A Coaching Model Created by Susan Porter
(Transformational, UNITED STATES)
My coaching model has been inspired by a picture called The Paths of Life. This picture illustrates the many paths in life that can be taken and the destinations the choices made can take you to. It explains that life is a journey of pathways, upon which you have choices. Simply by taking a different path on the journey of life it can offer pathways of endless opportunity.
This coaching paradigm has been produced to guide the coaching process. It is intended to be a living document, and evolve over time. Its processes and methods will be evaluated, validated and improved continuously The P.A.T.H coaching paradigm is based on a transformational process.
What Does P.A.T.H. Stand For?
Before examining the P.A.T.H. coaching model, let us define the words POTENTIAL, ACTION, TRASFORMATION and HAPPINESS.
In the Oxford English Dictionary the definitions are:
A few years ago we inherited a family picture called The Paths of Life, which was drawn in the early 1800’s by my husband’s great great grandfather. This shows the various paths an individual can take through the journey of life and the variety of experiences on the way.
The concept of this picture has always fascinated me and gave me the inspiration to build my coaching model. The start of the journey on this picture is Parental Care Home and the final destination is Peaceful Ocean. Depending on which choices you make while taking the journey from Parental Care Home to Peaceful Ocean you can experience various desirable locations such as Trustworthy Place, Cheering Spring, Content Manor and Thankful Heart Road, whilst other choices will take you through the not so desirable Bad Man’s Land, Sinking Sands and Bottomless Pitt! None of us can change the final destination of life, however how we reach that destination and what experiences we have on the way is of our own choosing.
It is important to be aware of our final destination and know that it is inevitable that we will reach it. However the more important factor is how we experience this journey, with whom we walk it and at what speed. The same path walked with a different person could create a change to the locations seen and offer experience and endless opportunities. Simply turning right instead of left can result in amazing and phenomenal new life experiences. Just by exploring a different path we can encounter all the POTENTIAL it may offer, take ACTION that may be supported by your values and beliefs, experience the TRANSFORMATION that can take place and revel in the HAPPINESS it can provide.
The Process Of P.A.T.H
It is a very individual and personal process that is full of POTENTIAL, ACTION, TRANSFORMATION and HAPPINESS, in a shared and safe environment. No two paths are ever the same or travelled in the same manner. A variety of coaching tools will be used during this process depending on my Client’s needs and requirements.
The first path to explore is POTENTIAL. People choosing to use a Life Coach to become the best they can be exude POTENTIAL. The experience of Life Coaching has the POTENTIAL to take a person from the ordinary to the extra-ordinary. Before stepping on the path of POTENTIAL with my Client, I ensure that a confidential and trusting environment has been created, remembering at all time that my Client is the expert in knowing what is best for them. My Client will be offered a discovery session, in which we explore their purpose for wanting to start a coaching partnership, what they want from it and what they want to achieve. A coaching agreement is created informing them of what is expected from them and what they can expect from me. This agreement also advises them of their responsibility for their actions.
As the journey begins along the path of POTENTIAL, I will ask powerful questions of the Client that may take them outside the box, questions that will encourage them to consider and evaluate, to create structures and maintain accountability. With empathy I will listen to my Client and demonstrate my understanding of what they are saying or what maybe they are fearful to voice, by asking further questions or paraphrasing their words. In using these coaching skills I will help my Client discover all the POTENTIAL they possess to become the best they possibly can.
To help reinforce all the POTENTIAL my Client has, I will encourage them to maintain journals of their travels through this experience. In this way they will be able to better identify patterns within their journey, can embrace their progress and create a maintenance program for their future reference.
During the exploration of the POTENTIAL path, my Client and I will investigate how the journey may be planned and prepared for down the ACTION path. We will also consider what ACTIONS may need to be taken to prevent hurdles marring the journey. I will use the tool of happiness and ask my Client to think of a list of 5 things that make them happy and refer to it often. We will identify my Client’s strengths and weaknesses in their journal and consider what ACTION is needed to develop a weakness into a strength. We will identify my Client’s goals and break them into smaller steps, journaling the achievements and successes along the way. We will discover and discuss how my Client can maintain motivation to reinforce their ACTIONS, using such tools as visual aids and other similar motivated individuals. Each Client’s individual and personal ACTIONS that they take as a result of the coaching experience will vary in enormity and result. Their ACTIONS may be impacted on underlying beliefs and values, which need to be expanded and fully understood. I will continuously encourage and support my Client to be accountable for their actions. As the ACTION path is travelled, I will constantly evaluate the coaching process and methods being used.
If my coaching process and the methods that I have implemented are successful, the validation process will take place, by the path of TRANSFORMATION appearing. The TRANSFORMATION will be different for each Client. For some it may be cultivating more self-awareness, discovering mindfulness, being empowered to practice new ways that align better with their desires or a change of attitude and for others it may be the full “Aha” moment.
However if the path of TRANSFORMATION does notappear, my Client and I will discuss the possibility of revisiting the previous paths.
The final path to travel on this coaching journey is one of HAPPINESS. HAPPINESS may take several different forms and will likely be different for each Client. However the common factor is “we all want it”! HAPPINESS may be found by finding purpose of life, reaching goals, and building on relationships or simply becoming more self-aware. HAPPINESS is contagious and will impact not only on my Client, but all that come into contact with them.
When the path of HAPPINESS has been experienced this particular coaching journey will come to an end. As the Coach I will ensure that my Client leaves this experience knowing that they have put structures in place for this maintenance process. Reinforcing strengths and positive behavior will ensure continuity of HAPPINESS.
In order for the P.A.T.H coaching model to continuously develop and evolve, I will ask my Client for their takeaways and then use this feedback to constantly improve my processes and methods.