FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
The Coaching Process
The first step is to complete some initial paperwork (an assessment) so that I know you and I are a good fit and I can meet your needs.
If I approve your application, we schedule a complimentary 20-minute consultation, either in person or via Zoom. I assess your opportunities and challenges, define the scope of ecospiritual life coaching and the coaching relationship. We discuss your broad goals for the coaching, which package best works for you, and scheduling. Based on this session, I prepare a Coaching Agreement, if and when you decide to move forward.
Next, you review the Coaching Agreement. The agreement includes your priorities for action and initial desires outcomes.
If the agreement is amenable to you, you sign it, make your payment, and we move forward!
Based on the Agreement, we continue with 1-hour coaching sessions. Some sessions may need to be longer in order for us to use specific tools, so we will make arrangements accordingly.
Between scheduled coaching sessions, I may ask you to complete specific actions in support of the goals listed in your Agreement, or new ones that come up during sessions. I will often share additional resources that will be useful to your personal/professional growth, such as relevant articles, assessments, rituals, personal activities, checklists, or models to support your thinking and actions.
Sessions will take place in person (in my Baltimore office) or outside, if you wish, keeping in mind the level of privacy you may need and desire. I also offer sessions virtually, via Zoom. Most clients prefer to have sessions once a week.
How long you wish to continue the coaching relationship will vary on your coaching package and your needs and preferences.
Glossary of Terms
What is Ecospirituality?
What is Ecospiritual Life Coaching?
Please see my definition here.
What is the Living Earth?
According to geo-ecologist and environmentalist Stan Rowe, the “Living Earth” means that Earth carries a vitalizing essence or animating principle (“Life”) that differentiates it from the “life” of organic things alone. Planet Earth exhibits “aliveness” in its cycles of organic construction and “deadness” in its cycles of inorganic/organic deconstruction (like decomposing plants). These processes have developed within and dependently on Earth’s air/water/land ecosystems. Rowe describes these as “geoecosystems” because they are specific to particular bioregions and other places. Thus Earth, the Ecosphere, and its geoecosystems have been the evolutionary source and purveyors of “Life”–from the beginning of time.
As Rowe states:
When the miraculous quality “Life” is located in Earth and its geoecosystems, a realistic foundation is established for a new kind of extra-human ethics: Ecological Ethics or Ecospheric Ethics. The axiom that creative Earth is primary and organisms secondary does not devalue people as such, but it moves the focus of their responsible actions from the narrow social level to the more encompassing ecological level.
Read more here.
What is Earth Grief (aka Climate Grief, Ecological Grief, Solastalgia)?
Earth Grief — also known as climate grief, ecological grief and solastalgia — describes feelings of grief, pain, depression, hopelessness and anxiety related to ecological loss. Increasing global warming and failures of planetary ecosystems, the loss of beloved landscapes and a stable climate, and the death of species by the millions are leaving emotional, spiritual and psychological tolls on humans around the world.
In his book Earth Grief: The Journey Into and Through Ecological Loss, Stephen Harrod Bunner describes this complex emotional state defines it Earth Grief as:
… our feeling response to a communication from the heart of the Earth, urging us to take a path, and engage in a work, that is quite different from the one our species has taken/engaged in the past two thousand years. We are being called, individually and collectively, to reinhabit our interbeing with the world.
Buhner, the award-winning author of 24 books on plant medicines and Earth ecosystem dynamics, emphasizes that Earth is a scenario, not a place. Because we are embedded in the Earth, we feel when Earth moves/communicates/changes. He writes:
And a crucial part of the problem we face is that for the firest time in the history of human habitation of Earth, we, as a species, have decided to ignore this truth about the liviness and intelligence of Earth– something that all of us once knew as children and that all ancient and indigneous cultures knew/know as well.
I highly recommend Buhner’s book. Please look for it in your local bookstore or you can order online.
How is Coaching Different from Therapy, Consulting, Mentoring & Training?
My response is borrowed from the International Coaching Federation:
Professional coaching focuses on setting goals, creating outcomes and managing personal change. Sometimes it’s helpful to understand coaching by distinguishing it from other personal or organizational support professions.
Therapy: Therapy deals with healing pain, dysfunction and conflict within an individual or in relationships. The focus is often on resolving difficulties arising from the past that hamper an individual’s emotional functioning in the present, improving overall psychological functioning, and dealing with the present in more emotionally healthy ways. Coaching, on the other hand, supports personal and professional growth based on self-initiated change in pursuit of specific actionable outcomes. These outcomes are linked to personal or professional success. Coaching is future focused. While positive feelings/emotions may be a natural outcome of coaching, the primary focus is on creating actionable strategies for achieving specific goals in one’s work or personal life. The emphases in a coaching relationship are on action, accountability, and follow through.
Consulting: Individuals or organizations retain consultants for their expertise. While consulting approaches vary widely, the assumption is the consultant will diagnose problems and prescribe and, sometimes, implement solutions. With coaching, the assumption is that individuals or teams are capable of generating their own solutions, with the coach supplying supportive, discovery-based approaches and frameworks.
Mentoring: A mentor is an expert who provides wisdom and guidance based on his or her own experience. Mentoring may include advising, counseling and coaching. The coaching process does not include advising or counseling, and focuses instead on individuals or groups setting and reaching their own objectives.
Training: Training programs are based on objectives set out by the trainer or instructor. Though objectives are clarified in the coaching process, they are set by the individual or team being coached, with guidance provided by the coach. Training also assumes a linear learning path that coincides with an established curriculum. Coaching is less linear without a set curriculum.