coaching refers to achieving a harmonious integration of one’s professional and personal lives.

Coaches help clients set boundaries, prioritize activities, and manage time to create a fulfilling balance between work, family, and leisure. Work-life balance supports overall well-being and reduces stress.


Book: “The Power of Full Engagement: Managing Energy, Not Time, Is the Key to High Performance and Personal Renewal” by Jim Loehr and Tony Schwartz

Article: “The Importance of Work-Life Balance Coaching” by Forbes

Youth Coaching

Youth coaching is a specialized form of coaching focused on guiding and empowering young individuals to achieve their goals and aspirations.

Coaches work with young clients to build self-confidence, develop life skills, and navigate challenges. Youth coaching supports personal growth and positive development in adolescents and young adults.

Book: “Youth Strengths and Needs: A Guide for Coaching and Mentoring Youth” by Sara Gray and Jessica Hefftner

Article: “The Role of Youth Coaching in Nurturing Potential” by International Coach Federation (ICF)

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