Finding our Personal Best

Finding our Personal Best.

Often, as I explore a dialogue with a person we go beyond the superfical issues, and start to approach the nagging worry that is central. It’s the area that has been holding them back. It lives in a sort of twilight, only partly concious, but enormously empowered.

Its unlikley this is about their competancy at work, or their balance of life, even though important. No, its more central than that, its around their reason to be, and

‘who they are’ and ‘are they OK?’ Its around the ‘whats if’s’ and deep hopes, even dreams. These questions live at the heart of our lives.

For many, realisation how vital it is to meet themselves comes late; when the job has eaten them up, a failure, or lose, or worse when chaos occurs. Then a cry comes up for meaning and fulfillment.

My belief is that the answers are as close as the questions, if we can see, if we don’t run away from the journey and give ourselves the time, and space, to enquire.

Our potential is realised by optimising our own uniqueness and individuality, never by moulding them to others opinions of what constitutes ‘the right way’. John Whitmore

To achieve your potential, to see the full expression of it, to get your personal best performance are the highest goals we can set ourselves.

It could be by winning in an athletic event or getting the promotion. It could be finally writing your book, or making a living from your passion. It could be ‘being the No 1 Dad’ or as outwardly simple as ‘learning to smile again’.

Whatever the target, it’s yours, and will demand you total responsibility and ownership to achieve. If it didn’t demand this, it’s likely at least partly, to belong to someone else

Surprisingly, you don’t need more information to grow.

Odysseus left his son with Mentor to be educated while he went overseas. ‘Tell him all you know’ he said, and at that point defined the limits of possibility.

All our lives we have learnt to do things without knowing ‘how’ to do it!

We learnt to walk, ride and catch a ball without detailed instructions. In fact the brain is so able to absob and learn that many tasks become automatic, ‘unconsciously competent’ within a short time.

How did we learn to drive a car? Well some brave individual took us out, and yes, they did give us some basic advice so that we focused our attention on a sequence of actions.

We learnt that we didn’t have this skill a very important first step! (the shift into knowing we are incompetent – help!) Then we felt awkward and incompetent. After a few outings we found we could work the pedals, shift the gears and look forward at the same time, with only a few anxious moments. Later we were driving, essentially forgetting the sequence of actions and started thinking about whom we were going to see- possibly our new personal goal!

We have huge personal potential for growth. Ownership and focus bring results.

Many of us stay at ‘the great potential stage’ all our lives.

Like acorns never planted, or given the time to germinate we remain dormant to the higher longings of our soul. We achieve the needs of life: food, shelter, belonging and some prestige. But without taking the time on ourselves we fail to reach for the higher goals depicted in Maslow’s hierarchy of human needs - self esteem and self actualising – to find our meaning and purpose, with an ongoing, challenging but satisfying, journey.

Like driving we need to focus, to become aware. Like top athletes going for their personal best this takes time and usually some help.

Coaching looks to your potential, working forward with your desire to change the structure, understanding that problems can only be resolved at a level below the one at which they show themselves.

The number one cause of stress in the workplace is sighted as ‘lack of personal control’. Stress occurs from long periods of suppression with loss of personal choice and thus self esteem. But we can take back personal responsibility for our choices, allowing ourselves ‘to be heard’. This involves actively working from the strong foundations of our values and individual purpose, working at the lower levels, and building a platform to retain our self esteem.

Personal responsibility demands that we make our own choices.

It’s unlikely that the ‘carrot and stick’ approach will engage us in this process but working for our own personal best offers freedom for us, and our best value to our community.

Coaching, believes this foundation of awareness, with ‘forward energy’ owned by the client, creates rapid and lasting change. It’s not a new plan or a mystic series of steps led by a guru; rather it’s a planned approach to opening up the potential that exists in all of us and like learning to drive, what required conscious attention soon becomes the new habits of life change.

Personal responsibility becomes our best survival tool in a constantly changing world.

Life Coaching is about self belief, motivation, choice and clarity of commitment. It builds awareness and responsibility for your personal best.

Unlike others styles of consulting, coaching works at the deeper levels of personal worth and determination to achieve self motivated people who are moving forward to find meaning and purpose in their lives. Their personal best!

Simon O’Shaughnessy – Exec Coach - T +64 21 556 458

Simon O'Shaughnessy

Posted via email from Simon's posterous