You’ve been criticizing yourself for years and it hasn’t worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens. ~Louise L. Hay
Your Inner Coach
What new challenges might you tackle if you had a non-judgmental, curious, and insightful coach? How much more could you accomplish if you had support and encouragement from an advocate and witness?
An effective coach welcomes all parts of you, listens actively and asks mind-opening questions. The support, accountability and perspective of a discerning guide can help you eliminate old limiting beliefs and behaviors, and identify strengths you can leverage to create the life you want.
What are characteristics of a great coach?
- Actively listens
- Non-judgmental and curious
- Asks great questions
- Supports you to create effective action and to be accountable to your goals and dreams
In the next chapter, I will ask you to make a contract with yourself to embody these qualities inside you and to utilize the skills of a great coach.
First, I’ll explain why these qualities and skills are important.
How to Be Your Own Best Friend Instead of Your Own Worst Enemy
Neuroscience research suggests a welcoming, friendly, non-judgmental attitude promotes positive learning and behavioral change. Case Western Reserve University research conducted by Professor Boyzatis using MRI scans reveal enhanced activity in the brain areas associated with learning and behavioral changes in clients whose coach demonstrates those qualities and helps the client focus on a positive future.
Treating yourself the way a great coach would treat you is not babying yourself—it’s the best way to engage your creativity, to motivate yourself and to initiate lasting change. Yelling at yourself and judging yourself harshly will not activate the learning and behavioral parts of your brain. In short, it’s harder to change when you adopt a hostile attitude towards yourself.
You are always listening to what you tell yourself. When your mind constantly focuses on criticizing yourself and identifying how you’re screwing up, the brain only notices the flaws and that criticizing yourself and screwing up is a big priority. Sometimes people unwittingly focus on what they don’t want over and over- and then unwittingly bring it about.
“I can’t screw up, I can’t screw up, I can’t screw up…. oops, I just screwed up…”
Pay attention to what you want. Express it in positive terms. “I want to do x. I want x to happen.” Reinforce in yourself what you do want, not what you don’t want.
May we pursue our paths cultivating our own inner coach,