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Do you use the EQ Profile with everyone you work with? I don’t. (Uh oh. Maybe I shouldn’t admit that). I do use the EQ Profile with every team I work with because I want to know what I’m getting myself into when I challenge them. (See an example of our new EQ Playbook for Teams here). And I don’t use the EQ Profile right out of the gate with every coaching client. I want to look for signs that the client is essentially asking for EQ Profile before I introduce them to it.
When I say asking for it, I mean that my clients expect me to help them see what they can’t see about themselves. And when a client’s blindspots become apparent to me (and not so much to them), I’ve found that is the ideal time to introduce the EQ Profile to them, to help them see themselves more fully.
Here are five signs or indications that a client is “asking” for the EQ Profile by how they are showing up in the coaching:
A number of years ago, I began to see a pattern in myself that I could no longer overlook. Whenever I coached an older female client, I experienced an internal dialogue that was critical of them. YIKES! That’s a big f-ing deal!
The foundation of my work as a coach is in seeing the hero in every client. My internal disparagements were infecting me and my client relationships and souring our results. Oh, I could always justify or explain away my criticism. “She’s being a victim.” “She’s just wanting attention.” But when I looked at my default patterns and the results they created, it was clear. I was the problem.
We all have patterns. Patterns of thinking, feeling, and wanting that reflect experiences from our past and how we’ve been shaped by them. Not metaphorically or figuratively shaped, but literally, neurobiologically shaped. Our brains, our minds and our bodies have been shaped by the events of our lives and the meaning we’ve made from them. And if we are not aware of it, we bring that pattern of being into our present moment experiences with our clients.
The perniciousness of these patterns is that they tend to be invisible to us. They are our “default settings.” They lie outside our conscious awareness. And because our patterns are largely hidden, we will tend to cling to, explain and defend them, even when they don’t serve us or our clients.
We will experience a given moment and believe that our internal reactions are reasonable and responsive to the unique situation at hand. And yet with help from reflection and self-examination, we can see that we’ve had many moments just like this one, with different people, in different circumstances, that yielded similar results. And we are the common denominator. (more…)
This week, while Alison Whitmire takes a week off from her blog, we welcome a guest blogger: our own Corrie Weikle*, Learning in Action’s Director of Training.
There were five minutes left on the clock. My ice hockey team was down 2-1 to move on to the national championship. It was the classic “Not enough time left, and my team is down by one point to get to the big game” story. You’ve heard it before.
The bench where my team sat was a depressing place to be.
Having little emotional literacy at that point in my life, I’d say we were a bunch of doubt-filled, negative Nancy, glass half-empty miserable people. The stakes were high, stress was soaring, and we were consumed by our own risk-driven internal experiences.
If you’ve happened to take the EQ Profile and you recall the dimensions, you’d say my teammates and I were primarily negatively-oriented, and likely over-accessing many of our distressing feelings.
My father passed away recently and we held the memorial service for him last weekend. While an unconscionable amount of drama preceded it, the service itself and our time together was precious and sweet and everything I could have hoped for. I was able to share my profound sadness with my family and friends and join with them in theirs.
The permanence, realness and finality of the loss of my father made so many unimportant things fall away. I had more meaningful, heartfelt, teary-eyed conversations with my family and friends than I have, maybe ever. The whole experience was such a gift.
Every emotion contains information for us that no other dimension of our experience possesses.
The information within sadness is that of loss. Our sadness tells us that we’ve experienced a loss of someone or something important to us (or someone close to us has). This description makes unpacking loss seem much simpler than it is. Loss is not easily untangled, teased out and identified. That is part of why experiencing loss can feel so overwhelming.
My dad was the single most important person in my life, for most of my life. When he passed, I lost more than just my father. I lost someone who believed in me, accepted me and loved me without condition. I lost the head of our family, the one who convened us, looked out for us and knitted us all together. I lost my advisor, mentor, and emotional sponsor. I lost the person who humbly embodied so many of the qualities to which I aspire. I lost my hero. (more…)