A Coaching Power Tool Created by Julien Lefort
(Business Coach, ROMANIA)
People with a greater understanding of what energises them are often more empowered to find solutions to parts of their lives where they are stuck and move forward towards the right goals. Focusing on anything that drains your energy has the opposite effect. It may not encourage us and will leave us in a place where we will not move ahead.
Harnessing the energy that enables us to move forward is extremely important. Similar to detaching ourselves from the things that do not matter as much or even keeping true to what is important to us, having trust in ourselves and in what energises us will make us take action in the right direction.
It is important to recognise that not every day, will our energy be at its maximum and that some things will energise us more than others. However, spending too much time in the depleting zone – when we do not have the need to – will be more harmful to our goals being achieved. We need to consciously take ourselves out of that zone and focus on the road ahead.
We have a choice
When we realise that we are stuck somewhere, not going in the right direction or not finding the right solutions – we can react in two ways:
- We keep going and keep using our same strengths to do things. We may learn from past experiences, try and do differently but the underlying strengths that might be de-energising to us will remain and we may get stuck again further down the line
- Or we can start realising better what are those strengths that really drain our energy and minimise them as much as possible, thus focusing more on the strengths that actually energise us more and will enable us to get unstuck. We will then be using our creative brain to find the right solutions that fit us.
Being energised by what we are doing and where we are heading puts us in the right frame of mind to achieve higher and bigger goal more aligned with what is true to us and what we have set for ourselves. It gives us the mind-set to grow and adapt but also helps us to leave aside our personal beliefs that tell us ‘we can’t’ to a mind-set where we believe we can achieve anything we want to achieve.
Energising vs. De-energising
One of the definitions of energy is: a usually positive spiritual force: the energy flowing through all people (Merriam-Webster)
It is important to harness that positive force to shift our perspective in the right direction.
But like any other forces in nature, there is always a balance, a counter force that pushes us the other way round. This is our de-energising force. We need to explore further the source of that energy that pushes us backward and drains us.
Whether for ourselves or for working with clients, our role, as an individual or as a coach is to find a way to shift this draining perspective into a positive force, help us (and our clients) focus on what will create a flourishing environment.
- Find a different way to approach draining tasks – if the approach our clients or we are taking is not working, we should not keep doing it. We can support them to reframe their perspective and seek the exception to the rule, a time when we found a similar task enjoyable or how others would have tackled that similar situation. Why was this occasion different? Could we do it this way again?
- When we do something wrong or make a mistake, many of us are inclined to dwell on it. We may think it is our fault, we will not be able to change and the consequences will be unpleasant. Instead, we can support our clients to put the consequences into perspective and shift them to a place of trust rather than of doubt about themselves.
- Help focus on a growth mind-set – who else can we learn from that will make us move forward? For example, when someone is greeting us with their good news and achievements, we could ask them to tell us more, share their happiness with them and capitalise on the moment to understand what they have done differently to enable themselves to reach this point.
- Enable our clients and ourselves to discover unused strengths – what are those strengths that we are good at and enjoy doing but do not do very much at the moment. We could find a way to do it more and combine them with our current strengths to move into action.
Energy vs Stillness
Another way to look at energy according to a definition from Meriam-Webster dictionary is a fundamental entity of nature that is transferred between parts of a system in the production of physical change within the system and usually regarded as the capacity for doing work.
Under this definition, we are not looking at energy as an opposite of de-energising but at a state of constant movement and change. On the opposite scale, we now have stillness, inaction, apathy maybe even lethargy.
Focusing our thoughts and harnessing our own energy means bringing a notion of movement in our coaching relationship with our clients and a constant activity and action towards reaching their goals. We create awareness for our clients and support them ahead in designing the right steps for shifting their perspective. Only then can they plan what will come next and set themselves the right goals for their journey.
The key to harnessing energy: letting go of our beliefs
Whether those are coming from our basic needs as human beings such as knowing what to do, having a contribution on others or a purpose in life or maybe even from past experiences and behaviours learnt from our parents and people who we are surrounded by, we all have beliefs that stop us from shifting our perspective. By not being able to take action and moving forward, we limit our energy. By overcoming our underlying beliefs, we unlock that energy needed to make a change.
To demonstrate this, let’s look at an example:
Jane was struggling to manage her own time. She had deadlines to fulfill at work, tasks to complete and more and more coming her way. She struggled with her personal life as she had to stay late in the office to complete her work. She was getting increasingly overwhelmed and tired as she had very little time for herself.
Working with a coach, the first thing they focused on was some of her underlying beliefs. Jane had a need to understand everything that was going on even if she was not in charge of that specific task. In some instances, she also needed to be guided and to have clarity on the “how she should be doing her tasks”. Together with her coach, she explored what was really important for her. She was not energised by being in control and having everything planned and organised but felt energised by any task where she could use her strategic awareness skills. Her belief that she needed to know everything to perform well started to fade. She began to shift her perspective by focusing on the bigger picture, thus giving herself an overview of how all these tasks were related but only focusing on the details that were important to her role.
Quickly after, she started creating structures where she regularly left work earlier and could focus on her personal life as well. Soon, she realised that she could focus more and more on those strengths that she had not used before and that were energising her, making them an asset to counterbalance the use of more de-energising strengths.
When we find our clients in a place of stillness or in a space of drained energy, it is important to find ways to renew that energy. We can shift their perspective by focusing on the beliefs that support this current state by discovering what is really happening underneath the surface.
Only then can we concentrate our efforts on what energises them and slowly move them to a place of action and commitments, a universe where possibilities become unlimited as those possibilities are coming out of the creative brain of our client. As a coach, help them understand how a renewing mind-set is part of their continuous growth as an individual, and see them flourish!