Can a life coach solve your problems?
No, not in my experience.
What a good life coach can do is help you solve your own problems, more easily and faster than if you work only by yourself.
When you think about it that only makes sense. After all, while I may be able to shed some light and help you discover your own solutions, I can’t actually make changes for you. I could try to force or trick you into a decision, but we both know that won’t work for long. So I don’t.
All sorts of problem solving
As a life coach people have presented all sorts of problems to me, often explaining how stuck they feel. Maybe they wanted a new career, or wondered if they should start a business of their own. Perhaps they knew their relationships with people could be improved but they weren’t sure how – or maybe they knew how in theory, but weren’t quite sure how to put that into action. Sometimes they’re facing major life decisions and don’t know how to make a choice. Or they know the choice they wanted to make but are afraid to make it.
And there are lots of smaller problems that crop up – like how honest to be in which situations, or admitting keeping the old car seems preferable to finding a new one.
Some of these smaller conundrums may be indicative of larger, un-examined issues. Of course, they may also be the mundane stuff of life.
So what can a coach do for you?
Generally speaking a life coach can do three basic things to help you solve your problems:
Listen deeply and with compassion
The best coaches are trained in what some call deep listening. Deep listening allows a certain kind of silence; it’s a whole body listening that is heard by both the listener and the one who is listened to.
Deep listening is compassionate, yes, but more than that it creates a space that allows an often unrecognized truth to service.
Such listening can lead to the best kinds of questions – those that lead both parties into a deeper resonance.
In the space co-created by deep listening, new choices and new options often surface. What was once obscure, looks clearer. New ideas entirely may be generated.
As the session continues, perhaps with some additional questions and conversation the whole issue becomes clarified – if not totally, the sense of having more options than one realized is liberating and sometimes exhilarating.
Increasing options also includes the option to say ‘no.’ It’s okay to say ‘no’ even if you’ve already committed. Following your intuition and examining the pros and cons of following through or not following through is something good coaches will help you do without imposing their standards.
Better choices is often a reflection of you getting clear about your own Vision and standards.
We all love the idea we’re accountable to ourselves and others. You know, that we do what we say we will do unless we consciously decide not to.
It’s one thing to be accountable to ourselves, and quite another when someone else holds us accountable. Holding space for someone else’s accountability is one of a life coaches most helpful skills when guiding you to solve your problems.
It’s not just a matter of ticking off done or not done during your next session. Nor is it only about urging you to figure out why you didn’t do what you promised.
More helpful is to help you look at both what worked and what didn’t. One can often inform the other and the result is you get more choices and become better at making decisions that truly support you.
Life coaching is really a partnership between you and your coach. If it’s group coaching you’re to some degree in partnership with the other coachees as well as with the coach.
As with many things in life, a major portion of the problem solving comes as you and your coach work together.
Does this sound like what you’d like to experience in life coaching? Feel free to say yea or nay in comments and to ask questions there.
Love, blessings and abundance,