We often have a shift in season and don’t know it. Often, the pace of a season changes, as does the priorities, the agenda and the spiritual atmosphere around us. If you are not in tune with what is happening and how God is at work, you may feel unsettled but not know why. It can catch you off balance and rob you of your peace.
An important part of coaching people, is to help them more fully engage with the season they are in and the season they are about to transition into. Fully engaging with a season does not just mean setting goals and figuring out priorities, although this part is hugely important. It is also about honouring your heart and your emotions. (Proverbs 4:23 – Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life. … Above everything else guard your heart, because from it flow the springs of life.)
Some people are more logical left brain thinkers, so will approach a new year thinking linearly about what the year ahead is going to hold. What they want to achieve and which goals really matter. Others just have a ‘sense’ of the new year and new season.
How do you coach either of these types of people to be able to fully embrace the season that’s coming?
Simply coaching at the ‘head level’, helping someone to set out their priorities and goals could miss important vital elements of what is ahead. If we are to believe the Bible that our hearts determine the course of our life, and from our hearts flows springs of life, maybe it’s a good idea to learn to coach people’s hearts! As par of our Coach Training, we teach how to do this in fullness, but for purposes of this blog, lets look at how to coach people to find the right pace and rhythm for their season.
- Find General Themes
Firstly, when coaching, once you have asked and ascertained what all the goals and priorities are, look at the overall themes that are presenting. Is it a year of ‘consolidation’, or ‘launching’ or ‘healing’ or ‘withdrawing’? As their coach you can articulate to them themes you see. The best way of helping someone to understand the themes is to coach them into an encounter.
You can do this by using visualization to take them into the future and their new season. Get them to feel what its like. What sense do they have? What do they see? What are the overriding themes? If they believe in God, you can coach them to encounter God to speak to them giving them single words to explain the themes. What is God saying? What three words does Holy Spirit give you for the themes for your new year? Alternatively, you can ask what three words would describe the overall themes you can sense?
- Experience the New Seasons Pace
One way of doing this is to coach your coachee into imagining they an animal and to imagine at what pace they as this animal is moving in the season. What is the animal doing? This bypasses all the details of the tasks and helps to give them a sense of how to embrace the pace of their new season. The use of metaphor is hugely useful in coaching to help people access their hearts, their intuition and what Holy Spirit is saying!
Another way is to simply, use visualisation and get them to define an ideal week. Ask them to imagine and describe what they are doing, in their ideal week. How much would they be doing and not doing? How much play and rest alongside work would feel good? The power of looking at an ideal week in a new season and even when helping someone to envision long term plans is huge. For me this exercise has given me a vivid internal photograph of where I want to head in the long term in my business and life. It has become a goal but not a written down SMART goal, more of a strong visual picture to which I have an emotion connection. This actually lasts longer and is more memorable than any SMART goal I would write down.
So as you read this blog, what are you sensing for your new year? Is it a fast paced, gallop or a relaxed canter? Is it a high speed hunt or a ‘sitting by the river bathing in the sun’ type of pace?
Close your eyes and ask God to give you his key words for your new season. Is it a season of abundance, rest, provision or out of the box surprises!
And……finally what do you want it to be? What would your ideal 2016 look like? Intentionally visualising this is a powerful force to draw you to it, and to draw heavens resources to you.
If you are interested in learning how to coach the heart, using encounters, visualisation, metaphors and much more, we still have a few places on our Online Coach Training School (fully interactive via video) and our Weekends Residential Course at the University of Cambridge