With Christmas and a New Year approaching over the coming days I’d like to share some personal reflections on this last year and the joyous life-affirming privilege I have had in supporting others on their life’s journey.
2020 been a year of shifts, sadness and surprises – more on these later, but for now I would like to share some advice on life’s journey.
The eternal question: What do you really want out of life?
This year, more than any other over the past two decades, has been notable for me by the marked increase in requests for support from individuals of all age groups; from school children and students, those about to begin a career and those nearing the point of retirement. Each and every one focused on “What do I really want out of life?”.
This basic need to understand what each of us really want out of life often arises from tipping point, inflections and times of dramatic change. It is then we each have personal reflections on life and that nagging feeling there has to be something different, there has to be more. Phrases like “it’s time for a change” and “I feel I want to do something more fulfilling”, “I want to give back” and “I want to be doing something that plays to my heart and soul, not just my mind”.
Work and the work you currently do can be seen as a makeshift raft for the slipstream of time and uncertainty that is life.
And so, when some cataclysm, be it the arrival of Covid, the passing of a loved one, the move to virtual working, collide with the slipstream of time, uncertainty and your normal work practice they capsize the raft, shatter it and leave us gasping amid the flotsam, ejected from the familiar flow of time. So, do we sink or swim?
Answering the eternal question
Firstly, swim with the flow and take time to understand what you want out of life. Begin by really getting to know yourself.
When asked the question, philosophers over the decades have offered questions to begin the process, but your truth lies in reflective practice combined with guided support.
What is Reflective Practice?
While a plethora of answers to this question exist, reflective practice provides the structure for developing the habit of rigorous reflection on learning experiences from throughout your life.
The essence of reflective practice is based on four phases:
1. Greater self-awareness of events
2. You begin to surface your emotions and thoughts as well as behaviour
3. Consolidating the recognition that deep-learning is usually a combination of both the previous two phases
4. Reinforcing the application of deep-learning into everyday practice and behaviour.
Reflective practice and knowing yourself
Take time to apply the four-phase approach to answering the following questions
What brings you joy, flow and fulfilment?
What is your moral and ethical framework?
Understand the things you can and can’t control
and most of all, remember
No one, but no one can take away your choice
The wisest use of time is that spent understanding and knowing yourself.
What has coaching got to do with all of this?
From the beginning of this journey guided support through professional coaching ensures the path you choose provides not just clarity, but critically a way forward with purpose and a sense of control that liberates you from the drag that has been holding you back from true fulfilment and joy.
For me, the wonder and joy of coaching is being allowed into someone’s life, often during times of change, challenge and confusion. To play a small part in providing clarity and purpose in this confusing world.
In Part 2 I would like to share with you some thoughts on personal resilience in times like these.
I am always ready to listen and support you, whether you would like our free guide to reflecting, or, a brief summary of our professional coaching service…drop me a line at: firstname.lastname@example.org