One of the skills we learn as coaches is self-management. This is how we keep our stories out of our coaching relationship giving our clients the full space to tell theirs. We are not having a conversation as such, we are there to bring our full listening selves to the relationship and to ask powerful questions, use our intuition, set challenges and apply other coaching skills if and as they suit the situation.
We self-manage by not getting distracted from our client, by ignoring that thought which takes us away from the listening space. Have they said something that’s triggered a memory, a thought, a missed deadline. Have they said something that makes us feel uncomfortable, challenged, inexperienced. Of course these things happen but we work at recovery and reconnection – how we can quickly get back into the space of the session.
To do this we manage our internal voice. We find our way back to curiosity, reminding ourselves that our purpose is to listen and to understand what’s important for our clients.
When was the last time someone said “Are you listening to me”? Were you? How do you bring yourself back? Try it next time you notice your thoughts are getting in the way of your listening.