The coach's oath

The Coach's Oath

June 04, 20249 min read

You know how in the medical field people must take the Hippocratic Oath - accordingly to Wikipedia, the Hippocratic Oath is "an oath of ethics historically taken by physicians, it is one of the most widely known of Greek medical texts. In its original form, it requires a new physician to swear, by a number of healings gods, to uphold specific ethical standards. The oath is the earliest expression of medical ethics in the western world, establishing several principles of medical ethics which remain of paramount significance today. These include the principles of medical confidentiality and non-maleficence."

Well, I think it's about time we have something similar in the coaching industry.

I felt called to write this post after posting on my IG Stories my take on what is my duty as a coach. I got so many amazing responses - so let's make it be a long and lasting form content.

Let's start with defining what a coach is, and what a coach isn't.

What is a coach?

The ICF - International Coaching Federation - defines coaching as "partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspired them to maximize their personal and professional potential. The process of coaching often unlocks previously untapped sources of imagination, productivity, and leadership.

We all have goals we want to reach, challenges we're striving to overcome and times when we feel stuck. Partnering with a coach can change your life, setting you on a path to greater personal and professional fulfillment."

I like to think that a coach is always a coach and something else...

A coach and a teacher: your coach will also teach you new skills, knowledge and strategies.

A coach and a mentor: your coach will also mentor you and draw from her personal experiences.

A coach and a consultant: your coach will also do some of the work for you.

A coach and a healer: your coach will also support you in your healing process.

[In case you're wondering, I'm a mix of coach, teacher and healer]

Why the need for a Coach's Oath?

Coaching is a highly unregulated industry, and for the past few years, coaches have been making claims that they cannot backup, have engaged in predatory behaviors, and engaged in techniques that are unsafe for some clients.

When a coach try to fit everyone in the same mold - the mold of what worked for them, what worked for past clients, or even mold that they were taught to use - it can be very damaging for clients.

Considering this state of affairs in this unregulated industry, it feels like having a coach oath as a north start and guidance in ethics is needed. Especially for clients to be able to discern which clients will be the best for them.

The things that I've seen, heard of, and experienced in the coaching industry have been a mix of awe inspiring sh*t and deep rage.

If you've been walking on the same side of the internet streets and I have, you might have encounter a few kind of coaches:

The "Lifestyle" Coach: what they are selling you is their lifestyle without context. Preaching that is possible to run a business making 7-figures working 4 hours per week. Without the context of: all the years that they worked full time and the team that they currently have supporting them.

The "Nightclub" Coach: I love those ones - they are PURE LUXURY AESTHETIC. You can see them sipping champagne flying private, in cabanas, pools, etc. They ALWAYS have the classic Channel bag. They are similar to the Lifestyle Coach in terms that they are selling their lifestyle. What they fail to show you is all the BTS of their business or, even more jarring, all the debt they accumulate to portrait this lifestyle.

The "IYBIYYNTI" Coach: If You Believe In Yourself You Need To Invest. I dread those ones. They can be pushy and they generally shame their clients and potential clients into buying their programs. You can see them making very polarizing and elitist comments and doubling down. They think they are "edgy", when in reality, they are privileged bullies.

The "TITOW" Coach" This Is The Only Way. They really believe that there is only one road to Rome. They are, generally, very aggressive and inflexible with their frameworks. They believe that there is just one way to be successful - and it's their way. They tend to ignore and bypass any sort of societal, cultural or neural diversity.

The "Braggalicious" Coach: Now, there is nothing wrong with bragging about your - and your clients - accomplishments. But it's weird when your entire brand is "me" centered and about how amazing you are. How you are the best. You are better than everyone else. And then... you fail to deliver. [And most likely will blame the client for lack of results].

The "YSYITC" Coach: You Said Yes In The Contract. This is the coach that does not understand consent. They will share your stories - regardless if you feel comfortable with them or not; they will assume consent for any techniques, subconscious word, or spiritual practices just because you signed the dotted lines.

The "JBEM" Coach: Just Be the Energetic Match. Those coaches are all about flow, lack of structure, and "vibes". They generally say that people pay them to be in their "energy" and that all the problems can be solved if you're just "high vibe". Oh! And they tend to tell their clients not to use all the calls, or all the resources they have together.

And then... you have the "Real Deal" Coach: This is a real coach. Which has flavors of coach, mentor, healer and, perhaps, consultant. They are a real coach who their priority when working with you is YOUR SUCCESS.

What is the "Coach's Oath"?

What I'm proposing is very simple, it's an oath were we, as coaches, are first and foremost committed to the success of our clients. It is about being a vessel for transformation, for alchemy, for growth. It is holding a safe and brave space for our clients to heal and to express themselves.

It's not about the vanity metrics. It is not about what it's perceived, or what is expected from us [or them].

A real coach is a gift, a calling, and a skill. A coach is someone that is forever curious, that their curiosity leads their path to alchemy. They are not afraid of the shadow, of the work part of the work.

If I'm to get a little bit more mythological, I'd like to call the Coach's Oath, the Hekate Oath.

Who the heck was Hekate?

Hekate. or Hecate, is the goddess of Magic, Witchcraft, the Night, Moon, and Ghosts. I'd like to think of her as the master alchemist. She lights the night - she is often depicted holding two torches. And other times having 3 faces.

The reason why I like to bring this mythological approach is: Hekate represents what a lot of people fear: their shadow and their own power. At the same time, she lights the way for the quest.

As a coach, we are the guide to the journey - we will support our clients, light the way, to challenge them and to nurture them. It's our duty to present the keys to alchemy, to transformation, to evolution.

Let's get to the "meat" of the Oath:

I can't promise that all coaches will follow this oath, but this my code of Ethics as a coach, this is what you can expect from me when working together:

  • Your privacy is important: if there is any part of your story you're not comfortable sharing with the world - anonymous or not - it won't be shared. Some things feels like so cool to share - like client's that were able to pay off debt and pay themselves a multiple 6 figure salary. If you're still healing from a worthiness wound, let's say, your story will not be made public.

  • Consent: A lot of the work I do is connected with our subconscious mind. It's my duty to ask for your consent every single time we do work together. It's not because you said yes once that I'll expect you to say yes every single time.

  • I show options, you choose the best route: For anything, from releasing limiting beliefs to a money management system - I'll show you options of paths we can go. You choose one or none of them.

  • You will always have the power: I'm all for self-empowerment. I cannot magically make you feel empowered, but it's my duty to ensure that I'm not taking the power away from you.

  • Protection: I'll share my preferred methods for protection and energy clearing. Again, it's all about you having the power and being able to feel confident, safe, and comfortable in your own skin.

  • I will challenge you: I'll ask you stirring questions, I'll challenge your current status quo. I'll challenge your self concept and model of reality. Do expect to be a bit uncomfortable. We can only grow when we step outside of our comfort zone.

  • There is no rush: You'll set the timing - I'm not here to bulldozer through traumas, beliefs, and ways of being. It is safe to be you. And it's safe to evolve. This is not a competition. Transformation can happen as fast or slow as it needs to be.

  • Your safety always come first: Your physical, mental and spiritual safety will never be at risk. This is what will be consider first. If we need to partner with other professionals and experts, this will be done.

  • There is no guaranteed results other than deep transformation - if you're willing and ready to do the work: I don't make any income claims or guaranteed results. Why? Because every single person that works with me has different goals. It's not my job to tell you what your goal should be. Additionally - I'm your guide, real transformation will come if you are willing - and ready - to put in the work: the shadow work, the inner child healing work, the releasing and healing work, the energetics work and the "work work" - the strategy and the action. You are the only one who can change yourself.

I know that this oath will evolve with time. But for now, this is all the things you can expect from working with me - and that you can consider requesting from any other coach.

If you're interested in learning how I can support you in building solid foundations in your business and life so you can have more creative freedom, you can learn about my services here and connect with me on Instagram and TikTok.

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Gigi Bier

Gigi Bier is a mindset, business and wealth coach who supports creative entrepreneurs in building businesses that supports their life, following her methodology of 95% mindset work and 5% strategy. Gigi has supported dozens of entrepreneurs achieve financial freedom and live out their most successful life.

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