Coaching World Issue 18: May 2016 - Page 13

What does being present have to do with describing coaching? I mean, if you are with someone, we assume that you are present. When we were in school and the teacher took the roll, we answered “present.” That meant we were there, in our seat. But, did it mean we were engaged or involved? The ICF Core Competencies describe Coaching Presence as being able to dance in the moment, be intuitive, tap into our knowing and more. Let’s thing they want to feel is your presence. You’re not distracted, you’re not playing solitaire online while you talk, etc. Now I know that we—yes, we coaches—would never do that. That’s why people want to work with us. But others in their lives might do those things. We listen, we ask questions, we invite our clients to take risks and try new things. Nowhere in the previous sentence does it say that we tell them what to do or even assume that we always know what they should do. But if we are not present with them, we have no clue where to go next in our conversation. How many of you “always” know what to say or do in the moment? Is that even expected? Do you beat yourself up when you don’t know how to respond? I hope not. Coaches don’t have the answers. We help the client figure out the answers and, yes, we sometimes share what may have worked for others in a similar situation. Let’s look at the emotions a bit. When people come to us it’s often because they’re unhappy, To my way of thinking, it is a privilege to actually be with someone as they shift and grow. They deserve us to be who we are and they deserve us to be present with them. “Whatever affects one direct