Iiiiiiiiii’m… Hooked On the Feelings!

Swear Trek: The Worst Year Ever
Image Courtesy of Swear Trek

I’m a coach. My job is to help people overcome obstacles and achieve their goals. And sometimes, shit happens. It does.

But sometimes, shit just keeps on happening. The client comes to me with something big and dramatic and important that they just have to work through– and it’s always a very legit problem, mind you– and we address it, only to discover that next week, the client has a new big and dramatic and important thing to address… Their aunt is in the hospital. Their credit cards were stolen. Their car randomly exploded, taking out the garage and breaking every window within a half-mile radius. Over time, if we let it, what started out as a fairly straightforward coaching relationship will turn into a crazy game of “whack-a-problem.”

And none of the client’s goals are being met. How could they be? The client has big, important, SUPER REAL PROBLEMS to deal with! What’s going on here?

As a coach, my assumption is always that you are the master of your own life, and that therefore anything that’s in it, is there because you are making something of it.

Just to be clear, I don’t mean that my disaster-stricken client is deliberately going out and poisoning their aunt, giving their credit cards to the first thief who wanders by, or dynamiting their own car. But the events taking place are just that– events. It’s what those events mean to you that gives them their power.

If your aunt is in the hospital, you have a choice: 1) spend your time freaking out about it, or 2) acknowledge it, maybe visit and bring her some flowers and a book to help her feel better (hospitals are boring as heck), and then get back to your goals.

If your credit cards were stolen, you have a choice: 1) spend your time freaking out about it, or 2) call the credit card companies to get them replaced, and then get back to your goals.

If your car randomly exploded… well okay, that one probably takes a little more dealing with, but even then you can reach a state of equilibrium and then get back to your goals.

“But these problems are real!” the client may object. “They’re important! They’re valid! They’re waaay too big for me to pay attention to anything else!” And the client isn’t wrong, but the client is still making that choice. Literally, as long as you can breathe and move and operate in the world, you have the ability to be working on your goals; and if you choose to spend your time freaking out about your problems– as real and valid as they are– then freaking out about your problems is all that will get done.

And, I mean, if you want to pay a coach to sit with you and freak out about all the crazy things going on in your life, I can totally do that, but you could probably get it a lot cheaper by inviting a friend out for coffee.

You might consider, instead, taking full advantage of your coach’s services: exploring possibilities, creating new ideas and moving in new directions, creating a new future based on what you really, truly want from your heart– instead of just taking the least-uncomfortable thing you think you can get.

That’s a conversation I’m much more interested in. How about you? 🙂