Life Coaching and Transition
Earl R. Owens Jr.
Life coaching can provide people that are leaders and learn how to build development and have a system to focus on growing in emotionally and through different transitions in life. By addressing certain situations during life’s challenges or low points, it can change the way a leader teaches or even make the client aware of how to handle a challenge with better coping performance. Building up to assisting clients to develop from life coaching, there must be an understanding about the relationship and knowledge that is learned that will help them confront challenges ahead of them. Coaching leadership can be powerful to the client while building relationships and reflecting on the challenges that the client will face. In life, there are various stages that we may face. It can be marital problems, depression from job layoffs, or improving in time management. In life coaching we want to support our clients and hold them responsible for their actions. During our lives we go through changes learned from experience, and rather than run away from difficult situations, a life coach can teach a client to be responsible with taking action on setting goals and accomplishing them. Life coaching can be positive while leaving an impact with faith and the motivation to be applied for attaining short and long term and to find solutions through conflict or problems. Our clients face trials and tribulations in the world, but as humans that make errors it is also acceptable to learn from our errors while adapting and conquering battles, difficulties, and setbacks of our lives.
Life coaching is a form of therapeutic counseling that motivates, teaches, and supports clients and allows them to make their own choices that are necessary for them and not what we think is best for them. The life coach should be consistent in placing responsibility on the client and for them to take action with their own accountability to the life to which God has lead them to be encouraged to move forward in their agenda or vision. Wanting a coach can be for many benefits such as personal growth, heartbreak, abuse, or the lack of mental drive to not be stagnated, but to grow from a bad experience or state of brokenness and need motivation or inspiration in life. Coaching is a partnership between a coach and a client that is focused on the client taking action toward the realization of their visions, goals, and desires (McCluskey, 2008).We will face many transitions which is normal and a part of life that must happen and it is universal that all of us will have to go through something painful to grow or become weaker. These things that happen to us individually allow us to gain a stronger mentality and resilience for experiences. Life has never been predictable so to try to figure out when bad or painful emotions or not having self -esteem can be changed, but it also must come from within the client’s mind and soul to make that decisions to improve for a better future. God has each of our lives already predestined and it is up to us to make due for what He has put before us. Transitional times happen at which clients will question whether they made a good choice and perhaps even consider going back to what they left behind (Collins, 2002). Coaches work with clients to facilitate experiential learning in a professional relationship and improve functioning and performance, often in the context of working toward specific goals (Collins, 2002). (((There are many different types of coaching, but leadership coaching was a topic that deals with life and also how to adapt to life and being a leader during a life transition can make the difference in life. The purpose of leadership coaching represents going through transitions , and it stood out to me, because the purpose of leadership coaching represents strong leadership, components of leadership, which according to ( Robertson, 2009) ,“ requires a willingness to listen, to change and adapt, and to connect and engage others in the learning journey at which leadership is relational” ( p.2). Being a leader means that you will have to be uncomfortable at times where you are, but to accept challenges and develop a sense of positive belief in what the goal or pursuit is at the time.
In career transition coaching people need help sometimes moving from one career to another. There are different reasons as to why clients come to coaches for direction is according to ( Genova, 2010) is that they feel that they don’t have an edge in career change and fear. The client can also make better business decisions when they are aware after being taught on how to get the edge in a time of crisis of change and fear. As explained by ( Genova, 2010) is that fear is manageable and that it doesn’t have to determine our behavior. We tend to worry about the what ifs so much that we eventually can miss the opportunity to get the promotion or move up in our career in fear of making that mature step or face the transition to change. As we grow older, obtain some experience in the working world, the step to a career transition is better than as we were younger when achieving the developmental milestone ( Genova, 2012). Work has a central place in our lives, as it defines who we are, shapes our self- concepts, and determines our standards of living (Collins, 2009). Having a positive spiritual life in the workplace is also important. As spirituality is explained by (Bourgeois, 2006), “Spirituality in the workplace translates into leaders who are authentic, socially responsible, doing what’s right no matter what, and respecting each other” (p.3).
Motivation is needed from the person that is looking for the better job and at times the client or person looks to the coach for that motivation. For example, in one of the points of what motivation could be, (Gelona, 2011) explains that a typical way of describing motivation is that, “a force which arises from within the individual, that activates and enables the individual to pursue a particular task, event, job, or goal (p.1). It is the drive within you that makes you exist and serve purpose to what defines who you want to be and do in life. We are supposed to be naturally motivated to set our own course and achieve them. There are various ways at which we can motivate ourselves to go where we want to go, how the pursuit of happiness will evolve, and how it forms our well- being. Motivation can influence us to go as far as we want to go, do things that we would have not known was possible, and allow that to influence through the rest of our lives in spite of certain times when there may be difficulties in setting goals.
Motivational coaching is “ a collaborative process for enabling clients to better understand how to generate and maintain higher self- motivation for pursuing goals and desired outcomes” (Gelona, 2010, p.2). A lot of clients that are looking to better themselves, trying to attain a better education whether it be a GED to a doctorate, some people are looking for someone that can empower and provide them the energy that can catapult them into a realm of success. Some people have lost a sense of establishing goals and no matter how hard they try they lose the passion of pursuit to succeed or the desire to win. The times in which we live call for a new understanding of what it means to be a professional and to participate in a profession. Coaches can learn a lot from their colleagues in medicine and psychology who have been wrestling with the potential and pitfalls of evidence- based practices for the past 17 years (Drake, 2008). The relationship between workplace coaching, the length of time an employee has worked with their employer, and how they handle life transitions are some of the reasons that transitional life coaching is on the demand. With coaching in the workplace there are certain problems that can evolve that may have to be addressed such as the relationship between the supervisor and the employee. According to ( Harris, Winskowski, & Engdahl, 2007), positive relationships with supervisors have been reported to strongly predict job tenure, positive organizational social climates, and the presence of friends or family at a particular work site have also been reported to predict employee retention (p.6).
Many clients may be in some need of motivational coaching to enable them to generate and maintain higher self motivation for pursuing goals and attaining desired outcomes. With effective motivational coaching can facilitate motivation enhancing processes that may help clients to address their need (Gelona, 2011). Trust is a valuable element in establishing the role of the coach and the client and is an essential element in learning from their coaches to apply these new ideas. Through motivation comes a good leader. Robertson (2009) found that leaders do not necessarily seek the type of situations that require movement out of comfort zones and into the emotional space to allow challenges to values and belief systems (p.4). During the course of life and when we go through the difficulties of real life tests and tribulation, having a coach can affect what we choose to decide, learn, and partake in wisdom. With life coaching as a new way of gaining knowledge through the partnership, the coach challenges each client to redirect their own way of what they have learned, establish more core values, and beliefs. Learning to be a leader during transition can change the way individuals would choose to work, within their leadership team, within their community, with other school, and with their families (Robertson, 2009). In the modern workforce, we must not only be great leaders, but we also must be great teachers.
Finding balance in life can be challenging and as coaches we can assist our clients to begin their way to a path of focus. Collins (2009) explained that “coaching for balance begins with helping people figure out what they value most in life and then ordering their lives around in it” (p.246). One thing about balance is that you have to reevaluate certain times in your life and that seasons do change. As Collins (2009) stated,“ what is balanced at one season of our lives may be entirely out of balance at another” (p.246). We get caught up with keeping our sights that we have seen continuously and forget that some of the values that were at the top of the list aren’t that important and can be dealt with later.
There are many challenges with coaching in this profession and where coaching fits in that special place. With the way things are changing there has to be a better understanding of being professional and participating in a profession such as coaching. To me coaching can gain more credibility if they make more connections in transparency and more results. Coaches include those with coach-specific training and experience as well as those with other backgrounds who simply call themselves coaches (Brennan, 2008, p.189). In my research paper and reflecting on my findings, I learned that coaching can also requires some applied science and drawing on some psychology at times. I reflected on how important worship, work, and play are three defined areas of importance and that if you don’t have these three key areas in your life, then your life is out of balance. I also learned upon reflection that I was doing something that was getting out of hand and affecting my personal life. I was doing so much every day and only a few people told me that I was doing too much, but what they didn’t say directly was that I was worshipping my work. I enjoyed training for my track championships which was my play time, but my normal time slot for training got overshadowed. Coaching my youth track club, studying for graduate school, and working full time with a new position took me away from my most deeply held values that were really important to me. As coaches we will have the opportunity to present more evidence based knowledge and practice what we have learned with our clients. As I read on the application of addressing core questions in this profession with different examples of strategy that was provided on how explained by Drake( 2008) that coaches need evidence that informs their awareness, shapes their assessment, and guides their actions (p.23). In this meaning we as the coach need to understand what is going on with our client and being aware of what is affecting them, but as we assess their lives we can provide leadership in guiding them the way that they will go in taking upon their own actions. Drake (2008) found that many coaches struggle most with taking and reflecting on action which would serve better by having more evidence. I learned that I need to apply more evidence toward my client to effectively get results out of my practice. One of the key elements of my reflection on this paper is having the best quality possible that can be given to my clients and to ensure that they get the best quality coaching offered in this professional standard.
Coaching clients in transitional change will have an impact, because everyone is going through something in their life at some particular time, phase, or journey. There is a need in quality assurance and it is something that I would concentrate on in this coaching ministry. Looking at how motivation can be utilized in coaching in not just one area, but several areas allows me to realize that there are people out there that want to gain insight in goal setting and maintain the leverage that they have gained from being self- motivated from the coach and not allowing the coach to do all of the motivation. It is generally accepted that people in many areas of life, have to deal with fast changing complex and stressful environments ( Gelona, 2011). Upon reflection of how motivational coaching can be used those that have lost the drive at a certain point in their life can actually regain focus on tasks, going back to school, or rebuilding the marriage that once had lost the fire in the relationship. Most importantly with motivational coaching, we the coaches bring order and organization to boost the level in them reaching their goals. As Gelona (2011) explained, motivation is essential to their ability to persist their goals and aspirations, especially when faced with difficulties and setbacks.
Some of the things that I would practice is problem identification which was developed from the PRACTICE model of coaching by (Palmer, 2011). As the problem is identified, the coach and the client can work on the problem and use the R which is realistic and relevant goals which will need to be set. I would ask the client what topic would they want to discuss and go into detail as to what the topic evolves, what resolve would follow and what would they like to change different about the topic and etc. I like exploring different options and allow them to use all of their resources as their own solutions. I like the PRACTICE method, because as Palmer (2011) explains it has been used for performance, business, career, executive, stress, health, life, and many more areas in addition to being used within counseling, psychotherapy, and stress management.
In life coaching I realize that the profession is broad and that there are different areas that could be reached and that going through different transitions in life such as having a family, raising kids, and job performance can be difficult to balance. It can get overwhelming at the pace that the world is going and we need someone to talk to that can get us that boost for our challenge at that critical time. This coaching focus makes me look at coaching from a Christian perspective and how can I help someone draw nearer to God without pushing them into salvation, but to let them know that Christ is using me to help them grow and myself as well as God continues to use me during those coaching sessions. Life coaching especially during transitions in my life could impact me personally, because I’ve seen countless times where I needed to talk to someone and couldn’t. The only one I could talk to was God at the time which is the best coach and counselor I could ask for, but at those times when I need a coach to help me get a grasp on life would help. During times of reflection and feeling like I have no purpose in life when I have so much going on can be a time of identity crisis, but I wouldn’t know without a coach. This is where I see that coaching can be effective and help others reach the goals that they have been trying to accomplish, but without a sense of organization or reevaluation it can be a stagnant period in my or anyone else’s life. Life coaching with the focus on employment transition can impact how I make the transition to being promoted and how my schedule has changed, but how to reduce the things I normally used to do when I had a different schedule. It impacts me because as I did my research I looked at myself and could see some of the problems that I encounter and how would I change these difficult things that I have encountered this year.
In conclusion, the profession of coaching is something related to psychotherapy that I hadn’t looked at in depth, but once introduced to what types of coaching can evolve as well as the life coach can choose as many topics or specialty areas he wants as long as he is competent in those specific areas to coach in. In researching how life balance and coaching can help people figure out what they value in life made me take a full evaluation of what I’m doing wrong and what I need to do right. This focus on life balance affected me and I don’t even have a life coach, because I too got caught up in using a lot of energy in other areas that I should have been using in the most important areas of focus. I have learned that this season has required huge amounts of energy and my life at home is suffering and my home is the most important aspect during this season. The revelation that I received during this paper will make me change my plans for these next few months in order to follow the path that God wants me to go in. The plan that I once had needs to be changed, due to the season that I am now in. As Collins (2009) states at which I caught the revelation of, “ I can’t change the wind, but I can adjust the sails” (p.247). I realized that my worship life was lacking, that I didn’t have much play life at all, and all I was doing for the past six months was work, which is taking me away from people that I love and care for. It has been a year of growth and maturity, but also a year of being overwhelmed, involuntary transitions, and preparing to start a new chapter in my life.
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