How can Career Coaching help you level up your career?
I think there is a perception with coaching that you only need it if you are struggling. However that is not the case at all. Any kind of coaching helps you to up your game, to take it to the next level and get you closer to your potential. Of course there are personal development things you can do yourself (and I recommend we all do this – life is about evolution, after all), but having a coach will push you in ways you wouldn’t push yourself. As well as unlocking though processes and things that you didn’t know you existed.
As humans we create our own models of the world, through what we think, feel, speak and behave. One core part of NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) is looking into our limiting beliefs. What are the things we tell ourselves subconsciously that impact the way we act? These tend to be deep rooted, likely from childhood and involve some re-framing to change that belief.
An example of this with a client is related to hard work and success. They were high up in their career and worked so hard all the time that they continually became burnt out and never felt a sense of achievement or successful. Through working with them, we identified that they had seen their parents working so hard and they used to be told that hard work was needed to achieve anything. Now we understood where this limiting belief came from, we then worked to understand when these thoughts arose how we could re-frame to change this thinking. This took some work on their part, but they were able to slowly release the link between hard work and success. Reducing the likelihood of burn out.
Career coaching allows you to take a step back and focus ON your career as opposed to in it. We spend so much of our lives on autopilot going through the day to day and are so busy, that we rarely take a step back for reflection. Reflection allows us to look at everything from a distance and really delve into how things are going. What is going well? What isn’t going so well? What can we improve on? What is no longer serving us? How do I feel most days?
You become a driver in your career journey, not a passanger. We are the masters of our own destiny and no one cares about our career as much as us. Instead of decisions being made for us (of our next roles, next project etc), it’s time to reclaim control and really think about what YOU want. Once you know what you want and have that clarity, it makes it much easier to communicate to your boss, your network and your advocates and to take steps in the right direction of getting to where you want to be. Being assertive in your career is important, as is investing in yourself and your personal and professional development.
Career coaching is not solely about your career – it looks at your WHOLE LIFE. It allows you to design your dream life and look at how your career fits into that. Even the smallest changes you make in your career will have ripple effects into your entire life. The things you work on will involve adapting your mindset and thinking about things in a different way! A good coaching session will mean you will never look at things in the same way again (a bold statement, but it’s true).
Do you have an idea of what your dream life looks like? Getting really clear on this is important and allows you then to put together plans on how to get there. I’ve spent a lot of time in my adult life really thinking about how I want my life to look like and what I need to do to work through that. In 2016 I first worked with a coach to map out the next year – I wanted a promotion and had the exact image of the house I wanted: Detached, mock tudor, nice garden, good area etc. Putting this out into the universe (and the hard work and determination that goes with that) meant that over the next 2 years I achieved that. Mindset, I believe is so important, you have to believe that you can attain these things and in order to do that you need to have a clear positive mindset that I work on every. damn.day.
When you have a good understanding of your dream life, you can then look into how you career fits into that. I believe that our careers should complement and uplift our lives, they form a segment of our lives but are not its entirety (balance is mega important to me). You can then look into – how does my current career fit or not fit into my life? It might be that your dream life is to have a big family and spend a lot of time together. You’d then need to look into – how does your current career serve that vision? Assuming you would need more flexibility with working hours and not want to work 50 hour weeks.
I believe Career Coaching is integral to a successful life and career. I’m not just saying that as I’m a coach! The coaching I had 4 years ago helped me re-frame my thinking and set me on a path to get to where I need to be. Not all coaching needs to be transformative, but I think you will find that the one thing you want to change will have ripple effects throughout your whole life.