Fake Research on Coaching

Charles Smith January 14, 2016 7
Fake Research on Coaching


Based on decades of informal, unverified, and unscientific observation, the checklist for obstacles to Effective Coaching (EF) includes:


      Belief addiction disorder.      Believing in things that don’t work.

      Victim addiction disorder.        Stuck in victim mode     

      Performance addiction disorder.     If you can’t measure it, it doesn’t exist

      Hierarchy addiction disorder.     Having to have hierarchy up and down

      Possibility deficit disorder        Never see Possibilities

      Possibility addiction disorder      So many possibilities you can’t decide

      Explanation addiction disorder      Excessive unnecessary explanation

      Dysfunction addiction disorder.    Can’t stand having things work

      Fear addiction disorder         Needing to be afraid

      Identity addiction disorder        Stuck in who you think you are  

      Measurement addiction disorder.    Excessive need for certainty

      Yes addiction disorder        Having to say yes

      No addiction disorder       Having to say no

      Cognitive dissonance disorder   Need to be confused

      Inquiry avoidance addiction     Obsessive need to know

      Profit addiction disorder.          Profit is God

      Arrogance addiction disorder        Self importance always wins

      Control addiction disorder.          Never not Dominate

      Adrenaline addiction disorder.       No Rush, No Existence

      Relationship addiction disorder      Feeling unloved or unworthy

      Having to be nice            Soft is always better

      Having to be severe          Hard is always better


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7 Comments on "Fake Research on Coaching"

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Kerryn Griffiths

Am I missing something? I don’t understand the point of this article… is it meant to be funny and I’m not getting the joke?

Charles Smith


Addicts are not coachable until they hit rock bottom. Then sometimes, they become coachable at least for a while and sometimes, they take themselves on in a sustainable way.
With many of the obstacles to effective coaching, I often suspect that the dysfunction itself has become addictive.

My habit is to make a joke out of something I don’t know how to address reliably, I meant to be funny and meant to be not funny.

The article ought to be longer to tell a story in depth.


It’s not funny, but wry. I do get your point, though. Signs you would benefit from coaching are dissatisfaction with where you are in your life’s story and a resolve to get there no matter what it takes. The above list sometimes holds people back – there is an underlying pay-off to remaining in those addictions (think it’s called secondary gain). If were a simple matter to uncover this secondary gain, then the client insights and subsequent progress are huge. Most often, addictions have roots beyond the scope of coaching. Makes sense to partner with a psychologist for resolving that.… Read more »
Kerryn Griffiths

OK, now I think I get it. We’re not actually talking about addictions, but the underlying patterns we are working with much of the time… and isn’t that the work of coaching and Effective Coaching (EF), as you say, helps us overcome these patterns?

Charles Smith

Thanks Esther,

Years ago, the great therapist Carl Rogers studied most forms of therapy and concluded that healing or fundamental growth was a function of unqualified positive regard by the therapist and had little to do with the nature of the therapy, counseling or coaching.

In home schooling our boys, I learned that what really mattered in their progress came from absolute commitment to their success and a context of love.

Much of the rest is so non linear and paradoxical there is little chance of accessing a quantum reality where magic can happen.


Charlie Smith


I don’t know what the effect of coaching ought to be. For me, it’s transcendence, freedom, escape velocity, fearlessness and ultimately something like accepting that suffering is part of life and we are all Sisyphus. All I control, it seems, is my mood.

Apologies for getting your name wrong the first time.


Dave Schulman

This is a useful and thought-provoking list. I intend to share it with people preparing to be coached. Thanks, Charlie.