The Unexpected Rewards of Becoming a Certified Integral Coach

I completed my year-long integral coaching certification training this weekend.

There is a lot to say about the benefits of coaching to the person being coached – and I surely will at some point! – but today the script is flipped.

Here are some of the immeasurable gifts I’ve gained from the training:

A calmer mind

New Ventures West encourages us to have “the mind and body of a coach”. For me this means regular sitting (meditating) and journalling. The daily sitting practice has evolved from being a chore to a delight to a necessity for my well being.

Capacity to listen deeply

A great coach once described how most people are in a conversation as “talking, and waiting to talk.” While I’ve always strived to be a good listener, what got in the way was the feeling that I had to respond – with something really smart! – to everything I heard. Now, I can leave that urge behind, be present with the person talking, and listen not only to the words but the sense of the person behind them.

Accessing new intelligences

Most of us go first to our mind for solutions, and our minds have served us well – to a point. I intentionally chose a coaching program that focuses not only on the mind, but on accessing wisdom from the heart and the gut. It was disconcerting at first to realize that not all problems can be solved by thinking hard about them, but as I’ve accepted this, I feel more confident and creative in my ideas.

And the biggest gift is the community that grew during the year long course. I am deeply appreciative to my teachers (including Anamaria Aristizabal) and classmates who were all deeply invested in each other’s growth.

Doing this course was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.

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