Coaching Insight Gained
During the last session, I again realized that despite the coach’s desire to tackle a specific issue, the most important issue to tackle is what is in the client’s heart and mind. Clearly, Patrick had a need to go away from the session with firm plans on which classes he could take (versus tackling deeper-seated issues mentioned above). Trusting in a client’s process and rhythm is probably one of the most challenging tasks a coach must do – given how we are naturally incline to want to help and “solve” problems!
Other Methodologies Used
During the course of the engagement I also used the following methodologies:
- Positive Affirmations: Knowing Patrick’s current state and feelings of self-doubt, each engagement I had with him were filled with affirmations of both big and small wins – from his realizations to his openness and awareness to his committing to concrete action steps.
- Action Plan Matrix – Since Patrick had a high need to come out of each session with something concrete, we spent a number of sessions really mapping out options and coming up with firm next steps. We looked at the pros and cons of each option, how each option weighed against his values, his personality type, his skills, and his interests. We also checked what supporting factors he had in his life that would aide each option. Conversely, we looked at what could hinder each option. Lastly, we made a list of “Burning Questions” he would need answered to know more and understand each option better.
After six sessions, Patrick has not fully identified what the one project/career option is that he would like to invest himself in. However, before leaving for his vacation, he committed to the following:
- Spending 15 minutes each morning to meditate, calm and center himself, and listen to his inner yearnings.
- Spend more time on activities that lead into the three options we discussed, i.e., catching up on reading that will educate him on a specific area he wants to get into
- Discuss with close friends and family in his home country the options that he has – in order to gain perspective from people who know him better
We agreed to touch base again once he gets back, to recalibrate and assess his state.
Conclusions & Implications for my Coaching Practice
At the end of the six sessions, I have grown immensely as a coach. More than knowing simply theoretically, I know understand first-hand what it means to trust in my client, to listen to what my client wants (and not what I want nor what I think he wants!), and to be fully present in the moment, in the Now.
I recognize also that it is not my responsibility to solve any problems. I am a motivator, a supporter, a listener. I cheer lead, I ask, I hold up a mirror. But I do not need to solve problems. I create space – a safe space, a space that is not afraid to have individuals be awkward, questioning, lost, and confused.
Please Note: Some details of the client given are limited/have been changed in order to protect my client’s identity and maintain confidentiality.