Honesty, No judgment, Consciousness, Action: the four pillars to understand how coaching works.
In this article a few days ago, I tried to describe the fundamentals of what coaching is and is not.
I am going to offer you here a couple more touches on how it works.
Coaching (when it is not a group coaching) is a relationship between two people, in which a professional helps a client to find and achieve a goal.
I would love to say that coaches are like the genie from Aladdin’s lamp, who help to realize people’s dreams, if it wasn’t for one fundamental detail:
achievements depend on the will of the client.
These days I have come across potential clients who have challenged me to make them see how powerful coaching is, without any commitment.
In this case, don’t waste your time: the precondition of coachingis the client’s willingness and honesty in receiving support.
We are not magicians.
A coach is – often – someone who takes you to see things you don’t want to see so that you can become that person you’ve always known you can be.
Coaching is not for everyone: among the main traits of people who can get the most out of coaching are honesty, humility, a willingness to persevere and work hard and constant openness to learning.
If you think you have this attitude, the coach will lead you to pursue any goal.
According to the International Coach Federation “Professional coaching is based on a partnership with clients in a reflective and creative accompaniment process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential.”
A thoughtful and creative process that puts the customer at the center.
And here it comes the second point: coaching is a process in which the client is at the helm and their agenda is followed.
And if you don’t have the helm yet, the coach will take you to find it and have it in your hands.
A coach will never tell you what to do.
A coach does not judge your value systems, priorities or goals.
A coach has to take you to your goal through research and questions to understand what your real difficulties are and how to overcome them.
And how do they do it?
The first objective of Coaching is to help the client to become aware of their mental mechanisms, blocks or filters.
If you are able to understand how your own “autopilot” works, how you react to stressors or to the demands of life, you can live intentionally and decide how to show yourself to the world.
As I commented in this other article, our personality may be a cage that other people or circumstances have built on us.
What we are depends on the stimuli and the education we receive or not, on the encounters we make or not in our lives and on many other more or less random things, as for the genetic heritage of each one of us.
However, our attitude is not hereditary.
It is something we can work on and change.
And by leaving our comfort zone and changing our behaviors and habits, perhaps one day we will wake up discovering that we are no longer the same person.
With brings us to the last point of this first (and even superficial) description of coaching: action.
All this work is not finished in a greater knowledge of ourselves by itself.
The cornerstone of coaching is the client’s goal.
The coach has the tools to turn your disorder into a scalable and easy-to-execute action plan, motivating you through small partial and incremental improvements and generating confidence and energy as you overcome obstacles along the way.
Those of you who know me well, know that I am a huge fan of soccer and the Atlético Madrid club.
Its coach’s motto is “brick by brick” or as the Americans say “step by step”.
The action plan is executed in this way – brick by brick – checking every day if we are meeting the correct step towards the objective and reviewing the results from time to time to optimize the strategy.
As climbers well know, if you are climbing never look at what is left to reach the top, nor look down.
Focus on your next step and put your foot in the best spot to keep climbing.
There is no past and no future, only the present moment.
One day you will reach the peak and you will forget how difficult the road has been.
You will only be immensely happy.