World's Leading Life Coaching Research Study | The Coaching Institute

WORLD’S LEADING LIFE COACHING RESEARCH STUDY

Founder of The Coaching Institute, Sharon Pearson has embarked on an important global mission that we would like you to take part in with us! It’s a life coaching research study called: Discovering How to Serve Our Students Even More.

The Coaching Institute is taking a massive step forward in paving the way for the coaching industry.

We are the first life coaching school in Australia to undertake an evidence-based and results-based life coaching research study at this scope and volume, and together we're going to make history!

The research project, Discovering How to Serve Our Students Even More is primarily to help our students with their:

  1. Personal development
  2. Studies
  3. Coaching
  4. Business
  5. Success

Even more than we already do!

The Coaching Institute, and all of the participants of this survey, will also be laying the foundations to improve and elevate industry standards with our study. We are moving into evidence-based coaching and psychologically grounded methodologies through our training & resources.

It’s such an exciting time for us to be able to innovate worldwide coaching research. We’re totally enjoying all of this epic process immensely!

QUESTIONNAIRE SURVEY

As participants take part, they will get to know themselves on a deeper level than ever before. This survey will be completed at their intake, then again in 90 days; 6 months; and 12 months’ time.

Participants can choose to continue to do this every year that they are with us.

This way, we can see and track their progression from the moment that they start their journey with us and throughout their continued learning and growing as they become a life coach.

This also helps us improve coaching research globally.

Someone from The Research Team will discuss all of the gathered results with the participating students, and they get to see them collated in an individual report that will be generated for them.

Students will be able to identify any parts of themselves that they would like to focus on and, as always, we are here to help and support them all the way along their journey.

Later, not only will they know how to do this for themselves, but they will be trained and guided in applying this within their very own coaching sessions when they participate in Advanced Skills and Meta Dynamics™ trainings.

And so, the cycle of helping continues!

Grouped sets of the data of many participants (all anonymous) will be converted into research articles; articles for the public; and used to generate discussion in our community about patterns that we notice to completely eliminate the guesswork previously involved.

This is vital in terms of The Coaching Institute, the training we deliver, and how we can best serve all our students and our community even further with our research.

The research project is made up of 16 psychological questionnaires that are conducted as a survey. These scales are all research-based with so much behind them to back up why we’re using them.

DOMAIN SATISFACTION SCALE

This scale shows the satisfaction someone has with specific areas of their lives (domains) and represents an overall satisfaction with their subjective quality of life.

This can be used in many different ways, such as:

  • Including blank domains and asking the participant to include what they care about
  • Having the participant discuss the optimal amount of satisfaction that they think they should experience in each domain specified

According to Michalos (1985), the surveyor can learn the extent to which objective conditions in a particular area of life match people’s respective needs or aspirations.

The life domain scales most often curated by researchers are job satisfaction, health satisfaction and life satisfaction.

Getting a gauge of these areas can be a helpful way to set a coaching agenda and identify areas of strength and area for development.

It is recommended to open conversations about the participants sources of dissatisfaction, current opportunities, perceived progress and good choices.

Michalos, A. C. (1985). Multiple discrepancies theory (MDT). Social Indicators Research, 16, 347–413.

SATISFACTION WITH LIFE SCALE

This scale shows the overall satisfaction someone has with their life through 5 key statements.

Satisfaction with Life indicates the subjective happiness experienced by a grouped set of individuals.

It was developed to assess people’s satisfaction with their lives as a whole. It allows the respondent to take the statements and integrate and weigh them subjectively in whichever way they relate to them.

This scale works well when used in conjunction with other psychological scales as it assesses an individuals’ conscious evaluative judgement or his or her life by using the person’s own criteria. This then becomes a means for discussion.

Pavot, W., & Diener, E. (1993). Review of the Satisfaction With Life Scale. Psychological Assessment, 5(2), 164–172.

Rituals

MEANING IN LIFE QUESTIONNAIRE

This is a 10-item questionnaire designed to measure two dimensions of meaning in life: presence of meaning (1) or how much respondents feel their lives have meaning and search for meaning (2) or how much respondents strive to find meaning and understanding in their lives.

According to Viktor Frankl,

“Logotherapy focuses on the search for the meaning of human existence” (Frankl, 1958).

“Logotherapy” is the idea that human beings are most motivated by a search for meaning, indicating that the meaning of life is that biggest question on our minds and the biggest stressor on our psyches. Logotherapy aids participants to reach a meaning in life. (Selva, 2019)

Logotherapy posits that:

  1. There is meaning in life
  2. People are motivated by the Will to Meaning
  3. People are free to find their own meaning (Selva, 2019)

In other words, logotherapy is a type of psychotherapy that believes that lack of meaning causes mental health issues, so it attempts to help people find meaning in order to help solve their problems. (Selva, 2019)

Frankl, V.E. (1958). On Logotherapy and Existential Analysis. American Journal of Psychoanalysis 18(1), 28-37.

Selva, J. (2019, October 27). Logotherapy: Viktor Frankl's Theory Of Meaning. Retrieved from https://positivepsychology.com/viktor-frankl-logotherapy/.

ALTRUISM SCALE

Altruism, as defined in the Dictionary, is the “disinterested and selfless concern for the well-being of others.”

This 14-item scale assesses intentions related to altruistic behaviours, with a higher score indicating high altruism.

This scale is used as an indicator of:

  • the helping behaviour in someone
  • their self-consciousness
  • their levels of self-reported altruistic behaviour

It is a useful tool for the coach’s evaluation - and the participant's self-evaluation - and discussion of their altruistic behaviour.

Rushton, P.C., R., Witt, P. and Boleman, C. (2009) Adapted Self-Report Altruism Scale. Cited and adapted by the CYFAR Life Skills Project, Youth Development Initiative, Texas A&M University.

Rushton, P. C., R. (1981). The altruistic personality and the self-report altruism scale. Personality and Individual Differences, 2(4), 293-302.

SOURCES OF MEANING AND MEANING IN LIFE QUESTIONNAIRE

The Source of Meaning and Meaning in Life Questionnaire (SoME) by Tatjana Schnell offers separate scales to measure a positive and a negative dimension of meaning:

  • Meaningfulness – a fundamental sense of meaning and belonging
  • Crisis of meaning – the evaluation of life as frustratingly empty and lacking meaning

Both intercorrelate moderately. SoME measures this through 26 sources of meaning, or subscales.

We learn that meaningfulness predicts positive well-being, but is not predictive of negative well-being.

Crisis of meaning is a strong predictor for both positive and negative well-being in the participant.

Positive indicators represent mood and satisfaction with life, while negative indicators represent neuroticism, anxiety and depression.

This information is vital for a coach in understanding the wants and needs of their client.

Schnell, Tatjana. (2009). The Sources of Meaning and Meaning in Life Questionnaire (SoMe): Relations to demographics and well-being. The Journal of Positive Psychology. 4. 483-499.

RYFF’S PSYCHOLOGICAL WELL-BEING SCALE

Ryff's 42-item, 6-factor Psychological Well-Being (PWB) scale contributes to an individual's:

  1. Psychological well-being
  2. Contentment
  3. Happiness

Psychological well-being consists of positive relationships with others, personal mastery, autonomy, a feeling of purpose and meaning in life, and personal growth and development.

Psychological well-being is attained by achieving a state of balance affected by both challenging and rewarding life events.

Research has shown that:

  • Experiences of daily discrimination are associated with worse wellbeing
  • Adults have better wellbeing when they remember having had supportive and affectionate relationships with their parents in childhood (An & Cooney, 2016)
  • Additionally, multiple studies have found that education is associated with better wellbeing (Ryff, Keyes, & Hughes, 2003; Keyes, Shmotkin, & Ryff, 2002).

Because education is both an indicator of status and a path out of poverty (Card, 2001), PWB may be an important link to mobility.

This information is vital for a coach to understand their client.

SPARQTools. Psychological Wellbeing Scale. Retrieved from http://sparqtools.org/mobilitymeasure/psychological-wellbeing-scale/#42-item-version.

An, J. S., & Cooney, T. M. (2016). Psychological well-being in mid to late life: The role of generativity development and parent–child relationships across the lifespan. International Journal of Behavioral Development30, 410–421.

Ryff, C. D., Keyes, C. L. M., & Hughes, D. L. (2003). Status inequalities, perceived discrimination, and eudaimonic well-being: Do the challenges of minority life hone purpose and growth? Journal of Health and Social Behavior44(3), 275-291.

Keyes, C. L. M., Shmotkin, D., & Ryff, C. D. (2002). Optimizing well-being: The empirical encounter of two traditions. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology82, 1007–1022.

Card, D. (2001). Estimating the return to schooling: Progress on some persistent econometric problems. Econometrica69(5), 1127-1160.

AUTHENTICITY SCALE

Authenticity is essentially being genuine or true.

From a scientific point of view the idea that there is a “true self” and that this self can be reflected in actions and emotions is problematic.

It is difficult, for example, to measure this genuine core and to gauge its distance from the daily experience of life.

Therefore, from a psychological perspective, authenticity is principally about bringing one’s beliefs and actions into harmony: a synthesis of a person’s behaviour with their identity.

There are three primary aspects of measuring authenticity:

  • Self-alienation (knowledge of one’s beliefs, emotions, and purpose),
  • Authentic living (the degree to which a person lives in accord with her values)
  • Accepting external influences (being influenced by the beliefs and desires of others)

You can’t have a high self-alienation score or accepting external influence score and still have an authentic life.

When examining with this scale, the coach only wants to see a high score with the aspect of authentic living.

Biswas-Diener, R. (2010). Practicing positive psychology coaching: Assessment, activities and strategies for success. John Wiley & Sons. 1, 121-122.

BASIC PSYCHOLOGICAL NEED SATISFACTION AND FRUSTRATION SCALE

This scale has 12 items assessing both satisfaction (1), and frustration (2) on a daily basis for factors:

  • Competence (a sense of effectiveness and mastery)
  • Autonomy (a sense of volition and psychological freedom)
  • Relatedness (a sense of intimacy and connection with important others)

Although still in its experimental stage, this assessment of needs was shown to be related in theoretically meaningful ways to daily contextual support of the needs and well-being of the participant.

The extent to which a participant experiences satisfaction with these needs enhances psychological well-being and health, and is said to represent essential nutrients of growth (Deci & Ryan, 2000; Ryan & Deci, 2017).

Chen, B.Vansteenkiste, M.Beyers, W.Boone, L.Deci, E. L.Van der Kaap‐Deeder, J., … Verstuyf, J. (2015). Basic psychological need satisfaction, need frustration, and need strength across four culturesMotivation and Emotion39216236.

Deci, E. L., & Ryan, R. M. (2000). The ‘what’ and ‘why’ of goal pursuits: Human needs and the selfdetermination of behavior. Psychological Inquiry, 11, 227-268.

Ryan, R. M., & Deci, E. L. (2000). Self-determination theory and the facilitation of intrinsic motivation, social development, and well-being. American Psychologist, 55, 68-78.

POSITIVE AND NEGATIVE AFFECT SCHEDULE SCALE

In recent studies of the structure of affect: positive; and negative affect, have consistently emerged as two dominant and relatively independent dimensions.

The Positive and Negative Affect Schedule (PANAS) self-report questionnaire consists of two 10-item scales to measure both of these affects.

A number of mood scales have been created previously to measure these factors; however, many are inadequate, showing low reliability or poor convergent or discriminant validity.

To fill the need for reliable and valid scales that measure Positive Affect and Negative Affect while also being brief and easy to administer, the PANAS scale was created.

From the results you can get a sense of how a respondent truly feels emotionally.

Watson, D., Clark, L. A., & Tellegen, A. (1988). Development and validation of brief measures of positive and negative affect: The PANAS scales. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 54(6), 1063–1070.

ASPIRATIONS INDEX

Aspirations refer to people’s life goals.

The Aspirations Index was developed to assess people’s aspirations, focusing on the relative strength of intrinsic aspirations (meaningful relationships, personal growth, and community contributions) versus extrinsic aspirations (wealth, fame, and image).

Creators, Tim Kasser and Richard M. Ryan ask people to rate the importance of various aspirations or "life goals", and The Coaching Institute are specifically examining how participants respond to the 5 life goals related to community contributions through:

  1. The importance to themselves of each aspiration
  2. Their beliefs about the likelihood of attaining each
  3. The degree to which they have already attained each

Research has revealed that having strong relative aspirations for extrinsic outcomes was negatively associated with mental health indicators; whereas, placing more importance on intrinsic aspirations was found to be positively associated with mental health indicators (Kasser & Ryan, 1993; 1996).

Kasser, T., & Ryan, R. M. (1993). A dark side of the American dream: Correlates of financial success as a central life aspiration. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 65, 410-422.

Kasser, T., & Ryan, R. M. (1996). Further examining the American dream: Differential correlates of intrinsic and extrinsic goals. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 22, 280-287.

ROSENBERG SELF-ESTEEM SCALE

Self-esteem has become a household word. Teachers, parents, therapists, and others have focused efforts on boosting self-esteem, on the assumption that high self-esteem will cause many positive outcomes and benefits— an assumption that is critically evaluated (Baumeister, et al., 2003).

This 10-item scale estimates self-worth by measuring both positive and negative feelings about the self:

  • Self-esteem has a strong relation to happiness, where high self-esteem leads to greater happiness
  • Low self-esteem is more likely to lead to depression (under some circumstances)

Some studies find that high self-esteem leads to happier
outcomes regardless of stress or other circumstances.

Coaches take into consideration these factors when examining participant's responses to the scale's statements with a potential maximum score out of 40.

Rosenberg, M. (1965). Society and the adolescent self-image. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.

Baumeister, R. F., Campbell, J. D., Krueger, J. I., & Vohs, K. D. (2003). Does high selfesteem cause better performance, interpersonal success, happiness, or healthier lifestyles? Psychological Science in the Public Interest, 4, 1-44.

VIA CHARACTER STRENGTHS SURVEY

As part of our research project at The Coaching Institute, we are asking our participants to complete the paper and pen version of the online, scientifically validated assessment of personal character strengths.

This exercise enables you to identify your top strengths, ranking them from 1-5 in how you value them and asking you:

  • Whether this is a real representation of you?
  • Do you enjoy using X strength?
  • Does using X strength energise you?

It goes further, to ask when you use your top 5 and how this usage will help you to succeed.

Here's the link if you'd like to check it out further: https://www.viacharacter.org/ to do the online survey and see the many ways you can use your strengths more often.

STRENGTHS USE SCALE

In this scale, instead of measuring individual strengths, Reena Govindji and Alex Linley have created a measure that asked people to report on their knack for using strengths in general.

Interestingly, they found that strengths use – in the general sense of the word – was associated with:

  • Authenticity
  • Vitality
  • Increased well-being

Not only will this measure provide a general gauge of strengths use, but the individual items can be used for in-depth discussion.

The item “My life presents me with lots of different ways to use my strengths,” for example, begs the client to list these, thereby increasing awareness of potential opportunities and resources.

Govindji and Linley believe it also bears note that in completing the scales, "many participants commented that various questions prompted them to ponder upon aspects of their lives and experiences that they had not previously considered".

A number of participants commented that this was helpful to them in thinking about their future life directions, which could be useful in the coaching relationship.

Biswas-Diener, R. (2010). Practicing positive psychology coaching: Assessment, activities and strategies for success. John Wiley & Sons. 1, 122-123.

GENERAL SELF-EFFICACY (GSE) SCALE

Self-efficacy is the belief we have in our own abilities, specifically our ability to meet the challenges ahead of us and complete a task successfully (Akhtar, 2008).

The General Self-Efficacy Scale is correlated to emotion, optimism and work satisfaction. Negative coefficients were found for depression, stress, health complaints, burnout, and anxiety (Schwarzer, et al., 1995).

While self-esteem is focused more on “being” (e.g., feeling that you are perfectly acceptable as you are), self-efficacy is more focused on “doing” (e.g., feeling that you are up to a challenge).

High self-worth can definitely improve one’s sense of self-efficacy (Ackerman, 2019)

This scale is great way to gauge ways to improve self-efficacy, such as:

  • Giving frequent, more focused and positive feedback
  • Teach specific learning modules that give the student a strategy
  • Establish short-term goals that are challenging but achievable

Ackerman, C. (2019) What is Self-Efficacy Theory in Psychology? Positive Psychology. Retrieved from https://positivepsychology.com/self-efficacy/.

Akhtar, M. (2008). What is self-efficacy? Bandura’s 4 sources of efficacy beliefs. Positive Psychology UK. Retrieved from http://positivepsychology.org.uk/self-efficacy-definition-bandura-meaning/.

Schwarzer, R., & Jerusalem, M. (1995). Generalized Self-Efficacy scale. In J. Weinman, S. Wright, & M. Johnston, Measures in health
psychology: A user’s portfolio. Causal and control beliefs. 1, 35-37.

VALUES SCALE

Your core values are your guiding principles, which determine your choices and behaviour.

Your core values:

  • Tell you what you consider to be important and deeply meaningful
  • Reveal what types of decisions you’re likely to make about what you will do with your time; who you will want to have relationships with; what career you prefer, and what you stand for

Values may change over time. They can can be impacted by:

  1. Your environment
  2. Learning something new which re-orients your priorities
  3. Having a significant event occur

Your values reveal to you what you care about, focus on, give energy to, and experience in your life.

This exercise enables you to identify your top values, ranking them from 1-10.

They are not aspirational words, or how you’d prefer to be. They represent you, and what you stand for, as of this moment.

You can change your values at any time…

Both these exercises provide valuable insights for coaching purposes as well as making decisions personally about what to focus on, care about, and experience in your life.

Based on Mind Tools Content Team. What Are Your Values? Decision-Making Skills from MindTools.com. Retrived from https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newTED_85.htm.

THE FUTURE SCALE

Hope is defined as the perceived capability to derive pathways to desired goals, and motivate oneself via agency thinking to use those pathways.

This scale is a 12-item measure of a respondent’s level of hope.

In particular, the scale is divided into two subscales that comprise: (1) Agency (i.e., goal-directed energy) and (2) Pathways (i.e., planning to accomplish goals).

Researchers can examine results at either subscale level individually or combine the two subscales to create a total "hope" score.

Higher hope consistently is related to better outcomes in criteria such as:

  • Academics
  • Athletics
  • Physical health
  • Psychological adjustment
  • Psychotherapy (Snyder, 2002)

Future research is encouraged in regard to accurately enhancing hope and helping people to pursue those goals for which they are best suited. (Synder, 2002)

Snyder, C. R., Harris, C., Anderson, J. R., Holleran, S. A., Irving, L. M., Sigmon, S. T., et al.(1991). The will and the ways: Development and validation of an individual-differences measure of hope. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 60, 570-585.

Snyder, C. R. (2002). Hope theory: Rainbows in the mind. Psychological Inquiry, 13, 249-275.

If you feel like you’re up for it too then here’s how you can get involved: give the WOW team a call on ‪03 9645 9945 or email us at courseadmin@thecoachinginstitute.com.au for us to be able to get a questionnaire survey out to you!

Our hugest thanks for reading all about this project and to our awesome community at The Coaching Institute! We couldn’t achieve our dreams of improving our curriculum without any of you doing this, so our deepest appreciation!

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