A Coaching Model Created by Colin Batchelor
(Wellness Coach, UNITED KINGDOM)
My coaching model is aimed at helping clients overcome the inertia that comes from a fear of change.
Change is an inevitable part of life. As we grow and develop we all change, sometimes these changes are subtle and sometimes they are dramatic, sometimes change happens as a natural part of our evolution and sometimes it happens to us, imposed on us by an outside ‘force’. But however that change occurs we will all at some time change and we will all at sometime feel a fear of change.
This model helps clients (and indeed coaches) step through that change.
At each stage of the coaching process we will stop and review the actions developed from the previous stage, thus we will continually have a point of reference and will be able to ensure that we progress safely whilst still staying to our comfort zone.
General fear of change
This will be felt by clients who know that a major change is happening or soon to happen in their lives. There are a number of possible responses to this:
- The client wants to change
- The client doesn’t want to change
- The client is unsure about change
This will usually manifest itself as a general and non specific fear of that change, even if the client actually wants to change then inertia can take hold and in some cases prevents the client making any movement towards their desired change.
The Steps to deal with that fear
The first thing the coach will do is to work with the client to look at where the client wants to be or where the client needs to be, the goal. If due to inertia or general fear the client is unsure of where they want or need to be then this ‘end point’ will be developed as part of the coaching process.
It is of course possible that during the journey the clients goal may well change. To support the client through this it is important that the coach checks back with the client that the goal they are moving towards is still the right one for the client.
We work with the client to put some ‘shape’ to the general fear. What is it? How does it look? What does it feel like? Where is it? Why is it there?
We create an environment where the client feels safe, we create an environment where the client feels trusted, we create an environment where the client feels they can speak and will be listened to, we create an environment where the client feels they have space to express themselves and to be themselves.
We use powerful questioning to start to put some context around this general fear. We create a space for the client and during the sessions we allow silence to support the client and ourselves as coaches, creating a spontaneous environment where the client can examine their fears around this change.
Identifying specific fears
Once we have a clear (or clearer) understanding of the clients fear. We can start to break that ‘big fear’ down into smaller, more specific fears and concerns and we can start to address each of these individually. Again our intention is to create a safe and non-judgemental space, a space where the client can explore their fears and we can work through those fears to start to move to the place the client wants to be.
Throughout this process we remain curious, supportive and non judgemental, we hold a safe place for the client and we work in the strictest confidentiality ensuring that the client can pause and change direction if at any time they begin to feel uncomfortable.
Identifying Underlying Beliefs
As we work with the client to better understand specific fears we will begin to uncover underlying beliefs. These beliefs may have been with the client for many, many years or they could possibly be recently acquired. The important thing to do is to support the client whilst they ask ‘does this belief still support me’. Having asked that question we can begin to support the client as they look at alternatives and other options around that belief, we can start to look at alternative ways of thinking and start to move towards identifying beliefs that are more supportive of the client and the direction they wish to move in.
During this phase we will work with the client to identify their values, to ensure that the clients values are firm within them and still relevant in their present situation. As we work to discover values and beliefs we will need to ensure that we make reference back to the initial issue the client brought to us as it is highly possible that during this phase of belief / value discovery that the initial issue the client started with is relevant and that the outcome we are working towards is still one we need to work towards.
Development of Awareness
As we work through the clients fears, as we look at underlying beliefs and as we pinpoint values the client will begging to develop awareness around where they are, where they want to be and how they are going to get there.
We support our client in that development of awareness by continuing to remain curious, holding the space for them, allowing the sessions to be in the flow, asking powerful questions and by not being afraid to allow silence into the coaching space as it is often in a deep silence that the most profound development in awareness can take place.
As we continue our work with the client we reach a point where we can agree that the client is at the place they need to be. This of course could well be a place that is different to the one that they originally thought of. That is why at every stage of the process we need to check back and make sure the place we are aiming for is still relevant. It is more than possible that after we have uncovered and challenged underlying beliefs that point may well change or vanish totally.
Finally we reach a place of resolution. That place will be where the change they initially feared has taken place and the client is feeling OK about that change and in fact sees that change as an opportunity, an opportunity for an amazing new world and an amazing new life. The work we will have done supports this move towards action and the work we will have done will continue to support the client as they progress and face new situations and environments.