My coaching conversations often go a bit like this…
Client: “I want to do something completely different. I’ve outgrown my current role and I’m starting to feel bored. I don’t feel fulfilled any longer and I need a change.”
Me: “What does different look like?”
Client: “I don’t know, I’ve never really given it any thought. I just want it to be different.”
Me: “What might you like to de doing that you’re not doing now?”
Client: “I have no idea, I just know it’s not this. I feel so stuck. I’ve got responsibilities and bills to pay. I can’t just drop everything and spend the next year wandering around the streets with my camera capturing interesting people doing interesting things. I wish I was a bit more interesting”.
Me: “Oh, so you like photography? Let’s talk about that….”
I could have said “So you like interesting people. What makes them interesting? Let’s talk about that…” or “So you like wandering around, exploring new places? Let’s talk about that…” The joys of coaching! It allows you to wander down many different paths, to explore and feed your curiosity about what might be possible… even if some of those paths come to a dead end.
Sometimes we struggle to get started on making a change because we don’t know where to start, and often it feels easier to just stay put. At least you know what you’re working with, right? But if we continue to repeat the same patterns of behaviour, continue to go to the same places every day, continue to talk to the same people, you will continue to lead the same life. Nothing changes.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for establishing habits and routines if they are the habits and routines that allow you to live the life you want. If they don’t, then what do you need to change to start living the life you want? Where do you start in identifying what it is you want in the first place? Well, it’s simple really. Start experimenting!
New experiences open up the mind, they can bring new perspectives to a well-trodden path, they can stimulate new ideas and bring about new opportunities that perhaps you couldn’t see from your current position. They can open your eyes to what might be possible or help you to re-affirm that what you have already is all you want. These experiences don’t have to be life-changing!
- work in a different location once a week
- buy a new cookery book to experience a different taste
- take a different route to your normal run
- spend a day shadowing your best mate at work
- take an evening course in photography to test your enthusiasm for the art
- immerse yourself in a new cultural experience
Traditionally I’ve always sat on the “risk adverse” side of the risk equation when it comes to enabling change! But I set myself the challenge a couple of years ago of saying yes to everything, no matter how risky or random they felt… well within reason! And my world started to change. I met lots of new people, my creative juices were stimulated, and new business ideas started to form. I started speaking at conferences, I’ve worked on some fun collaborations and I found myself being filmed by a drone for my new website! I also said yes to running a half marathon and managed to raise £1k for charity in the process. Now I can’t live without my weekly fix, it helps me to clear my mind – fortunately it’s a healthy habit!
Try some new experiences and don’t question why or whether they make sense, just experiment. Jazz it up a bit! You never know what new idea might be sparked as a result and what new conversations might bring. Let me know how you get on!