Category: ICF Coaching Competencies

3D Ideas 898: Diving Deep

Claire writes: “It’s not unusual for the conversations we have to dive deep – but who decides whether we dive or not? A few years ago, we were in Paxos on a family holiday and the girls and I went for a scuba diving lesson. They loved it. I wasn’t ready when we did the deep (for beginners) dive. I hated it – even when the rather gorgeous instructor guided me by the hand along the sea floor.  Everyone else saw amazing things. I just wanted to go home! We had, for me, dived too early.

In coaching, we need to have agreed what we are doing together today before we dive at all – and then only with permission. Otherwise we risk taking them places where we want to go that may be at best not useful and at worst resemble my scuba lesson. While we are working out together what to do today – or rightsizing, they may choose to go deep. That’s great – but I need to hold back on depth until we are clear what we are doing today.  Otherwise I go to the deep coral because that interests me – and if I had waited I would have heard that today they’d like to look at the old shipwreck in the next bay.”

Ⓒ 3D Coaching Ltd 2020

May be distributed freely.  Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com If you would like to get this by email every week, you can do that here!

3D Ideas 896: What am I carrying?

Claire writes: “I’ve been thinking a lot about how important it is to go into conversations with empty pockets. Coaching mastery is about integration not accumulation of tools and techniques. 

And yet we  do go into every conversation with the privilege we do or don’t carry – our education, our gender, our colour or race. I’m grateful to a friend of colour who challenged me to think more deeply about this. Several months ago, when I was writing the book, she told me: ‘You have to talk about it in a way we can’t.’ This took me to listening to some challenging books including Akala’s Natives.

This video is another way of looking at privilege. We can’t get rid of our privilege. But acknowledging it is there is an important step forward if we are going to work in partnership as much as possible. What’s your privilege?

Ⓒ 3D Coaching Ltd 2020

May be distributed freely.  Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com If you would like to get this by email every week, you can do that here!

3D Ideas 895: Connections

Claire writes: “One of the interesting things about lockdown is that we have been asked to make decisions in service of our communities.  Whether we like it or not, we have stayed at home for a common cause that is bigger than we are.

‘Everything is in connection’ says Senge. Many of the connections, or systems, around us are invisible – how we connect to family and friends, teams at work or in the community, to our organisations and to society.

This morning, we ran a module of Transforming Conversations online and we were mapping out the systems in which we live and work. The process of looking at something differently brought insights and clarity to many of us.

Lockdown is, for many, an opportunity to review and reflect on how, what, where and even why or when we do what we do. If it’s time for you to review, mapping it out with stuff (coins, coffee cups, tic tacs – anything that moves) might give you some new insights, if it’s useful?” 

Ⓒ 3D Coaching Ltd 2020

May be distributed freely.  Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com If you would like to get this by email every week, you can do that here!

3D Ideas 894: Deerstalker

Claire writes: “On yesterday’s walk I saw a tiny muntjac deer pop his head out from behind some bushes.  It was tempting to follow him quietly into the woods by stalking him. In the moment, I chose to continue with the walk I was on. I know that deer live in that wood.  I can return to exploring that another day, if I choose.

 

In conversations, it can be easy to form a hypothesis from an observation or intuition, and follow it to see if we were right or wrong. When we are trying to work in partnership that causes an imbalance of power.  Nigel Wellings said ‘Never know first, never know better, never think you know.’ 

In conversation, partnership means don’t stalk the deer – ask them: Is that a deer – what shall we do now?

If you want to learn about coaching in partnership, talk to us about how we can help you.

Ⓒ 3D Coaching Ltd 2020

May be distributed freely.  Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com If you would like to get this by email every week, you can do that here!

3D Ideas 893: Punctuation

Claire writes: “On our kitchen cupboard is a sticky note that says Is this a bracket? Sometime ago, after some coaching, I put that up to remind me to stop, take stop and reflect.

It feels like Covid19 has forced a break and given us the opportunity for a new paragraph. What I love about a new paragraph is that there is empty space in the gap. You can choose to carry on and write about the same subject or you can change the subject if you want to.  I wonder what that means for me, for you?

Punctuation is also key to great conversations. When we catch what the other person is saying with phrases like OK or yes, they act like full stops. Great coaching conversations pay attention to pauses and the space in the words between us. It makes a significant difference to the thinking space we offer. I’ll be exploring Punctuation: Silence in Coaching in a special one hour masterclass on Wednesday 8th July 16.00 (UK). Places limited. £30 inc VAT. Register your interest by emailing info@3dcoaching.com”  

Ⓒ 3D Coaching Ltd 2020

May be distributed freely.  Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com If you would like to get this by email every week, you can do that here!

3D Ideas 892: In Sync

Claire writes: “Out of sync is a daily occurrence in the world of online meetings and Zoom socials. Someone is speaking and you are lagging a few seconds behind them. Being out of sync isn’t a lockdown thing. It is always a daily occurrence – it’s just that we can’t see it.

People think and speak at different speeds, and in coaching it’s common for the thinker to be having a conversation with themselves at the same time as the one they are having with you. The greatest gift you can offer is to notice and invite them to connect the two. I notice that often that’s when they acknowledge the inner talk for the first time. Bringing their thinking processes together catches them up with themselves and makes the encounter deeper and richer.”

Ⓒ 3D Coaching Ltd 2020
May be distributed freely. Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com If you would like to get this by email every week, you can do that here!

3D Ideas 891: We can’t make it OK

Claire writes: “Over the last few weeks it’s been a privilege to spend a little time with Systemic Teacher, Lynn Stoney to talk about with trauma.  One of those conversations has informed this blog post.

Hellinger wrote that war, natural disasters and pandemics are ‘the greater forces that shape us’. We aren’t used to this level of not being in control. It’s a shock and our normal coping strategies may or may not work for us. Naming out loud what we can influence and what we can’t influence can be liberating. In systemic work, this is described as agreeing to something exactly as it is. The world won’t be the same again is about naming the truth of what is. 

Inviting ourselves, or someone else, to say out loud I am feeling trapped in my home, if that is what they are expressing, is very different from reassuring them that lots of other people are, too. Reassurance minimises when we try and make something better.

Agreeing to what is is very different from trying to make something OK.”

[In coaching this is a skill to evoke awareness. This will be part of Wednesday’s masterclass for trained coaches which will be available as a recording from Thursday]

Ⓒ 3D Coaching Ltd 2020

May be distributed freely.  Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com If you would like to get this by email every week, you can do that here!

3D Ideas 890: Ask Them

Claire writes: “Although we are all separated physically, the art of conversation is critical during this season of not knowing. The simplest learning from coaching is more than useful. I have just come off a call where the learning from the practice was that “he (the thinker) needs to use his brain more than me (the coach)”. Conversations work best when they happen in the space between and are not dominated by one or another.

The space and pace of life means that I have taken the same long walk alone every lunchtime for over the last 7 weeks. I walk to this tree, sit for a while, ponder, take a picture and walk home. That started before my Mum was admitted to hospital just after Covid began. We may not have seen Mum in her last three weeks, but we spoke daily on the phone.  Sadly when she died a few weeks ago, I have experienced all kinds of responses from others.  Many of these have been to tell me how traumatic it has been for me. Without asking how I feel. It’s hard to say ‘not traumatised’ after that and it seems that feeling OK isn’t an acceptable answer. Grief in a time of Covid, for me, has occupied a spacious time with a slower pace and lots of outdoor thinking space. All this has been significantly helped by my parents making clear their wishes for direct cremation many months ago. If it’s useful to you, my Dad wrote this article to help him work out what he was thinking about funerals. It has made planning something different a much easier process than it might have been.

 

My Mum used to say ‘visitors first’. 3D’s first principle of coaching is ‘ask them’. Let’s ask people how they are feeling today rather than telling them how they feel.  We won’t know unless we ask. We may be in the same boat but we are all responding to this season in different ways.”

 

Ⓒ 3D Coaching Ltd 2020

May be distributed freely.  Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com If you would like to get this by email every week, you can do that here!

 

3D Ideas 885: Take a Picture

Claire writes: “The best book I have read so far in 2020 is Somebody I Used to Know by Wendy Mitchell. Wendy was diagnosed with dementia young and this is her story.  It wasn’t an easy read but there was much to learn. At the end of the book, I wanted to know what happened next, so I looked her up. Wendy is alive and well and tweeting and blogging.

Last week, Wendy posted a photo of her bedroom wall.  She had gone in and seen something huge which worried and confused her.  She took a photo and left the room. Outside the room, she looked at it from a different place, and recognised the shadow of the pot plants on her window. I love that the concept of looking from a different place has such wide value.

In the last 48 hours, we have been thinking about what questions we need to be asking over the next few days and weeks about behaving responsibly and working in service of the greater good? As a result of this we have decided for the time being to stop all on site group and team events so that we can respect the UK government guidelines about social distancing. We will be focusing on offering online training, coaching and mentor coaching – so we are available to talk whenever that’s useful.

So this morning has been busy with logistics and phone calls.  Now that’s all done, and I can take a step back, I am reminded of Wendy and the photograph.  What I see from a distance is the opportunity to go more slowly, to focus on some useful and important developments, and to experience a different way of being. That’s exciting.”

Ⓒ 3D Coaching Ltd 2020

May be distributed freely.  Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com If you would like to get this by email every week, you can do that here!

3D Ideas 884: Rightsizing

All our ethics training will now be available free on our podcast The Coaching Inn. Find our first recording on iTunes, TuneIn and Stitcher. You can also listen through the website

Claire writes: “A couple of weeks ago I was in my favourite coffee shop. It was the final day of writing my chapter on partnership and power and I was feeling seriously disempowered. On the phone, one of my coaching buddies said ‘Maybe this is about rightsizing?’. That’s a new word to me. So I rightsized my anxiety, by screwing up a sticky note to represent it – and popped it in a convenient hole in the brick next to my table. What had felt enormous was, when rightsized, quite a manageable thing to overcome. If I may invent a new word, my overthinking had wrongsized it!

Now I am back on the road training, I notice that contracting in conversations is an opportunity to rightsize the question. Which means that you can do good thinking around a situation – as long as the question we are exploring is the right size for the time we have.

We use these questions to rightsize. The first letters form the word STOKeRS: 

  • SUBJECT – what do we need to think about today?
  • TIME – given that we have x minutes, what about that do we need to focus on?
  • OUTCOME – what would you like to be different by the end of our time?
  • KNOW – how will you know you have got what you need out of this time?
  • e
  • ROLE – how are we going to do this?
  • START – where shall we start?”

Ⓒ 3D Coaching Ltd 2020

May be distributed freely.  Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com If you would like to get this by email every week, you can do that here!