I like to consider myself a runner. Not a very good runner, I am a realist, but a person who enjoys the freedom of being able to go for a run. I started off with a simple objective, I wanted to get fit and comfortably run a few trail runs. After two years of running I found myself no longer progressing, so I decided to get a running coach. I now attend a running clinic once a week.
Why am I telling you this? Well, as a professional coach myself, this role reversal from coach to client was a huge confirmation and reiteration for me, that good coaches are actually damn awesome and can add so much value to your life (personal or business). Everyone needs a coach!
Over the past couple of weeks Dillon, my running coach, has re-inforced a few coaching lessons I would like to share with you. Even though he and I work in different coaching worlds, the following principles would fit into any coaching practise.
1. Show up and be focused
Well done, you joined a coaching group or you signed up for one-on-one coaching. That’s just the first step and unfortunately change or improvement doesn’t just happen via osmosis. You need to show up to the sessions with focus and determination to change your unwanted behaviours. What you put in, is what you get out.
2. The coach cannot do it for you
The only person who can make the necessary changes is you. The coach can help you clarify goals, opportunities, ideas and perspectives which you may not have had before, but the only person who can actually implement the change is you. You’ve heard the saying, “You can lead a horse to water, but you cannot make it drink.”
3. Practice, practice, practice
The biggest change takes place between the coaching sessions, not during. Outside of the sessions you get an opportunity to mull over or process what you have learnt. To slowly start implementing certain changes and becoming comfortable with new concepts and ideas which you have discussed in your coaching session. If you are not putting thought into your change or actioning change between sessions, you will become frustrated and disillusioned.
4. If you think it’s going to change over night, you are mistaken
I’ve spoken about the dangers of instant gratification before, and I don’t believe I can over-emphasis the damage it can do. Change doesn’t happen over night. It takes time, patience, practice and determination in order to move forward, permanently. Get comfortable with that realisation.
5. Training your brain
This goes hand in hand with practice. By focusing on the new behaviours and mindfully putting them into practice you start training your brain to think and act differently. In the beginning you need to concentrate and put in a lot of energy to change your actions, but after consistently putting in the efforts, your actions will become automatic and new habits will emerge naturally.
6. Be ready for change
As a coach, this principle is probably the most important. By being ready, it means you have acknowledged that something needs to shift. You are not perfect and something needs to be improved and that’s okay. Once you let go of that “I don’t need to change, I am perfect just the way I am” or “ It’s not me, it’s them” mantra it becomes easier to open yourself up to different thoughts, suggestions, ideas and feedback.
So if you want to lift your game and become a more focused and motivated individual in either your business or personal life, try working with a coach, they could change your life!