This write-up is a follow up to a discussion
among a COP of coaches, on a subject “Changing Goals during
After the usual ceremony, courtesy and rapport
building, a coaching session is in progress …
The following is a coaching conversation between
the coach and the coachee …
Coachee : “I am feeling down and unhappy.
I want to be happy. This is also my objective in this coaching
Coach : “I am sure we both can work out
something so that you can feel happier. What are you not feeling happy
Coachee ; “I don’t know whether it is my
mid-life crisis. You see, I am not happy about my current job. My
management is terrible. My colleagues are not co-operative. My family is
busy with their own things. I am feeling rather lonely suddenly.”
Coach : “Are you feeling unhappy, or
lonely or both?”
Coachee : “I suppose I am feeling lonely.
Maybe my objective of this coaching session is to get out of my
(Note: a change in the goal or objective or
agenda of the coaching session).
Coach : “Tell me, what is your own
assessment on the degree of your loneliness, in a scale of 0 to 10, 10
being extremely lonely.”
Coachee : “I would say it is at a scale of
8. I remember in the past, when I felt that lonely, I got myself to read
story books and novels. I felt ok then. I don’t have interest in
reading now. Maybe I should take up a new hobby. Maybe you can help me
to explore a new hobby in this coaching session.”
(Note: another change in the goal or objective
or agenda of the coaching session).
Coach : “Sure, as your coach, I am here to
listen to you and follow your agenda. Tell me, what are your current
thinking so far on hobbies that suit you?”
Coachee : “Well, there are several things
I have in mind. I have never been interested in sports and exercises,
now maybe I should try, good for my health. Say, golf, tai-chi etc. I
have been thinking taking up foreign languages, then I can travel places
and appreciate the cultures in different countries. Maybe I should take
up serious study on investment, so that I can build up some wealth for
my retirement. …..”
Coach : “All the ideas you have sound
interesting and compelling. Tell me, in your past experiences, what
hobby or undertaking you took up that shows clearly your determination
Coachee : “Your question is really like a hammer hitting on
me hard. I must say that I have never demonstrated any
determination, passion, commitment in any of my undertaking. I have been
merely floating in my life, up with the high tide, down with the low
tide. Maybe, as a coach you can help me to install passion and
commitment in my life, I would like that to be our coaching objective.
Don’t get me wrong, I feel good that you listen to me. You have been
patient with me in my goals shifting. I am really glad we come this far.
I appreciate every small step of this journey”
(Note: 3rd change in the goal or objective or
agenda of the coaching session).
The original goal “to be happy” is shifted
to “to get out of loneliness” to “finding a new hobby” to
“installation of passion in life”. A pattern is established and
likely as coaching continues, the coachee may come up with another
suggestion of coaching objective.
are the implications of the above?
actually is happening?
should be the coach’s overall strategy?
Andrew Wong - EP Coach