6. Is coaching the same as therapy?

No.   Coaching is not therapy.  Therapy, in this instance for eating disorders, falls under mental health treatment and/or Behavioral Health Services and is a distinct clinical treatment  service . Coaching is a collaborative and co-creative professional support/partnership service that does not diagnose nor provide treatment.

Therapy is a billable mental health service, coaching is not. Therapy provides treatment for psychological, emotional and mental health concerns. It is centered around pathology, process, history and exploration of a person's inner world (the "inside" work), which moves a person from dysfunction to function.  A person comes into therapy looking for relief of emotional pain, to further their self-awareness and knowledge of and treatment for clinical disorders.  

A person comes into coaching typically when they are "stuck" in an area of their life.  They are looking for a professional who is knowledgeable, understanding of the area/s they struggle who can facilitate the process of helping them reach their visions and goals.  Coaching is focused more on the external areas of a person's life (the "outer" realm), typically career, personal or professional development, business, spiritual, health, wellness, etc.  When it is about eating disorders the focus is more on supporting their recovery and not providing eating disorder treatment.

Individuals do not need to be sick or ill in order to access coaching.  They typically desire to move forward in specific areas of their life.  Coaching provides an energizing and empowering level of support, structure, guidance and knowledge. It is a professional service that helps a person make positive changes and move forward in areas of their choosing.

Both therapy and coaching are professional services with distinct standards, licensing/credentialing requirements, and code of ethics followed  those trained in these disciplines.

Over the last 25 years of coaching in the area of eating disorders, I have seen coaching be very   beneficial  for individuals coming out of acute treatment and transitioning back into everyday life.  While that is the most common stage to bring in coaching,  it is not uncommon for a trained, experienced Coach to be brought in during earlier stages of change/recovery.  I often received requests from doctors, therapists and parents asking me to work an individual who has not yet been in treatment or is very early in treatment. At this point, it is crucial that a Coach be experienced in these early stages as well as trained  and knowledgeable of the recovery process journey.