That’s one way of answering the question, which I think is very true. Hence, if you hire someone, whether in a coaching capacity or not, quite often you’re going to look for a bit of yourself in that person because that’s a part of you that you want to grow.
One more common question is ‘Which context are people in when they come to see you?’ We will start with the typical ‘How much pain are you in before you come in?’, or ‘What are you hoping for?’ Hopes are something we will address later since that’s a little bit of a lighter touch. Yet the type of pain that people experience when they come to meet me or any of my colleagues is quite often the situation when they have been banging their heads and their hearts many times again and again. They are tired. They’re tired of trying to do this same thing over and over, trying to use their mind and/or muscles without much more success. Therefore, they kind of lose. There is a bit of searching for a bit more confidence in themselves. They’re literally looking to have a bit more appreciation for who they are. They are looking for less need for external recognition and more access to internal recognition and appreciation of who they are. That manifests in the world in the way that there might either be a promotion or the lack of such. Yet quite often my clients have this promotion but are wondering if they’re going to make it and if they’re going to succeed. So typically it’s working, and it’s progressing, but the cost of success is getting higher and higher. The cost of success may be too high for you as a leader and a manager, and in that case, we have to address the leadership side of you.
The other problem is that it may get harder and harder to inspire others to trust themselves in working with you or move towards the same goal since the energy necessary to inspire someone is less available.
People came to see me many times due to the confusion that occurred to some of them. It felt to them almost like losing access to the lightness and the sense of ownership and power, which comes to you when you know that you have your own back while being able to trust yourself. It’s quite often a transition from being half self-confident to learning that you can actually trust yourself for being here in all circumstances, whether you are down or you are up, whether you are in pain or enjoying life, you will be here to support yourself, to grow, to learn, and to make the transition that you are really willing to make in the world of a specific organization and in society in general. Those are some of the pain points that people commonly feel.
One more thing that people who come to me often have in common is a very strong desire to build and create. Those commonly are entrepreneurs who either create their own company, work in-house, or for any other organization. Those people have a lot of ideas for the world that they want to build. They want to rally people around their cause or join a different cause to build something. Therefore, they also experience the transition and learn to create things with others, for others so that together they can really make a difference. That’s a big change as well. The question here is ‘How do I almost lose myself to become a bigger self, which is a collective self through joining collective leadership?’ And that is another step in maturity. It’s another step in life when we recognize that a whole is bigger than the sum of the parts, but that idea stops being a concept and it starts to become the only way, the way we are looking for. Making that transition requires us to make peace with some of our stories and some of our beliefs.
I’ve also heard that people come to see me because they want to be provoked and challenged since that’s what I offer. I believe in a healthy level of tension in conversation to help people see things that they do not necessarily want to look at. Not because it doesn’t look good, but precisely because it is the way it looks and it doesn’t have to look good or bad. It just has to be the way it is. It is much harder to look at something and appreciates it for what it is than to label it as good or bad. That’s quite often provocative. It takes a bit of patience and a bit of humility to work in that direction. Obviously, I was going to say I have this humility, but life has multiple times shown me a way to stop taking myself too seriously. Even while being in a serious conversation, this is just an experience we are going through together. For some of us, we are blessed to experience it in health and in good fortune while some others are going through pain and are much less fortunate. We meet with my clients in good fortune most of the time. That’s something I don’t want you to forget so that we can start to play, we can create an environment for others who maybe have less good fortune than we do. Together we can get over ourselves, we can start to trust ourselves to make the world trust us a little bit more as well.