Tuesday, March 28, 2006
I have always been excellent at following rules and making things work. I am very proficient at doing things efficiently and well. However, I don't enjoy it in the slightest. My favourite thing is making it up as I go along, relying on my ability and intuition, dancing in the moment with whatever comes up.
So I start this great program designed to help me become a big success in my self-employment journey, and immediately get plunged into this strange world of sales and marketing and networking and taxes and policies and trademarks and....basically, plenty of things to DO. Doing all this made me feel very competant and on top of things. In fact, I searched the internet for even more information about what to do and how to do it well.
Yet despite all I have done, I felt that I wasn't accomplishing much. It all seemed a bit empty and annoyingly corporate. I was able to see, through this inspired coaching, that it was because I was receiving advice focused on a goal that didn't interest me. I don't want my company to become the next McDonalds or IBM, and I certainly don't want to sell it off and make wads of cash.
It became abundantly clear that I needed to make a strong stand rejecting other people's views on the "right way" to be an entrepreneur. So I bundled up all of the handouts and flyers and notes I had made and took them down to the beach and burnt them. It took a surprisingly long time, and it turned into a great meditation on trust and freedom. When I left, because it started to snow, I felt so much stronger.
This is not to say that I don't need help; of course I do, and I ask for it all the time. But I need to trust my own instincts about what is important and take the next step that makes sense to me, even though it might appear crazy to a traditional business advisor.
Technorati tags: business coaching doing/being
The most amazing thing has happened to time. It's as if everything has slowed down, like I'm meditating. I'm going through life just fine, getting the laundry done, renting videos, petting the dog; but every second seems bigger.
One of the great benefits of this is having more time to choose a response when I'm in a challenging situation. Something will happen that I would normally react to negatively, and I get time to hear/see it, go "ouch!", then respond in a way that is helpful to me. I feel much calmer and more present in these situations which is a huge gift.
Another benefit is that I can see the truly amazing beauty in the world around me and the people everywhere. There is so much love in every moment. I'm adoring my life and appreciating every opportunity to work and share.
Rereading this, I'm perfectly aware that it sounds a bit nuts, but that doesn't really matter, either. Wow. Yeah!!!
Technorati tags: re-entering coaching time warp
Sunday, March 12, 2006
Monday, March 06, 2006
Then I did the next thing. I called the Coaches Training Institute and signed up for their Leadership course. This is what I have to do. I can't provide you, dear reader, with any good rational reasons why. I can give you lots of great reasons why I shouldn't, but we won't go there. All I know is I have to do it, and as it happens there was one space left in the course starting next week.
It's a wild moment in my life, and as it turns out there aren't too many words here. I'm drinking it in.
Technorati tags: coaching therapy leadership
Sunday, March 05, 2006
Nothing Less Than Everything
How did I do this? I pushed and pushed these leaders with outrageous honesty about my experience. I told them what I really, truly thought, even at the point when I was sure the whole thing was a big waste of my time and money. And they kept on accepting everything I could produce from my bag of tricks; tears, anger, snideness, boredom, depression.....I've got a big range....and asking for more.
I figured, they really mean it. They want it ALL and they want it all in my coaching. So I blasted them, full bore, no holding back - and they loved it. It turns out that's what they meant, all along, about coactive coaching. People have asked me for my full commitment and passion before; but when I gave it to them, they were scared and overwhelmed and told me off for being inappropriate. Not this time.
The leaders told me that my work was the best they had seen in over 30 teachings of this same course, and my classmates agreed - I got a standing ovation (another first in the leaders' experience) and many people came to tell me how much I had inspired them. I am just pumped because as a coach I am required to USE my whole self. I can't hold back and if I do I am ripping off my clients.
This post is a way to savour that experience and most importantly reinforce what I know to be true now. This blog can serve as a way to keep that fresh and constant in my life and most importantly in my coaching. My clients deserve nothing less than everything I have to give.
Technorati tags: coaching co-active celebration
Wednesday, March 01, 2006
Becoming More Human
One blog I read regularly is What is the (Next) Message by Mark Federman at the University of Toronto. I discovered him after reading The Gutenberg Galaxy and looking for others who were interested in McLuhan's work. This book was extremely difficult for me to read, so naturally I loved it. McLuhan's mind was truly brilliant and he did his best to convince people to become concious of the effects of technology on their experience of the world.
Mark often notes that the business world is changing whether or not corporations are keeping up. The old corporate model of controlling information and having highly standardized products is no longer meeting consumer demands. Consumers can (and do!) talk to each other in real time via the internet and can create a buzz or a boycott with little effort. HSBC - do you even know about yours? Politicians are also generally clueless about the potential of the medium.
While there are huge markets that do not operate in this way (hi Mum!) the Early Adopters are living more and more of their lives online. In that arena, people know how easy it is to set up a website and provide a great service which is highly personalized using today's technology. One ordinary consumer's network is no longer limited geographically, or by the number of people they can physically meet, or even time, as a website does its thing 24-7. If you suck, they tell everyone. If you don't meet their requirements, they tell everyone. If you're amazing, they link to your site, and tell everyone.
Making a business into a system that produces the same effect over and over again, even if it is personalized to the customer to the nth degree, just isn't going to work for much longer. One cannot plan for every human possibility. At some point, the system just starts getting in the way. Isn't it more sensible to set up a business that is responsive to each individual, each time a transaction happens? Anyone know of any books touting this as the next business fad?
Technorati tags: business Marshall McLuhan internet