“I’m a little freaked out by how upside down and crazy the world has turned, but I’m working on understanding what this means for me (and my future). I have no shame in sharing that I really am not ok.”Rachelle Stone, July 2020
Many of my conversations these days begin with a deep dive into ‘how are you REALLY doing?’ This is a two-way ask and I really want to know the truth. Not only do I want to know how the person in my zoom room/other end of the phone is doing, but I want them to know how I am, too. I ask this of friends, clients, and peers.
If your stock answer is ‘I’m fine’ or ‘I’m good’ you are being dishonest with both yourself and the person in front of you and avoiding the question.
So let’s get honest. Really honest. I’ll go first.
I keep thinking I’ll wake up tomorrow and the world won’t be quite as ‘crisis-y’ as it was when I went to sleep the night before. One look at the morning’s headlines and I know this is no bad dream. I feel like every day is Groundhog Day. While I was ok for about six weeks of Groundhog Day, we are approaching SIX MONTHS with no sign of abating anytime soon.
I’m a little freaked out by how upside down and crazy the world has turned, but I’m working on understanding what this means for me (and my future). I have no shame in sharing that I really am not ok. And while I know I have quarantine fatigue and am probably boarding on the edge of depression, I am continuing to push through and try to bring some form of happiness and joy into my life every single day. It’s totally helping.
Generally, the person in front of me is bobbing their head up and down in complete understanding and agreement with all I am saying – right up until that part about pushing to bring happiness into my life every day. Then they just look confused and herein begins the conversation of how am I doing this and why now is the absolute best time to engage a coach.
Fear of the unknown
Fear is rooted in the unknown, and we are all experiencing some level of fear right now. We coaches don’t know any better than you how things will turn out. However, we do have a ton of tools in our toolboxes that make managing fear much easier. Fear will always hold you back and keep you from moving forward. This fact alone is worth the investment in coaching for yourself to face and handle your fear.
Not everyone has a solid support system in place or even wants to lean on their existing support system when they are dealing with a challenge. When you are trying to process ‘something’ you don’t even understand yourself, coaching is a safe place to drill down into the issue. Understanding allows you to take action, and that is the point of coaching. Providing you with support and accountability so you can and will move forward again. Coaching provides a safe space to explore the areas of your life where you lack support or simply desire outside support.
Coaching gives you an outside perspective that you just can’t get from your inner circle or even your peers. Two really powerful facts about coaching: first, we coaches are not from your world or industry, and our lack of understanding about it makes our perception fresh and different than yours. This means we are able to bring observations forward that you may not have considered. Secondly, we coaches are not attached to your outcomes, but we are attached to you reaching them. So if it is an understanding you seek, then coaching allows you to probe the issues in ways you just can’t do from the inside and gets you to the finish line.
Your co-pilot to achieving your goals
I like to say that in coaching, you as the one being coached are in the driver’s seat, and I as the coach am in the passenger seat holding an old fashioned road map. This means you are 100% in charge of the direction you choose to go. As the passenger in your car and your coach, all I can do is make you aware of what I am seeing, how it shows up for me and then you ultimately get to decide which direction you go.
Do you know what one of the coolest things is about working with a coach? You can change your direction on a dime with a coach and they will be happy to journey with you to get you there. That is the beauty of coaching; it’s all about where you want to go and what you want.
There are two schools to Time: Either you’ve way more of it on your hands than you know what to do with these days or you are running around like a chicken with your head cut off with absolutely no time to spare for yourself or others.
- School #1: You’ve idle time you didn’t ask for on your hands. Maybe your position was eliminated, or you are from an industry you know will not be returning for a very long time. While some are keeping busy applying for positions for the security of a paycheck (I get it, we all need one!), those who opt to go the coaching route are learning things about themselves they never knew were in them all along. Coaching helps you to get under the surface of ‘you’. Find a new direction or help you get ‘unstuck’ and moving forward again. They give you the bandwidth to really hone in on what is important to you; if what you were doing before is really what you want to do moving forward. And even, help you see how others see you and decide if that is how you want to keep showing up in the world. There are way too many benefits of coaching for those with idle time to list here.
- School #2: I love my busy bees! Those who say they do not have even one hour to spare a week for themselves much less coaching are the ones that benefit from it the most. Newsflash: busy does not equate to productive, valuable, or even good at what you do. When I hear others say how busy they are, I wonder if they struggle to complete simple tasks well, how often they let things accidentally slip through the cracks because they were too busy and simply ‘missed’ or ‘forgot’ it and if the work they do complete is up to a high enough standard for what they do. These are the folks who need coaching more than anyone to stop their spinning and help them get focused on what is really important. A perception of busy does not equate to competent or productive. Focus and undivided attention reflect productivity, and coaching helps you busy bees get grounded. My ‘too busy’ clients who are committed to stopping the spin go from frantic to focused in a matter of weeks, and it is always followed by some sort of unexpected life satisfaction benefit. It’s amazing how that works.
I bet you are wondering if I am in coaching. That would be a “Hell Yes!” Especially now. I’m in transition and working on my pivot too these days. There is no way I could be in month five going on six of this crazy pandemic quarantine without the support of my coach.
Ultimately, I look at coaching as a healthy habit for my well-being. While exercising and eating good food care for my body, working with a coach helps me keep my mind and soul healthy. Together, I’m able to process what’s going on around and with me, am challenged to confront fears when they arise, and I’m held accountable for doing what I say I want to do each week. There’s simply no downside!
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