I have been describing myself as a coach for the last two years and the question I get asked most is “What kind of coach are you?” There are so many different types of coaches out there. Career, performance, executive, life, wellbeing or wellness, leadership, motivation, confidence, business, transformational, relationship… you name it you can probably find a coach for it. And that doesn’t even include the cross-overs to sports, therapy (e.g. cognitive behavioural coach), mentoring or training.
The common thread is around helping people to change.
Very few of us are completely satisfied with the way we are and the way our life is going. We think we will finally be happy when we find love, get our own place, have children, land a dream job, get promoted, win the lottery, move to a bigger house, retire. There is nothing wrong with having goals and working towards them, and there is no doubt that you are more likely to achieve your aspirations if you have a plan. Coaching can certainly help you make your plan and remove the obstacles to achieving your goals. A good coach will not impose their own opinion or direct you (you may want a mentor for this) – they will help you to find your own way by asking powerful questions and challenging your assumptions. I’ll call this ‘surface’ coaching.
The sad truth is that within months of achieving one goal we tend to get used to it, it becomes the new normal, we then start finding problems with it and want more. Perhaps that’s just the human condition.
Or else something unexpected hits us from out of the blue. Redundancy, serious illness, bereavement shakes us to our very core and makes us question everything including our own existence. This often comes in the middle of our lives triggering the ‘mid-life crisis’.
This is when ‘deep’ coaching can help. It will take you on a journey of self-discovery. Help you work out what is truly important to you. Help you find your purpose. Give you new perspective. It will change the way you think. It’s about getting to know yourself and becoming friends with yourself. I’m not a great fan of the term ‘self-love’ – it conjures up too many cliches and Whitney Houston songs, but learning to be kind to yourself can be the route to contentment. Understanding which of your repetitive behaviours harm you and which heal you or make you happy. It enables you to build resilience and better cope with what life throws at you, leaving you happier. It helps you understand others and have better relationships by appreciating that everyone has a unique view of the world.
This is my kind of coaching – I’m going to call it Kindness Coaching.
It may be that you don’t need a new job/house/car/partner after all. You may need to start by being kinder to yourself.
Contact me to find out more.