A Coaching Model Created by Adina Morris
(Transformational Coach, USA)
As young women graduate high school, they are leaving the comforts of home and family and striking out on their own, either partially or entirely. However, even as they leave the warm, safe and caring cradle of home, there is still a real need for support in making the spectrum of choices ahead of them. It is an exciting time in their lives. However, sometimes it may feel like the cloud of daunting tasks creating dismay and indecision leading to stress and anxiety. The many decisions they make now will affect them in their future as women, wives and mothers in society. Many young women upon graduating high school face multiple decisions before them simultaneously. Among them are education, employment and career choices, peer relationship opportunities and challenges, dating for marriage and creating a harmonious life balance of self and community with a vision for the here and now as well as for the future. CRDL (Career, Relationship, Dating and Life) Coaching was born out of this multifaceted reality for many women.
By working with this population as a coach, I have found that all of the issues in CRDL coaching come up simultaneously for these women post high school. The CRADLE model described below evokes an image of a warm, caring and safe place where each individual can search, discover, acknowledge and appreciate who they are currently. It is a warm place where the client is appreciated for who they are. It is a caring environment where they can be supported to align their beliefs with their values and envision who they would like to be. It is a safe space where they can decipher their underlying beliefs, their values, and uncover their core beliefs without fear of judgment. It is a journey where through embracing the possibilities before them, they learn to soar to great heights. This process encourages them to view the rainbow of options leading to numerous opportunities. By providing a sounding board, as their coach, I am helping them go for it and create their shining moment of becoming their optimal self in each arena in their lives. As a CRDL coach, I help inspire the client through the CRADLE process, to believe in herself and take the first step of many forward into her bright future.
When first meeting with the client, the coach is curious about their life story. Where is their ground zero? What do they think about themselves, their life and their future? The coach will discuss their family, friends and passions. This is a time to explore with the client their underlying beliefs and values and what drives them in their day to day living. It is a period of reflection to decipher if their underlying beliefs are in line with their values and vision for themselves. It is an opportunity to discover any beliefs that may be blocking the client from moving forward. It is a moment among many to challenge those beliefs to test their value and see if they are serving the client well or blocking the client from moving forward. By being in a safe and curious environment, the client is free to be themselves and openly share without fear of judgment or another’s agenda.
With the young adult market especially, building a strong rapport and understanding their unique position helps in creating a warm, caring and safe environment for the client to share openly about the challenges they face. It is a key element to help the client recognize that we, as the coach, are here to support and encourage the client to create their future. By giving of our presence, intent listening and judgment free open ended questioning, we are able to partner with the client in helping them shape their future the way they want it.
A-Assess, Acknowledge & Appreciate
A major component for helping these young women is to assess what strengths and resources they currently have, acknowledge the wonderful traits they possess, and appreciate the positive things currently in their lives. All too often, when presented with many challenges at once, we overlook the positive and focus on the negative. With careful questioning, we can slowly peel back the many layers representing the client. What are all of the wonderful things about them? What gives them meaning and purpose? We support the client to emphasize those positive traits, people and occasions in their lives. By shifting perspectives and taking the “over” out of overwhelm, allowing the cloud of dismay to dissipate, we support the client in creating a sense of calm and quiet for the client to take stock of their life and current story. We allow the client to recognize the excitement in creating a fresh start and bright future full of a rainbow of opportunities for themselves. This moment of reflection and self awareness gives the client clarity and allows the client to start looking more positively and seeing things as opportunities instead of paralyzing challenges.
Building on this momentum, now is the time we ask the client to decide how to proceed. What do they want to tackle first? How may one issue be connected to another? What may be holding them back? How does their indecision serve them? What outcome are they looking for? How will they get there? What might it look like upon achievement? How will they celebrate and reward themselves upon accomplishment? Here, we give the client the opportunity to visualize their future and their success, by enthusing them with the energy to move forward with confidence. At times they may feel their vulnerability, in that there is so much unknown, which may feel paralyzing. As the coach, we show how vulnerability can be sometimes positive in that it breeds caution leading to greater efficiency, effectiveness and therefore success and accomplishment. (For more in depth analysis, please see Adina Morris’ ICA Power Tool Vulnerability: Paralyzing vs. Empowering)
Now is the time to act. We ask the client to use or seek out resources and build on their skills in order to step into the next phase of becoming. This is the springboard for the client to jump into the adventure of their life. Strong and committed action takes place here with accountability to the coach to encourage movement on behalf of the client. She goes for it!
The energized client steps forward into a shining bright future ready for all of the opportunities that await her. She is evolving into her optimal self. She is taking steps forward and reaching her goals, evaluating as she goes, ensuring alignment with her core beliefs and values to achieve her greatest potential and finding wonderful meaning as a woman, wife and mother in society. Her cloud of dismay has dissipated and she is enjoying the beauty of her own unique contribution to her family and to society.
By going through each step of the CRADLE model, we acknowledge the uniqueness of this client market, which has a rainbow of opportunities to review and decisions to make. The rainbow signifies a bridge stretching from one place to the next; creating a progression of going from one level to the next. We support the client in reaching these higher levels and turning their dreams into a shining, bright reality.
The CRADLE model of coaching allows the young woman to uncover her core beliefs and align them to her values, as well as to shift from the dismay of a daunting cloud of indecision and the disempowering state of vulnerability to the rainbow bridge of opportunities empowering her through her vulnerability to reach higher levels and her best potential. By creating an awareness of what she believes in, her choices in life will become that much easier to make and feel satisfied, happy and fulfilled. Finding meaning in all that she does, the client is supported to stretch to greater levels of achievement. This new energy and excitement in finding alignment and meaning will encourage and strengthen the client to move forward into her bright future, creating shining moments, one step at a time, reaching greater heights. Her journey has begun.
The graphic of the cradle coaching model is in the form of a gray cloud to start, emerging into a 6 banded rainbow listing each step in the model, finishing with Evolve, the final stage. The rainbow reaches up towards the sky, as “the sky is the limit” for opportunities available to the client. Each band of color in the rainbow graphic merges together forming one point at the end. This signifies how each step in the cradle process is critical for the client to evolve, forming a focused successful plan. Pointing upward like a soaring bird, the client is never finished in their quest, as there is always more room to grow and evolve. However, with the newly found self awareness, clarity and prioritizing, the client is able to strategize in a more efficient manner leading to continuous success in their life journey. The dual use of the word CRADLE and acronym CRDL shows how the model is able to effectively take the client through each of the decisions and situations that uniquely form her life journey.