INTRODUCTION: The objective of this exploratory qualitative study was to examine the experience of persons living with type II diabetes who participated in a health coaching intervention. METHODS: The researchers used a qualitative phenomenological hermeneutic research design to explore the experiences of people undergoing health coaching for self-management of their diabetes. RESULTS: Qualitative data analysis resulted in three themes that best described participants' experience of health coaching for diabetes: (1) "the driving force," which described how health coaches helped clients to find powerful motivators for change; (2) "I'm not a child," which described how people wanted to be treated by the health coaches; and (3) "meeting the inner coach," which described how health coaches helped clients develop their own inner wisdom. DISCUSSION: The participants' descriptions of coaching challenge a more traditional paradigm of expert-driven and information-laden diabetes education practices. The findings suggest that the process of health coaching may help persons with diabetes become confident self-managers of their diabetes.
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