The Power of Coaching: Do you have someone who really listens to you?
After responding to the call to be more deeply involved in the lives of those struggling with life or those seeking deeper meaning, I immersed myself in all kinds of training and education. I love to learn and explore new horizons. During my advanced coaching training, while watching my instructor perform coaching demonstrations with other students, I became absolutely astonished at the power of coaching.
As students, we were asked to bring our “real-world” challenges and struggles to each coach training session. In one particular coaching demonstration, a fellow student volunteered to be vulnerable and shared her problem with an addictive habit that was destructive to her body. I watched in fascination as our instructor asked thoughtful, timely, and powerful questions of this woman. Not once did the teacher tell her what to do. Only curious, caring questions. Our brave volunteer was visibly touched by the power of this short, compassionate time of exploration by our instructor. She even let a few tears show. At the end of the demo, our class was speechless. The instructor turned to us and asked, “Now how would the outcome have been different if I had counseled Kim (name changed), labeled her, or told her what to do?” Instead, the answers and actions came from within Kim. After observing this powerful coaching demo, I knew I was onto something big.
The power of coaching is in deeply listening and asking thoughtful, in-the-moment questions that create space for the client to go deep and tap into life-changing wisdom within themself. Try this experiment: The next time you’re at a social gathering and another is talking, just notice how many actually listen and ask curious, non-judgmental, non-opinionated questions. Then notice how many jump in, as soon as the speaker pauses, and talk about themselves. Track how many really listen vs. how many are impatient to talk about themselves, their experience, or their knowledge. I think you’ll find that true listening and really hearing are quite rare.
Coaching is powerful and valuable because it’s rare. It’s rare to be really listened to. It’s rare to feel deeply heard. Most of us are so busy talking. When’s the last time you felt truly heard? Really seen? True, excellent life coaching is rare and powerful.
Do you have someone who listens to you? I mean really listens. Not someone who is quiet for 30 seconds, then jumps in with advice and answers. I’m talking about someone who listens deeply, caringly, and thoughtfully. Do you have a person like that in your life? Do you have someone with whom you feel heard? If not, you’re really missing out. It’s incredible how the burdens of life can be eased by someone who just hears you. I encourage you to set an intention to find a good listener. They’re out there.
If you’re missing this in your life and feeling alone… or confused… or overwhelmed, I can help. Coaching is powerful because great coaching - great listening - is rare. Experience what it’s like for you to be deeply heard. Reach out to me and discover for yourself. It’s life-changing.
“Ultimately, it is not our technology or our medicine but our love that heals.”
James R. Doty, MD, “Into the Magic Shop”
Self-reflection: Try the “good listener” role from both perspectives. Notice what it’s like for you when different people in your life listen when you speak. Next, try your listener hat on for size. Really tune in to your listening skills. What’s it like for you to listen? Are you patient and genuinely curious? Or are you thinking about what to say as soon as your companion pauses? Feel what it’s like for you to listen and in listening, to truly hear.