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The Essence of Coaching

By Colin Thompson Colin Thompson has been doing a spate of interviews over the past few weeks to promote the release of his new book,

By WhatTheyThink Guest Contributor
Published: May 14, 2007

By Colin Thompson

Colin Thompson has been doing a spate of interviews over the past few weeks to promote the release of his new book, "Create Your Own Success Story" One of the interviewers asked him if he could explain the essence of coaching to him in the space of a few minutes. Thompson said he could do it in two questions--the same two he asks all his clients in a dozen different ways nearly every time they speak. The direction or destination you want to go determines what you need to get there. Question One: What Do You Want? One day Alice came to a fork in the road and saw a Cheshire cat in a tree. 'Which road do I take?' she asked. His response was a question: 'Where do you want to go?' 'I don't know,' Alice answered 'Then,' said the cat, 'it doesn't matter.' -Lewis Carroll, from 'Alice in Wonderland' Without a clear direction to head out in or destination to head out towards, the details of the journey are largely irrelevant. This is as true in life as it is in travel; the direction or destination you want to go determines what you need to get there. It also helps define any potential obstacles that may prevent you from arriving. Here are some of my favorite variations on Question One: * What would you like to be different? * What would you love to be, do or have? * Where would you like to be in one year's time? * What result would you love to create? Each time you ask (and answer!) one of these questions, you are setting your direction and telling your unconscious mind what to pay attention to. It's like putting a big neon sign in front of your brain which says "That way!" Your brain will quickly respond with ideas, inspirations and intuitions which will guide you on your path to wherever it is you are trying to go. Lest this seems too basic and obvious to really make a difference in your life, think about the questions people normally ask themselves: * What's wrong? * What seems to be the problem here? * How can we fix this? * Why does this always happen to me? While there is nothing wrong with these questions in the abstract, they tend to take our attention in the direction of the problem (issue), not the solution. And the problem is only a problem in the first place because there's somewhere else you want to be. Let's face it --a traffic jam on the way to the airport is only really a problem if you're trying to catch a flight. When you get really clear and honest about what you want, everything in the universe conspires to help you get it. So if we want to be able to create more of what we want in our lives, it is incredibly important to begin by identifying what it is. And it gets even better. In "You Can Have What You Want", I explain it in terms of the principle of effortless success: When you get really clear and honest about what you want, everything in the universe conspires to help you get it. Question Two: What Stops You? "Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off your goals." -Henry Ford Imagine you want to stand up, walk over to the nearest person to you and say 'hello'. Will you be successful? In fact, is there anything which could possibly stop you from doing it? If you really wanted to do it, nothing could stop you. (Unless the nearest person to you is a visiting dignitary and their bodyguards tackle you before you reach them, but I'm assuming this is unlikely. Now imagine you want to earn a million dollars in the next five years doing work that you love. Will you be successful? In fact, is there anything which could possibly stop you from doing it? Sure seems like it, doesn't it? Here are some of the usual answers, each of which corresponds to one of the nine obstacle areas I encounter most frequently in my work: * I don't know how (information) * I'm terrible with money (skill) * I can't because... (belief) * I get exhausted just thinking about it (well-being) * My boss won't let me (other people) * I don't think I really want to (motivation) * There aren't enough hours in the day (time) * Only the rich can get richer (money) * I think I'm going be sick! (fear) While any one of these answers may seem a plausible reason for imminent failure, the reality is that they are just obstacles, and no matter how large they may appear in your mind, they are nowhere near as large as the power you have within you to overcome them. No matter how large obstacles may appear in your mind, they are nowhere near as large as the power you have within you to overcome them. When you begin to apply this 'inside-out' approach to your own life, you will find yourself able to make tremendous progress on your most exciting goals, and the only question you'll need to ask yourself then is how you'll know when you've reached them. If you're wondering about the answer, I recommend the strategy proposed by the King in Alice in Wonderland: "Begin at the beginning, the King said, very gravely, 'and go on till you come to the end: then stop." Have fun, learn heaps, and enjoy every step of your path! Life is fun, life is hard work, but just look at the success you will have in life. Give your feedback to Colin. He can be reached at colin@cavendish-mr.org. See More Exclusive Articles Colin Thompson is a former Managing Director of Print Manufacturing Plants, Print Management/Workflow Solutions companies and other organizations, former Group Chairman of the Academy for Chief Executives and Non-Executive Director, helping companies raise their `bottom-line` and `increase cash flow`. Author of several publications, research reports, guides, business and educational models on CD-ROM's/Software and over 400 articles published on business and educational subjects worldwide. Plus, he is an International Speaker and Visiting University Professor on the International circuit. Colin can be reached at + 44 (0) 121 244 0306 or via email at colin@cavendish-mr.org. His website is www.cavendish-mr.org -

 

 

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