Definitions: Part 4-What a Personal Business Coach May Look at for Your Self-Improvement

In the last post we looked at the terms intuition, discern, solutions and environment and their definitions. In this post, we will look at shifts, leaps and strengths.All the terms we have addressed and defined so far are important. As a personal business coach or a personal development business coach I enjoy seeing shifts and leaps in my clients’ businesses and lives. And, for these shifts and leaps to occur, you must have strengths. So, let’s get started with the first term, shifts.

Shifts:Literally, a shift is a transfer from one place or position to another and includes a change, exchange, or substitution of something. It means to put something aside, such as a concept or understanding, and replace it with another. A shift can be systematic, following an established path of growth, or it can happen suddenly. Shifts are observable in resulting behaviors.

For example, in my personal business coach practice I had a client who was very talented, very bright and extremely impatient. You probably have already guessed that his impatience would end up sabotaging his talent and intellect. You are right. This was exactly what would happen. He would be overlooked for promotions because he was seen as reactionary with some mild displays of temper.

In his youth, he was a boxer. I asked him how he liked to box. He said he always liked to see what the other person was doing and react to it. He liked to be a counter puncher. He was very quick with great reflexes. I asked him if that was successful.

He said that in the beginning it was. Yet, as the competition improved he would lose because he would instinctively react, and everyone knew what his pattern was, so they were ready for him. Interestingly, everyone at work knew what his patterns as a manager were. They knew how he would react.

And very often, after he reacted, he would regret his behavior. We came up with a shift in thinking. Instead of reacting the next time someone says or does something, relax for a moment or a few minutes and then choose your response. Over time he changed from a react and respond leader to a relax and respond leader. This was huge shift. The benefit was that over time he became better liked and more trusted. Ultimately, he became the senior vice president of operations for the international company he was working for. To this day he is grateful for his shift from react and respond to relax and respond. Shifts will absolutely necessary to continuing self-improvement.

Leaps: To leap is to literally “spring” from one point or position to another. It involves jumping or springing over something to get to another place. In personal development business coaching, a leap is sudden and quick, not following a prescribed pattern of growth, and is usually accompanies with dramatic evidence of the leap. Leaps can be made over short or extensive distances. Leaping is the most obvious of all forms of client development that I have observed as a personal business coach. I have seen this in clients in many areas. It is a great reward as a coach to see clients make leaps in self-improvement that take their businesses and lives to a higher level.

Strengths: Literally, strength is the quality or state of being strong, an intellectual or moral force, a source of power, an attribute, or something with great value. Strengths are a collection of attributes, those things that a person excels at doing or has natural ability for. Strengths can be physical, emotional, or spiritual; they are values, skills, talents, attitudes, relationships, resources, and other sources of power, sustenance, encouragement, and satisfaction.

In self-improvement business coaching, identifying a client’s strengths is critical. Ultimately, for the client to be at his best and to give the most of himself he must be spending a large part of his time in his areas of strength.

When clients do not spend time in the areas of their strengths they will feel stuck, overwhelmed and are unlikely to improve. As a personal development business coach, I must identify a client’s strengths and guide them to developing a business and life around them. Yes, it is important to be aware of our weaknesses and to have a way to address them.

Yet, the greatest advances in self-improvement take place when we identify our strengths and design our businesses and lives to allow us to focus on them. When we do, this is a shift in and of itself. And when this shift is made, it leads to more shifts and ultimately leaps for the client to clear the way to greater self-improvement and creating the business and life he or she desires.

Aim High

A college professor prepared a test for his soon to be graduating seniors.  The test questions were divided into three categories and the students were instructed to choose questions from only one of the categories.  The first category of questions was the hardest and worth fifty points.  The second, which was easier, was worth forty points.  The third, the simplest, was worth thirty points.

Upon completion of the test, students who had chosen the hardest fifty-point questions were given As.  The students who had chosen the forty-point questions received Bs.  Those who settled for the easiest thirty-pointers were given Cs.

The students were frustrated with the grading of their papers and asked the professor what he was looking for.  The professor leaned over the podium, smiled, and explained, “I wasn’t testing your book knowledge.  I was testing your aim.”

An anonymous writer once commented, “Make no small plans for they have no power to stir your soul.”  Robert Kriegel put it this way, “The key is to have a dream that inspires us to go beyond our limits.”  Not only are people short on dreams but even those with dreams often set their sights low enough to protect themselves from failure.

To stay on your course for continuous self-improvement and the benefits that will be attracted to you and your business—AIM HIGH!

Definitions: What a Personal Business Coach May Look at for Your Self-Improvement

To better understand self-improvement coaching and what a personal business coach does, or as they are also called, personal development business coaches, I find that a great deal of the mystery around coaching can be taken away when we understand some key terms and how they are defined.

Self-improvement does not happen by itself.  All of us can improve some without a focus.  We have to do that to live, let alone to survive.  Yet, to live a happier, more fulfilling and peaceful life it is important to understand the definitions of key words that are central to the overall theme of self-improvement business coaching. In a way, these words provide some key tips on self-improvement.

Personal Foundation:  This is a structural basis to support an individual in living an exceptional life. The personal foundation is comprised of three elements:  the Who, the What, and the How.  Your personal foundation will determine where and how far you can go in your self-improvement.  The good news is that your personal foundation can be made stronger.

Personal Growth/Development:  Personal growth and development is the overall process of evolving to fully express your purpose and values.

Self:  Our “self” is who we are versus the terms we use to label ourselves.  It is our distinct personality that creates our individuality.  We draw upon this self as we are called upon to respond to the world.

Integrity:  Integrity is a state of personal wholeness, well-being, and fulfillment—not something to achieve, but rather a statement of our being.  It is a reflection of who you are in any moment and is the dynamic relationship you maintain between purpose and path.  It is vigilant development, or continual adjustment, of the fit between our calling and our conduct that allows us to sustain a high level of integrity.  Integrity, in my opinion, is one the key words in guiding us to a better life.

Values:  Values are ideals that are personally important and meaningful for you and draw you forward.  Values are inherent in each person’s makeup; we all have them.  They are specific and individual, but people can share common values.  For example, people often value honesty, openness, and respect in a conversation.

It is important to know your values.  It is critical to know the values of those you associate with.  As a personal development business coach or when I am doing personal business coaching I strongly encourage my clients to know the values of those they associate with.

An example that comes to mind was a discussion I was in where the person was having a lot of relational disruption with a group of people who were, in his opinion, important to his business.  I asked him to articulate the values of the individuals in this group of people.  At first, he resisted.  He said, “They have good values.”  Yet as he explored it and spoke about the people it became obvious they all had the same values, but they were not his.  Interestingly, they were thieves of other people’s time and money.

The conclusion was that someone can tell you they have good values.  Yet, without a frame of reference we cannot know if they are good or not.  A group of thieves all have the same values.  And they think those are good values.  Always know the values of others.  What tips on self-improvement can we take away from this story?

Know your values.  Know the values of others.  When you do, you are less likely to put yourself in situations where you are compromising your values and your principles.  When you do compromise in those areas it diminishes your authenticity and your trust which leads us down a path to poorer relationships and more problems.

In self-improvement coaching, I always ask my clients to identify their values.  When you know your values, your self-improvement can rise to a higher level because you will make better decisions that will honor you and your gifts and talents.

In the next post we will continue with some more definitions to bring more clarity to your self-improvement.