Why You Need Coaching

(Especially If You Think You Don’t)

By Yen Uy


[photo credits] Photo by Stocksnap on Pixabay

I can still remember my first encounter with coaching. A very good friend wanted me to just give it a try, to see if I like it. I rejected his suggestion immediately thinking that I didn’t need it. "Sure, I have problems, but I can handle them on my own," I thought. But my friend persisted in convincing me. Eventually, his persistence paid off. I found myself sitting at a café anxious about having my first coaching conversation.

During that session, I talked about my life: about how it almost fell apart, but didn’t because I worked hard at keeping it together. Sure, I was unhappy many times, but who’s happy all the time? There were many things that needed to be dealt with throughout my life and I just had to roll with the punches. I was actually really proud of myself. But after my first session, that’s when it hit me--the struggling, the negative feelings were so normal to me that I had already accepted them. I had accepted a life that’s not miserable, but not joyful either.

After my first coaching session, I became aware that I had already settled for a life that’s missing joy and I had been okay with it. I stopped dreaming for reasons I believed were valid and logical. Once I came to this awareness, I couldn’t help but challenge how I thought. I started asking different questions. From being so set on how my life should turn out, I got curious. My curiosity led me to follow a trail of breadcrumbs that led me to a path that never ever, not even once, crossed my mind: becoming a coach.

Now as a coach, I see the same pattern play out. My most transformational conversations are with those who didn’t think they need coaching, but were just curious to try it out. They would usually begin the conversation with “I am not sure what to talk about today.” Followed by a seemingly innocent symptom they are experiencing. As the conversation progresses, they would become aware of something that they’ve normalized about themselves or their lives. They would also become aware that they’ve been behaving in the opposite of what they deeply want. At the end the session, a very common phrase I hear from my clients is, “I feel foolish.” What they mean by that is: they can’t believe they’ve been behaving a certain way just because of how “faulty” they were thinking. When you experience this, of course, you can stay the same if you want--but not if you want to grow and to move forward with your life. Not if deep inside, you want your life to be different.

It’s giving you space to see the disconnect between the life you want and how you’re behaving towards or away from it – that’s how coaching can really help you. Maybe you don’t know what you want, maybe you’re unaware that you don’t know what you want, or maybe you just need to see how you can be different so your life can be different. For these things, you need someone to listen intently to you, to hold space for you without judgement, and to draw out from you what’s most important for you to know. Are you ready? Let’s do that!