Life Coach Training
Worthy and Deserving
One of the most crucial elements in your success as a coach is your sense of worthiness and deservingness to offer coaching, receive payment for it, and build a career, if that is your intention. Most coaches-to-be struggle a little or a lot with a feeling of unworthiness. Today we will begin to face and overcome that potentially troublesome issue, and address it over the course of our studies, until it becomes a non-issue.
In his brilliant book Success Intelligence (highly recommended), Robert Holden sheds light on what he calls “fraud guilt” ― the feeling that you are in some way a phony, and that if your true ineptness were exposed, no one would want to be coached by you or even be with you at all. Fraud guilt can run as a subtle, niggling stream of thought just below the surface of your awareness, or it may be a big, bold, in-your-face critical voice. Whether the voice is subtle or blatant, it must be put to rest. Here are some ways to smite the dragon once and for all:
1. Identify what the voice of unworthiness says.
“What makes you think you are qualified to be a coach? You don’t even have your own life together, so how do you come off setting yourself up to help other people? If people knew your true failings, what you think in the darkness of your own mind, your private sins, how fearful you are, and how lost you sometimes feel, they would laugh at the notion of you coaching! And you expect to charge other people money for this? You should be paying them―or someone―to get coaching yourself! Give it up and keep your day job!”
Sound familiar? If so, and you can be honest about how that voice chides you, you have made a major step toward pulling the rug out from under it. Simply observing the critical voice from a position outside of it, rather than identifying with it, cringing at it, or running from it, will begin to loosen its hold on you.
2. Create an affirmative stream of thought to counter the unworthiness voice.
“I do have unique experience and skills that can be helpful to others. I may not be perfect, but I have come far enough along my own path of awakening that I have learned some things that can serve, uplift, and guide. My heart and intention are sincere, and I am open to Higher Power moving through me to help my clients. In my illuminated moments I know that I have what it takes. I choose those moments of inner confidence to be my reality. The voice of unworthiness is an old and outmoded one, and I no longer give power to its unkind and insane ramblings. I feel intuitively guided to set out on this path, and I trust my intuition. Everyone deserves to be paid for helping others, and my service to my clients is a valuable gift for which I am open and willing to receive material support. I can and will learn to be a good coach—in some ways I already am—and I embrace this journey as a great adventure in making my life better along with the lives of those I touch. All is well, and I move ahead with confidence, in the perfect way and timing.”
3. Practice identifying the frequency of the voice of unworthiness, as well as the frequency of the voice of confidence, and learn to discern betwen the two.
The critical voice speaks with a certain flavor or tone that you can identify. Get to know how it feels so that when it speaks you do not sit down to tea with it. At the same time, notice how the voice of confidence feels, so when it speaks, you can open the door to enlarge it.
By analogy: Think for a moment who your best friend is. Imagine that someone you do not know phones you and says, “This is [name of your best friend]. I need to speak to you about something important. Meet me at Starbucks in an hour.”
Now imagine that your best friend phones you and does not even say his or her name. “I need to speak to you about something important. Meet me at Starbucks in an hour.”
Would you go to meet the person you did not know who impersonated your best friend? Certainly not. Would you meet your best friend, even though he or she did not say his/her name? Certainly.
Why? You know your best friend’s energy and voice. By experience you trust that person. The foreign voice is alien to you and you recognize it as an imposter.
Likewise, the voice of love has a unique frequency, and the voice of fear has a unique frequency. The voice of love is your best friend and the negative critical voice is an impostor. Practice discerning between the two, not so much by the words, but by the energy, and you will gain mastery over the critical voice.
4. Recognize where your critical voice came from.
The critical voice is not your own. You were not born with self-judgment, and it is not natural to you. If you observe little children, they live in a completely non-critical consciousness. They are immersed in self-love and don’t feel self-conscious or judgmental about anything―until they learn criticism from parents, siblings, teachers, religion, and authority figures. Eventually the voices of external criticism become internalized, and you believe that critical thoughts are your own. They are not. They are adopted. If you can identify whose voice speaks to you in your critical moments, you can begin to dis-identify with it and gain freedom from it.
5. Observe successful teachers and coaches, and recognize that, while they have their positive points, they are human too and have their issues and demerits.
All great teachers have their human moments and frailties which one could judge as disqualifying them from their position as teacher. Yet they also have their moments of insight, genius, and service that make them excellent teachers. In fact, coaches or teachers who have wrestled with their egos and inner “demons” and mastered them are the strongest teachers. So their humanness did not keep them from being good teachers, but it made them good teachers.
6. Just do it anyway.
Many years ago I made a meditation cassette to sell to my students. While cassettes were selling for $10 at the time, I was charging $3, my cost to make them. One of my students told me, “This is a great cassette. You should sell it for the going price. I would be happy to pay it, and I know others would, too.” While I had resistance to raising the price, I decided to take my student’s advice and just do it anyway. When people began to buy the cassettes at $10 and thank me for them, my glass ceiling was raised, and I realized the cassettes were worth the price―and I liked having the money!
Any resistance or reluctance you have to put yourself out there as a coach is self-created and maintained. Break this limiting illusion by just doing what you would choose to do. When you receive positive feedback―and money―you will wonder why you ever hesitated.
1. What does your voice of unworthiness or “fraud guilt” say to you?
(Write down everything you can think of that it has said or might say):
2. Write a paragraph of self-affirmation as an antidote to the critical voice:
3. From whom did you adopt the voice of your inner critic?
What did that person or institution say to you?
4. How might you respond to the voice of that person or institution with love, clarity, purpose, and power that will offset that voice?
5. Identify a teacher, mentor or role model who embodies human attributes (even frailties) as well as greatness:
How has that person been empowered by facing and overcoming his or her difficulties?
How does that person use those experiences to be a better teacher or healer?
6. What step toward coaching or teaching would you like to take, that you have been hesitating to do?
How might you simply go ahead and do it anyway?
I am worthy to coach as a career or informally, as I choose.
I have much to offer my clients, and they benefit significantly.
I listen only to the voice of positive vision, and let all else go.
I am ready. I can and will achieve my goals.