Spiritual Director or Life Coach?


I've just turned 21, and I have been a college graduate since December who has been unable to find employment for the past 5-6 months. During this time, I have been gaining a greater understanding and appreciation of the Priesthood and Married Life. With that said, I feel slightly immbolized in processing what the next step in my life should be. I don't know where my focus should be: Employment (What and Where), Dating (Finding a Spouse), perhaps pursuing a call to the Priesthood or Religious Life (Which I feel neither hot or cold about).

I'm trying to figure out whether I need a Spiritual Director or a Life Coach (or Counselor)

Since one of my potential options as a young male is Priesthood or the Religious Life, logic would suggest I get a Spiritual Director. It would benefit me in discerning whether that is God's calling for me or not. It could also help me in improving my prayer and spiritual life, which is not great, but improving, albeit slowly. At the same time, I don't feel particularly called to the Priesthood or the Seminary, especially for the right reasons and/or motivations. I know part of me wondering whether I should consider the Priesthood is becausing I've struggled to find employment, which isn't exactly a good reason, but I also know that if I was employed that I would have more distractions preventing me from discerning the Priesthood at all.

On the othe side of things, I know my other option is to be a working man and perhaps have a Family, so logic would suggest I should get some sort of "Life Coach" to help me with my struggles to being employable and figuring out my career options, dating, and being more sociable and less prone to anxiety. Part of my problem in feeling unable to pursue either Vocation is that I feel completely unprepared or ready for either. I neither feel comfortable or feel I would fit in well at a Seminary or in Dating someone seriously and considering Marriage. I also can't really pursue either at this time because I haven't been a convert for 3 years yet until this August (Priesthood), and I certainly can't consider Dating or Marriage being unemployed. On the other hand, Counseling can be expensive, (my insurance doesn't cover it I think) and it doesn't necessarily help with my Spiritual Life which may or may not be the key to figuring everything out.

I guess it is easy to summarize that I am not sure what I really "need" at this point and was hoping some of you who are older and wiser could make some suggestions. I've considered going to my Diocese's Vocations Director to ask this question, but I have not pulled the trigger on that because I know Vocations Directors Jobs are more focused on helping folks who are seriously considering the Priesthood.This may not be the right post in the Vocations Sub Forum, but at the least I'd like to figure out whether Spiritual Direction is appropriate for me at this time in my life or not.

Thanks in Advance:)


I’m pretty sure that spiritual direction is appropriate for any interested person at any time- it sounds as if it would really help you.


I underscore what Phoooiee has said. A spiritual director/spiritual direction is for any person at any time and always highly recommended at any time - not only if one is contemplating religious life or the priesthood. A spiritual director (if one has not yet established one's call in life) can be a gift in discerning to what God may be inviting in life which is the essence of vocation and call.
A good spiritual director is a great gift.
After identifying a potential spiritual director and making an appointment, you could then discuss with him/her your "Life Coach" questions. This director may be able to undertake this role as well as spiritual direction per se - or he/she may not. Our spiritual life cannot be divorced in any way from any content of or in our lives including our relaxation and recreation.

I've considered going to my Diocese's Vocations Director to ask this question, but I have not pulled the trigger on that because I know Vocations Directors Jobs are more focused on helping folks who are seriously considering the Priesthood.

I think possibly the Vocations Director is focused on the priesthood, but it seems to me that you COULD/MIGHT be a candidate for the priesthood/religious life but unsure at this point - hence I would be contacing the Vocations Director, explaining your dilema and asking advice. Were it me, I would be making an appointment with the Vocations Director and have a talk face to face. However you could write a letter, email or phone. Letters, emails or phoning do not always reach who one wants to reach, whereas an appointment will. I am pretty confident that if the Vocations Director cannot help he/she will be able to direct you to someone who can help. Ideally anyway.

God bless




I hope you see this soon as I just discovered your post.

First, everyone can benefit from a spiritual director. They aren’t just for those considering religious life.

Second, you can also have a counselor if you like, such as a career counselor from your college/university. Those services are usually free or low-cost.

Third, I am also an adult convert (it’s been one year) and remember that religious life, married life, and single life are all vocations. If you don’t feel called to the priesthood or married life, then live out your vocation as a single, celibate individual. That is what I do. While I am open to the possibility that God has called me to a different vocation, I am actively discerning religious life as a sister or simply as a member of a secular institute.

There are a lot of options out there for you to live out your faith. Just don’t get too overwhelmed and start with the career office at your school and your parish priest. If nothing else, the parish priest can either be your spiritual director or suggest one for you!


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It sounds like spiritual direction would benefit you the most. If you need something else, your spiritual director will help you discern that. If you’re lost as to where your life is supposed to go next, spend time in prayer and attending daily Mass (when possible) and ask God to help you find what you’re supposed to do next.


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