Is the "Coach" Eating the "Counselor's" Lunch?


I have a friend that makes more money than any counselor I know.  She takes her clients on lavish trips multiple times per year to embrace life.  I envy her skills, and her clients seems to love the services she offers.  She is a  life and business coach.  Now, she works from home using only her phone and computer as her office.  Clients pay her up to $200 per hour, and she never gets out of her pajamas.

She is not a therapist, counselor, social worker, or have any other license.  She has no formal training in mental health.  She is simply a person that actively listens to her clients and helps them find "abundance" and "alignment".  Fact is, people line up to receive her services and she reaps the financial and personal rewards of helping others.

So, what is different from coaching and counseling?  A LOT!  

There's not enough space on this blog post to list them all, but I will discuss the main difference I see.  Therapists and counselors are required to follow ethics, laws, HIPAA, etc.; and are required to work by the standards set forth by their governing bodies.  Coaches have the freedom to do whatever they want (good or bad).  Though I truly believe that counselors, through their training and expertise, offer a far superior clinical service, coaches are becoming more and more popular.  

Maybe one of the areas that counselors can improve is by opening up the use of technology to provide therapy services.  By offering clients the freedom of choice, and giving clients the opportunity to avoid the "stigma" of walking into the therapy office, we might find that clients benefit from our services even more.

Just a thought.  Do you think coaches are eating our lunch, or do you see things differently?