Embracing the Power of Coaching

Image Credit https://www.vantagefit.io/blog/mental-health-awareness/

“Have you ever wondered why coaching is widely accepted and essential for professional athletes, yet leaders in other fields hesitate to embrace it? In my recent conversation with a friend from the corporate world, we explored the obstacles that hinder the acceptance of coaching.

As the International Coaching Federation (ICF) highlights, coaching is an essential tool for personal and professional development. By engaging in coaching, we can systematically develop awareness and build the skills necessary to navigate life’s obstacles with confidence.

During International Coaching Week, I invite you to take action and experience the transformative potential of coaching. To support this initiative, I am offering free exploratory sessions to those who are curious about coaching and its benefits. To schedule please email vandena@coachingu2bmore.co.za

I recently had coffee with a friend of mine who works in the corporate world and has experienced significant personal growth through leadership coaching. She shared with me her observations about leaders being reluctant to embrace coaching and invest in their own self-development. When she suggested coaching to a colleague, she encountered immediate resistance and apprehension, with a knee-jerk reaction of “I don’t need coaching.”

During our conversation, we delved into the obstacles that hinder the acceptance of coaching:
• Why is coaching seen as acceptable and essential for professional athletes, but not for leaders in other fields?
• What prevents us from integrating coaching into our daily lives, similar to physical exercise or spiritual practices?
• Why do we often wait for life-changing events before considering coaching as a priority?

Let’s take a look at some examples from the world of sports. Michael Phelps, the most decorated Olympian, has extensively worked with sports psychologists throughout his career. He credits their guidance in helping him manage anxiety, overcome mental hurdles, and maintain a strong mindset during competition. Another notable example is Simone Biles, who has also sought the assistance of sports psychologists to address the mental aspects of her gymnastics performance. She emphasizes the importance of mental health and acknowledges the value of professional support in coping with the pressures of competition and maintaining a healthy mindset.

Interestingly, while it is widely accepted to prioritize physical exercise or engage in spiritual practices like attending church, the significance of investing in our mental fitness often eludes us.

In some cases, coaching is mistakenly perceived as a sign of weakness or as a solution solely for individuals facing challenges. There is an expectation in organizations that people should be self-sufficient and capable of handling their own problems. Coaching may also get confused with therapy or counselling, leading to the misconception that seeking coaching implies struggling with a mental illness.

As an unknown quote wisely suggests, “Nourishing the mind is as important as nourishing the body and soul.” Taking care of our mental well-being is just as vital as taking care of our physical and spiritual selves. In the words of the Greek philosopher Marcus Aurelius, “The mind is everything. What you think, you become.” Our thoughts influence our actions, shape our perceptions of the world, and ultimately determine the individuals we become.

Coaching is an empowering and supportive process that helps clients consciously direct their thoughts towards positivity, growth, and success. It enables us to create a more fulfilling and meaningful life.

Let’s not wait until we’re in the midst of a crisis. Investing in coaching beforehand makes it much easier to work through and recover from life’s challenges. By engaging in coaching, we can systematically develop awareness and build the skills necessary to navigate the obstacles that come our way with confidence.

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