In this week’s guest post coach Hwai Tah Lee looks at some of the things that can get in the way of coaches being successful:
Overcoming Self-Limiting Beliefs (For Coaches)
By Hwai Tah Lee
Isn’t it ironic that we, who coach people who pay us to help eliminate their self-limiting beliefs, have a few of our own sometimes?
Self-limiting beliefs are beliefs that don’t serve us, put a constraint on our true potential, distort the truth about who we really are and what we are truly capable of.
Even coaches have self-limiting beliefs that could get in the way of serving our clients 100%.
Self-Limiting Beliefs on Getting New Clients
What are the common self-limiting beliefs when acquiring new coaching clients? Here are a few:
- Few people are willing to pay money for personal coaching.
- I’ve no track record of successfully coaching leaders in this industry.
- This guy is too senior and are not coachable by me.
- This coaching issue is beyond the niche that I’m comfortable working in.
- I need to gain respect and prove my credibility to my client.
- I’ve never charged someone this amount for personal coaching before.
- Do I have what it takes to deliver great value to this client?
- I don’t feel comfortable asking for money for my coaching.
Self-Limiting Beliefs during Coaching
What about those that surface during the coaching process itself? Here are a few:
- I’ve not dealt with this issue before – it seems tough.
- Change is impossible for this client.
- I’ve not done sufficient preparation for this coaching session, let’s hope for the best!
- I think it’s better to tell him what to do, he will never see it on his own.
- My coaching skills aren’t adequate enough to help her move through this massive challenge.
- I wish I could avoid coaching on this particular issue.
- I wish I’ve taken up that Advanced Coaching Course so that I could be better at coaching these top guys.
Recognize that the beliefs (which are thoughts made up by you) that you hold determine your experience as a coach.
As real and solid as they may appear to be, your beliefs are only true because you have decided they are – that’s the only reason they hold any weight.
As coaches, we have already known that and we help our clients to see and shift their seeing. But we may have our own blind spots as well. Whatever the case, our beliefs are formed unconsciously, without us being aware. And soon with that, we formed our self-identity as coaches.
Here are some pointers to overcome self-limiting beliefs, as coaches:
- Recognize beliefs for what they are – a collection of thoughts, made up by you.
- Be aware of disempowering feelings – they serve as barometers to let us know the quality of your thoughts in the moment.
- See your thoughts for what they are – you don’t have to agree or embrace them. Be curious about them.
- Test them – instead of questioning whether your beliefs are true or false, put them to the test. Test your assumptions, go beyond the imaginary boundary. Suspend your judgment and test, test, test.
- Develop systems – do you have a system for getting client, system for coaching, system for following up with clients? Systems are good for promoting consistent, healthy processes and structures to help you run your coaching business. Businesses thrive on systems and structures that are solid.
- Focus on serving first – give, give and give before getting. That’s what it’s all about. Do what you do best and the money will flow.
In addition, here are a series of useful self-coaching questions to challenge your self-limiting beliefs and move beyond them. They are constructed in a logical sequence, although not all of the questions must be used at once.
What is something you are resisting or avoiding as a coach?
What are your feelings when experiencing this?
What are you telling yourself when you’re resisting or avoiding this?
What is the belief underneath this resistance or avoidance?
Is the belief true in all coaching situations?
If you keep holding on to this belief, where will it lead you?
Is this belief helping you get your desired outcomes?
What are the high costs of holding on to this belief?
What are the benefits of holding on to this belief?
What would happen when you’re no longer attached to this belief?
How can you make it easy to be okay without being attached to this belief?
What possibilities might open up when this belief is gone?
How would your self-identity as a coach shift without this belief?
What will you do next?
Remember this: You are not your belief and you are not your thoughts because you are certainly not your creation.
Most self-help gurus said that if you change your thinking, you can change your life. In a way, that’s true. But I would like to invite you to shift to a higher level of seeing – when you see that you are the one doing all the thinking (that creates your experience), that alone changes everything.
You don’t have to be afraid or limited by your beliefs. You are the thinker and the creator. Just as the creation cannot limit the creator, your beliefs cannot limit you. They are made up by you, remember?
Many times, that insight alone provides the instant awakening from the inside-out and you don’t even have to go through the series of coaching questions above. When the light comes on, the shadows shift away or disappear – no strategy is required to overcome the shadows. When you see your beliefs for what they are, no overcoming is required. All is left is the clarity to serve your clients 100%.
All my love,
About Hwai Tah Lee
Coach Hwai Tah is a certified coach with the International Coach Federation (ICF). He stands in the gap of where organizations and individuals are and their extraordinary future and dreams. He engages leaders in thought-provoking process to accomplish big professional and personal goals.
Operating from his base in Malaysia and the surrounding region, Hwai Tah’s specialized areas of coaching includes performance, leadership, executive and life coaching.
Hwai Tah also writes regularly in his coaching website, Coaching Journey – Coaching to make profound shifts in the Journey of Success and Happiness. Check out some of his best works there.