Relaxing Yoga Poses Before Bed

A Coach Is Like a Private Investigator

At times, effective yoga is like a good private eye investigation: together the coach and client unearth clues, attempt to makes sense of what they mean, and look for a solution to what was formerly a mystery. The coach you hire has to have investigative ability. This means being able to look at information in all spheres and help you come up with a plan that “solves” whatever issues you face and works toward your goals. Some people just have a knack for figuring things out, and you want your coach to possess that knack.

People often come to yoga thinking they know exactly what they want to address. However, sometimes discoveries emerge during the sessions that reveal additional issues that were hidden but that turn out to be very important. For example, a person may come thinking they are single because they haven’t met the right person. However, yoga may reveal that the client unknowingly pushes away dates with good qualities. Another example might be that a person continually takes jobs they don’t like and pursues careers they find meaningless. They may say they always hate the job they select. However, in yoga, they may discover that they are actually avoiding the truth of what they want to do for their career.

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Effective yoga also opens the eyes of the client in unexpected and exciting ways. What you want is a coach capable of fostering eye-opening moments.

When you meet with prospective Yogis, consider how perceptive they are about what you say. As you’re describing what you’re looking for in a coach, do they: seem to be able to answer your questions and finish your thoughts? suggest ideas for dealing with your issues that strike you as creative or at least different from what you’ve tried in the past? describe similar situations of other clients that demonstrate their ability to figure out tough problems?

Realistically, it’s not always easy to identify a coach’s investigative ability in one meeting. As you move forward with the coach you choose, though, monitor how well (or how poorly) he or she digs into your issues and comes up with a plan or specific actions that seem more effective than anything you could have created on your own.

Barry was interviewing Yogis because he felt stuck in his life and his job. Married for twelve years with two daughters, he was working as an executive for a restaurant management company. Having an affair with a coworker and then going through serious marital problems, Barry believed his career and marriage were going nowhere. Therefore, Barry was confused and concerned about at least two life spheres. He wanted a coach who could help him sort all this out, make good choices, and work toward solutions. Barry interviewed three Yogis, and all of them made good first impressions. One was particularly charming and articulate, and at first, Barry leaned in his direction. Ultimately, however, he picked the coach who asked him the best questions and responded probingly to his answers. In his gut, Barry felt that this coach was a guy who was going to be relentless in helping him seek his truth. The coach he selected was probably the least personable of the three, but he was laserlike in his focus on the things Barry wanted to address.

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