Being ready in every coaching session that we have is mandatory. After all, that’s part of our commitment to our practice and our clients, right? We owe it to our clients. And to ourselves too. So how do you know if you are ready to engage in yet another life-changing session with your client?
Here are five questions to reflect on before you begin your session:
1) Am I 100% present now?
Assess the space you’re in. Are you free from distractions? Is your mind (and heart) not wandering around? Are you truly ready to listen and understand? Focus is key so that you get to navigate fully with your client in harmony as you ask powerful questions that will bring them from where they are at present to where they want to be. It’s either you’re all in or not; there’s no in between.
2) What are my intentions for coaching today?
For each session, come from a space of honesty and ask yourself, what intentions are you bringing? What do you want to achieve? Are you there for the right reasons? Please take note that at the end of the day, the coaching session is not about you, so your intentions must be aligned with whatever would be beneficial for your clients.
3) What biases must I set aside?
Never judge. Come into every session with an open mind and heart. Leave your prejudice behind. While you may be familiar with your clients, never assume that you know better than them by tweaking the session to fit your own assumptions. Remember, every time you let your biases get in the way, you prevent the session from flowing freely and your client from growing fully.
4) What can I learn from today’s session?
Every session that you have with your client allows you to grow personally and professionally as a coach. You just have to be open (and very excited) to learning along the way. Anticipate new enlightening and empowering experiences ahead and know that whatever lies ahead is in line with what you need at the present, too.
Allow yourself to grow in harmony with your client by mentally noting all the things that their journey is teaching you. Doing so presents a very beautiful opportunity during your own decompression session after coaching as you embrace the valuable lessons you have learned along the way.
5) What can add value to my coaching session today?
Going the extra mile for your clients must be second nature to you. Have you remembered something they needed help with? Have you stumbled upon something that will be of value to them?
At the end of the day, it’s not just about giving them new information, new practice methodology, new toolkits or whatever they were seeking during previous sessions. Going the extra mile can mean extending your time a bit during a session, giving consideration for a pending request from a client, or whatever little gesture that your client can appreciate. Remember, not everyone has a smooth journey towards becoming one’s own #bestmeever, so a little act of kindness (or going the extra mile) can go a long way.
I hope these questions help you reflect and recalibrate as you coach. Remember to give your clients your 100% best. When feeling lost and confused along the way and you feel the need to brush up on your coaching skills, feel free to visit ICF’s Core Competence and Code of Ethics. Those can help you fully become the coach you’re meant to be for the clients you are meant to serve. And before you coach, ask yourself these questions.