Focusing on our transient feelings of pleasure or gratification to define ‘happiness’ doesn’t work – not for our clients nor for us as coaches. Life has a way of throwing curve balls at us; pain, frustration, boredom, conflict, stress, disappointment are an integral part of living. Not something that we need to (or can) avoid or run away from.
A more holistic way to look at ‘happiness’ is to live a life that is congruent with our values. We take action on things that matter to us deeply and we move in directions that have value and meaning to us. Such a life will have its ups and downs, but the broad direction will be one that moves us towards how we want to be. When this values based direction is clearer we can draw strength and meaning to deal with the daily frustrations or difficult phases of life. The starting point is often to help our clients really understand and define their values. Not just their goals, but their VALUES!
Here is where the authenticity tire skids off the road: Many of us as coaches encourage our clients to ‘do a values exercise’, not having done it for ourselves. As coaches, do we have our own values (not goals!) in place? Are our daily dilemmas and decisions put through our values lens? Can we coach on this from our own experience – the successes and the failures?
It’s difficult to coach authentically around values and values based directions if we don’t walk our own talk. So, how do we start?
Check out details of our ICF accredited 125 hour ACTP Executive Coach training program being held in October and December in Bangalore, on this website’s ACTP/ACSTH page. Why not use this as an opportunity to visit India / Bangalore?
Reference: The Happiness Trap: Stop Struggling, Start Living by Dr Russ Harris