Why My Cat Would Make a Terrible Life Coach


Are our cats mentors? Yes, sometimes. Wise teachers? Sure. Annoying and cute at the same time? Often! Life coaches? Probably not. Even though there may be times when you’re tempted to turn to your cat for a session of life coaching…don’t do it! You’ll be sorry.

What is life coaching, anyway?

Need a little motivation? Need help reaching a particular goal? Need help transitioning through something in your life? Those are things a life coach can help you with. There are life coaches, too, that specialize in all kinds of ways. You can get a life coach to help you lose weight, or a life coach that will help with money, or even a coach that works specifically with writers or creative people. The field is humongous! I’ve done a little of it myself — both been coached and have been a life coach. It’s fun and rewarding. But hiring your cat as a life coach — resist!

First of all, why would you turn to your cat for life coaching?

They’re cheaper. Yes, life coaches can get pricey! Your cat, however, is free. But — is she? There are hidden costs when you engage in life coaching with your cat. She will Make You Pay.

So here’s why not to hire your cat as a life coach, even if she could save you money! These imaginary conversations will quickly show you why life coaching with your cat could go south in a real hurry.

First, for context, here’s how a conversation with a human life coach might go. Notice that the life coach lets the client set the agenda, and meets the client “where they’re at.” Don’t expect that from your cat!

Coach: What’s on your mind today?

You: Darn, I’m really struggling with this last 10 pounds. I just cannot get rid of it.

Coach: Say more about that.

You: Well … I feel so heavy and tired. All the time. And I feel like I have the weight of the world on my shoulders. Yes. I feel like I’m carrying a huge burden.

Coach: Stand up. Now breathe for a few moments. Now … put a shape to that burden. What does that burden look like? Smell like? How heavy is it?

You: Describes burden …

Coach: Leads client through visualization, possibly of burden slipping off shoulders.

A coaching conversation with a human coach could go many ways. With your cat, it’s more likely to go one way.

A Coach is supposed to follow the client’s agenda — your cat has her own agenda.

Cat: So what’s on your mind today?

You: Darn, I just really want to lose these 10 pounds and am having a hard time.

Cat: Maybe you’d lose the weight if you spent more time playing with me!

You: Hey, you’re supposed to ask me to tell you more. You’re supposed to care.

Cat: And furthermore, what about my weight? Can’t you see that I am way too thin? Oh, yes! Bring on the pellets, now! Better yet, crack open a can. Don’t be stingy!

You: I feel a total lack of support.

Cat: It’s a tough world!

A coach is a good listener — your cat is distracted.

Cat: What’s on your mind today?

You: Well, I’m having a hard time pinpointing it. I just feel like I need to make a change. But I don’t know what the change is. There’s something, I know it.

Cat: Hey, there’s a mouse behind that door. Gotta pounce now!

You: Wait? I want to tell you more. I need time to talk. To think!

Cat: Later! crunch. Here’s a mouse present.

A coach is in service to the client — your cat is in service to herself

You: I’m having a real problem with money. There never seems to be enough of it.

Cat: I’ll say. My food portions have gotten smaller and smaller!

You: No, seriously. I don’t have enough money. I feel like I’m being frivolous.

Cat: You are! Spend more on me and all will be fine. Trust me!

A coach has to be “in the moment” — your cat is in the moment, too, but it’s her moment.

Cat: Let’s dance with the possibilities here, shall we?

You: Huh?

Cat: Come on. That’s what coaching is, right? Being in the moment?

You: Well yeah, but it’s supposed to be my moment.

Cat: Who said? I’m the coach.

You: OMG, that reminds me of the time my mother ranted at me and said, “I’m the mother!”

Cat: Leave your mother out of this!

As you can see, life coaching with your cat could be a pretty rough experience! Nothing like having your cat “go for your jugular” when you’re feeling the most vulnerable. So do yourself a favor. Resist the urge to engage your cat as a life coach — you’ll both be happier.

Has your cat coached you? Tell us in comments!

More about cats, motivation, and life coaching:

About Catherine Holm: Told that she is funny but doesn’t know it, accused of being an unintentional con artist by her husband, quiet, with frequent unannounced bursts into dancing liveliness, Cat Holm loves writing about, working for, and living with cats. She is the author of the cat-themed memoir Driving with Cats: Ours for a Short Time, the creator of Ann Catanzaro cat fantasy story gift books, and the author of a short story collection about people and place. She loves to dance, be outside whenever possible, read, play with cats, make music, do and teach yoga, and write. Cat lives in the woods, which she loves as much as really dark chocolate, and gets regular inspiration shots along with her double espresso shots from the city.

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