What is Coaching?
- ICF defines coaching as “partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential.”
How I see coaching?
I see coaching as a safe space to think, to feel, to talk, to be.The coach is there to create this space, to help the clients lower the noise volume so that they can hear what is really important for them, reconnect with their emotions and true values.
We live in a world where everything happens on fast forward, the social events around us, the pandemic, so many expectations and standards, so many decisions, so many emotions, so many thoughts. It is so easy to get stressed and anxious, to want to keep up with everything that’s going on, that we sometimes lose track of what we really want and what is meaningful for us.
I like this metaphor of a tormented lake, when the weather is windy and it rains. It is impossible to see the reflection of the greatness around it, nevertheless the bottom of the lake. But when the weather is calm the lake is still, you can see nature’s reflection in it, when the water is clean you can see the bottom.
- Now think of the coaching space as the tempered weather. The client is the lake. The coach is reflecting the client’s thoughts, beliefs and emotions exactly as nature’s reflection on the lake.
- The coach asks questions that will reach deeply inside the client’s thoughts, emotions, intuition and inspiration (the lake depth) guiding him/ her to access the greatness that lies within.
It is a provocative process as well as transformational one and no matter your objective you can be sure the solutions will reflect your greatness.
- Coaching relies on a trust and safety relationship between coach and client. The coach uses all his abilities, honesty and authenticity to create this environment but in the same he conducts the sessions respecting the ICF code of ethics.
- All coaching sessions are confidential therefore the client can discuss anything that he thinks or feels.
- There is a coaching collaboration agreement between coach and client. This agreement sets the framework of the process by mentioning things like how many sessions the coach and client agreed on, what’s the length of each session, what’s the objective the client wants to reach by the end of the agreed sessions, confidentiality and code of ethics.
- Besides establishing a number of sessions and an end goal each coaching session has its own goal and duration. The coach is responsible to respect the framework and the client is welcomed to come up with coaching topics every session.
- As mentioned before, coaching is a profound transformational process therefore during sessions the objective might change or the client can choose a different topic to work on.
- Always having to set an objective might feel intense and the client might feel some pressure to keep on acting. It shouldn’t feel like that, the client sets the tone and rhythm, one’s session objective can be to gain clarity over a thing, it doesn’t always have to be focused on doings, profound awareness can help us change our actions and beliefs without even making a decision to act in a certain way.
The question everyone asks is: Does it really work?
The answer is yes, it works.
You have to keep in mind coaches are humans as everyone else, even though sometimes the energy and questions often feel magical due to the coach’s mastery. As a client you really need to be invested and you really have to want a change and work towards it. The coach can not do the work for you.
When the coach’s mastery meets the client’s diligence, magic happens.