Personal Development Coaching via Twitter – #Coaching Q1a: What are the 5 most important things to you in your life?#PersonalDevelopment #MakingLemonade
There are no right or wrong answers to this question. Your answers need to be honest and represent your current thinking.
This is a fairly typical values-based coaching question. Values are what we believe are important to us and to aspects of our lives. Our values are linked to our identity and often motivate our behaviour and direction. Thinking about your values is a great starting point when undertaking coaching.
I don’t want to get all ‘coachy’ on you right now, so simply think about who and/or what is important to you in your life.
Coaching Q1b: What makes them important to you? #PersonalDevelopment #MakingLemonade
It is sometimes easier to brainstorm your ideas and then arrange them in order of importance to you.
Q1a and Q1b are basic but important questions. Keep your responses in your mind as you continue answering the subsequent questions.
#Coaching Q2a: If you could meet anyone, alive or dead, who would you meet?#PersonalDevelopment #MakingLemonade
I found this coaching question took some thinking about, but in the end I went for Mo Mowlam.
She was a great female role model who was successful in a very male dominated, very tough work environment. She worked exceptionally hard to make a difference in highly sensitive situations. I admire her even more as she did much of this while living with a brain tumour. She was truly a people’s politician and UK politics would benefit from more like her.
#Coaching Q2b: What would you ask the person you chose in Q2a? #PersonalDevelopment #MakingLemonade
I would ask her for her tips on how to successfully negotiate.
#Coaching Q2c: What does your Q2a&b answers tell you about yourself?#PersonalDevelopment #MakingLemonade
When I looked back at why I chose Mo Mowlam I can see that my choice represents me well. I like to be motivated by people I find inspiring. I believe in working hard and challenging people’s misconceptions. I believe you should love what you do and do it with a smile; I am a believer a sense of humour is an advantage in stressful situations.
The question I would ask her highlighted an area where I can lack confidence. This led me to dig out an audio book on negotiating which I wouldn’t have done otherwise.
What does your answer say about you and what you would like to know more about?
#Coaching Q3a: You win £250,000 on the lottery, what do you spend it on?#PersonalDevelopment #MakingLemonade
Another thought provoking one! £250,000 is a large amount of money, but it probably won’t provide you with all you need to rely on for the rest of your days.
#Coaching Q3b: In the absence of a lottery win, what can you do now? #PersonalDevelopment #MakingLemonade
What many of my clients find, is that when they look at their response to the question above they don’t actually need the lottery win to make some of the things a reality. This is not because they are wealthy necessarily; it’s often because what they have responded with is not entirely unworkable. They might need the lottery win to do it all or in their ideal way, but with a little planning and creative thinking they see something is possible.
To give you an example, I know someone who responded that they would go to Mount Everest’s base camp. She then went away and did some research. Firstly, the cost wasn’t as high as she had imagined. She worked out her finances and decided with a little sacrifice she could afford it. The other barrier was her fitness. She is of the opinion that this is a once in a lifetime experience and the fitter she is the more she will get out of it. She has booked to make the trip next year and is currently working on her fitness. Improving her fitness is a spin off, money-can’t-buy goal that has resulted from her response to a question about a fantasy lottery win.
One of my responses was that I would buy a tandem. This got me thinking that I may not need a lottery win to make this happen.
I found out about a charity that hires tandems and I am in the process of applying to hire one over the summer. Not quite the same as owning one, but the next best thing. Without thinking about this question I would not have pursued this and I would not have the opportunity to enjoy cycling this summer.
Take a look at your list and consider what steps you can take to make any of your plans happen. I’d love to hear from you – leave a comment.
#Coaching Q4a: If you could change one thing what would it be? #PersonalDevelopment #MakingLemonade
Ok, this is about as open-ended as they come and so the temptation might be to say something seemingly impossible. I am not going to dissuade you from saying anything that appears to beimpossible – it is for you to answer as you wish.
Whether you say something obviously important to you and that you can influence or seemingly impossible or fanciful, I’ll wager that either response will be something important to you and something you can influence.
Let me give you an example; I recently asked a friend this question and he quickly responded that his change would be that everyone in the world had access to clean drinking water. The inference was this was an impossible wish. However, it was something important to him as he said it without hesitation and with conviction.
I went on to suggest that he could influence this change. If he set up a direct debit and donated just £2 a month to WaterAid he would enable one person to access a lasting supply of safe, clean water which would improve hygiene and sanitation for that person within eight months.
OK, so he hasn’t single-handedly made the global change his initial response implied. Yet, he has made that change possible for one person and it will have a life changing impact. What’s more he won’t miss £2 a month to make this change. Having this conversation made me realise that I wouldn’t miss £2 a month either and so I also made the change. We are now two people closer to his change being reality.
My glass of lemonade is always half full so my tendency is to see beyond what may at first seem impossible. With further thought you may decide there is some way you can influence your change.
Share what you would change and how you will go about it in the comments below.
#Coaching Q5a: What would you like your legacy to be? #PersonalDevelopment #MakingLemonade
This question asks you to think about how you would like to be perceived when you are no longer with us. Consider your responses to Q1a and Q1b as your values and those important to you might well figure in your response here. You might like to be remembered for something you achieved or for a contribution you made to something or someone.
#Coaching Q5b: What do you need to do or change, to live up to your legacy now?#PersonalDevelopment #MakingLemonade
Your legacy will almost certainly have a direct link with what you did while on this earth. For example, one of my clients said he wanted his legacy to be that he was a good husband and father. He told me that it was important to him that his sons and wife would think that, but he didn’t care much for what others would say.
He asked himself that if he were to pass away tomorrow would he rest in peace that he had been both those things?
He didn’t feel confident that he had prioritised his family of late. He had been working late and feeling stressed. He hadn’t seen his sons play football for a while and frequently missed the bedtime ritual. He also said he hadn’t spent much quality time with his wife as they both seemed to be busy and subsequently tired most of the time.
Without any prompt, he vowed that he would do something about getting the balance back between work and family life. He said he would ask his parents to babysit at the weekend and take his wife out for dinner. He said he would be more mindful to put his boys to bed more often and be present on the football side lines at their next game.
My legacy included that I would be remembered for being fun and encouraging others to achieve their potential. In considering my legacy it dawned on me that I hadn’t done any of the things I consider fun with any of my friends for some time. I made a conscious decision to say yes next time I was invited out. I went one step further and arranged a get-together for some friends who I rarely see.
The other part of my legacy motivates me to continue striving to achieve success in my work.
This question serves as an opportunity to stop and reflect on the present, even though initially it is asking you to think about the future.
Feel free to share your legacy in the comments below.
Final task: Look at your responses and complete your Wheel of Life. #PersonalDevelopment #MakingLemonade
You start by giving each segment a heading and then grade each segment according to how satisfied you feel about it. You can label the segments in a number of ways:
- General topics (as per example on the wheel of life front page)
- Top things that stress you out
- Wheel of finance
- Wheel of happiness
For example, if you choose to create a ‘wheel of happiness’ you would label the segments according to what excites you, what things you enjoy and ultimately what makes you happy! They could include hobbies, family outings, nights out with the girls/boys etc. Give them a grade according to how much you are drawn to the topic, how satisfied you feel or how much additional time you want to spend on them. Commit to an action in each area or a couple of areas where you would like to feel increased happiness.
If you choose to create a ‘wheel of finance’, then topics might be savings, debt reduction, budgeting, saving for a holiday, switching utility providers, phone expenditure, reducing overdraft etc
If you have a goal in mind then use the wheel to identify areas that represent things you can do to create a successful outcome. For example, if your goal is to find a new job, your segments might include social media, up-date CV, recruitment agencies, existing networks, on-line job alerts etc. You can then grade which of these you want to work at or do first.
A completed wheel gives you a clear, visual indication of where you are at. You can then give a second grade to where you would like to be with each topic. It’s a great tool to evaluate progress and identify what areas still exist that you would like to change.