Anyone who knows me knows that I have the greatest respect for my life coach, Tim Brownson. He helped me make the transition from a stay-at-home mom of five boys to becoming a successful writer and content manager. I could go on for pages about his qualifications and training and techniques, but none of that would have done me a bit of good had I not done one simple thing: listened to him.
If you’re reading this post and the 90 Days series, it’s because you want something.
You want to become more confident, to experience more happiness, and to achieve more success. These are all things that are imminently achievable by each and every one of us and the first step is to listen to those who are there to coach us through it.
Sounds simple enough, but it doesn’t always come naturally. While we might hear what our coaches are telling us and pay lip service to agreeing with it, we often put up roadblocks to really listening to what is being said.
First, let me clear up one thing – this post isn’t just for people who have life coaches.
Whether you have a formal coaching arrangement, or are working with a mentor, or using self-help materials, listening is the secret to getting the most benefit and starting your trajectory towards success. You could be getting the best advice in the world, but it does you no good, unless you pay attention.
Absorb what is said, before you argue against it
Has anyone ever started to tell you a story and you realized you weren’t paying attention, because you were thinking of an even better story to tell them when it was your turn?
It’s human nature to concentrate on what we’ll say but it’s often much more beneficial to us to focus on what others are telling us. This goes double when it’s somebody trying to help us!
It could very well be that after careful listening and putting some thought into it, that you still disagree with what your coach is saying, but if your first instinct is to react defensively to what you think is being said rather than to listen and glean out the truth and wisdom, you’ll have a difficult time progressing.
Take the lessons to heart
It’s not enough to just listen once and never think about it again, you have to remind yourself of what you’ve learned and look for ways to apply it. All of the encouragement and solid advice that my coach gave me about being more confident would have done me no good had I not believed in it and used it to motivate me to take that first chance.
I write a lot of humor as a hobby and sometimes I’ll write “letters to my life coach” where I ask him absurd questions and present him with conundrums. The truth is, I often have internal dialogues where I will “talk” to him and he’ll “remind” me of what I’ve learned. It sounds a bit nutty, and perhaps a bit obsessive, but it beats listening to any of the negative voices I’ve got stored in my head.
The fact is, we’ve all got conversations going on in our heads at all times and we’d be better off if we could replace that inner critic or nag with an inner life coach.
If you find yourself resistant
If you have truly opened yourself up to fully listening but still find it difficult to take advice to heart, it’s worth exploring why that might be.
Do you feel like your coach truly has your best interests at heart? Perhaps you feel like they aren’t listening to you and the advice they are offering is shallow and trite? There is nothing wrong with finding a new coach, mentor, or self help program if you feel like you’re mismatched.
All of the coaching and advice in the world doesn’t do any good until you make the choice to listen to it. If you can learn to listen to those who want to help you, you’ll be well on your way to achieving astonishing success.
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