How to Be An Ideal Coaching Client

Are you a coaching client now? If so, are you getting results?

If you’re not getting results, what thoughts do you have on why that might be? What ideas do you have on how to improve that?

In coaching circles there is this notion of an ideal coaching client. We talk about a client’s:

READINESS – Are they ready for change, or are they still wondering whether they can or if they should change at all?

WILLINGNESS – Are they willing to change? Is there truly a desire to make a change, small or large, whether uncomfortable or not?

CAPACITY- Is there capacity for change, meaning is the capability there, from resources internal and external to energy within?

The more strongly these 3 elements show up in a client, the better the situation that positive movement can be made towards desired states.

However, there are more elements that make for a coaching client that has a maximal chance of reaching their desired state. These are:

OPENNESS – To be open to new ideas, new ways of viewing the world, alternative life stories to be written, to changing themselves, to face discomfort and sit in it for as long as it takes. Coaching requires people to be open to the changes and ideas that will shift them from where they are now to where they want to be.

INCENTIVE – Are the incentives for coaching aligned with your desire for change in your life?

Incentives can be:

Monetary – if you pay more, likely you will pay a LOT more attention to the work than if you pay a little, or if it’s free.

Severity – Is your incentive something like:

My doctor told me I am on track for heart disease if I don’t change my lifestyle.
I will lose my job if I can’t figure out my relationship with my manager.
I need to figure out my relationship with my parents or else I will live in misery for the rest of my life.

However, I DETEST negative ones! How about some positive ones:

My life will be free of people who don’t serve me.
My life will be full of joy when I am able to pursue my passions.
My health will enable me to play with my grandchildren.

TAKING CHARGE OF THEIR OWN BEING – Are you a person who takes charge of their life, their feelings, their energy, their health? Or are you a person who wants someone to do everything for them? 

Coaching works best with people who actively take a role in shaping their being.

REALIZING THAT INFORMATION DOES NOT WORK ALONE – Many clients come to sessions asking for lots of information. Unfortunately, in my work, I rarely see people move on information alone. 

In our thought heavy society, we think that knowing is enough to fix things; usually information is NOT the problem but what is blocking you from applying that knowledge is. That is the focus of coaching, not the acquisition of information.

DESIRE – Do you have an emotional connection with where you want to be? If so, how strong is it? Can you say that your desired state of being is something you long for more than anything else in the world? 

Or is it a nice to have. Something you read on the internet that maybe you should.

The stronger your emotional connection with what you want to move towards, the more successful your coaching will be.

How are these landing for you? If you’re a current coaching client or aspire to be one, where are these elements of an ideal client in you right now?

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