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How to Coach a Viking

Posted by Coach Training

How to Coach a Viking

Guest post by David Papini.

As most parents are, I am exposed to a lot of cartoon movies (most of them full of cleverly engineered cross-generational stimuli and layers) and also repeatedly to the same one, with a frequency inversely proportional to the child age.

When an adult starts watching the same cartoon for the nth time, he or she can react in two ways: blankly staring at the video letting his or her mind wander in a more interesting place or trying to consciously watch the movie paying attention to details escaped to the first nth minus 1 session.


Or it can be that the reactions mix, and that’s what happened to me watching a dialog between two young Vikings, Astrid and Hiccup, in the movie How to Train your Dragon. The dialog is 1 minute 5 seconds long and yesterday evening I suddenly realized that I was watching a masterful and efficient coaching session. Astrid is the coach and Hiccup the client. The relationship between the two is already well established, but it is the first time in the movie that Astrid purposefully tries to help Hiccup.

Here is the dialog with my comments:

 

To me, from now on, coaching like a Viking, is going to have the meaning of: make a shift happen in 1’5” or less, and Astrid is on my top ten list of masterful coaches.

David was born in Florence in 1966 just a few months before the deluge, and that's a kind of destiny. As an executive is in charge for general management in a IT Firm, as a certified NLP counselor helps clients to explore their life experience, as a Coach helps clients getting what they really want, as a conflict mediator witnesses how tough and creative a relationship can be, as a trainer helps trainees in stretching their brain, growing and learning, as a public speaker enjoys co-creating experience on the fly, as a dad loves his two children. As a man he is grateful and worried that he’s got this wonderful life. And he’s fond of categorizing his professional roles :-). More about him at http://papini.typepad.com/lifehike/

Coach David Papini

 

Visit David's Coach 100 Page Here.

Topics: Coaching, coach, How to, master coach, masterful coaches, how to become a coach, David Papini

Coaching and Emotion: The Godfather Syndrome

Posted by Coach Training

Coach David PapiniGuest post by David Papini.

There is a famous scene in the first movie of The Godfather trilogy, when the four Corleone brothers meet right after their father has been shot and is struggling between life and death in a hospital. The topic they discuss is if and how they have to retaliate against Virgil “The Turk” Sollozzo who ordered the shooting. At a certain point in the discussion, Michael Corleone/Al Pacino, the youngest brother, the only brother not involved in his family mafia business, proposes himself as the avenger in a plan where he manages to shoot Sollozzo. The elder brothers explain to him that the issue at stake, retaliation, “it’s not personal, it’s just business”, meaning that it has nothing to do with emotion, family values, the need of justice, the father-son relationship: it’s only a tool to protect the business and send a message to the “business community”.


What struck me (apart the fact I am Italian and I know that business better than the Godfather’s screenwriters ;-), is that for these guys family is not affect, emotion, relationship; it’s “just business”: this is why Michael’s brothers do not consider appropriate (and even harmful) the intention of avenging his father following an emotional reaction (while of course the killing itself can be an appropriate tool, but without emotional involvement).


Last week a client, struggling with her career, was talking about having a “professional demeanor”. To her, this was synonymous with “professional mask”, as opposite to “personal authenticity”, which she was patently not allowed to show at her workplace. Further inquiry led us to discover that for personal authenticity she intended “expressing emotions”, that is, the mask was intended to hide her emotions from her colleagues, because expression of emotions in general was not very welcome at her workplace. Basically, she and her firm were adopting a variant of the Godfather philosophy: it’s business, no emotion or affect needed per-se.


The step from “not expressing emotion” to “believe that you can stop/ignore feeling emotion” seemed closely related for her, while I had in mind what Antonio Damasio (Self Comes to Mind: Constructing the Conscious Brain, 2010) says: “The expression of emotions can doubtless be modulated voluntarily. But the degree of modulatory control of the emotions evidently cannot go beyond the external manifestations. Given that emotions include many other responses, several of which are internal and invisible to the naked eyes of others, the bulk of the emotional program is still executed, no matter how much willpower we apply to inhibit it. Most important, feelings of emotion, which result from the perception of the concert of emotional changes, still take place even when external emotional expressions are partially inhibited.”


That led me to think of how many times I challenged these limiting beliefs about emotions, all variants of the Godfather syndrome: when it comes to emotions and business, clients often found or put themselves in a mafia business, implicitly negating reality, unavoidability and the value of emotional states. Over time I collected a list of common misconception of emotions in the workplace (and, more in general, in organizations) that I call “storytelling about emotions”. Here is it, with the “false” part in bold:

  1. You are/I am too emotional (I credit this one to Jim and Michele McCarthy, in their book, Software for your Head)
  2. It’s wrong to feel like this
  3. There is no reason I/you feel like that
  4. You make me feel …
  5. Expressing emotion can be disturbing
  6. One must be rational
  7. One cannot think and feel at the same time
  8. Emotions are dangerous
  9. Emotions are not thoughts
  10. Emotions cannot be changed
  11. Emotions can be masked


Every belief in the list favors detaching between parts of the self in a person, which in turn prevents development, change for the best, growth and happiness. This is why I consider part of my job as a coach to help clients with mafia-like emotional approaches to explore how the world can be outside the Godfather mindset.

David was born in Florence in 1966 just a few months before the deluge, and that's a kind of destiny. As an executive is in charge for general management in a IT Firm, as a certified NLP counselor helps clients to explore their life experience, as a Coach helps clients getting what they really want , as a conflict mediator witnesses how tough and creative a relationship can be, as a trainer helps trainees in stretching their brain, growing and learning, as a public speaker enjoys co-creating experience on the fly, as a dad loves his two children. As a man he is grateful and worried that he’s got this wonderful life. And he’s fond of categorizing his professional roles :-). More about him at http://papini.typepad.com/lifehike/

David is a member of SCM's Certified Coach Training Program.

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Topics: Coaching, coaching clients, Certified Coach Training, coaching vs. therapy, Coaching Tip

Qi Dao Coaching and Healing

Posted by Coach Training

Qi Dao CoachingGuest Blogger, Lama Somananda Tantrapa, is the holder of the lineage of Qi Dao that has been fostered in his clan for 27 generations since 1224 AD.  He has over 30 years of experience in Qi Dao and other internal martial arts.  After pioneering Qi Dao Coaching in 2000, he has provided wellness, peak performance and life coaching to hundreds of clients from all walks of life.  His coaching has inspired many professional athletes, speakers, dancers, singers, writers and actors to open up to the infinite source of power that exists within everyone. Lama is Founder and Editor of Mastery Journal.

Qi Dao Coaching and Healing


Most health professionals agree that their clients heal when they are ready to heal. An energy healing modality promoting facilitating self-healing deserves some serious attention at this day and age.

Thousands of years ago, Qigong formed the foundation of Oriental medicine and needs to be regarded as such. All styles of Qigong work with Qi – universal energy, or life force – that is considered to be the basis of life; therefore, energy awareness offers us the key to health, happiness and longevity. Most styles of Qigong use movements, breathing, meditation and visualization for the purpose of cultivating Qi. They are often taught through “doing forms,” or choreographed movements, that are to be memorized and repeated on a regular basis.

At one time or another, all styles originated from a primordial foundation of Qigong that was deeply rooted in the Shamanic Medicine Dances.  Tibetan Shamanic Qigong, also known as Qi Dao, goes back to the Shamanic roots of Qigong and encourages its practitioners to stay true to the universality of this energy art.  Its spiritual tradition has been preserved in my family by twenty-seven generations of masters who dedicated their lives to exploring the ways to apply energy awareness to all spheres of life, from fighting to healing and sexual energy arts.  

In contrast to doing any repetitive Qigong or Tai Chi forms, Qi Dao teaches us how to feel the flow of energy and how to be in the flow. The practice of Qi Dao includes no routines of repetitive movements that are supposed to manipulate or cultivate Qi. Unlike acupuncturists, Qi Dao practitioners have no need for memorizing the myriad of acupuncture points and meridians; instead, we learn to navigate the energetic pathways by feeling the flow of Qi, using our personal observation and intuition. Free of any methods of manipulating other’s energy or directing it where we think it should go, Qi Dao teaches us that there is an abundant source of energy within us that we can tap by paying attention to the existing flow of Qi without any judgments. Empowering others to embody such an attitude became the hallmark of the new discipline is called Qi Dao Coaching.

“The flow of things,” traditionally referred to as the Dao, makes no mistakes; therefore, Qi always flows as it should. Even if the energy doesn’t appear to flow as expected, it still flows somewhere as long as we are alive. When we experience any symptoms, i.e. pain in any part of the body, most of us habitually tend to worry about the pain perceiving it as a problem, or an energy blockage.  Qi Dao teaches us to shift our attention from the worries about pain to the flow of energy that may be streaming somewhere around the block, just like water flowing around any obstacles. The practitioners of Qi Dao learn to accept every experience as a lesson, rather than a problem, and to accept the challenge of surrendering to the flow of Qi.

As Qi Dao practitioners, we learn to trust that, no matter what happened or will happen to us, our lives constantly unfold in the way that resonates with the energies we identify with. On one hand, we always experience exactly what we need to experience in order to learn our life’s lessons. On the other hand, we have the freedom of choice as to which energies to identify with moment by moment. By bringing this awareness into the present moment, Qi Dao Coaching helps us reveal our inner nature spontaneously through fluid and natural movements, sounds and other expressions.  This approach to movement therapy and bodywork is deeply rooted in this archetypal field of human consciousness, our true nature. Consciously entering “Qigong State” allows us to suspend discriminating logic and judgmental reasoning. This promotes profound experiences in dynamic meditation and lucid dreaming, facilitating profound peace and receptivity to inner guidance. In this meditative state, we learn to perceive energy flowing through the body and simply surrender to that flow, which feels like total harmony and well-being.

Qi Dao Coaching clients heal themselves by learning to manifest the dreams that various parts of their organisms strive for consciously or unconsciously. This empowers them to integrate all the aspects of their bodies, minds and spirits as they learn to embody vibrant health and well-being. Awakening the healer within them, Qi Dao empowers the clients to let go of resistance to their issues and thereby transcend them.  It allows them to break through the lifetimes of their old habits and programmed patterns of behavior and body awareness.  

Qi Dao Coaching represents the “missing link” between the modern body-oriented Somatic Therapies and ancient Shamanic healing, working with the whole human being. Our ancient holistic tradition not only addresses the issues on the physical, emotional, and spiritual levels, but also balances all these levels. With practice, we learn to pay attention to the whole spectrum of spontaneous processes occurring in the human being. Qi Dao Coaching may be a perfect methodology for experiencing and exploring the qualities of human consciousness usually dormant in the conditions of our “information age” lifestyles.  
    


Topics: Coaching, coach, clients, mastery, Life Coaching, coaching tool

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