Wednesday, February 10, 2016

My coaching starts with me

Let's do a current emotion check, shall we?

I just did this about an hour ago, and here's what I came up with.


Ahh! I couldn't contain myself. This was a big moment for me.

I'll share what my excitement was about in a moment, but first, I can't help but take pause. 

I want to stop and compare these feelings to where I was just one week earlier, and especially to two or three weeks prior. 

Do you all remember me the first couple days of the January conference? 

Sick. Sad. Resigned. Constricted. 

Many of you read my mood and body language, and described me as down, unhappy, that my "light seemed dim" that I had lost my spark. 

And that was exactly true. I felt sad, lonely, sick and miserable. 

And now it's just two weeks later, and look at these emotions again.

Enthusiasm, Joy, Excitement. I'll say it again: Ahhhh! :D

Quite the difference! And it truly did start with shifts that started to take place at the conference. Day by day, bit by bit. 

Starting with many conversations with you. 

Conversation means changing together

I hope you were changed, but I at least know I was. 

I made declarations, and it turned to action

So here was the most recent action: Tonight I went to a salsa dance class and social. It was my first time going to this place. 

I heard about it from its owner Monica, randomly. A few weeks ago I was ringing her up at Trader Joe's. Before she left she handed me her card, which listed the salsa and bachata times. 

I said, oh, I love dancing salsa and bachata! She told me I had to come on a Tuesday. 

Well, tonight, I made it a point to show up. Monica was there, it was her birthday week, and they had a cake and dance for her. I re-introduced myself to her, and she remembered me and was really glad I came.

I started asking people to dance... 

And, man, can I say..... I was FEELING it!!


Slowly, as I danced, the moves came back to me...

I came back to the music, and just felt alive! I felt connected, dancing with this stranger to a beautiful rhythm. 

I was like, yes. 


It reminded me of what Michael commented after the centering I led on the fourth day of the conference. He told me that by the end of the song, "I was long gone! ...That was exactly what I needed!" 

Hah, yes. It's amazing when your heart becomes one with the music. :)

Later I got to dance with Monica, and immediately we just fit together rhythmically. I loved dancing with her. She's a beautiful, soulful person.

She invited me back the next week, and here's the exciting part - she asked me to teach the beginner bachata class next Tuesday!!

I said, OK, well I can help you, but you'll lead it, right? She said, No! I want you to teach it! I will help you, she said.


.....I'm going to lead the class! After only 1 time being there! (Cue all the emotions I was listing the beginning)

Now you can understand my enthusiasm.

And suddenly... it felt like I was right where I needed to be.

By trusting and taking one step at a time, by surrounding myself with such wonderfully supportive people (you all), it got me to where I belonged. To a new opportunity. 

It was Mitch who, while addressing me in my sick and downtrodden state, commented that when he pictured me, he saw me in front of a group of people. He said this after seeing me the lead the centering. That's where I'm most at ease, he said. 

It was, as is most of what Mitch says, an astute observation, and I took it to heart. I thought, hmm, there's something to that. 

I don't belong folded up in a corner somewhere hiding, which is where I feel like I've spent the last few months. 

But maybe that's where I needed to be during that time, so I can appreciate what it's like to be unfolded. Connected. Alive.

So what does dancing and feeling great have to do with coaching? Don't I need clients? Isn't coaching sitting across from someone having a conversation?

Yes, but coaching cannot begin there. It starts much earlier, with us. 

That's why we spent 4 months digging up our own sh**. Coming face to face with it. 

That's why we've spent weeks and weeks asking ourselves what the heck does it mean to center. Why does resolute feel so weird? Do I really need flexibility? 

And by wrestling with all these things - with ourselves - we pave the way to show up in a whole way for our clients. 

Not perfect, but whole. 

Complete, as in completely human. 

We've learned to (or are learning to) love ourselves, and our own journeys, in all their messiness and ups and downs; we're learning to embrace that we don't have our sh** together, and likely never will, because we're beginners, and that's the best thing to be in life. Beginners. Learners.

And so no, I don't have any clients yet. I will soon. But I'm investing in coaching by going out there and dancing, and trusting, and continuing to be me. 

And all this will only make me the best coach for all those clients who are waiting for me out there. 

So when that moment comes and our clients say, "I don't know, but I want to learn," they get to declare, "I'm a beginner." 

And we get to say, "Me, too."

"Me, too!"

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