I talk to many well-meaning people who would like to coach CEO’s. They have watched CEO’s or read about them and they feel they could really help them. When we observe others, we can often see how making just a few changes would make them so much more effective. It’s not that easy.
I have been blessed with the opportunity to actually coach some of those people and seen significant improvements in their performance. Being able to show them what others see, and what they can do differently, is powerful and rewarding. Client issues, however, are like a mirror into how I have made most of the communication mistakes my clients have experienced. If mistakes build experience … I have a lot of experience.
My Biggest Coaching Challenge
The person I see in the mirror is my biggest coaching challenge. I see all the things I could do better and only a few of the improvements actually become reality. I am blessed to be married to a world-class coach and even with thirty years of her coaching me … I could do better.
Keeping New Year’s resolutions is often an example of our good intentions colliding with the reality of how hard some personal changes are to make … even when we are motivated. Motivation is often fleeting. Some days motivation flies away by noon and other days the motivation never shows up.
My brother’s Zen view of life says the challenge we have is accepting that we are flawed. Our pain comes from unrealistic expectations. There is some truth in that for me. I ask, “Why is that important to me?” Determining if the expectation is really an external/comparative expectation, or is truly my personal expectation, narrows my scope for change.
I am not a believer in just accepting my flaws with subsequent lowered expectations. The recent movement to focus on strengths is better than only focusing on weaknesses, but I am not a believer in focusing only on strengths.
Many times the key weaknesses are derailleurs at work and in one’s personal life. Key weaknesses should be addressed. There should also be a focus on key strengths. If we focus on correcting one or two key weaknesses, and on using more of our key strengths, it is easier to be kind to ourselves.
I certainly see that focusing on a few key changes is the most effective approach for my clients. As I look in the mirror at my biggest coaching challenge … I will try to keep that in mind. If you have already failed at some of your New Year’s resolutions … I hope you will be kind to yourself, too.