Life Coaching

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Question 1
Write a brief summary of how you would prepare yourself and the environment for a life coaching session before the meeting.

In order to prepare for a life coaching session the coach would make use of a notebook or having paper to hand and diary such that any ideas, plans, subjects and exercises that arise, can be discussed. This is to ensure that what is written down are ‘facts’. The use of having a diary can also be easier to set deadlines and ensure that no double bookings have taken place. Furthermore, taking at least 20 – 30mins prior to the session can be beneficial as this will give you time to relax and gather your thoughts together. Deep breathing exercises, quiet meditation and positive thinking are also useful tools. Spending time reading notes from past sessions and making notes can be useful if this is to be discussed at the next meeting. Any telephone conversations can be jotted down and used also. This enables the coach to accelerate the process of change.

The Environment is important and should be where the sessions are quiet e.g. private room and free from distractions. A room that is comfortable with regards to seating and where it is feasible to write. Freedom of speaking is also important and should be where the coach and client would not be overheard in any way by others, as this is the coaches and client’s private time.

Communicating with others that you should not be disturbed and discussing this previously allows you time to work around your schedule and work out the best possible time for your coaching sessions. Further practical steps can be to turn off the mobile, not answer the door if someone should pass by and eat well before the meeting.

Question 2

In your own words write a paragraph on the difference between ‘hearing’ and active listening’. Within this write about why effective listening is important to life coaching.

The difference between ‘hearing’ and ‘active listening’ is that hearing can be likened to a natural ability. For example, in conversation with others our desire is to talk, such that while the other person is speaking we are thinking of what we want to say and waiting for the opportunity to speak. Our attention should be on what the other person is saying rather than focusing on our own thoughts. This happens when our mind’s attention has drifted on other things and is no longer intent or understanding and responding. Thus ‘hearing’ rather than ‘listening’ is seen. Listening is more important than talking. By active listening clients can be helped to overcome fears, where complete and utter undivided attention can be given with incomparable support. For example, by actively understanding and analyzing what the client is saying through verbal response such as “yes”, “I understand” and non-verbal responses such as positive gestures i.e. firm hand shake and/or eye to eye contact.

Therefore, for effective listening to take place and seen as an important factor in life coaching, the following could be applied: Eye to Eye Contact: Provides deeper communication between the client and coach as opposed to looking out the window, at a newspaper, up at the ceiling or down at the floor. By maintaining eye to eye contact the client will feel recognised, important, valued and connected to the coach and the coaching process.

Evidence of Interest: An occasional nod and facial movements can indicate to the client that we have an understanding of what they are saying.

Verification: Ask questions that will enable the coach to clarify what the client is saying. This shows the client that we are engaged through active listening.

Non-judgmental: By not advising, criticising or judging we are helping the client to come into contact with their own inner truths and needs.

Empathic: To be aware of situations that allows the client to feel understood and cared for, experiencing the inner reality of the client by asking effective questions that...
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