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Home » Blog » A Coach’s Journey of Self-transformation

All along the avenue of coaching, we talk about what a coach must do for the client, what a coach must do for the system, how can the client benefit from the coaching practices, etc, etc. In this melee, ‘What must a coach do for himself/herself?’ often finds itself in the backseat, lost amongst the many responsibilities of a coach. It will serve us well to remember that to help others, coaches must first help themselves. The former is not possible as a standalone event. In essence, coaching is the transfer of ideas across individuals and then the carryover of those ideas into actions. For this process to take place, an idea must first germinate in the coach’s mind. The coach will then be able to pass it on to the others. For those initial ideas to spring up, a coach must make the effort to constantly improve and educate their own selves.

This self-improvement takes many forms. One may choose to level up the accreditations that they hold, opt for new credentials (certifications) from the ICF, or find some way to professionally upskill. The other way is continued self-learning. As in life, so in coaching- this is an attitude that will never take you down the wrong path.

Here we delve into some of the nitty-gritty of daily life that a coach can practice to drive more impact in their careers-

Communicate better  


Communication is one word, but a series of processes. Here’s what you can do as a coach to make sure you become a better communicator as the days progress-

  • Listen actively- This is the first step of good communication. We also cannot emphasise enough that hearing is not equal to listening. You hear noises, for example, a vehicle honking, but you listen to a podcast. Listening requires attention and intelligence. Focus on the underlying thoughts and feelings, for often the most important things are left unsaid and lingering in silence, for the listener to decipher. Listen to yourself before you listen to the client’s needs and challenges.
  • Ask questions- Curiosity may have killed the cat, but it sure helped the coaches thrive. Asking questions not only gets you more information about the client, but it also forces the client to do some thinking on their own. An added plus- your involvement level will seriously impress the client and inevitably work wonders for you. Practice by asking relevant questions to people in daily conversations.
  • Provide feedback- Specific, unbiased, and constructive feedback delivered in a proper manner will enhance your reputation as an able communicator. Start with your partner or maybe the kids’ science project for school. Provide feedback to your house help about their quality of work and gently let them know if improvements need to be made. Be patient with people as they process the feedback. It takes time to change thought into action. Gradually, watch meaningful change occur.

Empower yourself as a coach

  • Never stop learning- Thanks to the Internet, the variety and depth of available learning experiences is pretty much endless. From online conferences to one-day workshops, to university courses, and more. That’s besides industry newsletters, podcasts, websites, and YouTube. You must have fresh examples and case studies on hand for clients to relate better.
  • Find a coach for yourself- Being a coach doesn’t automatically make you an all-knowing expert who can resolve any situation. Coaches need coaches too. As a coachee, you will understand the perspective of your clients and this will help you to resolve their issues better. It will make you a better coach.
  • Set clear expectations- Clients must know what to expect of you. Coaching is not just about having conversations. An essential work plan for objectives and goal setting keeps a client motivated. Tangible changes and transformation always play a key role in helping a coach establish a system for the sessions.

Keep absorbing information

It is a good idea to keep in touch with the past and future of the coaching industry. Be well-read and aware of the changes going on in the industry, and also know how coaching evolved to where it is today. We have a curated list of some videos and books that you can peruse on your journey (or if you happen to be starting it)

Unconscious Learning– Milton Erickson talks about the power of the unconscious mind and how it keeps learning through various mechanisms.

Systems Coaching– A video of Peter Senge elaborating on the emergence of systems and how coaching is now turning towards the system instead of the individual.

Apart from these videos, there are also a number of books at your disposal from stalwarts in the industry. A few (which you must read) are given below-

  1. Coaching for Performance by John Whitmore.
  2. What got you here won’t get you there by Marshall Goldsmith
  3. Fifth Discipline by Peter Senge
  4. Games People Play by Eric Berne
  5. Constellations and Systemic Coaching by John Whittington
  6. Systemic Coaching: Delivering Value Beyond the Individual by Peter Hawkins and Eve Turner.

So, there you have it- a well-rounded list of things to do by yourself to get better as a coach! Constantly reinventing and upgrading yourself is always required to keep up with changing times. On this evergreen path of self-transformation, stay fresh!