A Coaching Power Tool created by Himani Tyagi
(Youth & Career Coach, INDIA)
Every waking hour, we are presented with numerous choices. Even the mundane everyday affairs require active decision making, for example, whether to feed the kids homemade pancakes or readymade processed cereal; choosing to meditate or skipping it for ‘good morning America’; letting the kids watch television while you nap for an hour or take them to the library! These are relatively simple issues with no definite right or wrong answers (hence the confusion!) but in the long term, these small decisions can affect our lives in big ways. When it comes to big, life changing issues, like career change, relationships etc, it is all the more overwhelming and confusing to make a choice and stick with it. The stress can be relentless, What if we made the wrong decision? What will others think?
Linda has a choice to make between her existing career as a successful executive in a leading firm and being a coach. She has been contemplating leaving her current job despite attractive salary because of enormous work load, long working hours and tedious work. After a lot of research, she has found out that coaching is aligned with her values and strengths. The very idea energizes and motivates her. It has been months since she has been sitting on the idea, finds herself thoroughly confused whether to move forward with her plan. She is apprehensive about the opinions of her friends and relatives. She also finds herself attached to the money, status and prestige that her current job provides her.
Linda clearly has a tough decision to make. It is not easy to forsake the security and familiarity of a plush job to move into an unknown territory and unpredictable future. She is confused. She has spent a lot of her time wishing, praying, thinking and wanting. To get past confusion, Sheila needs to make a wise decision. To assist her in her journey, she utilizes the services of a coach. Together, they unravel her underlying beliefs regarding her career. She took time to be still, to seek her true self, and to listen to her little voice which repeatedly told her to go with her intuition and follow her dream. As she withdrew within herself, the voices and opinions of those around her got quieter and she was able to listen to herself clearly.
There are three elements in the path of life – Uncertainty (I hope), Security (I believe), True understanding (I know). Making a good decision is moving from ‘I hope’ to ‘I know’. How does one do that? Confusion is very simply just mind chatter. If one starts listening to everything being said, he/she will end up getting confused.
Confusion leads to indecisiveness which then produces overwhelm and frustration .When Linda reflected in a quiet internal space, it became progressively easier for her to ‘know’ that her decision of being a coach was the one right for her. Barbara De Angelis very beautifully describes the payoffs of being stuck in confusion. Confusion leads to avoidance. Preoccupied with confusion, we get to avoid whatever it is that we don’t want to face:
- We avoid the truth
- We avoid change
- We avoid facing our fears
- We avoid disappointing people we love
- We avoid taking risks
- We avoid confrontation with others
- We avoid reality
- We avoid leaping off the cliff
The Maori, the indigenous people of New Zealand, have a saying:
Turn your face to the sun, and the shadows fall behind you.
The shadows created by confusion cause so much bewilderment that we forget that the truth is shining bright inside us. Know this that your answers are within you and once you discover them, they will illuminate your path!