If you’re not familiar with me and my coaching background, that’s alright. I did my training through The Coaches Training Institute (CTI) and the kind of coaching they’re all about is called “Co-Active Coaching.” You can read more about what Co-Active Coaching is all about on this webpage from CTI, but I’m going to get at what I think makes coaching so darn fabulous here.
At its core, coaching asks people to decide what they want. Now, you might think that it sounds simple: why would I need a coach to figure that out? Well, I vividly remember at my first training weekend being asked, “What’s your dream?” This is, of course, a variant on the “What do you want?” question. In the grandest terms, our dreams are the things we want.
And I was stumped.
For all the work I’d already done and coaching I’d been through, I didn’t have a good answer. But that question got me thinking, and thinking in a positive way. To be honest, at that point, I mostly knew what I didn’t want: I didn’t want an eating disorder. I didn’t want to be unemployed. I didn’t want to be alone.
But it’s just that shift from knowing what we don’t want—to hate our bodies any more, to be lonely any more, to weigh x number of pounds any more—to thinking about what we do want—to love ourselves and feel good in our physical bodies, to be surrounded by a group of amazing people, to be healthy—that is absolutely empowering.
Coaches believe that our clients are “naturally creative, resourceful and whole.” In simpler terms, we know that you can figure this out on your own. But our world is filled with messages that I believe keep you from asking yourself the questions you need to. A coach can ask you the questions that help you clarify not only what you don’t want, but what you really want to create for yourself in your life. They can help you define what those things look like; if you say you want to be healthy but you’ve never unpacked what you mean by “healthy,” you might never know if you’re on the right track. A coach can call you on your shit and let you know where you’re holding yourself back. They can be a friend and a cheerleader. But most importantly, they can remind you to have a dream—and to believe in your worthiness when it comes to making that dream a reality.