- Joyce Gayles
The Power of Coaching
Updated: Sep 26, 2022
So, why coaching? Why now?
We live in a time of unprecedented change, and many of us have myriad choices in a lifetime. We live longer, and we may take up a second career. We seek to be good at the things we do, we seek balance in our lives, and we are the first generation to be so focused on our growth and development.
Coaching was uniquely developed to support you with your personal and professional changes, growth, and transformation.
What does coaching do?
1. It helps you to focus and take planned action
As a person of ideas, you want to see your ideas take root and grow. But, you either take action or you don’t take action. Have you ever taken action that you later wished you hadn’t? Or have you ever waited too long to take action?
Working with a coach is having an “objective” person to bounce ideas off of, to role play, and to help you release your barriers to acting. Working with a coach will help you put your energy where it will serve you best to accomplish your goals.
2. It keeps you accountable
Knowing that you’ve made a commitment to yourself and that your coach stands as a witness to your commitment makes you more likely to stay on task. It’s much less easy to allow yourself to slide when you make an agreement with your coach to do something you need and want to do AND you know that your coach is supporting you.
3. It allows you to be more effective
Goal-oriented people are always looking for ways to be more effective. Your coach helps you eliminate blocks in order to move forward more easily. An experienced coach will ask the right questions, listen to the things you say and the things you don’t say to help you remove obstacles in your way.
4. It lets you find balance and eliminate stress
We 21st century humans need to find a balance of mind, body, and spirit. Your coach is there to help you find that in your life. You cannot be your best self if we are stressed, overwhelmed, and unhappy. With you coach, you identify stressors in your life and work to eliminate as many as possible and reduce the effects of the rest so that you can take charge and create your best life.
5. It gives you unconditional support
You can count on your coach to support you. Your coach may not tell you what you want to hear, but he/she is not a critic or judge. So, when a curve ball threatens to knock you down, your coach is with you. On days when you just can’t see the benefits of batting, your coach helps you identify the values of staying in the game. When you are confused about which directions to go, your coach gives you knowledgeable guidance. When you hit a home run, your coach is the first to give you a high-five. And when you win the game, your coach gives you all the credit.
Getting the most out of your coaching relationship requires four things:
You are in the Coachability Zone.
You and your coach are a good match.
You teach your coach how to coach you.
You ask your coach to help you play bigger.
The Coachability Zone
When you are open to being coached and can envision yourself in an honest, working relationship with a coach, then you will get the most power from the coaching experience. You are in the Coachability Zone.
Finding a Good Match
Coaching is based in relationship, and the best coaching is based in a good match and relationship between you and your coach. The relationship starts with selecting the right coach for you. As a client, you need to feel comfortable with your coach’s orientation and general approach.
So, how do you find a well-qualified coach who will fit for you? Searching through various referral services, such as that at PsychologyToday.com and The International Coaches Federation is a simple approach to tapping into the pool of qualified coaches. Ask someone you know who has had a successful coaching experience to recommend someone.
Only through a personal meeting can you assess whether a particular coach is right for you. It may take a couple of conversations before you have a clear sense of the fit, because selecting a coach involves a combination of objective and intuitive experience. Besides checking out professional qualifications, discuss your specific needs and goals with the coach, and determine with the coach whether she or he can work with you on the goals you want to achieve.
Here are some questions to ask a coach before hiring him or her:
Why are you the best qualified coach for me?
Can I have 2-3 references?
What is your specialty and how long have you been doing it?
Why do I interest you as a possible client?
What do you think is most important about coaching?
What is your code of ethics?
Will everything I tell you remain confidential?
Here are questions to ask yourself before hiring a particular coach:
Do I have a positive feeling about this person?
Do I like the coach’s voice and demeanor?
Am I willing to be totally honest with this person?
Does this coach’s program match my needs?
Am I clear about the coach’s fees and guidelines?
Teaching the Coach How To Coach You
Get the most out of your coaching sessions by being prepared to talk openly and honestly with your coach. Give your coach feedback about what approaches work well for you.
Asking the Coach To Help You Play Bigger
Goals help you to focus and let you know how you are doing. There are two types of coaching goals. The first is the one you really want to accomplish, for example, completing the novel you been working on for the last six months or getting a better job. The second type of goal is the “breakthrough project” that is so powerful that your whole life upgrades as a result.
To get the most out of coaching, ask your coach to help you play bigger by working on a breakthrough project. Examples of breakthrough projects are:
A formerly obese person achieves his goal to complete his first half-marathon.
A successful small business owner expands her business by three-fold in 18 months.
A 17-year delivery company employee who is fed up with her job follows her dream to become an event planner
You are in the Coachability Zone, you and your coach are a good match, you teach your coach how best to coach you, and you ask for help to play bigger, then, you can experience the power of coaching–the power to achieve the results you want in your life, the power to live life more fully, and the power to reach your highest potential.