Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Copious Curiosity

It was one of those crazy busy days where I had many back to back appointments.  Unlike the way I used to be, I had not thought about who was coming and what they might need to be coached on.  In other words, I knew where I had to be, who I had to see, but I had not processed, or analyzed what it all meant.  I knew client X was coming at 9 AM and one hour and 15 minutes later, I had to coach client Y, but I was not trying to remember or predict what they might want to be coached on.  This was in part due to a conscious effort on my part to be copiously curious as my mentor coach would put it.  And I have learned that if I study or review a client’s past coaching session, then I am expecting it to go a certain way and then I’ve lost my curiosity. 

The day continued on the same way it had started, with lots of curiosity and hustle.  My evening appointment was with my children at the pediatrician’s office for their annual flu shots.  I had not processed that my daughter usually hates getting shots and sometimes even gets a little hysterical.  It was as if I had forgotten how stressful this appointment could be.  Well, to my surprise, she hopped on the examination table and pulled up her sleeve and took the shot without any drama at all!  Right after she hopped back down and put on her sweater, I realized what had happened.

She had changed her story.  Driving back home, I was reminded of my coaching sessions during the day.  In fact, all my clients had managed to surprise me.  None of the sessions had gone on in an orderly fashion, they had been slightly unpredictable and a bit messy.  Yet, I had enjoyed them because they had pushed me into directions I had not gone before.  This is not that uncommon in a coaching session, because no matter how well you think you know your client, you couldn’t possibly know them as well as you think.
At the pediatrician’s office I realized the same thing about my daughter.  What I thought I knew about her was just a prediction based on past behavior.  In a coaching session, the coach allows the client to change their story.  That’s how coaching works, you are in a space where you can change your story.  With practice, I am learning to apply the same principles in my own life and in the more intimate relationships which I think I know so much about! 

Copious curiosity in coaching works by dissolving the bars of the prisons that our clients have created from their stories.  When you are in the presence of someone as if for the first time, listening with your whole being and being present without judgment, expectation, or the need to fit into any theories, past behaviors, or projecting your own story upon them, magic happens!  The client is now free to change their story.

This is one of the reasons why I refer to myself as a spiritual life coach.  What happens in a session when the coach has been copiously curious, is not logical or rational.  It is outside the realms of mental understanding.  It is what I call a spiritual experience!

If you are interested in working with a spiritual life coach, contact me for a complimentary 30 minute spiritual coaching conversation.

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