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  • Writer's pictureUnscrambledHeads

My take on certifying organisations

Awarding Bodies

According to Wikipedia, "In the United Kingdom, counselling is not under statutory regulation, and is overseen and supported by several organisations, none of which are officially recognised by the government". It is the same for Life Coaching, Neural Linguistic Programming (NLP), Hypnotherapy and many other coaching and helping disciplines. - Some of these bodies require extensive study including a Bachelor's or Master's degree, and some that do not.

Psychology or similar degrees

To be clear, I am not a member of one of the organisations that requires a BSc or MSc in a related discipline such as Psychology, I do hold a BSc in Business Administration from Aston University in Birmingham which included modules in Psychology and Sociology. Please do not be put off by a lack of a degree in a primary discipline. I believe that there is a place for these bodies, for example, in the case of counselling when being referred by a private health insurance scheme.

Outcome based

But, in practice, my belief is that as long as service is being provided in a safe and ethical environment, where the coach undertakes in-service training (CPD), where the coach has a mentor or pool of mentors, where assistance is client centred, and where positive outcomes are achieved, then that is where the value lies for you.

And, many times, you don't need a wall full of Psychology degrees to achieve those things. Many times, a wall full of certificates proves you can study and learn facts, which is useful, but doesn't guarantee a positive end result. My credentials

For what it's worth, I am registered with Achology, The Academy of Applied Psychology. I have over 300 study hours combined with over 100 hours of practical training. I have also graduated to being a tutor and now co-lead a number of in-service training events.

My testimonials

And, I also have many, many client testimonials, a selection of which are on my Testimonials page.

What would I look for?

From my own experience of being a client of helping practitioners, I have found most to be absolutely excellent, and they have added real value; and then a much smaller number who have been, well let's be frank about it ... "average, at best, and poor at worst" - and they have all been "certified". For me, life coaching, executive coaching and being a helping practitioner is all about connecting with people. If I can't "connect" then I won't be able to help, whatever process skills I have and despite what it says on my certificates.

The importance of connection

I recall one of my 1st ever sessions during my own formal and practical training; I was a practice client for a lady (she is in the USA) and within seconds she had connected with me at a personal level over a video conference session. It was amazing. Before I knew it, she was asking me deep and personal questions that made me explore stuff I hadn't explored before. And, I felt comfortable enough because of that "connection" to let my thoughts, feelings and emotions come out, and for them to be explored. So, for what it's worth, I believe it's about combining a connection, with some skills with a strong ethical foundation.

My advice

My advice to you is: If you are looking for a life coach, helping practitioner or executive coach with related university degrees or a coach who is a member of a government approved certification body, then I totally get it - there are many instances where this is the right path. But, before you decide on which practitioner to go with, have a video conference session with them and make sure you connect. If you don't connect, try another until you do.

Get in touch

And, if my honest opinion above made you think "UnscrambledHeads" sounds like a good option, then reach out and let's talk.

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