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Coaching and personal development – simply getting much, much, more out of your life, sooner than you thought possible.

By EugeneYeng Subscribe to RSS | December 29th 2011 | Views:

We are all well aware of coaches working in sport but what exactly do they do and what is coaching outside of sport? Well the answer is that coaching is the action of improving personal knowledge and development and growth in any area. Just as with the sports coach there is a close alliance between coach and client that is dedicated to the outcomes of the client. Coaching enables individuals to look at their lives in the whole taking into account all areas of a persons’ life and reconsidering the goals, activity and direction in each area as well as the balance between competing demands. The main reason why people turn to coaches simply is to get more out of life, whether this is in terms of relationships, career, health, sport, well being, spirituality, learning, life-style, or creativity. Typically people turn to coaches when they are no longer getting the results that they are seeking. This point can be a crisis, period of transition, or it can even be a frustration in a particular aspect of personal performance. Many people, however, are now aware of the benefits of coaching and are realising that they can get more out of any aspect of their lives through working with a coach well before aspects of their lives begin to become problematic.

A keen equestrian has a fall and looses confidence and works with a coach to rebuild her confidence. Realising the changes, she continues to develop her understanding of her work life values and relationships and makes changes in her life and work as a result.

A highly successful businessman works with a coach to improve his golf game – realises the approaches are applicable to his business life and continues to develop his goals and motivation together with a breakthrough session to remove limiting beliefs which he found holding him back. His target – to double his business in twelve months. He takes an NLP Practitioner Course and develops a new range of approaches to working with himself and with others clearly confident in doubling his income which he does.

A teacher takes a distance learning coaching course to work with students better, realises he has no life goals or targets himself and sets about transforming his life, doubles his salary, gets a new house and eventually lets go of old beliefs and values and embarks on a totally new career and life-style.

Coaching is about personal transformation and growth. It teaches us that we have options in every aspect of our lives. It shows us why we live within frameworks of values, beliefs, behaviours, and habits and it gives us choice in every area.

So why do so may people spend so much time and money on self help books with such limited impact? The reason is simple. When you are learning about your own mind, it’s far more effective to work with another, more skilled mind to get the changes you want. Coaches compel to action simply through natural human interaction. They challenge with skillful questions at the right time. They provoke within a context of rapport to challenge beliefs and values. They enlighten with a range of approaches and techniques to reveal to the client representations of the clients own experience which they simply were not aware of. Coaches work within what they call a framework of ecology. What this means is that they consider all the consequences of any course of action for a client. Yes a client could double his or her income but if this had a negative impact on their health or relationships the coach can easily lead the client to a deep understanding of all the consequences of their action so that they can adjust behaviour accordingly.

The Coaching Process

The coaching process is focussed on you. It begins with a detailed personal history which is much more than it sounds. It’s not just a detailed personal history in terms of your upbringing relationships, career etc. It will start your internal unconscious processes working to re-evaluate your values and aspirations before any formal work begins.

You may complete an audit and review of your current context and then choose an area to work on.


The coach then begins an intensive programme called a breakthrough process which elicits and ranks your core values in a chosen area of your life – typically these are broad contexts such as Relationships, Career, Wealth, Health, and can also focus on personal contexts such as creativity, spirituality, and sporting interests.

Addressing limiting beliefs, behaviours and values

In order to be able to move forward in your life the coach works with you to identify the limits which your pervious learning, experience and upbringing may be placing on you. Having identified these the coach will use specific techniques which will then give you choice over whether to modify these or not. Learning that you have choice over these aspects of you make up is a tremendously liberating experience - hence the breakthrough tag on the process.

Creating a new pattern to live to

We all work and life to our own internal patterns, goals and aspirations. We do this whether we acknowledge this or not. These patterns shape our daily and lifelong behaviour. Becoming aware of the programmes we operate by through working with a skilled professional coach and giving ourselves choice over these is the key point of the whole coaching process.

Working with your coach, using specific techniques, the coach will assist you in the development of a revised personal conceptualisation – plan – vision – sense of - schema – of your present and future life. The imprinting events which shape our lives for decades are acquired really quickly and can be revised just a quickly. In fact, when we realise where our imprinting events are we can be shocked at how casually we adopt these and the lasting impact they have on us long, long after they were relevant or served our personal needs.

The coach knows how to develop your new internal aspirations and programmes with you so that they impact on your daily beliefs and behaviours and then works with you to achieve this.

Follow up

This is the followed up by a process of clean up of any further limiting beliefs, less helpful behaviours or sustaining new changes.

Ideally you will now have a very detailed written description of your future in every respect. The writing process is important to pattern unconscious learning into conscious thought – this directs the attention of the unconscious mind which then automatically matches actions, thoughts, opportunity taking to meet the new programmes you are working towards.

Choosing a coach

There are no standard qualifications which coaches have to have but there are some standards which will give you a great deal of security in choosing someone to work with. You will see many coaching courses available however these may not give the coach the full range of skills needed. The main ones to check for, are that they have an advanced qualification in Neuro Linguistic Programming. You should know that there are three of four levels of qualification:

NLP Diploma A Three or Four day Qualification which is an introduction. If you are interested in your own personal development then this would be a good place for you to start with yourself. There are though, far too any people operating as coaches with only a Diploma or Certificate in NLP.

NLP Practitioner This is a qualification which take between seven to sixteen days to achieve and is the minimum standard you should work with. They will have a good grounding in the techniques and approaches needed to coach you. They might also have additional coaching qualifications but these are generally focussed on goal setting and low level rational processes which are limited in effectiveness without the Practitioner Certification. You will see Coaches with NLP Coaching Certification as well -such coaches are well prepared to support you in your development.

NLP Master Practitioner This is the ideal training needed to coach you. Master Practitioners are able to work with values, beliefs, behaviours, limiting beliefs, early patterning issues and even significant trauma. Ideally they will have additional certification in Hypnotherapy and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy thought this is a useful bonus and not essential.

NLP Trainer Such coaches have generally the highest level of capability of skills available and can work fluidly and flexibly to coach you to the outcomes you are looking for. They should be actively training and you should be able to assess their abilities by attending one of their shorter seminars.

Coaching is about working with you to achieve personal excellence in any area of your life. Many coaches set themselves up in response to some sort of unwanted transition in their lives. Why model these people? Choose a coach who is successful and effective in their own lives. You may not personally like them but you are not looking for a friend – you may need someone who can lead you out of your comfort zone

What you can do on your own

There are many ‘Be Your Own Life Coach’ books available which will give you a good introduction to personal development. Similarly there are many books available on Coaching and NLP which you may find useful. Free coaching course are available and a good introduction to personal development for participants as opposed to setting up a practice. You would certainly get a lot from taking an NLP Diploma or Practitioner course as this will give you considerable personal advantages and flexibility. Some coaching practices Charge less for a practitioner course than they do for a coaching package in the belief that it represents better value to the client. That is something you need to decide yourself.

In practical terms today go online and look for a wheel of life exercise and complete this. Then spend some times writing out a set of goals for your future setting out in detail what you want your life to be like in three years time, one years time, and what you will do every week to achieve this.

You are not stuck with the life you currently have. You have the life you have now because of your beliefs, values and behaviours. All of these can be changed so that they align with the life you want now rather than the life you wanted then.

EugeneYeng - About Author:
Andy Lee is a certified NLP Coach Master Practitioner and Trainer with 30 years experience in people development in education working with hard top reach individuals and families. He is an expert in people development in a range of contexts and achieves outstanding results in a very wide range of contexts. He contributes to leading on line forums and leadership and personal development sites. He operates in the North of England as a Coach and trainer. He offers the NLPremium Practitioner which is believed to be the most exciting personal development opportunity in Europe. He has an international reputation for excellence in coaching, training and people development.

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