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How Automation and Wearables Could Play a Role in Coaching

Today, I’ll be talking with Rob Scott, founder of Fundamental Shift LLC, about the role automation and wearables may have in the future of coaching. Some of these ideas seem a little far out at first, but not once you consider recent tech developments!

Automation and Wearable Tech in Coaching

Ruthie: Rob and I are going to talk about how automation and wearable tech can play a role in coaching. I was a little surprised when you recommended this subject to me, Rob. I can’t say that I’ve consumed a single thing that connects this tech and coaching. Have you seen automation play a role in coaching? 

Rob: AI and automation is advancing pretty rapidly, and there’s a growing concern that transportation-type stuff will go away with time, like driving. And 10 years ago, I would’ve thought things like coaching would be one of the last things to get innovated out because there’s such a personal element to it. I’m starting to doubt that. 

Enabling Better Coaching Through Tech

Part of my job is to be a bit of a lie detector; not that somebody is consciously lying to me, but a lot of times we’re lying to ourselves. Let’s say I may be sensing something in the pupil. I might notice a breathing pattern, a quickening heart rate that I can’t really see, but there’s a bit of an intuition because I’ve become hypersensitive to that.

If you add AI and tech in there, somebody is wearing a heart rate monitor. Somebody could actually see the pupil dilation. Somebody could see blinking rates. You could have a coaching dialogue with something that would know very quickly that what you just said wasn’t true.

Every coaching and psychological technique that’s ever been could be right at the ready. 

Coaching in Your Ear

Additionally, if I’m wearing headphones and I have a Siri-level friend hanging with me, watching my behavior, I could get immediate, real-time coaching in my ear. Like, “Hey, you don’t want to eat that. Don’t forget your calories today.” That can obviously be really scary and invasive, but there could be ways to convince people that it’s incredibly helpful.

There’s a therapy app where you can get connected to a therapist and if you don’t like them, you can request another therapist. 

For years, I thought the work that I did was so personal that I would have to do it one-on-one forever, and I had a big epiphany about what it would be like to do this in a group. Could I protect their privacy, but have them share things with me?

So through doing some of it on a site where they can privately message me and also coach in front of a group, everybody else can see a pattern. People are getting to see, “Oh, we’re all doing this.” And it becomes true for them much more quickly than if I just did it one-on-one with them. They learn it much more deeply because of that group-level scale. 


We already have things like Wearable, AI, and automation. You can set a reminder from an app to habituate something. I think we’re going to see phenomenal innovations in those fields.

I’m already talking to people to look through recordings of thousands of hours of my coaching, analyze it for trends and patterns, and how could we make it some type of a smart system. I can’t say that it’s coming especially soon, but that’s going to be happening in the near future.

The Power of Social Pressure

Ruthie: Like you said, the app dings, but I would be way more committed if I knew that the app wasn’t just dinging for me, but it was also letting my coach know how I’m doing. Like if you try to deviate from your diet, the person that you’re paying to help you lose weight will see that.

Rob: You’re talking about the power of social pressure. For example, part of the problem of becoming an entrepreneur all by yourself is that no one’s looking. You can play games and pretend you’re super busy, but not actually do anything so you don’t have to go out there and fail.

You can stay in your little bubble where you feel like you’ll be a success one day. But as we can start to add social pressure in, we’re held to a different standard. It won’t just be an app that doesn’t know anything and nobody cares. It’s going to lead to some report that somebody else is going to see and that you’re going to have to be accountable to. 

Ruthie: Because the app’s not going to be disappointed in me. 

Rob: Oh, it will. I’m already friends with Google. I’m like, “Hey, read that Wikipedia article. Thanks!” It’s my best friend during this COVID lockdown. 

Ruthie: That’s true. When I did my fitness competitions, everybody knew I was doing it. They saw my giant lunchbox. They were like, “Oh, we know that Sergeant Bowles was working out before PT because she’s just like that.”

So I knew I couldn’t just quit a competition at the last second unless I broke my leg or something. What was I going to say? I’m in the army, I’m a staff sergeant, I’ve got Soldiers! And I’m just gonna tell them it was too hard?! 

Rob: Exactly. I’m with my friend. There’s COVID. He’s at his house, I’m at my house, and we’re both trying to work out and do things. We started taking screenshots of what our stats are. We’re holding each other accountable.

We’re cheering each other on when it’s a win and going, “Hey, what happened? There are too many donuts.” When it goes the wrong direction. 

What’s Your Current Main Focus?

Ruthie: You’ve given so much value here. So I’d like to kind of get an update on you and what you’re focusing on this year, in terms of the programs that you’re trying to put out there. Where are you focusing right now that people can take a look? I’m sure more than one person is going to be curious. 

Rob: If you want to know more about me, my home website is You can find the podcast and all the other stuff there too. If you’re specifically interested in identity shifting, you can go to and check that out. 

Identity Shifting Will Be Primary

I’ve developed many standalone, digital products over the years that are really helpful. However, my focus this year is to dial it back and make the identity shifting the primary thing. In the past, it’s been a 6-week breakthrough program, which is delivering all these benefits that I’ve shared in these talks. 

Wake Up and Grow Up Over 12 Months

What we’re doing this year is based on the idea that there’s both “wake up” and “grow up”. What I mean by that is you can have a meaningful, permanent epiphany in the moment; a new idea can be so profound that it truly changes you, but life also occurs.

More challenges are on the way. We’re seeing that in the complexity of our life right now, with COVID and the racial stuff going on, it’s almost like the world keeps coming. So we’re changing this to deliver that breakthrough heavily upfront in the first quarter, but I’m going to continue to support people through an entire year.

You can have this “wake up”, and then apply it across all the dimensions of your life. That’s what I would call “grow up”. 

I can take a depressed person and through a conversation and turn them happy. There’s no path to happiness. You can be happy right now if you just change your meaning-making in the moment. But I can’t turn you into a concert pianist, billionaire, or entrepreneur right now.

So there’s a wake up into a different sense of self, but then there’s the application of that over time and to get the results that you want. So we’re putting that together. 

I’m deeply excited about it because we’re adding some really cool stuff. And we’re going to get to have a longer relationship with everybody and go very, very deep. People still get that breakthrough right up front, but I get to hold their hand for a longer period of time and get them even more results. 

Ruthie: That sounds great! It sounds like a smart business model. By the time the program has wrapped up and you’ve gone through that wake up and grow up, you’ll look back a year from now and you’ll be completely different. 

Rob: People don’t realize how focused they are on one thing. You may really be focused on business results, and you can get those very, very quickly.

Then four months later you have a serious relationship issue. I want to be there to go, “These things still hold. Let me show you how to apply it here.” And then some health-related issue comes up. A family member becomes. I want to be able to hold that at least that long, and continue to be there for them after that. But I just really want to systematize a whole thing where they can just keep growing throughout. 

Where to Find More of Rob’s Content

Ruthie: So where can people follow you? Where can they go and consume more of your content, outside of your website? 

Rob: I’m on all the platforms. You can find me on Facebook and I’m @realrobscott on Instagram. 

Ruthie: Well, thank you so much for joining me today. I’m very excited about getting your interview series out into the world. I think people are going to get a lot of value out of it. Thank you so much. I hope this upcoming year on your new program set up works out fantastic for you! 

Rob: This has been my pleasure. Thank you so much.