Focus on resilience
A clear message during the global pandemic was to keep our distance or stay home so we could all stay safe. But because we didn’t know how long lockdowns would last, many of us worked with clients remotely to help them develop their coping skills and focus on resilience as this was seen as a positive activity when so many were finding life difficult or confusing.
And as a professional coach we are constantly being asked to help our clients listen to their emotions so they can make sense of how they feel, especially when we know it’s difficult for some people to stay positive or build-up that coping experience. And during the pandemic, these normal coping mechanisms were really being tested to the limit, with many clients left feeling bored, frustrated and lonely. So what did we learn from this time that can now help our clients keep that focus on the future and take life one day at a time?
One option would be to run or re-run a skills audit to work with clients to on a review their personal and interpersonal skills as it can help to identify how they naturally react to situations that test their resilience or perseverance. And by helping them to understand their strengths and talents, or any areas they could focus on, they will quickly learn to see what can be done to develop better coping mechanisms. Especially if they find themselves in a difficult situation and questioning how realistic is it for them to simply – Keep Calm and Carry On.
“Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off your goals.”
Quote: Henry Ford
Why does it help to focus on resilience?
Having a focus on resilience is a key personal skill that could be very helpful to your clients when they are finding everyday life exhausting and is defined as:
“The ability to achieve objectives by overcoming difficulties and obstacles.”
It has been scientifically proven that our brain tries to protect us from pain, by making us stop or give up when something starts to hurt. For example, when we get tired or pull a muscle when exercising, or when we are afraid of getting hurt. In his second example, your client may find that they do not even attempt something because they are afraid of the expected outcome. But if they can learn to focus on resilience, it can be a way of tapping into their inner strength to unlock their ability to either resist these outside pressures or simply embrace them and let go of any worry and fear that holds them back.
To help your clients avoid getting carried away with never-ending disaster scenarios, we would normally suggest they try to keep a very clear focus on the present. That way they will learn to see the future as a series of little here and nows they can easily cope with or overcome. And as Nury Vittachi puts it in his book, The Kamasutra of Business:
“Any question to which the answer is a hypothetical reading of the future is not worth asking and will only put you off.”
Some examples to help your clients focus on resilience:
- Break down goals into bite-size steps
- Share goals with people who can give encouragement
- Set rewards at each step of the way (not just at the end)
- Imagine how it will feel once the goal is achieved
Tip: Often the thing we’re the most afraid of doing is the very thing we should focus on the most. The toughest thing is knowing we have to do the one things we just keep putting off.
If you have a client that would benefit from a coaching session where you focus on resilience by reviewing their skills, identify any strengths and talents or find the areas they could work on, check out our exclusive ebook in the online shop:
- Coaching Skills – Essential toolkit with the key questions you need to identify strengths and talents in your clients, plus a self-assessment skills compass handout
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