Three common coaching themes

There are three very common themes and they are Balance, Boundaries and Beliefs (most-often self-limiting beliefs)

I think it’s unsurprising given the global environment over the last few years, that people are now reassessing the balance in their lives so this is a very common theme.

Balance will often relate to work/life balance but more likely it is connected to the way that people structure their work life to get a better balance towards their personal working preferences.

For example, if someone is working in a fast-paced, constantly changing environment but they are a naturally reflective person then they can lose hold of that need to create space for thinking, innovating, adapting.

In these instances, the coaching conversations will explore the gap between the person’s current state and their ideal state in order to make a plan to bridge that gap.

The outcome of this type of conversation will often fall into the “small changes resulting in big transformations” category as it’s often very small tangible changes such as blocking out thinking time, repurposing existing thinking time  (when you’re at the gym, out for a run) to satisfy that reflective preference.

Another common theme that is often connected to the Balance theme is around creating and holding Boundaries.

I usually work with senior leaders who you might expect to have more control over their diaries than they actually do.

If you’re in a senior leadership role then it’s more likely that you have a squeezed diary, lots of competing priorities and very little direct control over what you do on a daily basis. In these instances, if you want to maintain a greater balance then this often requires you to set and hold your personal boundaries tightly.

A very simple way to view this is to think about:

  • What are you comfortable saying yes to?
  • What are you comfortable saying no to?
  • What will you compromise on?
  • What will you challenge?

Once you have this clear in your own mind then it’s often easier to understand where your boundaries are.

Connected to both balance and boundaries are our Beliefs.

Our beliefs are assumptions that we make about ourselves and the world around us and these beliefs can be either empowering (i.e. I am a good person) or self-limiting (i.e. I am selfish).

It’s much easier to change our beliefs once we know what they are so often coaching conversations are a way to shine a torch light onto our beliefs.

As part of the coaching journey I will often work with people to understand their beliefs, explore them/pull them apart, look at them from a different angle and assess if they’re still true and if they’re acting as a positive influence on behaviour or limiting potential.  

Once you understand those beliefs and their impact then you can look to your ideal state and build a plan to bridge any current gaps.