One of the main reasons people seek out coaches is to drive accountability on some sort of pressing goal or ambition. I am a “recovering perfectionist” and I am certainly “Type A.” I love checking things off the list and feeling a sense of accomplishment. That said, many coaches miss the boat by only focusing on accomplishing goals. I have found that my coaching is most effective when I help clients focus on “the doing and being” while achieving important milestones. We can check many things off the proverbial “to do list” but who cares if we are miserable?!
I define the “doing” as tactical steps that need to get accomplished in any given task. The “being” aspect of any task involves clarifying one’s mindset about how one wants to “show up” during that task or event. I ask clients to define their total intention and consider not only what they want to get at the end of the interaction, but how they want to feel and be perceived throughout.
This is a client situation I encountered recently:
I partnered with a client who was preparing to turn in the second half of her thesis project for her master’s program. She had shared that she felt remorse and self-doubt after turning in the first half of the thesis and this sparked much negative thinking and judgment. My intuition told me that she knew all the tasks and tactical steps needed to prepare in order to send in the second half of the project. What was equally important was for her to get clear on the how she wanted to conduct herself during the preparation and delivery of the thesis. What kind of experience did she want to have? We did some perspective work where she played with a variety of intentions. She decided to play with a perspective she created that we called the “dancing perspective.” This included allowing for flow, movement, and recognizing when she needed to take a break after “sweating” from working many hours. She decided to choose Elton John’s classic song “Tiny Dancer” to help ground her in this perspective any time she did work on her thesis. She reported to me that this point of view helped her enjoy the experience and she felt calm and at ease as she prepared and sent in her thesis – success with both the doing and being of this important project!
It is imperative to guide clients to set meaningful goals that align with their values and then focus on who they are being in the process. Ask them to consider their intentions and their mind-set. For example, let’s say a client is focusing on preparing for a job interview. She can have the perfect resume and be dressed to the nines. All her efforts will be for naught if she comes with a defeated attitude that screams, “I am desperate!” She will sabotage herself unless she considers her mindset during the interview. When I am helping clients prepare for interviews, I ask them, “Who do you want to be in the process? How will you define success other than getting the job? What does success look like in terms of who you are being?” Examples of intentions during an interview include: being ones authentic self, interviewing the company as much as they interview you, asking for what you want in terms of responsibilities and benefits, being curious, etc.
Helping clients focus on the “doing and being” creates much deeper experiences and helps them get results while enjoying the journey…
What a concept!
Rachel Karu, MS, ACC, is a professional and personal coach as well as an organization consultant specializing in training and development. She has more than 18 years of professional and personal development experience. With primary expertise in coaching and training people in the areas of intra/interpersonal skills, she provides counseling in areas including: career management, communication and listening skills, team effectiveness, life balance, value clarification, communicating boundaries, providing/receiving feedback, setting expectations, corporate leadership development and time management.
To find more information on Rachel, please visit her website or join her on Twitter or LinkedIn.
Website: RAE Development – Reflect, Act, Excel
Phone: (310) 441-1104