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Why is that Life Coach Shouting at Me?

I got officially into the world of self-development back in 2012. Two years prior to that, I started my own journey into getting to know myself again. Skip forward three years, and I was learning to love myself, again. So my five year anniversary is fast approaching, to celebrate when I started to share with and inspire people on the world wide web. Perhaps I will be gifting myself with something wooden!

the gift

 

 

 

 

Going back to self-development, or, as I prefer to categorise it, self-exploration. I was always excited to share the tools that not only helped me approach this life, but I was sure would help others. Was that not amazing? Yes, I was full of enthusiasm!

I can also recall during those early days the excitement every time I discovered a new approach to deal with an everyday matter. I wanted to share it. Sometimes I discovered new ways and at other times things that weren’t so unique – just new spins on old theories. I would write about them in my blog posts or guest articles.

guess what

Then there was social media, which was meant to be a platform to not only engage socially, but also a tool to market expertise. So a share would appear on my timeline or Facebook business page. Was it not loving to share?

Fast forward to the present day, where I have started to notice a trend on Facebook timeline: the rise of the shouting life coaches, or titled self-help gurus. Here are some examples of the tone they take: “Why do you think you’re not over there?” “You are not over there because you’re not following these prescribed steps!” “Come on, what’s stopping you?”

Did you not notice in the previous statements how it felt to read that exclamation mark, as the speaker came across as direct, perhaps even pushy? Yes, we may need a nudge at times, as we are creatures of comfort. But come on. Do you like people to shout at you? Trying to tell you what YOU should be doing? Personally, I don’t like the shouting-fest. There are always better ways of expressing oneself.

 

     What is the best way of approaching self-help?

     “Be ready”

We all have different ways of learning, picking up stuff, and applying it to our everyday lives. But before we go there, the first step is that we need to be ready to hear a message or reminder.

Like my mother always say, “nothing happens before its time.” The solution is always there, waiting for us. Before that moment, we will experience cycles where we seem to arrive at a point of frustration, time and again.

Tell me! Has this happened to you in relationships, where you have told yourself “never again”? Then you may have had a change of heart and forgotten about that promise to not overdo it. Alcohol is a good example.

 

     Learn from example.

We live what we learn. For example, we really do connect to real-life stories. It makes it much easier to relate with human feelings – the “feel good.”

My theory is that some of those people who are “shouting” about how you should be living are in fact feeling the need to talk to themselves. The tools that they are pushing on you about how you should feel and how you should be more of your awesome self are ideas they need to share.

These “shouting coaches” want to work stuff out. The need that they feel to shout and push their theories out there is more related to them playing the Archetype of the Fixer. They want to help people, when first they need to help themselves. Maybe they have the belief that this concept is selfish – that is often misconstrued – to take care of themselves first.

Of course, that is wrong, but you can feel free to not resonate with the former.

 

     “Remember that a teacher is a guide”

We have options when deciding whether we want to listen to some discovery or lesson, or if we are going to apply it. Ultimately, it is not to the responsibility of the coach to push this choice on another person. The teacher’s job is to point and show a way, not say, “that is the only way for you.” This was so eloquently described by the late Bruce Lee:

 

“A teacher is never a giver of “truth”; he is a guide, a pointer to the truth.”

     Freedom to feel and resonate.

The fact is we have free will to choose what we believe in and what resonates with us. Our feelings and emotions are valid. Our intuition is a good guide, a compass. This also includes our inner child, who may at times seem naïve. But this part of ourselves is always honest, and quite articulate at expressing its wants. So be aware of any teacher who is telling you, to suppress the inner child.

 

Overall, social media, like the other parts of the internet, gives us access to great resources and people who can support us. We do need to pay attention to the delivery, and the person’s intentions. Look at the place they’re coming from, as in the illustration where we looked at the “Fixer” Archetype. And, of course, when you hear a loud noise, you can mute it.

 

What are you going to do when you next hear the shouting life coach?

 

 

 

The “Expert”

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In this time, which we live in, life is digital. We can connect with people much easier through the World Wide Web. This can be through the medium of sending email messages or having video chats via Skype. We also have access to different informational products. This can be e-books, online courses and so forth. It has become easy to put your message out there; and show your expertise in a subject matter.

the expert

the expert

 

Who is an expert?

 

The days of having credentials behind your name when publishing non-fiction has gone.  People are sometimes calling themselves experts from reading up on a topic, or having personal experience with the topic. I do not have an issue with the latter, as you cannot beat experience – the practical! I do wonder about the former, studying. For many years I was an academic, studying concepts and sometimes applying it to scenarios with regard to legal problems: applying the law to the facts. In some respects it helped to know what the likely outcome will be, based on precedents. Although there were times when this may not be the case, as precedents may not be followed, as the judge may decide to ‘distinguish’ the facts or decide that there is a better way. This is an interesting point that because one rule has [apparently] worked before, then it does not mean you cannot try something new. As I write this post, I am also reading a book that raises the argument about not falling for the dogma. This is good approach to apply when looking at beliefs, as we may forget to question why we still accept this view.

In the world of coaching I have seen many ‘life coaches’ popping up. It is good to get help when it is required, sometimes you may not get this from reading.  A friend of mines years ago said, “I do not believe in life coaches. Why do you need someone to validate you?” Her main thought was that you are the best person to make life decisions.  She could not understand leaving it to someone else to say whether you were on the right path. Coaching is part mirroring the other person, reflecting what they are projecting and giving them the space to help come up solutions. I am weary of the people out there calling themselves ‘experts’ on topics that they have not mastered themselves on a personal level. So you will not see me [at the time of writing this: January 2014], publishing shortly the Money ‘Series” book. Perhaps that will come next year.

 

“You are an expert as you are living life”

I believe that we are experts in life, as we are living it. We go through different experiences: both good and bad. From these we are gaining an insight.  For example, learning that if you drink too much you may wake up with a bad hangover the next day. Please be warned, sometimes we may not take on the lesson that was to be learnt. This can be like that story where a person kept walking down the pavement, which had a pothole, kept falling in and cried in annoyance. Then the day when they decided to not walk along that same pavement, then they 1) did not fall into the payment and 2) no longer felt the annoyance of repeating the same action.

 

“Resonating”

 It is interesting how a theme can develop out of another discussion. Recently I was participated in a FaceBook discussion regarding time.  It started off as a joke, and then I added a point about a so-called expert on time. One participant in this explained how they did not enjoy the book; and felt bad for admitting this, as the author was well-known and renowned as an expert. I interjected by saying that I too could not get into the flow of the book, so therefore did not complete it. The point here is that just because a person is deemed an expert, does not mean that you will connect with the “how” they deliver the topic. It was their opinion. Opinions are not necessarily facts.

 

Question

Next time when seeing someone write or discuss a topic, ask yourself, “are they an expert?”

 

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