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Coaching for Better Middos

Source: Hamodia

By Rabbi Eliezer Glatt, MA

September 27, 2012


Is it Possible to Change Our Nature and Character?


As Jews who follow Torah guidance we not only believe that we can change our middos, we believe that we have an obligation to continually improve our middos. Using the “new” techniques taught by the best schools of coaching which provide a scientific and structured methodology we can change behavior and middos. With coaching, a person who wants to improve his or her middos is assisted and can make significant changes to his or her behavior and character. Lecturing others to get them to change often doesn’t work, whereascoaching will be effective much more often.


Torah Obligation to Improve our Middos


Since Jews have an obligation to continually grow in middos, wise individuals have sought – and seek — assistance in this process. Today, this assistance can take the form of coaching. The coaching process helps individuals to evaluate where they are, to clarify their goals, and to find ways to advance and improve their middos. Coaching is used to increase success in all aspects of family life, learning and business.


Coaching, a Skill and Profession Easily Learned by a Frum Jew


Frum Jews have a distinct advantage in learning to be a skillful Life coach. After all, we have mitzvot such as, v’ahavtah l’rayechah kamochah. We can learn from living and past role models who exemplify these mitzvot, such as Gedolei Yisroel and exceptional educators. However today we often don’t have the benefit of enough close shimush of our role models. Fortunately, when a Jew is exposed to the science of coaching, the principles are not new or strange. In fact, many of the students of the Refuah Institute are effectively coaching others only a few months into the course. What students learn fits with what, as Jews, they already know.

Refuah Institute Distance Learning Program, a Great Way to Learn Coaching

Students of the Refuah Institute learn from home utilizing live, fully interactive training. They may attend classes and practicums either audio only conference calls or by video conference according to their personal preference. Refuah’s programs are designed for those who have to balance a busy life of mitzvot, parnassah,learning and family. Students who are in Israel can join the classes on campus in Jerusalem. Either way, they enjoy working closely with the Refuah faculty, staff and students.


Why has the Refuah Program Been So Successful?


Refuah Institute exemplifies the successful use of modern techniques and technology to teach Torah truth and values. By extracting the kosher aspects of psychology and coaching and translating them back into Torah idioms, the Refuah Institute teaches skills that are extremely effective and that do not contradict the values of Torah Jewry. Refuah’s faculty integrates the values of Torah and the science of modern coaching techniques into their own lives. The dean and founder of the Refuah Institute is Dr. Joshua Ritchie, MD. In addition to having semichah, Professor Ritchie’s professional experience includes many years as a professor and practitioner of medicine, and of training graduate students in the art and science of coaching, counseling and Neuro-Linguistic Programming. Professor Ritchie’s coaching methods are a blend of his secular training and his close association with the Amshinover Rebbe, zt”l. As a ben bayis and shamash to the Rebbe, Professor Ritchie was privileged to spend over a thousand hours observing the methods employed by the Rebbe when counseling individuals in yechidus.


Who are the Refuah Students?


Refuah students come from a variety of backgrounds, often including life experience in such areas as education, the rabbinate, shadchanus, kiruv, marriage, parenting, organizational leadership, business and counseling. Graduates of the one-year comprehensive training program receive a Certified Life Coach Diploma from the Refuah Institute and certification as a Professional Coach from the American Association of Professional Coaches (AAPC). Upon graduation, students use their training and credentials to advance their careers in a wide range of organizational and educational settings. Refuah graduates have also developed private practices, often by phone or Skype from home.


Registration is Now in Progress for the Distance Learning Program


The weekly classes begin November 18, 2012. If you feel that coaching may be your calling, contact the Refuah Institute for more information about this exciting opportunity. Tel. 646-395-9613 (USA) or 972-2-5715112 (Israel). Email:, Website:

Refuah Graduates December 2005

I benefited greatly from the Refuah Institute, both personally and professionally. I have improved my personal relationships significantly by incorporating many of the coaching attitudes and perspectives into my daily interactions.


~ Rabbi Yaakov Nussbaum AAPC

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