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Coaching is everywhere. We have football coaches, walking coaches and even breakfast coaches. The list goes on. The term is applied to anything that involves guiding people as they engage in a certain activity. So let’s take a look at the coaching phenomenon.
What is coaching?
Coaching is a tool that stimulates reflection. Coaches bring up questions which make us think and this leads to a better understanding of why we do what we do. An insight into the reasons for a certain type of behaviour can open up a way to changing it. But that doesn’t mean it’s easy. It can be a hard slog to break with established routines.
What sort of questions do coaches ask?
Behaviour is comprised of different layers. The figure on the right shows these layers in the shape of an iceberg. Observable behaviour and its effects are shown above the waterline. But for the drivers of this behaviour we need to dive below the waterline and ask questions about thoughts, feelings, desires and personal blueprints.
Everyone has ideas about who they should be and the expectations they have to live up to. Those ideas are closely linked to emotions. Fear of failure, for instance, can lead to compulsive thoughts of having to be a success. These feelings can, in turn, be connected to the personal blueprint, a layer that comprises life-shaping elements such as culture, upbringing and impactful events which influence our thoughts and actions throughout our lives. Pressure to achieve in childhood may well fuel a fear of failure in adulthood.
What do coaches do with the answers?
Coaches are trained to observe and make connections, making it easier for the coachee to understand why he or she is stuck in behaviour that is no longer functional. Behaviours are developed for a reason and usually that reason can be found in the past. People’s lives are continually changing and that may mean you have to develop style flexibility in order to become more effective. A coach can help by joining you in the search for new behavioural options which can then be tested in practice, or by devising concrete exercises involving certain behaviours.
If you would like to find out more about coaching, please contact us for a no-obligation discussion. We are located in Delft, within walking distance of the railway station. Parking spaces are available in front of the building.