Coaching Reflections : Creating Awareness

I plan to bring in here in this fortnightly column Thoughts , Learning , Observations on different aspects of coaching — some of my own & some via interactions / reflections with my colleagues & friends . In effect , it’s the essence of what I understand — made available to wider audience
Today , I start with thoughts on Awareness — something very core to a coaching process
  • Acting without being aware is like taking medication without diagnosing medical condition .
  • Awareness is knowing (i) Who you are , (ii) Where are you currently (iii) What do you want to do in life , (iv) How would you like to go about it
  • It’s delving deeper into self , beyond the superficiality of understanding . It’s being in closer touch with self – much like the ‘ consciousness ‘ concept in spirituality
  • Awareness is not restricted to physicality or the external elements ; it is importantly more holistic  . Ancient Vedic concept of awareness is “ I’m aware when I’m not thinking “ as against conventional Western concept of “ I think , therefore I’m “
  • Process of meditation / any related mechanism to bring in awareness is like allowing the pot filled with muddy water time for sedimentation , whereby the dust settles down separating from water , leaving it clam & clear .
  • Since solution is where the problem is ; Coaching process helps client to seek a solution within . For him / her to do this requires self awareness for the client . A coach is better prepared to help client’s process of self awareness , provided he’s progressed adequately on his own ‘ self awareness ‘
  • A coach can help client’s self awareness process via :
    • Effacing himself from the situation ….. not imposing own view point , experience , judgment or perspective . In fact a Coach will need to work form the Client’s context
    • Not offering ‘ Advice ‘ . Advising not only assumes a pre supposed context ( which may be wrong ) but also has a ‘ Superior – Inferior ‘ level of equation . It can make the client overtly conscious of his / her ‘ shortcomings ‘ which may create guilt feel & get client stuck in the past than moving forward . In a way , ‘Advising ‘ approach in coaching can be inadvertently negative .
    • Give feedback – like showing a mirror .. neither adding nor deleting any thing form reality nor adding any value judgment / interpretation colour  . A good feedback can help a client get useful insights & a different perspective
    • Ask potent questions … it’s like digging ( efficiently ) with a sharper tool till you reach a fresh water spring in the ground

2 thoughts on “Coaching Reflections : Creating Awareness

  1. Yatin,
    Must congratulate on this intuitive article. Your article on ‘Awareness’ transcends typical coaching techniques, leading the reader into the spiritual realm of ‘Introspection’. I would also call this “Inside-Outside” technique.

    The art of being ‘self-aware’ needs to be instilled whilst the mind is ‘young’. We often find decision points in life, be it between two ice-creams or between education/industry streams, to be ‘externally’ influenced. This over a period of time becomes a pattern-of-life.

    Inside-Outside decisions are always ‘risk-prone’. As an example, a good-man wanted to pursue cinematography as a profession, but was ‘externally’ influenced to take ‘engineering’, which then was followed-up by cause-n-affect. The perceived ‘risk’ here was market ‘sustainability’.

    Schools should carry out short programs which encourage children in applying decisions and learning to understand/embrace outcome of the decisions.

    As it is said “Karma is not only your actions, but also the reaction to the action’.

    The ‘guru’ becomes the catalyst for the ‘shishya’ who becomes the ‘guru’.

    Prakash Iyer

    • Thanks Prakash , great reflections . I like the terminology : ‘ Inside – Outside ‘ . It’s my learning & experience that shifting the trigger from being an external source to internalising it is a process of evolution . Which is when the source of motivation shifts from an external one ( money , position etc ) to internal one ( sense of contribution , sense of fulfillment etc ) or the commitment to the job , shifting form external supervision to internal ownership . Internalisation of such triggers is systemic & sustainable , …. this is similar to achieving ‘ employee engagement ‘ . Unfortunately not many reach that in life time .Those who can are on their way to self-actualisation on Maslow’s hierarchy ( or Nirvana in our philosophy )

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