What is coaching and why do you need it anyways?
- Aug 24th 2020
This blog is authored by Nirupam Das
This is a question I had from day 1 when I started on my journey to become a coach. I have experienced coaching, mentoring and counselling but I managed to get all during my various sessions. So when I started on my “pure” coaching journey I was confused as to how do I explain coaching to myself. This blog is an attempt to answer that question. I had the privilege to work with a PhD (yes, I emphasise the PhD part-I love to work with people who have the right qualifications) in psychology and we worked in the realm from past to future. The experience has been magical. I discovered that
- Thoughts, emotions, behaviours and physical sensations are co-related
- To change a pattern in life, you need to work on all the 4
My personal example – I was struggling with making a major career decision and I was about to take up the job offer thinking that that was the only option available for me. Through my sessions I discovered other options and it prevented me in making an unhappy decision. The powerful question that my coach was “ What makes you think that this is the only option that you have?” I also discovered that
- When you come across situations you have 2 options
Reaction – immediate and based on emotions and feelings in the moment Response – involves some thought. Response is delayed and based on reason as well as emotion My personal example – I remember I was would always struggle when anyone disagreed with me. With the react vs response approach I started to take a step back with a powerful question “What do you mean when you say this statement?” and it gave a chance to clarify before I responded. I think what I learnt from my experience is we all need different approaches – a coach (who will ask you powerful questions), a counsellor (who will work on your thoughts and benefits ) , a mentor (who will share his/her life experience), a consultant (who will give expert solution to a problem). The approach that we need depends on what is going on in our life and work.
- If we want to challenge ourselves to be better – coaching will help through deep self-reflection, but the solution is yours
- If we want help with our thoughts and emotions – counsellor will help through looking through the past and present and together you come up a solution
- If you want help with a new venture where you don’t have any expertise- consultants will help you with the approach based on their expertise in the area
- If you want guidance from someone who has already done it – mentors will help by guiding, you on how they approached and achieved their goals in life
The deeper question is you can find all these in 1 person, or you could go for specific specialists (coach vs counsellor vs consultant vs mentor) and it all depends on the problem or goal that you want to solve /achieve. The important thing is to get the right person or persons to help you solve the problem at hand. In summary, everyone will need a coach or a counsellor or a mentor or a consultant , knowing what each one of them does and selecting the right person to help you is the key and this comes through awareness of the various disciplines and an effort to understand how each one operates to help you become better.
Rajat is a Master Certified Coach (MCC) with over 18 years of industry experience and over 2500 hours of coaching experience, helping people and organizations attain maximum effectiveness. His background includes working with CXOs, senior managers, managers and board of directors of small private companies to multi-billion dollar publicly traded organizations.