All People Are Unique
But It All Begins With Their stories
Often we will say to people who express an interest in coaching – "Tell me the Reader’s Digest version of your life." It is amazing that everyone can tell this story. And so out of our stories comes how we show up in the world.
Since the stories are all “made up” one has to wonder why we don’t make up more exciting stories about ourselves and our lives! One of the main reasons we don’t is because of what some call our “conditioned tendency.”
A person’s conditioned tendency is the result of things that they have learned or heard form the past from four sources – our family, cultural domestication, education and religion. We have a very quick, almost instantaneous, ability to consciously, or often subconsciously, know how someone will act given a given certain set of circumstances.
From our family source come messages about our ethnicity and gender. From our cultural domestication source come messages about our nationality and regional area identity. From our educational source come messages about our social class and our profession. From our religious source come many messages about the ideas that we hold about ourselves and our relationship with the world and the universe.
- The first place we get this training is from our gene pool. From here we get our gender, gender identity, sexual preference, race and ethnicity and many messages about them.
- The second place is from what we call our cultural domestication. From here we get training and messages about our language, history, laws and customs, clothing and diet mores, all of which are influenced and taught to us by our nationality, our parents, siblings and even the region of the world in which we live.
- The third place is from our education. From here we get trained by our teachers, mentors, coaches, consultants with messages about schooling, (having gone to a good school or a not so good school, being smart or not so smart), our profession and our resultant social status.
- The fourth place is from our religion and its resultant training. Here we acquire messages about the commandments of life, our moral and ethical values and in many cases, our after-life and hell, all of which influence our behavior and the way we show up in the world.
Noticing the Voices in Our Head
A masterful professional coaching program helps people notice the voices in their heads. Where do these voices come from? Almost all of them come from our conditioned tendencies and so, therefore, they can be tamed. What actually happens is that people can be helped or taught to notice or observing their conditioned tendency. Several things happen at this point.
First of all, they are able to make choices about whether or not to listen to the voice. Secondly, they can stop living in sadness about the past, or anger or disgust about the present or fear about the future. They can live in the present moment of what some call the NOW and be in joy. When people are unable to notice the voices in their heads, they end up being slaves to their feelings and emotions which, left unchecked, can turn into more permanent conditions called moods.
Feelings and Emotions
There are four to six, depending on how you count them, fundamental emotions which are sadness — anger and disgust — fear — joy and love, Everyone is experiencing one or more of these predominant emotions at any given time. They can be thought of as a circle or square. With our life coaching program, we help our clients notice which basic emotional state they are in at different times. This helps them move through it, release the conditioned tendency and take action or shift their state of being, so they can move back into the fundamental state of joy and love.
When we spend a considerable amount of time in a specific emotion we end up in what is called a mood. Out of our emotional states we can make an assessment of fact or an assessment as to possibility. We can either oppose or accept our moods and be in one of four other states: resentment and having some desire for secret revenge or be in a state of resignation. We can be in a state of acceptance and live in peace or be in a state of ambition.
In most cases, a person takes an action and there is a result. If we are not satisfied or happy with the result, we change the action and hope for a different result. And what if that doesn't work? It might be possible if, instead of returning to revise the action, we returned to reconsider how we were looking or noticing. There are two main ways that a life coach can apply the Transformational Change Theory and empower a person to transform or re-see him or herself – by:
- Holding up the mirror and asking if this is how they chose to show up in the world.
- Shining the spotlight into another place and asking if the person would like to look there.