So, my makeshift life-coaching session went well! Now, the guy I’m working with is a good friend, and anything we’re discussing isn’t outside of the scope of what I would usually give him advice on or try to help him out with. The approach I’m taking, how methodical I’m being, and how much I’m taking stock of my contribution to empowering him to change for himself is what is subtly different. The night went well, and in reality felt like any other night we might spend together – chat just got a little deeper than it probably would have otherwise. We pretty much spent our time chatting philosophy, the inner workings of ourselves and of the world – or at least, how we see it. I suppose it was more so just how he saw it in fact: I was mostly acting a little coy, meaning he had to keep explaining and elaborating his point of view, thinking I had little idea what he was on about as he tried to explain his conceptualization of the cosmos.
We never really got anywhere, in terms of the coaching side of things. He did bring up a few things which I reckon will become relevant as we go on, but I wanted to spend the first ‘session’ laying a groundwork of his thinking in my mind, grasping how he thinks, and why. Besides, we were mostly chatting philosophy as I said: trying to argue my way in there would have just been pitting my view of things against his, which is ineffective and would have gotten us nowhere. It isn’t about proving myself right, or pushing my way of thinking on him – that’s far from coaching, and alludes to a view of existence far from the one I have. I didn’t want to disturb too much – just observe. There were a few red flags which I took mental note of – mostly emotional points, which the conversation didn’t much go in to, and quite intentionally (on some level) I would imagine – but these are all things I’ll bring up as we go on. I asked him before I left if he was comfortable going in to some of the more affective issues he’s facing, which he’s absolutely happy to, so it will be interesting to see where things go from here with the two of us.
The idea of practicing some form of coaching down the line definitely appeals to me. It means I get to help people, in a holistic way, and to ends which serve them as a whole being. I’m not quite sure where on the spectrum I would focus, if we see the likes of entirely emotional/psychological coaching on one end, and the more lifestyle/business topics on the other end (I mean, it’s all more blurred than that – but for the sake of simplicity I’m sure it makes sense). I wouldn’t feel content in myself, or like I was really helping people, if I focused purely on the ‘kill it at the gym/earn that dolla’ side of things – but I mean, that’s what some people need. That’s what level some people are at. Then at the same time, focusing purely on the emotional end of things might feel equally incomplete… I don’t know. At the end of the day I suppose it would depend entirely on the client, wouldn’t it? Where you are, and what you need.
I’ve enrolled in some online learning from who genuinely seems like a successful and respected coach in his field – but from listening to him talk, I can’t help but see so much that’s lacking. I realize that part of it is simply us having different perspectives and experiences: different takes on the game of life. Although, it really has got me thinking – if he’s doing it, and doing it well, then there is no reason I couldn’t be. Not in any vein way – I’m not saying I’m better than him – but I’m certainly as knowledgeable in as far as I have seen.
Talking to my friend really got me turning inwards as well, rethinking some of my own stuff – which is always a fun consequence of that type of deep chat. I was realizing all sorts of assumptions I run on, just as I picked up on his. Other people are excellent mirrors for ourselves, and always an opportunity for learning. One thing I know is that if I want to coach people, a large part of it is leading by example. I’ve taken a lot of steps to lead the kind of life I want, and I’m deep in the throes of that, but I need (and want) to keep developing and learning. I enjoy growth and reflection. I enjoy the idea of sharing all of that with you as well, and of hearing your own stories and experiences. We’re all plodding along together, so it only makes sense to lend a hand when you can.