Welcome to my world! Below is a collection of terms I’ve learned throughout my personal growth, spiritual journey and training at the Coaches Training Institute, as well as a few I coined myself.
I use these terms frequently in my blog, website and coaching sessions. This glossary will clarify them for you, as many are not typically used day to day, or are used from a different point of view or in different contexts.
This is what I ask of my clients. It is how I help them reach their targets. They have homework to do and I hold them accountable to what they have said they will do. Accountability is not about blame or judgment – those things have no place in my coaching. Rather, it is a matter of motivating coachees to get moving towards their big picture vision. To achieve success and see what they are truly capable of.
Articulating what is going on
This is when a coach tells a client what they see them doing. It can be something the coach picks up on based on what the coachee says (or does not say). The intention is to bring awareness to something they have not yet realized for themselves, or are hesitant to admit, but need to acknowledge to move forward. For example, “Sandra, I know how much you want to change your relationship with your partner, but what I am hearing is that you keep interacting with him the same way you always have.”
This is an exercise from the Coaches Training Institute that looks at all areas of a coachee’s life: career/business, fun and recreation, money and finances, physical environment, personal growth/spirituality, health and wellbeing, friends, family and significant other. In each section, you answer questions to see where you are at the present time. Once the questions are answered, you transfer your score onto the completed assessment wheel. Looking at the wheel, you imagine your life is riding on it and ask yourself, how bumpy will this ride be? Where on the wheel are you most wanting and willing to make a difference? This helps guide you in determining the areas of your life you want to focus on.
Big picture vision
This is about visualizing what you truly want in your heart, for all areas of your life. It’s a picture of your ideal life. Imagine you have a magic wand and, with one swipe, can have your perfect life. What does it look like? Creating your big picture vision enables you to get inspired, take daily steps towards it, and keep your focus, get inspired and take daily steps towards it.
This is about getting to the core of an issue. The whole idea behind coaching is to change your stories, not to engage in lengthy storytelling sessions. You already know your stories. You can tell them to yourself, your friends, your family. When talking to your coach, you are there to change the stories that no longer serve you. Therefore, a coach will ask you to bottom line your stories. Meaning, get to the heart of the matter in a succinct way.
Branding your truth, your lived experience
This is an integral part of heart based coaching. It’s when you talk about your story, what you’ve learned and how you can help others along a similar journey. Having your personal truth come across in all aspects of your business and marketing is what attracts people who are on a similar path to the one you were once on. It’s how they come to you to guide them on that path. Doing this enables you to build a business that is meaningful, truly fulfilling and makes a difference in the lives of others.
Captain refers to your highest self; your inner leader; the part inside you that is clear and knowing. This part of you knows your strengths, talents, gifts and limitations and loves all of you, unconditionally. Your Captain believes in you completely, has infinite patience for you and is always available to you.
CEO of Your Life
“CEO” can either translate to “Chief Executive Officer” or, from my point of view, “Chief Excitement Officer”. Being the CEO of Your Life means knowing your values and life purpose, being connected to your Captain and living your whole life in alignment with these. It means you are continuously taking steps towards the big picture vision you have in your heart; the one you are orgasmically joyful about. It means taking full responsibility for your life and your circumstances, and realizing that it’s in your power to choose any path or mindset you want. It’s all a matter of choice.
During a coaching session, if you’re unable to be present in that moment due to other worries in your mind, it’s best to clear them. You do this by expressing those worries in order to clear the emotions from the situation and be able to be present. I like to do this in business meetings as well. I find they move more smoothly, efficiently and productively when everyone first takes a minute of clearing so that they can be focused and present during the meeting.
Co-Active refers to the basic nature of a coaching relationship, in which the coach and coachee are both active collaborators. Meaning, the coach does not set the agenda. It’s up to the client to bring forth what is happening and what they would like to work on. Both coach and coachee contribute fully. It is a relationship between equals, working together for the purpose of meeting the coachee’s needs.
Dancing in this moment
This is a term from the Coaches Training Institute. The idea is that it’s more creative to work with things as they come up, in the moment, rather than from a fixed plan. When you address what is coming up in the moment, there is room to “dance”. Everything that comes up is an opportunity for learning, movement and opening up to new possibilities.
This is what I do in the discovery session with my clients. It is meant to jumpstart our coach/coachee relationship. During our first session, we design our alliance – how we will work together. We discuss how you want me to coach you and what tools and structures I bring. Most of this session is discovery. It is when you train me on who you are, what you wish for and what I am to hold for you as your vision for your life and career/business. Designed alliances can change with time. It’s important to revisit when the current designed alliance isn’t working as well.
Embrace the mud
Sometimes in life, things happen that are unpleasant. Things we didn’t see coming and that seem to be obstacles in our path. Rather than complaining, focusing on them as obstacles, or avoiding them, how about embracing them? How about seeing them as things that could work FOR you rather than against you? When we choose to embrace whatever comes into our path, and to see it as something that could actually work for us, we open ourselves up to so many new experiences and possibilities.
When making a decision, think about it, feel it in your body. Tune into what your body is telling you. Your body is your inner guidance; your highest self-talking to you. If something feels light in your body, it means it is the right path for you. If something feels heavy, it is the wrong path for you.
Getting comfortable with the uncomfortable
In order to move forward, to see real change in your life, you need to get comfortable with the uncomfortable. You can see my version of this in this blog post.
I always say, look for the gift in every situation. Not a physical gift, but rather, look for what is positive about what is happening. Look for what can you learn and how you can grow from the situation you are in.
These are the voices in your head that want to keep you in the status quo. When thinking about stepping out of your comfort zone, taking a leap, or trying something different, the gremlins tell you things like, “Who do you think you are to go for this? You are not good enough. Just play it safe. You are fine where you are.” The gremlins hold you back. But you can tame your gremlins by starting to notice them and consciously choosing to send them away in a manner that feels right for you. Some people visualize them being sent on a plane far away, or being burned… whatever works for you. Taming those voices takes away their power over you, so that you can move forward towards what you truly want.
Heart based coaching
This is when you coach from the heart, meaning you partner with your inner voice, your Captain. You allow it to guide you on your journey in your life and your business. When you listen closely to your heart, it will lead you in the direction of your soul’s purpose. When using heart based coaching, you are speaking and making decisions from your heart.
When a coach gives his or her client a powerful question as homework. The intention is to encourage the client to reflect and deepen their learning. An inquiry can have several answers and is not a matter of being “right”; rather, it’s a matter of growth and learning. Examples:
- What are you tolerating?
- What are you attached to?
- What is running you?
At times, a coach may need to intrude, to interrupt the client in their story, in order to wake them up as to what is going on. This is done for the client’s benefit, to help them see a situation more clearly. An example would be the coach saying, “Stop right there. What is truly at the heart of this?” This might be rude in some cultures, but in Co-Active training, it’s viewed as being direct with the client so they can look at a situation for what it truly is.
Your life purpose is like your North Star; your internal compass. It steers you on a course through life that resonates deeply with the truth of who you are. It gives you purpose in everything you do. You need to first know your purpose and then align your life with it before truly moving forward towards your big picture vision. When creating your brand or planning your marketing, it’s ideal to bring the message of your life purpose into it. This is a big part of what will attract people to your business. When people feel that your message resonates with them, they will be drawn to you. This is what creates more meaningful relationships with your clients.
Emotions are energy in motion. When areas of your life are hard for you to be with, you need to express the emotions around them. You need to face them head on. To explore these emotions, we use process coaching. As a coach, I am fully in the moment with my client when using process coaching. In the whirlpool, in the mud, in the dark, or wherever they might be, I am fully in their experience with them until things naturally begin to shift and change. This is not just a matter of talking; it’s a matter of fully experiencing the emotions. Doing this allows the energy to release and shift, empowering the client to leverage that shift to fuel forward towards new possibilities.
A specific point of view. Looking at and creating different points of view, different perspectives, opens you up to new possibilities and new angles you never considered before. When you are always looking at something from the same perspective, you are limiting yourself. You are less resourceful and more of a victim to circumstance. When you can ask yourself what else is possible, and look at things from a different perspective, you open yourself up to seeing those new possibilities and moving forward with them.
If you look up orgasmic in the dictionary, it says “very enjoyable or exciting”. To me, orgasmically joyful means being extremely happy and loving life. I believe, in order to be truly orgasmically joyful, you need to become the CEO of Your Life. You need to align your life with your values, your life purpose and your Captain, and take continuous steps towards your big picture vision.
Asking powerful questions helps people to better understand themselves. It provides clarity, action and discovery. It opens up new perspectives and possibilities. Here are some examples of powerful questions:
- What do you truly want?
- What about this is important to you?
- What will you do and when will you do it?
- What’s next?
- What’s important for you to remember?
When something resonates with someone, you can hear it in their voice. You see it in their facial expressions and see that they are being their true self; that they feel alive. This is an indication that whatever they are doing or talking about is aligned with their values. When it’s clear that someone is speaking with low energy, it shows a dissonance. It means the Gremlins are present.
Another name for Gremlin.
Values represent what is most important to you; who you are right now. These are not something you choose. They are intrinsic to you. It’s important to know your values, and to live your life in alignment with them. They are a great tool to use in decision making. If you make your decisions based on how well they align with your values, they will guide you to the path that is right for you. When creating a brand for yourself, it’s important to bring out your three most important values in all your marketing. By branding your values, you attract people with similar ones, which is how you attract people you love to work with.
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