Thank You, Ken Wilber!

Recently a debate has bubbled up in more than one LinkIn group discussion about whether a Coach needs a coach in order to be truly excellent in the field of Coaching.

As I read the very strong opinions expressed on both sides of this debate, it is obvious that folks are writing and expressing views from very different definitions of what it means to be a coach. Moreover they are writing from very different world views. The ‘reality’ expressed reflects the observer each is.

This makes me lean back to Ken Wilber and his extraordinary gift for expressing the factors which define us as the observer we are of our reality. I encourage you to visit Wilber’s publications on Amazon and Google and choose anyone. “A Short History of Everything” got me started more than a dozen years ago, and a recent second or third look at Wilber’s writing reminded me of how helpful his writing style is to me. It’s not easy for me to comprehend broad philosophical and spiritual concepts, and his practice of asking a question and framing an answer helps me focus and absorb his thinking. Thank you, Ken Wilber!

For me, Coaching is about learning. Over the years I’ve been a Coach I have continued to learn with those I coach. And perhaps the greatest lessons for me continue to be, Be Open. Trust the Process. Listen. Live in Gratitude.

Talking It Over

“I was totally blindsided. Why didn’t anyone talk to me about this? Why is a written memo the first indication that I’m upsetting people with some of the things I’m doing? I’m so hurt and angry!”

These were the words I heard today from a woman who had just come out of a meeting with her boss. Her emotions were so strong and so painful that it was difficult for her to find words adequate to express them. She repeated over and over, “Why didn’t anybody talk to me?”

In truth her boss may have made an tentative attempt to talk with my friend, but clearly there was never a time when she had created a time and space for talking it over. And perhaps there were times when my friend may have ignored or misinterpreted subtle hints that some of her actions were problematic. She thought she was being helpful, others saw her as butting in. She thought that it was OK for some of her personal files and books to be on her desk, others saw her as inconsiderate of space.

‘Talking it over’ is so much easier if we do it sooner rather than later. Issues can grow from minor annoyances to huge barriers so quickly. Trust is eroded when we don’t deal with differences, when we avoid conflict. We may waste huge amounts of psychic energy as the conversation that needs to happen grows in our minds without our giving words to our feelings and expressing our concerns. “Let’s talk it over” is so easy to say. It’s such a simple way to begin a conversation that needs to happen.