“Anger is an acid that can do more harm to the vessel in which it stands than to anything on which it is poured.”
This time I’m sharing a guest post I wrote a little while ago concerning the variety of coaching ‘gifts’ coaches may bring to their work. Some coaching skills come more naturally to some individuals than others, and here I explore a way of structuring our approach to extending our range of ‘gifts’ beyond what we may naturally feel comfortable with.
The ‘Spectrum of Coaching Skills’ places our natural ‘gifts’ on a continuum ranging from more to less directive forms of interaction with our coachees. By thinking about where our strengths lie on this spectrum, we are enabled to gain awareness that leads to insight into areas we need to develop to improve the range of our abilities as coaches. We are then empowered to develop strategies to build those abilities in areas that we find difficult.
The guest post first appeared in Coaching World in September 2018, published by the International Coach Federation (ICF). You can see the original publication here, and I’d like to point out that copyright is held by the ICF (meaning it should not be reproduced or reblogged without gaining permission from the ICF first).
Extending Our Range of Coaching Gifts with the “Spectrum of Coaching Skills”
Coaches have different personalities and styles, meaning they bring a variety of approaches and “gifts” to their coaching work. All of us find certain coaching skills come more naturally to us than others. That’s fine, except when we allow our “natural” range of gifts to limit the ways in which we can work with clients.
It’s the middle of December, and here in the northern hemisphere the shortest, darkest days of winter are upon us. It can seem a long haul to reach spring, having left the warmth of summer far behind.
Some of us may be looking forward to winding down over the festive season, taking some time out to reflect on the year that has just passed and the year that is to come. We’ve touched on the importance of being a reflective coach on this blog before, as well as the need to temper this reflective work with self-compassion if we are to take care of ourselves with the same degree of empathy that we strive to offer our coachees.
This time all I’d like to do is remind us to reflect realistically and honestly about what we’ve done in the past year, whilst encouraging ourselves to be patient with our frailties, with the things we may feel we could have done better. If and when we go about planning goals for ourselves to work towards in future months and years, I’d wish for us to set ourselves up for success by distinguishing clearly between our dream goals, end goals, performance goals and process (or work) goals. Taking time to tease this out will ensure our goal setting is transformative rather than disillusioning.
Yes, the shortest, darkest days of winter are upon us. In amongst the twinkling lights of the festive season, we have a wonderful opportunity to take stock and be kind to ourselves as we approach the turn of another year. Be compassionate and kind to yourselves as well as others. Being mindful of our own frailties can help us be more patient with those of others too…
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