It Walloped Him!
There were about 5 seconds of silence, he was stunned, and then his eyes opened wide, and his head tilted this way and that way.
I smiled. I knew he got it. Then we talked, and everything changed from there.
This was a coaching moment I’m glad I got to see on Zoom, instead of hearing the silence on the phone and missing the look of astonishment on his face.
What’s the story?
His boss was out to get him. Or so he thought. She was on his case for everything, and his usual strategies just wouldn’t cut it anymore. No matter what he did to improve performance and results, he believed she was watching and documenting his every move and inching him out the door.
He was angry. Upset. Scared. Resentful.
We started our journey restoring resilience – working on how he managed his Inner World – his thoughts, emotions, energy, and patterns.
Then we started our Values Work. I usually share 3-4 different approaches to help a person clarify and prioritize what really matters to them so they can become more conscious creators and leaders of their lives. Values Work helps them get their Internal Compass set up in a way that’s aligned and calibrated with who they really are, and how they can live authentically and meaningfully.
Love was his highest value. We arbitrarily choose to prioritize what we feel means most to us. In one exercise, we take a look at how we’ve been living or honoring that value in our lives, and we rate it. A 10/10 would mean we are fully and completely satisfied with how we’re honoring that value in our life.
He believed he honored Love at a 10.
Then I simply asked, how will you Love your Boss?
That was the moment.
He got it.
It was like the magnetic poles were shifting inside him.
He had a bit of victimhood left. Resentment and fear held by one part of him. Some momentary shame held by another part, about saying he honored it at a 10, and realizing in this case, it was more like a 0. And I believe it was his true self that recognized an opportunity. An exciting new possibility. His true potential unblocked.
It was beautiful to see. It led to a new mindset and approach that changed his relationship with his boss completely. And it relieved a huge long-term drain of energy (all the feels – the anxiety, the anger, the sadness, the resentment) that interfered in his daily life and with his sense of self.
He reclaimed his resilience and confidence in what seemed like a flash but it was only made possible by the trust and safety he felt to talk about the stuff that’s hard for a lot of people to talk about. Our Emotional Inner World and our protective but often draining patterns. Uncomfortable emotions to experience and uncomfortable to talk about with others because when we talk about what hurts us or scares us, we feel vulnerable, and that’s uncomfortable too!
Without the trust in himself, me, the safe space we cocreated in coaching, he wouldn’t have gotten to that point.
That pivotal moment resulted from all the work he put in to that point but that’s not it – that wouldn’t have been enough. It’s what he did after that moment that made change happen and stick. And it’s what he repeatedly and courageously did after that that closed an old book and opened a new one in his life and career.
Without the supportive and encouraging structure that coaching provided in his life, that shift and insight would have faded away without action. And without the action and the reflection, he wouldn’t have had real experiences in his life that would become new references and templates for what’s possible.
The recognition that there are always possibilities – coupled with the recognition or self-knowledge that we so often get stuck in parts of ourselves that can’t access those perspectives and possibilities, give rise to hope and optimism, which contribute to our levels of confidence, resilience and wellbeing.
I’m proud of him and inspired by him! And hope this client story helps you in some meaningful way.
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