Can You Still Coach Even in Difficult Times?

March 24, 2020
Life Coaching

We all go through tough times. And now more than ever, there’s no question we’re living in doubt and uncertainty. COVID-19 is forcing us to look at life from a different perspective and to ask ourselves questions we never thought of asking ourselves. Can you still coach even in difficult times? Can we all still run our businesses even during lockdowns? How do you emotionally and mentally deal with this, and help others at the same time?

Thing is, there’s no be-all end-all solution. But yes, you can definitely still coach even in difficult times - be it during a pandemic like this or other tough times in life. Coaching is needed even more in times of acute change, and what you have to offer the world as a coach is vital and necessary.

Coaches Hold Light For Others and Bring Hope

If there’s one thing in common among coaches, it is that they bring hope into the room. They create the ideal conditions for hope to flourish. Coaches have this connection and unique relationship with positivity and realism that even during unprecedented moments, they are still able to connect with their training and stay optimistic and hopeful. They acknowledge the difficulty as well as the reality of a given situation and they honor the overwhelming emotions such times bring, but they also choose to remain hopeful and to continue to co-create the future with their clients.

Now more than ever, people need hope. The role of life coaches is becoming more vital and more important as people deal with unprecedented job loss, life changes and uncertainty. With the media coverage of COVID-19 alone, it’s almost impossible for some people to stay positive. Thus, as a coach, it’s your job to work with your client and create a toolbox for days when they feel hopeless. 

As a coach, you have the skillset to help them do this. But it’s also just as important to cultivate your own source of light as well. Don’t feel like you have to do it all alone.

Working With Others As a Coach Gives Us Strength

If you’re in doubt about whether or not you should continue your coaching business, you’re not alone. The desire to be a coach can gradually decrease especially when you are filled with overwhelm. It’s not just you. Keep in mind that working with others gives us strength too. It’s a two-way street where your client benefits from having a coach and you are also gaining strength and hope from working with your client.

Why? Because even during tough times, working with your client and seeing the results of that active participation motivates you to keep pushing and keep becoming a better coach, building on your existing knowledge and learning new skills. 

Sessions with your clients and the conversations you share remind you why you do what you do in the first place. Working with others is a great way to keep learning. And as coaches, we’re all hungry for lessons to be learned and shared.

Building Resilience + Grit Is Our Superpower 

Resilience and grit are a coach’s superpower to acclimate to change, especially something as profoundly affecting as this worldwide level of change. 

But coaches, through their training and work in Positive Psychology, know the power of the combination between grit and resilience. That said, this is a good time to learn more about how to be resilient -- our exposure to difficulty and our ability to overcome builds up our resiliency. To be open to opportunities for developing grit -- our opportunity to face down hard things and come out the other side builds our grit. 

This is a good time to hone your skills meant to help you navigate through change. Every coach has their own tools for times like this, and those tools are not only to help their clients but also themselves.

Cultivating Gratitude 

When put in a tough and uncertain situation, most people fall into fear and doubt. We’re all humans, after all. But as a coach, in order to be able to keep coaching even in difficult times, it’s good to remember to lean into grace and thankfulness. It’s good to cultivate gratitude -- not just for fluffy reasons, there’s scientific evidence that building gratitude makes us more creative, helps our brains process better, makes us more self aware, more prone to connection with others.

This is something that is worth passing onto your clients as well. Help them remember the things they’re grateful for. Work with them to develop ways to stay appreciative of life. Now more than ever, it is a perfect time to work with your clients to keep grace in their lives. Love is the same thing as paying attention -- so what are you paying attention to?

Take Things As They Come

Understand that just because you’re a coach doesn’t mean you have to automatically know how to deal with this massive situation or any situation. Coaches don’t dispense advice! Coaching is client led and client directed. Be kind and gentle with yourself. Keep in mind that there’s no RIGHT way or WRONG way to react, and this is something we should also remind our clients of, as they process the situation in light of pursuing their goals.

Instead of allowing doubt and overwhelm to take over you, take things as they come. Decide if things are feelings or facts. Allow yourself to be vulnerable enough to welcome this kind of change, and resilient enough to keep pushing forward as it feels right to you. Some days may be better than others!

Limit Social Media Time But Stay Connected

Social media is not the only way to stay connected. Remember calling? Remember texting? Those two come in handy these days. Seems like everyone is Zooming all day. In order to keep your business afloat and to still coach even during tough times, you may want to consider limiting your time on social media or reading the news. Too much social media means too much exposure to news about the coronavirus, other people’s outpour of emotions, and even memes that aren’t really helpful.

Safeguard your mind and heart by having a social media break. Instead, focus on you. Work with yourself to stay hopeful and fill your life with grace. And one of the best ways to do this is to connect with loved ones through other means like texting and calling. Allow them to remind you how much of a great person you are. And remind them how much they mean to you. Instead of leaning on panic and overwhelm, lean on love.

Your clients will benefit from the fact that you have taken care of yourself, and from the strategies you employ to stay on track yourself. Your story is your gold and your clients are drawn to you because they want to work with YOU! Keep coaching and lean on your support system as needed -- you are doing a valuable, good thing and the world needs what you have.

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