I am often asked what I do as a professional coach. So I often pass on this question to the clients I partner with when performing my work. Some of them are business executives seeking to deal with business challenges, others are team leaders in need to better communicate with their people; some are professionals seeking a new career path, or their calling; while others simply seek to achieve better relationships in their lives. Their experience of our partnership distils the spirit of what we actually achieve together.
Some say I am like a gardener – one who looks for the garden within, instead of being busy sowing a new one, holding the deep trust that the seeds are already there, ingrained, many and fertile. Then, once light is shed and water is dropped on the resourceful ground, springtime settles in and the seeds start suddenly and utterly blossoming and the air becomes full of the fragrance of their fulfilled potential.
Others say I become their window. Through me, they have a vision, a glimpse into all the possibilities within and around themselves, with their pluses and minuses. And once they reach this awareness, they become free to act and find the best solutions.
Most clients say I change lives. They flatter me, of course, as both them and I know it is not literally true. I cannot change any life but mine. What I do is stir something in them; trigger a process in which they ignite a fire, and a flame goes on burning in their inner being, fuelled by them only, illuminating wherever they move. The path, the way, the business solution, whatsoever they do or search for, it lights it.
To me personally, coaching people is like actively witnessing a sculpture: I stand in front of a beautiful piece of wood and I feel its energy, I can see in it all the potential shapes it could become, the beauty it would inspire, the spotlights on it at an art exhibition, the awe in the eyes of the people who admire it. Because a sculpture is a process, and so is each of us. And my biggest achievement as a coach is when my clients become sufficiently aware and responsible to pick up a chisel and start the sculpture of which they are the true and only master: a sculpture of their best self.