A Coaching Model By Konstantin Petrov, Executive Coach, BULGARIA
My “Shaolin Master” Philosophy of Coaching
To me, the philosophy of coaching is rather simple. All the answers to the questions you hold lie within you. The role of the coach is to get you to reconnect to your TRUE self, to your values, your beliefs and from there on it becomes easy. To be coached is like to be taught by a Shaolin Master. The Master doesn’t teach you techniques or gives you a drill to follow, but rather does the most important thing – he asks the right questions. If you think about it, only a few dare to go to the mountain, to the monastery, to the teacher. Those few are people who seek answers, who are not accepting their reality as is and want to change it and mold it, these people strive to make an impact. They are on this path for months and even years and are now ready for their next learning. The Master asks questions that expand your current way of thinking, that challenge the status quo, and challenge your reality. With the clear aim in his mind to get you to find a new view on life and your struggle, to find your resources, and to build a plan to overcome it. And off you go to test it out. Even the most skilled and wise Master can’t shorten the number of times you meet or the time needed to get you to your ultimate goal, because it is not the Master who defines the pace, but it is YOU. A few weeks later you are back with your progress, with your learnings, with your disappointments and successes. Then you go again – wiser, more experienced, and more aware, and you keep going until you reach your final goal in mind.
For Whom Is Coaching Ideal?
Coaching is not for everyone, like any other thing you chose in life. If you recognize yourself in one of the points below, then this coaching style might be of help to you:
- You feel stuck at your current job, you feel that you don’t know what you are passionate about, your feel like you have lost track of what brings you joy at work or home
- You are a senior executive/specialist and you want to become an inspiring leader, you want to improve your resilience and mental health
- You face a challenge greater than anything you have faced before and you need new paths or ideas on how to resolve or overcome it
- You want to get yourself unstuck and go back to your typical energetic, proactive, and positive you. You want to become again the master of your faith.
- You don’t accept the status quo and the current reality and you know that you can change it and shape it the way you want, but simply miss the tools to do so
- You have an open mind and you are willing to explore new paths and new roads and you are willing to accept the responsibility for your wellbeing.
- You are willing to get rid of old habits and behaviors that no longer serve you and become the best version of yourself
My Coaching Style “The Shaolin Master” Practice
When I coach, my time, attention, and energy go completely to you. I follow everything you say and especially what you don’t say. I will look for nonverbal cues, mimics, your body language and will make sure I understand what you truly bring and who you are. I will take my time to get to know you and your problem, which sometimes might feel like too much, but believe me this is essential for putting the right questions that will enable you to find your answers. I will be caring, nurturing, and supporting, but when it is needed, I will be challenging, pushing, and demanding. I find the ideal balance based on your personality, character, and wishes. From time to time, questions or processes might look unrelated or meaningless to you, but you will always get the full picture in the end. My goal is to create a safe and intimate space so you can feel protected to explore your challenge, to discover and create your true self, and sometimes to be vulnerable and weak which in the end always makes you stronger. I follow strictly the ICF competencies in which I have been thought and certified against, but I also use numerous tools from my psychotherapy practice, that brings awareness and new insights to my clients. Always with the same intention in mind – to motivate you to be the best version of yourself for yourself!
What Can You Expect During the Coaching Process?
This is a self-discovery or self-building process, that completely depends on your willingness and motivation. The process gives back as much as you are willing to put in. In many cases, you go into the process with a specific goal only to discover that this is not what you truly want or desire. Once you define your true questions, desire or goal then the actual work starts. The process as described is like being taught by a Master – it requires time, effort, patience, wisdom, and dedication. You will go true numerous emotions such as sadness, despair, anger, acceptance, positiveness, hopefulness, motivation, feeling in control of your faith, and more – in many cases not in this exact order. Every time you do it, you will get one step closer to where you want to be. During the process, you will discover that you have expanded your way of thinking, your beliefs, your values, and the way you perceive life.
The Structure of a Coaching Session
The process of coaching follows a natural flow and structure, which many times doesn’t keep a specific order and it may vary. It is crucial that during our initial meeting we focus on uncovering and defining your ultimate goal – what do you truly desire.
- Each session we will start with the formulation of your goal for the session (which needs to be aligned with your ultimate one). We will pin it down, set criteria to determine when it is reached and we will probe your motivation
- Then we go into exploration: we look at your current way of thinking, your beliefs around it, efforts have done so far, your blocking points. This is the most exciting part because during this phase we go deeper to define and eliminate the obstacle on our way. During the process, usually, new learnings and awareness are discovered, that open up new possibilities for you
- Once that is completed, we go into planning mode, where you define what needs to be done to get you to your goal. We will explore resources, support needed, timing, and your commitment level.
- When all is defined, we will celebrate success and set a new time to follow up on your action plan.
- Next time we meet we will evaluate the success and whether those were the right actions and we will collect your learnings. We will evaluate how close that got you to the finish line and we will go again through the process keeping in mind the ultimate end goal defined during the discovery session.
Benefits of Coaching
There are hundreds of books and articles that speak about the benefits of coaching. What I would like to share is my experience and the experience of clients I have worked with. Having that internal expansion at the end of a coaching process to me is the greatest gift of coaching. It gives you the feeling of broadening of your views, beliefs, perspectives, and many times your values. It brings a substantial sense of gratitude and acceptance. Coaching itself gives a sense of moving forward, a sense of empowerment, and a sense of being in control of your life. During the process, you not only reach your goals, but you learn how to cope up with similar situations in the future and how to coach yourself and many times others around you during difficult times. It helps you reconnect to your true self (your authentic self), which holds all the answers and wisdom you are looking for. If we consider the saying ‘God is in all of us’ true, then you will truly be closer to GOD by the of your journey.