A coaching student just asked me how he could get his client to a potentially pivotal awareness.
There’s a set-up in this question.
Anytime you find yourself asking how to “get” a client to a specific point, pay attention:
This can reflect that you, coach, have already decided on some level where the client needs to go.
But – you protest – what if I’m trying to take the client to the outcomes she said she wanted?
The answer lies in attachment to outcome.
Just because your client identifies certain outcomes at the opening of the session, does not mean those outcomes are what will serve her best. That is simply what she sees at that particular bend in the road.
Remember the old adage: It’s about the journey, not the destination?
Well as soon as you become attached to reaching the stated outcomes, you’ve limited what is possible for your client, including her awareness, her growth, and yes, even her outcomes.
Being attached to outcomes, even for the sake of delivering “effective coaching,” will limit the discovery process, and therefore limit what is possible.
Remember: Coaching can take your client to outcomes far beyond what s/he may have imagined.
So what’s a caring, committed coach to do? You want to deliver value, right?
First, make a simple shift:
Stop trying to “get” or “take” your clients anywhere and just be present with them in the journey.
Learn to see the beauty that is possible when your client does not reach a desired outcome. This will free you up to be present in a far more intimate way.
To support you with this:
- Rethink your role as a coach.
- Update your perspective on “results.”
- Learn to integrate desired outcomes with learning in the moment.
- Invite truth to surface and dance with what shows up
- Trust where the discovery process wants to take you and your client.
Bottom line: Coach with love. Love your clients’ highest good enough to allow them to be uncomfortable. Love the coaching journey enough to remain in “delighted discovery,” no matter what shows up. Love yourself in ways that allow you to surrender to not knowing.
Instead of directing the dance, allow the dance to lead you.
Instead of chasing the outcomes, allow them to reveal themselves across the course of the coaching journey.
Because what your client – and you! – will get from this can be beyond your wildest imaginings.
Does this speak to you? Raise questions? Either way, consider joining my Coaching With Love program, beginning March 7. This is where you can roll up your sleeves and dive into the “how” of this deeper, more intimate approach to serving your clients. And that’s what it’s all about, right?