I saw this message on social media today and thought it was something worth chatting about:
“Teachers Don’t Make You Learn. Trainers Don’t Make You Fit. Coaches Don’t Make You Rish. At Some Point, You Have To Realize That Other People Can Help You, But Your Growth Is Your Responsibility.”
It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that hiring a coach or a mentor is a magic bullet to success. We look to these individuals as the catalysts for our change, expecting that their input alone will propel us to the next level. But the truth is, their role is to guide, to illuminate paths we might not have seen, and to challenge us to push beyond our perceived limits. The heavy lifting, however, is entirely up to us.
This isn’t to downplay the value of coaches, teachers, or trainers. On the contrary, their support is invaluable. They provide structure, knowledge, encouragement, and accountability. But without our own commitment to apply what we learn, to take the steps necessary for change, and to hold ourselves accountable, their efforts can only go so far.
Now, I want you to think about your current or past mentors and coaches. Reflect on those relationships for a moment—did you place the burden of your progress on them? It’s a common tendency to think, “If I’m not succeeding, it must be because my coach isn’t doing their job.” But this mindset shifts the responsibility away from where it truly belongs: with ourselves. Our mentors and coaches can open doors and shine a light on our path, but we’re the ones who have to walk through and journey down that path.
This reflection is crucial, not just for our own growth but also in how we approach coaching others. If you’re a coach, it’s vital to understand and communicate that while you’re there to support, guide, and motivate, the responsibility for your clients’ progress and success lies with them. This understanding prevents an unhealthy dynamic where clients become overly dependent on their coaches, stunting their own growth and development.
In fact, one of the most empowering aspects of coaching is helping clients realize and embrace their own power and responsibility in their growth journey. It’s about fostering independence, not dependence. This approach encourages clients to develop self-reliance, resilience, and the confidence to take ownership of their decisions and actions.
As coaches, we must be mindful of not taking on the responsibility for our clients’ successes or failures. Our role is to be a catalyst for change, not the creators of it.