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Health-Based Coaching: The Many Dimensions

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 Toxins

Toxins are very important when we (as health-based coaches) survey the sources of health—and the sources of both our client’s injuries and their illnesses. There are several different kinds of toxins. First, there is a cluster of toxins known as “neurotoxins“. These toxins are substances that alter the structure or function of the nervous system. There are also environmental toxins: including cancer-causing chemicals and endocrine disruptors. They are both human-made and naturally occurring—and can harm our health by disrupting sensitive biological systems. Finally, there are toxins that are often not recognized – at least by those engaged in environmental advocacy. These are toxins that we are labeling: “cultural toxins.” These are the unhealthy interpersonal conditions that exist in our workplace and community. There are also “political toxins” As citizens, we rely on the leadership of our governments (local, state and federal) to protect us from irresponsible parties polluting our environment.  We are often disappointed in the policies and protective actions taken in this regard.

 

The Mind-Body-Spirit Connection:

Plotting New Directions for Health-Based Coaching

The field of professional coaching grew directly out of several different psychologically-based human services – in particular career counselling, leadership development and organization development. It is not surprising, therefore, that health-based coaching is aligned with and makes extensive use of many psychological principles and strategies. It is even more the case when we come to recognize that physical health as well as mental health is deeply immersed in psychology—especially the interweaving of emotions, cognition and physiology.

Revolutions in the field of neurobiology are now closely aligned with (and complement) a comparable revolution in the field of cognitive psychology – mind meets brain and body. We see this alliance in the brief description we offered earlier of the biopsychosocial perspective on health.  We also see this alliance operating in the close relationship between health-based coaching and the engagement of three other human service strategies: psychotherapy, biofeedback and (the newest of the psychologically-founded strategies) neurofeedback. We will briefly touch on each of these.

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