In continuation from this post, I’ve been thinking a lot about the role of coaching, and therefor the role of coaches, more in depth than ever before. Covid-19 has been like holding up a magnifying glass to the world’s problems: inequality, climate change, consumerism, a selfishness spurred by panic, and everything in between. Who am I to think that I can impact these behemoth, multidimensional problems when all I’m armed with is curiosity, exercises in visioning, metaphor, embodiment, and powerful questions?
But the real question rather: who am I not to think that I can have an impact?
I genuinely believe in the strength of perspective, mindset, and fulfillment; that when a person is fulfilled, they have the power to serve others, to transform their community, and therefore, to change the world. I’ve seen first hand how a shift in mindset, from impulsively reacting to the world to actively choosing to engage with the world, how that simple decision to see things differently opens up endless opportunities. One is passive: “the world is out to get me; I’m at it’s mercy”. The other is active: “I can create from this”. One is a statement: “I can’t win”. The other is a question: “what would it look like if I won?” One is contracting: “this is my only option”. The other is expanding: “what are my other options?”
Earlier today, during another brilliant Co-Active Training Institute call, an image came to me as we wrapped up. Covid-19 for me feels like being locked in an old, run down manor with the stale smell and wear and tear of time. There are endless rooms; some are boarded up, others have floorboards missing, the remaining have windows so dirty you can’t see out of them. After a few weeks of wandering aimlessly between its many rooms, getting sucked into the ambiance of each one, it appears that I have to choose where to spend my time. So what will I choose?
I choose the ballroom, the biggest room of them all. Even though I can’t peer through them just yet, it has the most windows to the outside world. Maybe if I scrub hard enough or break the glass, I can sneak a peek at the estate. It has a piano, a smooth floor, and great acoustics. Maybe I can practice some tunes or bust a move or break into song. It has high ceilings and endless built in shelves. Maybe it’s a place to climb, to tap back into my favorite childhood past-times.
Ultimately, the choice itself is a creative pursuit, not a reactive one. The act of choosing, though it requires energy and determination, is what gives me power. And if I can choose, if I have that power, then I’d rather choose the largest room, the one with most possibilities to honor myself and my values, instead of choosing the smallest one, the toilet, where yes, my basic needs are met but there’s not enough room to dance.