School of Coaching Mastery

Coaching Blog

Life Coaching and Post-Healing Society

Posted by Julia Stewart

earth_nasa.jpg 

There is a broad assumption in our society that many, if not most people need to heal, as in restore health or be made whole. And while healing is a phenomenal process that can restore life to millions of people, and for which I am most grateful, I believe we are increasingly moving into a "post-healing society" and I'm not alone.

Post-healing is itself an extraordinary milestone in human evolution, which deserves to be talked about and clarified, so we all know when we are experiencing it and so we can have more of it.

I'm sometimes surprised by people who are unaware of even the possibility of a post-healing society.

So what am I talking about when I say, "post-healing society?" I'm calling it "post-healing", because at the start of something that is this complex and revolutionary, it's helpful to make a distinction between newly emerging conditions and that which went before, gave rise to the new, and is now distinct from it. Over time, I believe a different name will emerge that describes more fully what "post-healing" really is, but for now, let's look at how it is different from healing society.

Post-healing society and healing society currently overlap and will do so for the foreseeable future.

I'm talking largely about psychological healing here, but body, mind, heart, and spirit are so entwined that that distinction may not be altogether important. In fact, appreciating the inherent wholeness and interconnectedness of body, mind, heart, and spirit is a feature of post-healing.

From a psychological perspective, healing society arose and reached its zenith in the second half of the 20th Century when defining mental illnesses, cataloging their symptoms, and finding effective treatments for them became the primary focus of the fields of psychology, psychoanalysis, and psychiatry. As treatments became more effective, the impact on society was seismic. People started to understand their own differences and difficulties, as well as those of others, learned to ask for what they needed, began to experience wellness, spoke up for their rights to be treated equally and with respect, and for many, to a large degree, suffering was diminished.

When there is less suffering, new possibilities emerge.

But by the end of the 20th Century, many professionals seemed to believe there was something psychologically wrong with us all. I heard one psychologist say that everyone had something, either a neurosis, personality disorder, or psychosis; or else they had addictions, brain damage, or other neurological disorders. Another told me that in therapy, neurotic is what you want to be, because everything else is worse.

So what is healthy if everyone is ill, including apparently (since everyone has something), the therapists, themselves?

I wasn't the only one wondering about this, because positive psychology officially emerged in the 1990's as a sub-specialty of psychological research. Positive psychology is specifically concerned with studying people who are doing well, who enjoy well-being and are flourishing, so that others can learn from them and enjoy greater well-being, also.

The pioneers of positive psychology, notably Martin Seligman, went so far as to declare that the goal of positive psychology was to render itself obsolete. In other words, that the larger field of psychology would return to its original intent and cover the entire range of human behavior, rather than just focusing on what was wrong.

Here's a real-world example of post-healing. Seligman was asked by the United States Armed Services to help returning servicemen and women who have developed Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), a debilitating illness that is particularly difficult to heal. After surveying a large number of soldiers, Seligman's team found that a small percentage, who had been exposed to many of the same horrors of war as those who developed PTSD, actually seemed to grow through the experience.

The key to growth rather than illness? It was the story they told themselves about it, in other words, the meaning they attached to the event. If a soldier told him or herself that they were at fault for the deaths of their buddies, or that they should have been able to save a friend, they were more likely to develop PTSD. If on the other hand, they told themselves that they must have been spared for a reason and that now they had an important purpose to serve with their lives, they were more likely to experience what Seligman calls, Post Traumatic Growth.

Now there is training for soldiers that can help them grow through trauma, instead of being damaged by it.

We could call this pre-healing, since it precedes the need for healing. I call it a post-healing intervention, because it comes from a mindset that sees the limitations of healing and, instead of allowing a problem to continue and then waiting to heal people from it, it has found a solution that eliminates the need for healing (An even more advanced post-healing society would eliminate the need for war.)

As an aside, I want to mention that 20th Century psychology has focused, from a scientific and medical standpoint, on many of the same issues that were once thought to belong to the realm of spirit, spirituality, and religion. Afterall, its name is derived from the Greek, "psykhe", meaning soul, spirit, or mind.

Today's "spiritual-but-not-religious" movement focuses on healing almost as much as the psychological field.

But modern spirituality also focuses on the transcendent, trans-personal, upon enlightenment, and other lofty states. Like the field of psychology that is envisioned by Seligman, spirituality focuses on the full range of human behaviors and experiences.

An example of post-healing spirituality is Zen Master, Genpo Roshi's, brilliant integration of voice dialogue therapy with modern Zen, called Big Mind. The goal of Big Mind isn't healing, but Buddhist enlightenment. It begins with the assumption that the student is already whole, complete, and perfect; including the parts s/he would like to eliminate!

An example is what Roshi calls a "disowned voice", a part of us that we judge negatively and may want to eliminate and that can become a problematic shadow. One such voice is what he calls, "The Damage". Most of us who seek out healing would love to eliminate what we consider damaged in ourselves. Some of us go from therapist to therapist, spiritual healer to spiritual healer, for years hoping to finally be healed.

Don't go to Roshi for healing, though. Instead, he completely reframes the role of The Damage. He will tell you that you are already whole, complete, and perfect, including The Damage, which is perfectly damaged. It's perfect, because it has accepted all the slings and arrows of your life, so the rest of you can remain undamaged. No more, no less.

What would you call someone who took a bullet for you? Your hero?

The Damage is a hero who accepts all the damage we would otherwise endure, allowing the rest of our selves to remain whole, complete, and perfect. It deserves to be honored and embraced. Instead, we cause suffering for ourselves by framing it as imperfect, not good enough, broken, or sick. When we go through life believing we need to heal, we sometimes keep old wounds open, we feel less than, we sometimes give away our power to healers, or we may use our condition to be less than fully responsible for ourselves.

Once you embrace that you're whole, complete, and perfect, there are no more excuses.

I'm not suggesting that these two examples of what I call, post-healing, are what everyone needs. Remember, both the healing society and post-healing society will exist side-by-side for quite a while, if not forever. I am suggesting that healing has opened the door to post-healing.

I'll use myself as another example. As someone who grew up in the proverbial dysfunctional family, I worked with a number of therapists over the years, believing there was something wrong with me. They made a big difference. But one of the most dramatic shifts that I made with any therapist was with the last, who at one point said, "Read my lips, you're healthy." Accepting that there was nothing seriously wrong with me was like waking from a dream. Suddenly, so much more was possible. I felt confident and believed in myself.

Of course, I wouldn't have gotten there without the help of some wonderful healers. And that's my point. Therapy got me ready for post-healing. And it got me ready for coaching, too.

Life coaching is, as far as I know, the first and perhaps only profession that is completely post-healing.

Life coaching and its siblings, including business coaching, executive coaching, and more, don't focus on healing clients, but rather assist clients to shift into more resourceful, and some would say, transformative mind-states that help them see solutions to problems and pathways to goals, while inspiring them to take action and create the outcomes that are best for themselves and others.

We see our clients as whole, complete, and perfect. We believe in them from the very start. We help them reframe limiting beliefs, integrate disowned voices, and experience their interconnectedness with others. As a result, they become more confident, believe in themselves, evolve into who they want to be, and create valuable changes for themselves and others. It's both an honor and an interdevelopmental experience to work with people who are discovering their true selves for the very first time.

They step into their greatness and go on to change the world for the better.

Imagine a world where all people not only heal, but reach their full potential and are inspired to transform the world. It's not a dream. Because of the good work done by healers, clients are becoming ready for post-healing and coaches go on to make transformative possibilities real everyday.

Would you like to join the post-healing society?

Find a coach here. Or become a coach. Your first step toward professional coaching would be to explore the following course for new life, business, and executive coaches:

Explore Coaching Groundwork Advanced

Topics: Genpo Roshi, Big Mind Big Heart, Life Coaching, Positive Psychology, Martin Seligman, post-healing

6 Ideas That'll Change Your Coaching and Your Life

Posted by Julia Stewart

Positivity RatioI'm always looking for new ideas that'll upgrade, broaden, or deepen my coaching, so it's more effective. You too? Then you'll love this post.

It's a challenge to keep readers like you, well...challenged. You're a pretty sophisticated bunch.

But here goes: some of the best ideas I've encountered, which ultimately changed my life and the way I coach and may change your life and coaching too.

 

1. The Power of Negativity. This first one is possibly the most powerful idea to come out of positive psychology. It's the concept of the Positivity Ratio and the upper limit of positivity, which can be measured as both positive thoughts and feelings, as well as whether you're curious or defending your point of view, and/or focused on yourself or on those around you. To flourish, you, your relationship, your business, or your coaching, needs at least a three-to-one ratio of positivity to negativity. AND there's an upward limit around eleven-to-one, beyond which things go down fast. So, if you're a Law of Attraction Nazi, or if you focus only on the good stuff in coaching, stepping over the problematic stuff, or if you relentlessly reframe problems into opportunities, or (as one of my clients famously put it) FLO's (F*cking Learning Opportunities), you may hinder, rather than help your clients. (Read Barbara Fredrickson's Positivity.)

2. The Tyranny of Mild Praise. This one also comes from positive psychology and it's about relationships. Let's face it, the relationship between coach and client does much of the coaching for us. Therefore, the concept called, Active Constructive Responding (ACR), is critical. What is ACR? It's an over-the-top form of acknowledgment that includes positive tone of voice (genuine excitement, awe, wonder), positive body language (smiling, eye contact, touching), repeating the specifics of what the other has said, commenting on it's importance to the other, suggesting a celebration; all of which leads to flourishing within the relationship. NONE of the other types of responses, including Passive Constructive Responding (Flat tone of voice, general praise, "That's nice."), Passive Destructive Responding (ignoring, changing the subject, turning away), or Active Negative Responding (showing concern, pointing out problems); I repeat, none of these promote relationships. In fact they ALL have a negative impact on relationships, which obviously can negatively impact coaching. I've listened to thousands of coaching sessions over the years. Even "good" coaches tend to rely heavily on Passive Constructive Response, or a hybrid of ACR and PCR, which  clearly limits the value of their coaching. ACR can be a challenge to weave into coaching and for some of us, it's a challenge to make it truly genuine, but master coaches do it all the time. For others, over-using ACR (see above) damages our credibility. This is a tool that we can't afford not to master. (Read Martin Seligman's Flourish.)

3. Change Your Brain to Change Your Mind. This one comes from neuroscience and it has profound implications for positive psychology coaches, as well as every other type of coach. As members of my positive psychology course know, the Positivity Ratio can be used to measure and increase your current potential for flourishing and it'sa nifty coaching tool. There are also tools, founded in modern neuroscience, that can change the brain to sustainably increase peace, happiness, love and other elements of positivity. Literally, you can grow some areas of your brain so that they become more dominant, relatively permanently. And over-developed areas that may be problematic (such as the over-sized amygdala of those who suffer from anxiety) can shrink, again causing sustainable change. Change your brain; change your life for good. I just took a neuroscience seminar on this, but you can read more about it. (Read Rick Hanson's Buddha's Brain.)

4. Coaching's Not Complete If It's Not Integral. I'm taking a course from Integral Philospher, Ken Wilber. Some people say he's the most important philosopher since Plato, but that statement begs an argument, so I won't say it. Suffice it to say, if you don't know his work, your evolution may be stymied. And that of your clients, as well. As coaches, we say our clients are whole, complete and perfect. Trouble is, we may be blind to some of that perfection. And our clients almost certainly are. Blind spots make trouble (see #5, below). Wilber's Integral Model, known as AQAL, is an elegant map that streamlines how we know anything and how we evolve. It's closely aligned with Spiral Dynamics, which I'll be teaching next month. But AQAL goes even further. The AQAL Map is a beautiful tool to use when helping our clients design accountability structures, supportive systems, environments and strategic habitats (or whatever you prefer to call them). With AQAL, we can easily see if we're leaving anything out, or if the client is blind to some aspects of reality (almost everybody is). Plus, we have an evolutionary framework. It makes the complex simple, when you understand it. I'll be teaching an introductory course on integral coaching soon, but start reading books on Integral Theory now. (Read Wilber's simplest book, Integral Vision.)

5. All Coaching is Shadow Coaching - Or Should Be. My first lesson from Zen Master, Genpo Roshi, included a joke - on us. To paraphrase, he said (with a laugh), evolved people like to say they're whole, complete and perfect, except the parts they don't like about themselves. But you can't be complete without all of it! So what parts of yourself don't you like? The part that overeats? The part that's naive? The part that gets tongue-tied at parties? It's not those parts that keep you fragmented, it's the fact that you try to disown them. Then they become blind spots, which grow into shadows, which undermine and sabotage you. That's what fragmentation really is. For many people, the first step toward wholeness is integration of the parts they formerly disliked. That's the underlying cause of stuckness and it keeps coming back until all aspects of the self are integrated (or Integral). Some people are so fragmented that they lose the ability to choose wholeness. That's what is known as mental illness and I'm not suggesting that shadow coaching can cure that. But even healthy people have shadows and we can choose to integrate them with assistance from a skilled coach.  I use this approach in my Great Self Coaching. Genpo Roshi is incredibly masterful at it from a Zen perspective. (Read Genpo Roshi's Big Mind/Big Heart.)

6. Your Business Model May Be Too Infantile to Last. I've also been studying Adizes Management Methodology of late. Ichak Adizes is a legendary management consultant who deftly identified several different stages of a business life cycle. His theory explains, among other things, why the US Government is floundering these days (no, it has nothing to do with Republicans vs. Democrats). One thing that strikes me about it is that most coaches base their businesses on one of three early-stage levels and expect their businesses to continue at that stage forever. It won't happen. I'm happy to say, I saw this even before I studied Adizes and I'm ready for it. I'll write more at length on how you can design your business to last in a future post. But this issue could explain why our industry is so successful, but some coaches never enjoy that success. (Read Ichak Adizes' Corporate life cycles)

We all have access to too much information these days. But there really is no substitution for knowing the right stuff.

Topics: coaching business, Coaching, Coaches, Law of Attraction, master coach, Great Self Coaching, Spiral Dynamics, Ken Wilber, Genpo Roshi, Big Mind Big Heart, Integral Philosophy, acknowledgment, coaching tool, Positive Psychology, Martin Seligman

Coaching Your Great Self: A Whole New World of You

Posted by Julia Stewart

Great Self Coaching

What is the Great Self?

That's a great question...If you're a veteran of personal development programs or of some forms of spirituality, then you may have been introduced to the distinction of the Higher Self vs. the Ego. The terminology may have been different, but the basic idea is that the Higher Self is good (ex.: loving, spiritual, altruistic, etc.), while the Ego is bad (ex.: selfish, petty, destructive, etc.) Read A New Earth for one of the best descriptions of this dualistic view of human beings.

The Great Self concept takes this idea a step further from either/or to both/AND. The ego is an essential operating system for any healthy human being. It's there to protect you and look out for your interests. It only becomes a problem when our interests conflict with the interests of others. This tends to happen, because we are either unaware of the Higher Self or are rejecting the Ego.

Eliminating the Ego would be like removing the Windows, Mac, or Chrome operating system from your computer and expecting it to still work. In Great Self Coaching, we integrate the ego and all of its 'apps' with the Higher Self, which is enormously powerful. This is a HUGE upgrade, like going from 8 Gigs to 160. And it's a fun process!

How did Great Self Coaching come about?

Another awesome question. Great Self coaching is the culmination of decades of professional experience, helping people reach their dreams. I've synthesized and developed the work of hundreds of master teachers from fields like coaching, psychology, neuroscience, spirituality, personal development and more, such as Thomas Leonard, the Founder of the Coaching Profession, and Zen Master, Genpo Roshi, whose Big Mind process added the concepts of the Controller, Protector and Analyzer as gateways to the Great Self.

Great Self Coaching has been years in the making and you're invited to taste it for free in one of 3 group coaching sessions coming up:

Find out more about Great Self Coaching Here.

 

 

Image courtesy of Elan Sun Star.

Topics: Coaching, group coaching, ego, Thomas Leonard, Great Self Coaching, psychotherapy, Genpo Roshi, Big Mind Big Heart, Life Coaching, personal development, Eckhart Tolle

How to Coach Someone Who Is Thinking Like a Failure

Posted by Julia Stewart

How to Coach In sports, it's called thinking like a winner vs. thinking like a loser.

In Law of Attraction terms, it's thinking that attracts what you want vs. thinking that repels what you want. I call it success thinking vs. failure thinking. Regardless, these thoughts are powerful and they can hijack your client's plans no matter how well you coach them.

Most, if not all, failure thinking comes from the Voice of the Victim, in Big Mind terms. We all have it to some degree. Ironically, the victim can jump out just when your client is about to succeed! Genpo Roshi, who pioneered the Big Mind process, says that the victim story is a cover up for disowning the voice of 'seeking power'. Read on and you'll see why.

What does failure thinking sound like? Helpless. Focused on obstacles more than goals. The client has placed power outside of him/herself and put it in their circumstances. Think: whining.

A few strategies for coaching your client to success:

1. Most of the time, your client's inner victim just needs to be heard. Usually we try to shut down our victim thoughts, but if we never voice them, they may block us from doing what we really want. Procrastination and self-sabotage are examples. Encourage your client to voice their complaints - up to a point. Five minutes of 'BMW Time' (bitch, moan & whine) at the start of the coaching session can work wonders.

Example: I had a client who hired me to help her work on her personal development just before her husband left her for another woman. She was seeing a therapist, but her husband's cruel antics threatened to dominate our coaching sessions until we established BMW Time at the start of each session and devoted the rest to her personal growth.

2.Validate how your client feels - again up to a point. Most clients just need to know that they're okay, even though they're scared. Definitely support them in that, but take care not to get caught up in the client's story. Validate the client, not their belief that they are going to fail.

3. Sometimes the client needs to upgrade his/her community. If you're client is surrounded by failure thinking, it may feel normal to them. Limiting time with the Negative Nancies and expanding time spent with folks who think positively can work wonders. Help your client develop awareness around this, so they can make empowering choices.

4. If failure thinking persists, you may have to bring out the sledgehammer.  Sometimes your client just needs you to call them on their crap. Remember, it's your job to tell the truth, but if you sense your client it too fragile to hear it, you may need to skip straight to #5. 

Example: When I was working on my MFA in Dance, I was fortunate enough to study choreography with Phyllis Lamhut, a dance legend who I consider my 1st coach. Working with Phyllis isn't for the faint hearted, but she is brilliant and she tells the unvarnished truth, which is what high achievers really want. One weekend after I performed less than my best in a concert, Phyllis shared the unvarnished truth with me in front of my entire class. Although I was sick and had several other excuses, Phyllis knew I was letting myself down. She told me I was throwing away my career, if I let all  of that get in the way. Was I crushed? Slightly. Did I get the message? You bet. Ultimately, there are no excuses; you either do what you really want or you don't.

5. If all of the above doesn't move your client out of failure thinking, they may need therapy more than coaching. If the victim has grown this powerful, you're likely hearing the voice of depression or worse. In this case, the victim has taken over; it's not just seeking power, it has enslaved it. Coaches aren't qualified to diagnose mental illness, but we are qualified to notice when our tools aren't adequate for our client's situation.

What's the difference between knowing our limits and thinking like a failure? The outcome. Failure thinking leads to failure. Recognizing limits leads to growth and new possibilities. Learn the difference and help your clients succeed.

Topics: Coaching, coaching clients, coach, How to, Law of Attraction, Coaching Tip, goals, Genpo Roshi, Big Mind Big Heart

Fifteen Favorite Free Tools for Coaches

Posted by Julia Stewart

Free HugsIf you're a smart coach, you've learned that 'free' can be priceless.

Free is an attraction magnet and one of the smartest ways to market. That's why savvy coaches give away free sessions and other attractive stuff. 'Free' leads to relationships and relationships lead to clients.

Coaches didn't invent 'free', of course. We are also the happy beneficiaries of many free tools that make starting a coaching business one of the least expensive businesses you can get into.

Another lovely development is that online tools are getting easier to use.

Here without further ado are a few of my favs (plus a nice freebie from us).

1. Gmail. Every online business owner answers email pretty much all day. What a delight to have email that is virtually SPAM free without ticking off your potential clients by forcing them fill out a SpamArrest Captcha box before they can even contact you (really bad for business, by the way). Gmail is free and comes with loads of storage. It's online, so you're computer never slows down while it's downloading your (spam) email into Outlook. [UPDATE 10-21-09: You can also upgrade to Google Apps Standard for free and use your website address as your email domain.)

2. Google Reader. While we're in Google land, here are a couple more items that are helpful. Other people's blogs are among the most valuable free resources you'll find on the web, but most folks haven't figured out the whole RSS subscription thing. That's a pity, but good news! Google Reader is to blogs what AOL was to email ten years ago. Suddenly those of us who are clueless can join the party, too. Better yet, Google Reader is free.

Question: when you click one of those little orange RSS buttons RSS button that you see on blogs, do you know what to do with all that code that comes up? Me either. RSS stands for 'really simple syndication', but in my opinion, that was a misnomer until Google invented Reader. Now you can copy a blog's website address and paste that into your little Reader subscription box and all the articles will show up there automatically. If you can read email, you can subscribe to blogs with RSS in Reader.

3. Flickr Creative Commons. Let's say you've gotten so comfortable with blogs that you are now blogging regularly yourself (good idea, by the way). Blog posts are more likely to get read when they include engaging pictures. You can download digital photos from many paid sites (I like Dreamstime*), but if you're blogging every other day or so (good idea, by the way) even a dollar per picture adds up.

Flickr Creative Commons allows you to download thousands of pictures freely. The 'Free Hugs' photo above is an example. Just do the right thing and credit the photographer in your post. (Free Hugs Photo by Kalandrakas)

4. Social Networking sites. A blog is a great way to communicate with your fans, but how do you attract fans, in the first place? One way is via social networking. The most popular sites for coaches are Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. And they are free. Or you can go for a much more targeted site like, Mastery Coach Exchange. Free again. Add badges from your favorite social networking sites to your blog, as we've done here, and keep the flow of traffic moving to your site.

5. Bit.ly. To invite people to your site, you need to post links. But links can be pretty cumbersome, especially if there is a limit to how long posts can be (as they are on Twitter). You need a link shortening service. There are many out there to choose from. I used to be loyal to Tinyurl and it's still great, but Bit.ly has some extra bells and whistles that are especially nice. My favorites include the ability to post directly to Twitter from Bit.ly and the ability to track how many people clicked a particular link. Makes it easy to gage which projects are most attractive to my fans.

6. Topify. Another tool that I like to use with Twitter is Topify. Once you set up and account with Topify, you'll receive an email each time someone follows you on Twitter. Topify with share enough info about your new followers that you can decide whether you want to follow them back, block them from following you, and/or report them as spammers.

Most people think that having lots of people follow you is the name of the game on Twitter. Actually, the quality of your followers is far more important. If you're not paying attention to who's following you, you'll likely get a lot of porno-spammers and some very weird tweets. (By the way, I learned about both Bit.ly and Topify from @DannyBrown, who is a heck of a nice guy to follow on Twitter. If you like, you can also follow me at @MasteryCoach.)

7.MailChimp*. Now that you have some quality followers, you want to invite them to something. Make that something wonderful and you may develop some raving fans. Fans become clients. MailChimp is an email marketing and list manager that offers a free account for email lists up to 500. Use a bit.ly link to invite your social networking followers to sign up for your free newsletter (or whatever) and manage that in MailChimp for free until your list gets really big and then you start to pay something. (By then, your client's fees will more than pay for the service.)

8. SurveyMonkey. Good marketing is about listening even more than expressing (just like good coaching). And you don't stop listening just because your list grows. You just need more efficient ways to listen to your fans. Surveys are a great way to do this. SurveyMonkey is well-designed and unless you're using it constantly, like we do (Our Coach 100 Feedback Forms are on the SurveyMonkey platform, for instance) the free SurveyMonkey account will be plenty.

9. Teleconferencing. Another great way to communicate with your fans (and have something to invite them to) is by doing teleconference calls. There are a plethora of free teleconference services out there that have an impressive array of features.

Two that we like are FreeConferencCalling, which lets you record in MP3 for free (great for preparing your coaching sessions for IAC Certification) and even has a nice button player for your website; and then there is FreeConferenceCall, which has an 'audiopodium' feature, if you just want your participants to be able to use a telephone to call into the recording. (If you're ready to get serious about creating digital products out of your conference calls, you may want to step up to AudioAcrobat* for your recording needs. It is not a free service, but it does have a free trial. And if you want a teleconference line with more bells and whistles, MaestroConference* has a free trial, too.)

10. DimDim*.  Webinars have many advantages over teleconferencing. A recorded webinar makes a attractive movie, for instance, that you can embed on your site, blog or even YouTube. I've tried all the webinar services out there, including WebEx, InstantTeleseminar, and GoToWebinar. I think none compare to DimDim and the free version may be all you'll ever need. It even comes with a free teleconference line, if you want to do tele-webinars.

11. BaseCamp*. You can use Dimdim to collaborate with a group of people from around the world, but if you do a lot of collaborative projects, you may want BaseCamp, an awesome suite of tools from the folks at 37Signals. Very simple, clean neat tools for getting projects done efficiently. Who couldn't use more of that? And the free version is very robust.

12. Pulse. Hate Quicken and QuickBooks? Me too. But you still need to track your finances. A simple tool that tracks your cash flow, Pulse creates graphs and multiple views of your financial picture, so you can see where you are today, make projections into the future and sleep better at night. The free version is very nice and it works with BaseCamp, too.

13. PayPal*. Paypal used to be seen as a tool for amateurs, but boy, has it grown up. Setting up a basic Paypal account is still free. Note however, that when people pay you, Paypal will take a small percentage. All merchant gateways will do this, but most will charge some hefty fees upfront, as well.

The thing that's great about Paypal is that it can grow with you. Over time, when you need invoices, website buttons, subscription services, take payments over the phone, accept all major credit cards, plus debit cards and checks, Paypal can do all that and create reports for your accountant, too. You can learn as you go and if you want an alternative payment service, you can always add one, but some people like to pay directly from their Paypal accounts, so you may want to keep it. (At some point, you may need an online shopping cart to automate most of your business transactions. We use 1ShoppingCart* for this and it has a free trial. It integrates with Paypal and other merchant gateways.)

14. BigMind. So far, I've focused on business solutions that you can try out for free, but of course, every great coach has also done their personal development work. It's part of the job description. That could be another whole blog post, but today I'm highlighting my favorite free personal development resource. All this week, you can watch live streaming video of Genpo Roshi taking a group of retreat members through the Big Mind/Big Heart Process for free. Live participants paid hundreds of dollars to be there (I'll be there in November), but you can be 'there' for free. 

The difference between this Genpo Roshi free program and the free teleclass programs that I warned you about in a previous post, is that this is an advanced, in-depth program that is not designed to manipulate you into buying something, but is focused simply on providing value. Big distinction.

15. And of course, the School of Coaching Mastery has tons of free resources for you, too. Videos, audios, eBooks, free webinars, study groups and even our own social networking site. Just explore the site and blog and you'll find them. One resource that is particularly powerful is the 'Become a Coach!' eBook, which contains an 8-hour free coach training program. Again, this is not just a free informercial teleclass, but a real training program, for free.

Become a Coach eBook

 

Download the free Become a Coach! eBook and eCourse here.

Don't expect everything to be free of course. When it comes to your business, learn to pay for the stuff that helps you make more money. But try it for free, first.

 

* Disclosure: I'm an affiliate of this company. And I would recommend it, anyway.

Free Hugs Photo by Kalandrakas

Topics: blogging, School of Coaching Mastery, webinar, coach, IAC Certification, twitter, Mastery Coach Exchange, Genpo Roshi, Big Mind Big Heart, teleclass

Do You Coach with a Big Mind and Big Heart?

Posted by Julia Stewart

Genpo Roshi Big Mind Big Hear

I spent last weekend in Denver at the Vast Sky Conference with Zen Master Genpo Roshi, Ken Wilber, Bill Harris and Bernie Glassman Roshi.

Mind blowing doesn't begin to describe it. For me, the two highlights were:

1. Reconnecting with my former coach, Anna Dargitz, née Hodge, who took me out for a wonderful dinner and introduced me to her husband, Les. They have built a beautiful life together. So inspiring!
2. Participating live in a Big Mind/Big Heart workshop with Genpo Roshi. I had done it via DVD, so I thought I knew what to expect, and it was all that, but live is soooooo much more powerful!
 
Nothing has ever resonated with me more than Big Mind/Big Heart. I came home wondering if I should just move to the Big Mind Zen Center in Salt Lake City for a year. And I'm not even a Buddhist!
 
All the other presenters were also amazing. In fact, I went because Ken Wilber was there. He has been suffering from a chronic illness and doesn't travel for speaking engagements these days, so I felt now was the time to see him. He is the genius behind Integral Philosophy, who can speak as an expert (often THE expert) on a thousand subjects. Looking frail, thin and a bit older, he did not disappoint. (I award the prize for coolest entourage to Ken's gaggle of 30-ish men, all dressed in dark glasses, shaved heads and elegant suits with cool graphic T's peeking out - exactly Ken's own look.)
 
Genpo, on the other hand (or Roshi, as his followers call him), was totally down to earth, beaming with unconditional love and erupting with an irreverent sense of mirth, a total revelation. He has perhaps the cleanest energy I've ever experienced.
 
Big Mind/Big Heart is a raucous and fast path to enlightenment, especially when experienced live in Roshi's  presence. He bids many of your 10,000 "voices" to come forth and speak, including your disowned "shadow" voices, sometimes for the very first time. I discovered, among others, that I have a disowned fundamentalist (no real surprise) and a disowned narcissist (who knew?).
 
Ultimately, the purpose of Big Mind/Big Heart is to lead you deep down the path of Buddhist enlightenment in far less time than the monks of old have attained it. He combines a Western Process called, Voice Dialog, with the Eastern philosophy of Zen. It is revolutionary and it is fast. Although deepening it will likely require discipline and practice for a life time. But who wouldn't want to become enlightened when it's this much fun?
 
Roshi's mission is to enlighten many more souls, because as he says in the book, Big Mind/Big Heart, 
 
"We're at a point in our evolution where we all have to become conscious."
 
Naturally, as a coach, I appreciated all the ways that Roshi shows up as a masterful coach: Curiosity, Acknowledgment, Challenge, Humor, Unconditional Love, and all the other skills of coaching, but with a group of 70 people who all get coached simultaneously.  Wow.
 
Obviously, I recommend that you dive into all the tools that Roshi and his team have created, so you too, can become enlightened in a hurry: DVD's, CD's, Books, streaming video and of course, live events. He'll be in NYC and Houston with Centerpointe's Bill Harris this Fall. BE there, if you can. Visit BigMind.org for more info.
[UPDATE: On February 3rd, 2011, Genpo Merzel announced that he would disrobe as a Buddhist monk, after admitting to improper relationships with some students. He plans to continue teaching Big Mind on a secular basis and will no longer teach at Kanzeon Zen Center.]

Topics: Coaching, coach, Ken Wilber, Genpo Roshi, Big Mind Big Heart, Integral Philosophy, Bill Harris, Anna Dargitz

    Subscribe for FREE: Learn About Coaching

    Follow Us

    The Coaching Blog

    If you're a professional Business or Life Coach or you're interested in becoming one, the SCM Coaching Blog covers topics you may want to know about: How to Become a Business or Life Coach, Grow a Successful Coaching Business, Get Coach Training and/or Business and Life Coach Certification, Become a Coaching Master and Evolve Your Life and Business. 

    Subscribe above and/or explore by tag, month or article popularity, below.

    Latest Posts

    Most Popular Posts

    Browse by Tag

    Top Career-Jobs Sites Living-Well blog