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I was recently facilitating a group coaching call when one of the participants reflected that for months she had been triggered when I called her a powerhouse. She bristled at this statement because she didn’t relate to herself in that same way.
I was dumbfounded.
This woman regularly impressed me with her grace and presence. She’d been called a natural leader by her boss, but she didn’t relate to herself as a powerhouse.
So many of the women I speak with on a regular basis are leaders and change agents in their own right. Ironically, the way others see them isn’t the way they see themselves. In fact, they struggle to relate to themselves as others so naturally do.
One of the foundational coaching exercises I distinguish with my clients is to distill down their essence; meaning who they are at their highest and best.
Typically, we’re much more reliable at naming our weaknesses than our strengths, as such, in this exercise, we use external input in order to distill down these qualities.
Naturally too, we often times relate to ourselves (and validate ourselves) on what we do vs who we are.
Why do you think, “What do you do?” is the automatic expression of introduction for so many? (Which I personally have a huge aversion to, in case you were curious.)
So often when people begin this exercise, they use those doing-based qualifiers as well, when we’re looking for those timeless being-based ones.
There are many ways in which I’ve seen clients begin to relate to themselves more and more as their essences versus their fear or egoic based selves.
Here Are 3 Exercises To Help You Understand Your True Essence.
In the case of my client, she chose to sit with being called a powerhouse quietly, not sharing with us at first that she, in fact, didn’t see herself in this light, and when she eventually brought the conversation to our attention, she had already begun to shift her relationship to how she saw herself.
For me, that is the power of this work I have the privilege of doing. The deeper mindset work that has us up against our greatest fears and grievances about ourselves.
It is confronting and deeply impactful.
And for me, one of the greatest joys is hearing clients own their own power.
This morning was the final coaching session of a group coaching program I run for women. I wanted to share some of the beautiful words that one of the participants sent me in an email this morning.
“I want to acknowledge you Cat (so much!!) for pushing me when I didn’t want to be pushed and continually steering me towards the things I was resisting. In doing that you’ve modeled so much of how to be real, and I sometimes am just in awe that you are able to cut through the BS in such a powerful way so consistently, and with such grace.
Given how challenging some of these ideas were for me, I don’t always feel like you got a sense of my gratitude during our calls, but I feel overwhelming GRATITUDE for you and for your ability to stay honest, always. I actually hear your voice in my head often when I’m being at-effect or when I’m avoiding instead of facing a larger issue. Or when I want to stay quiet instead of speaking my truth.
I am recognizing that the goal of coaching (and of life) isn’t to achieve and then celebrate or receive external acknowledgment for achieving, but to stay curious and love yourself enough to push through both challenges and successes to continually GROW! And that realization has been nothing short of life-changing.” Megan
It really touched me and reminded me of how deeply grateful I am for the work I get to do, the relationships I get to build, and the impact I get to make.
Let’s schedule a call if you’re interested in working together.
To being our true selves,