Coaching in a Mindfull way: have you ever thought about it? – did you ever think that such thing could be possible?
Curious about it? Well, continue to read and share your comments.
First, let’s define what’s what.
Coaching is the art of establishing a relation with the coachee – the rapport -, in an incredible and creative way. The process to achieve the goals, set and maximize the inner power of an individual, without judgments.
Mindfulness is the art of developing and maintain the present moment: being conscious about your thoughts, feelings, your body, and the environment that surrounds you.
Quite simple at first glance, right? Yes and no.
Like coaching, being mindful is like working out at your local gym, but in this case, you’re using another muscle: the brain. Meditate must be an everyday practice, a consistent one – each day you’ll get better becoming more conscious about yourself, dealing with your thoughts and emotions, as if you have had started practicing it since the day you born.
Now, let’s see how can we put all together:
1. When you’re in a coaching session, you should be attentive to the coachee, listening actively and don’t express your opinion. You’ll listen without judging; your role here is to facilitate the process and not be judgemental, right?
The same principle applies to Mindfulness: don’t judge; listen to the other side (the other person) without expressing your judgments about what you’re listening.
Sometimes, people ‘associate’/engage with their thoughts; they just don’t listen attentively, thus losing precious information.
2. Patience is a virtue – people say, and from my point of view, they’re right.
This principle appears in Coaching as in Mindfulness; it is supposed to allow the coachee to express himself in the most natural and organic way, and answer to powerful questions made by the coach.
The same thing happens when having a Mindful attitude: you present yourself to facilitate the other, not in a hurry, instead allowing, step by step, the person to take him/her time to discover their path.
3. There is a principle in Mindfulness called ‘Beginner’s Mind’; translated to Coaching by the ability to active listening. Being curious, without ‘labeling’ what you’re hearing; the will enable you to investigate more deeply, using the logic values, as if you’re being exploring layer by layer, what I call the “onion effect.”
It’s like looking at a flower for the first time in your life, like a child: first, you see the color, the smell, you feel the touch; everything is a discovery – the same applies to Coaching, don’t you find it so?
4. In both areas – Coaching and Mindfulness – you should have/build trust on/with the coachee, as in real life with everyone else with whom you contact with. It’s a process, step by step, that needs nourishment; when reached, you’ll get a strong bound, almost unbreakable.
Without this variable you’ll never be able to have a firm ‘contract’ with your client, this way you won’t be serving s/he the best way possible in your coaching session.
It’s like a dance – the tango -, where it takes two, a connection, to get an excellent end result.
5. Can you push someone in a coaching session? Of course not! We shouldn’t have an ‘agenda’; instead following the client’s pace, as if we’re talking about an orchestra. The same thing happens with Mindfulness – why?
Well, each ‘connection’ needs it’s own time to establish itself, and each person has their timing to unveil him/herself, and this shouldn’t be compromised.
6. In Coaching we should have the capacity to ask compelling questions – questions that echo inside the coachee-; questions that would make an impact until a change, a breakthrough, shows up as a pivotal moment. If we look to meditation, as we practice it, we’ll as well face changes: stress level, attention, sleep – in this case, we don’t need to question, just time to get those changes to be felt.
7. As a Coach, we should be in the coaching position, and don’t fall into the temptation to give advises or suggestions; in this line of thought, when meditating the posture is also important, being fully attentive, in the present moment, it’s a paramount matter.
It’s a fact that our brain was built to think, to makes us feel emotions, sometimes as if it was pouring torrential rain. The thing is whether we associate with them or not – we can acknowledge them, but we don’t need to engage with them. We can let them follow their path, anchoring ourselves, for example, to the breath – this is our point of return, the way to come back to the present moment.
8. Why, in Coaching, set action steps with our coachee, if they won’t be put in practice – it doesn’t make any sense at all!
Nevertheless, it’s the client who should be accountable or having someone to make him/her remember them. It can be a friend or a significant other; everything as to do to the ‘contract’ – how it was set beforehand.
We meditate because it makes sense to us, because we choose it as part of our lives, and each day we tell ourselves in a systematic way why we do it, in a responsible way.
Practicing is a must, alone or in a group; that way all of the benefits will be achieved. Here, the most important thing is the experience, and what is going on internally; not a preset goal per se, otherwise we’ll never have what we wish for.
Applying these principles to your Coaching practice may be a path never walked before, as well to your coachee; all it takes is to know if you’re curious enough and want to provide a service with better quality every day.
Dare yourself to practice Mindfulness! Dare yourself to become a Mindful Coach.