Your client has just been diagnosed!
Your client has just been diagnosed! Here is how you can support
No one plans to become ill or have to cope with a medical condition and that goes for our coaching clients as well.
But when a coaching client has just been diagnosed with a health or medical condition that too needs to addressed I the coaching sessions.
Here are 5 things your client needs to do and YOU the coach can support:
- Finding the Right Medical Allies. Medical allies are healthcare practitioners (HCPs) that your client has a relationship of trust with both on a professional and personal level. Make no mistake – this can, literally, make the difference, between life and death.
In order to find the right medical allies, the client needs to know what is his/her definition of a Medical Ally.
The Medical Coaching approach: create a model/profile for the desired medical ally. These questions can help:
- How do you need your Healthcare Practitioner to be with you?
- What values are you looking for in a Healthcare Practitioner?
- Have you had a Healthcare Practitioner that was a medical ally? If so what qualities did he/she have?
- What are the things you are not willing to accept from your HCP?
- Understanding the diagnosis and the relevant treatment options
As coaches, we want to help our client shift from a reactive state of mind to a proactive one. To this end, it’s important to encourage our clients to become experts in their illness and how it behaves in their body. When they step into that power they can become a part of their own medical team and establish a collaborative model of communication and work.
The Medical Coaching approach: becoming proactive is directly connected to the client’s self-esteem and inner sense of worth.
Identify the core values that are connected to the client’s inner identity, reevaluate the belief system around these issues and updated the relevant limiting beliefs.
- Knowing the medication. Knowledge is power and empowered people to make responsible decisions about their lives and their health.
The Medical Coaching approach: reframing the medication’s role in the client’s life from “Medication” to “Resource” and creating a behavioral system that will support the client’s learning process and adherence.
- Finding and/or Becoming an Advocate. Getting the best care can be a struggle, finding an advocate to help the client cope with the medical system and navigate through it saves the client energy, time and money.
The Medical Coaching approach: shifting into team awareness and perspective.
Use perspective work to help the client identify people that can be advocates. These can be family members, friends, neighbours, colleagues, charities, other patients, patient associations etc.
If the client has previous experience with teamwork, use that as a reference.
- Preparing Emergency Plans. Emergencies can happen and sometimes things go wrong. That is why it’s important that the client has a contingency plan.
The Medical Coaching approach: strategy building and crisis management.
- Your client can use the experience of the medical team as well as other people with the same condition to define possible emergencies and identify relevant solutions.
- Create simulations with the client to test the contingency plans.
- Notice the emotional aspects of these possible emergencies and clear the stressors.
- Once a contingency plan is in place it’s important that the client makes the environment is aware of it.
If you found this useful share it with someone else that can benefit from it.
Master Medical Coach
CEO of MCI – the Medical Coaching Institute