The world in 2020 will be on thin ice—both in real terms (accelerating global warming, a US election deepening political tribalism, a hard Brexit, Hindu nationalism in India leading to national fracturing, etc., etc.)—but also metaphorically.
This may be the reason why techniques related to positive psychology and destined to improve our feelings of wellbeing and our ability to make better decisions are gaining so much traction.
Coaching is one of them. According to the International Coach Federation (an industry association), its membership has risen from about 20,000 members in 2013 to almost 34,000 in 2018; while in 2017, the business generated $2.35 billion in the US and $900 million in Western Europe.
Coaching—which finds its origin in positive psychology, therapy and sport—is not strictly categorized as a “wellness” activity, and yet it contributes to the wellbeing of those who benefit from it. According to Carsten Schermuly, a professor of business psychology, coaching “improves the health of people, wellbeing and work satisfaction, performance and self-regulation.” Randomized control tests suggest that coaching also has a “small but significant calming, balancing and responsibility-enhancing effect on personality.”
And, of course, while it’s a concept most applied to career and professional development, all kinds of health and wellness coaches are on the rise, from sleep to nutritional coaches.
Read the recent article in The New York Times, “Resolving to Be Coached,” on the benefits and evidence behind the rise of health coaches—people trained to inspire and motivate people to make behavioral changes through acceptance and partnership.