Are you meant to be a life coach?

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00:00:40 Hi, Rhonda Britten, Master Coach Mindset™ podcast. I am always so excited to be here. Coaching is what I love. I never believed I could do it. I remember when I first started coaching over 23 years ago and there were five coaches in the world. Coaching was nothing. There was no coaching. There was like five people who were doing it, and one of them happened to be somebody I knew, a client of mine actually for something else I was doing at the time. He would always tell me, “You’re going to be a better coach than me.” I remember saying to him, “Coach? I can’t be a Coach. I’m messed up. I’m messed up. I can’t coach. How could anyone … Would anybody listen to me? No way. My life has to get better before I can ever help anybody else.”
00:01:31 I remember him just looking at me with that all-knowing, those all-knowing eyes. He would always say to me, “You’re going to be a better Coach than me. You’re going to be a better Coach than me. You’re going to be a better Coach than me.” I didn’t know what he meant. I really believed I could never do it or I had a right to do it because I wasn’t healthy enough, and my life wasn’t great enough.
00:01:55 It’s also what I hear from people that are interested in the Life Coach Certification Program™ right here at the Fearless Living Institute™ who become Coaches. So many people that have a heart’s desire to help other people, to support them through coaching as a Coach don’t do it because they think they have to be perfect, better, more; their life has to be healthy, or they have to be more together. It always breaks my heart when that happens because that’s not how coaching works and that’s not how life works.
00:02:28 My heart opens to that because I was the same way. One of the honors that we get to do and get to have as Coaches is that we get to have our clients see themselves differently. When a client comes to me and says, “Well, yeah, I’d love to be a Coach, but my life’s messed up.” I have the opportunity through questioning, through using the “Art of Coaching,” to actually change their opinions of themselves. Not just solve their biggest problems but change the way they see themselves.
00:02:58 That is mind-blowing. For somebody who always is like, “Well, I’m not good enough. Oh, I suck. I’m too lazy. I’m stuck in perfectionism, it’s just the way I’ve always been,” and that changes. Wow, that is amazing. We as Coaches get to do that every day, to support a client in seeing themselves differently. If you’re a parent: to have your child see themselves differently. If you’re a boss: to have your co-workers or your employees or your team see themselves differently.
00:03:35 It’s not just through inspiration. That’ll only get you so far. It’s not by telling them. That only gets you so far, but a real cellular change at the very core of their being. Imagine. Imagine for yourself right now what you’re suffering with, what you’re having troubles with. You might be super successful and listening to this podcast. Everybody is working on something. What if what you’re working on you could see differently? That’s the power of coaching.
00:04:07 The skill we’re talking about today is: “Speak to Clarify.” For this Season, Season Two, we’re talking about the Eight Coaching Skills, and I sum it up as the “Art of Coaching.” Again there’s content, what you teach, what you Coach, what you support however you label it. There’s content. You’re a health Coach, so you talk about water. You’re a business Coach; you talk about systems. You’re a financial Coach; you talk about money. That’s your topic. Then there are the questions. That’s your content. That’s content.
00:04:39 Then there’s something called the “Art of Coaching,” which I coined in order to support people in understanding that questions alone don’t build confidence. Questions alone don’t change our clients on a permanent level. Questions alone aren’t enough. When we’re doubting ourselves, when we’re not trusting our coaching, when we’re not trusting ourselves, it’s the “Art of Coaching” we’re missing. I get that you can memorize questions. I get that you may be an expert on your topic. I have Coaches, Certified Fearless Living™ Coaches that used to be nurses, emergency nurses, all different types of nurses. Do they know health? Yeah. Maybe not thoroughly in every single area, but they know a lot about physical being-ness, they know a lot about health, they know a lot about the body. Wow, they’re more expert than I am.
00:05:26 When they’re coaching people going through an illness, or coaching family members about helping somebody go through a challenge, a physical challenge, that person is an expert. They know their stuff, and they might know their questions. It’s the “Art of Coaching” that opens a client’s heart. It’s the “Art of Coaching” that helps somebody see themselves differently. It’s the “Art of Coaching” that keeps us curious and in love with our coaching. It is the “Art of Coaching” that has us trust ourselves as Coaches.
00:05:58 I don’t know about you, but I want to trust myself. I want to trust my coaching. That is the gift that I have been able to experience in my life. I trust my coaching 100%. It’s not because I’ve memorized questions. It Is not because I’m an expert at a particular topic. It’s because I understand the “Art of Coaching.” I understand the human psychology. I understand the process of what a client needs in order to open their heart to themselves and to really step forward and change their life on a real permanent level, on a deep level. Not just superficial and not just because they had an insight. Insights are nice, but that is not change.
00:06:35 We’re on “Speak to Clarify,” and in the last Episode, I shared a lot about what that means. Right now I just want to refine it a little bit and give you some more tips, techniques, tools that you can use, and maybe things that you can see like “Am I speaking to clarify?” I don’t know. I think I am because again, “Speak to Clarify” is something that most Coaches learn in whatever coaching program you go through because that’s the art of questioning. “Speak to Clarify”: open-ended questions, close-ended questions. Remember in our last Episode we talked about broad and specific, broad and specific, broad and specific and the rhythm of a session. If you have not listened to that Episode yet, please make sure after this one you go back and listen to the last one, so you have the full flavor of “Speak to Clarify.”
00:07:17 “Speak to Clarify.” The other thing I want to say is when you’re unsure of yourself, as a Coach and you’re lost…How to get back into the session. Just to give you a little hint here, when you’re lost as a Coach, to get back into the session is you get away from your thinking, and you move towards the client. You look at the client, and you listen to the client. We talked last time about some techniques, some ways to get back into the conversation, and ultimately you are kind of getting lost “here,” and we want to focus “over there.” We want to focus on the client.
00:08:00 What are they thinking? What are they wanting? What’s moving through them? What feeling is going through them? What thoughts are they having? What’s moving through them? That’s one question I ask all the time, “What’s moving through you? What’s moving through you right now?” I might ask, “What thoughts are you thinking? What feelings are you having? What’s happening into your body?” I might get specific, or I might be broad and just say, “What’s moving through you right now?” Just leave it open-ended to allow them to say anything they need.
00:08:24 I can always ask that question. If I’m lost and confused, and I need to find a way to get back into the session: that is one way. You can basically turn to your client and say, “Tell me what’s moving through you right now?” Or you can ask them if you’ve lost the story, you can say, “Would you summarize what you just shared with me in one sentence?” That helps you get back into the session. Just wanted to throw that out because I want to make sure that you got that little technique. You’re not wrong. You’re not bad. You don’t suck as a Coach because you lost track. Don’t make that how you define yourself as a Coach.
00:09:05 Another tip: if a Client is conflicted or unsure then your job is to listen for lack of alignment. In the Certified Fearless Living Coaching Program, the Life Coach Certification Program at the Fearless Living Institute, what we do is we’re looking for alignment. When our clients aren’t aligned that’s when they’re confused. That’s when they don’t have the bravery to make a choice, another aspect of not trusting themselves.
00:09:32 ROLEPLAY:
You as a Coach, to help clarify, you are going to look for alignment. Let’s say they say, “Yeah, I want to triple my income,” and you say, “Okay, what percentage of you wants to triple their income?”
“Oh, 100%.”
“Oh, 100% of you. Great. So tell me what your body thinks about you making more money?”
“Oh, my body?”
“Yeah, tell me what your body thinks about you making more money?”
“Oh, I just think about how tired I’m going to be.”
00:09:58 See that. As a Coach you’re going, “A part of them is not interested in making more money.”
“What does your heart say about making more money?”
“Well, I’m worried about my relationships. I’m worried that I won’t have time for my relationships.”
“What does your head say?”
“Everyone’s ahead of me. Everyone’s ahead of me, and I’m never going to catch up.”
“What does your spirit say? I’m not sure what your spirituality is, I’m not sure what you believe that way, and again you can talk about it here if that’s appropriate.”
00:10:29 I usually don’t bring up spirituality or move into religion or that particular topic in any specific way unless the client brings it up. If they bring it up, then I’m totally there with them. I could ask something like, “I don’t know what you believe spiritually, don’t know what your philosophy is in life, and let’s just generally ask what does your spirit say about making more money?” They might say, “Oh, that’s the devil.” I’m just making up answers.
00:10:58 You can see that logically they want to make more money, but their body isn’t going, their heart’s not going, and their spirit’s not going with them. Then the next week when they’re not doing their exercises thoroughly or they maybe have momentum for three weeks, and then they lose momentum on the fourth week, which is common by the way, it’s because they’re not in alignment. A part of them I saying, “No thank you. That’s going to get me in trouble even though I think making triple my income will solve all my problems. In fact, I’m scared it’ll ruin my relationship, I’m scared it’ll ruin my health, I’m scared that I am chasing after something that is not of spiritual depth and I believe I’m a bad person if I care about money so much.”
00:11:47 Now when they say to you, “I want to triple my income,” you are looking for alignment. This is another aspect of clarifying. Remember in the last Episode I gave you lots of different ways to clarify so we’re just adding to. As I said at Certified Fearless Living Coaches in my Life Coach Certification program, I teach alignment. How do you help a client align? How do you support a client in alignment? That is why you and your clients, myself included, don’t move forward. We have fear. Fear shows up as worry, anxiety, concern. I say, “I want to triple my income, but then I’m worried that it’ll impact my relationships negatively.” “I want to triple my income, but I watched my father work himself to the bone and have a heart attack.”
00:12:46 All of this lives inside your Client, and that’s why in our last Episode we talked about the box that the dream is in. The Client has this dream, and it’s in a box. You as the Coach want to nudge that box a little bit open. You want to nudge it open a little bit because you want to make sure that they’re fully aligned so that they can move forward. Now let’s say they seem to be aligned. You go, “Oh, yeah, my body is like, yeah, let’s make some money, go to the gym more, yeah, my relationships, yeah, that’s what my spouse is always arguing to me about is money so that’ll solve that problem.” Then they start moving forward. You think they’re aligned, they think they’re aligned, awesome.
00:13:24 Just know that when they are tripping themselves up, when they are not moving forward, it probably goes back to a lack of alignment. What is lack of alignment hiding? A fear. That’s why here at the Fearless Living Institute we are experts at fear. Bottom line is my philosophy is that any time a client is “holding themselves back,” or “feeling stuck,” or “having blocks,” or you’re feeling like your client’s resistant, or they say, “I’m resistant, I don’t know why I’m resistant.” It’s fear. I want every Coach to be able to coach through someone’s fears, not through cliché. Not like, “What are you afraid of?” and that’s it. No, there’s so much more to fear than that.
00:14:06 Alignment is one of the hints, one of the ways that you can start checking their willingness, their readiness, and what’s true for them. You might be saying to yourself, “Rhonda, are you saying that I can’t have my client triple their income until they’re aligned?” No, that’s not what I’m saying. You as the Coach and them as the client need to know where the withholds are, and where the fears are showing up. As you do support the client in tripling their income it doesn’t blindside them. Or it doesn’t take them down, and they use it to beat themselves up. That’s the other thing the client’s not moving as fast as they want. They want better results faster, and they start beating themselves up. Or they didn’t do it as perfect. They start beating themselves up.
00:14:54 When you’ve clarified so that you both know what’s at stake here, and what’s scary, and what’s exciting, and you’re not afraid to talk about anything or ask the questions that need to be asked. Then as the client is moving forward you’re adjusting, you’re helping adjust, the client can adjust, and it takes away their right to beat themselves up. If they start beating themselves up, you can simply ask a question like, “Well, what part of you is afraid that you’re going to lose your family?” “My heart.” “So what can we do about your heart right now? Let’s talk about your heart. Let’s talk about ways that you can feel more secure and more safe or et cetera, et cetera,” whatever words they used to feel connected, belong. Again, you’re going to get these words from them, so that you can start shoring them up in the ways that could trip them up unconsciously.
00:15:47 You’re never going to be able to get everything, unconscious and the conscious, that’s impossible, don’t even try. There’s always going to be trip up, there’s always going to be surprises, there’s always going to be shocks. It’s just a function. Don’t think that you’re going to be perfect.
00:16:05 You want to ask enough questions so there’s awareness around how perfectionism is going to trip them up, there’s awareness around their worry about their relationship failing if they go triple their income. They’re aware of their health, and their fear of they’re going to have a heart attack or something bad is going to happen with their health. We want to help our clients become aware of that.
00:16:28 This is what I call alignment, and it is part of clarifying, and it is a key part of clarifying. So important. Hopefully, you’re getting a little taste of that. It’s why I created Fearless Conversations™ Workshop because we’ve got to practice this stuff; we’ve got to get it into our bodies. Another thing about “Speak to Clarify,” a powerful tool of speaking to clarify is actually helping your client and you by sitting in silence. Some of the most important work you do with your client will be in silence. Not asking any question at all but allowing your client to work it out inside themselves and give you the answer when they’re ready.
00:17:13 One of my Coaches, Bill Grout, says that one time he asked a question; I think he waited five to six minutes before the client answered. Most Coaches wouldn’t have the “patience,” they would start thinking. They’re thinking like, “What’s going on? What’s happening?” Don’t have the trust that the client is working it out. You stay completely present as the Coach with the client even if takes ten minutes. You don’t go wandering, and you’re not writing on stuff, you’re completely present with the client because that being present with the client is so critical for them having the courage to tell the truth and to trust themselves.
00:17:55 You being present, you literally have their back at that moment. You’ve got their back, and they can feel it. Consciously or unconsciously they know when you’re reading an email because they’re taking time to answer. I know you’re saying to yourself, “I never do that.” How do you get distracted? Distractions stop you from being present. Part of that distraction is you judging yourself, or you thinking you should know a question faster or wondering what you should be doing now. All of that is distraction.
00:18:30 The distraction can be external, or it can be internal. That’s what I want to support you with is removing those internal distractions so that you can actually be present and trust yourself in every session. That’s why there’s this thing called the Eight Coaching Skills and the “Art of Coaching.”
“Speak to Clarify,” silence heals, silence heals, silence heals, silence heals.
00:19:17 Take a deep breath. What is our job to “Speak to Clarify?” Our job is to clarify, to help our clients get clear through clarification, through speaking to clarify so that they can make the best decisions for themselves. That’s the job. Our job is to help the client unwrap, unfold, reveal anything that’s been holding them back, or making them doubt themselves, or giving them permission to beat themselves up so they can have the clarity they need in order to make the best decision for them.
00:20:09 Confusion is what keeps us stuck. We want to get clear, so a decision is right there. You know what the decision is. It’s easy and effortless. Confusion is what we’re solving and supporting our clients with, as we cut through.
00:20:36 One of the things that I train my Coaches to do is to become aware. To trust themselves at such a level, as a Coach, that they can feel a shift in their client whether it’s spoken or not. You want to be right with that client, so you can feel that shift. Then you’re going to pull that shift out so the client can see it, so they can own it. They can get aligned with it.
00:21:13 Let’s go to the question of the day. If you have a question for me, go over to I love questions, love, love, love questions. As you know, I answer a question in every episode of Master Coach Mindset. Make sure you go over to and ask me your questions. Any and every question I love questions. Whether you’re a Coach, a therapist, a parent, whatever that role is, ask me your specific question so I can answer and support you in becoming more skilled at being a Coach and more confident in your coaching skills.
Here is the question. “Should a new Coach focus more One-on-one coaching to start or group coaching or both at the same time?” Should a new Coach focus more on one-on-one coaching to start or group coaching or both at the same time? Well, if you’ve been listening to Master Coach Mindset for a while, I bet you know the answer to this. What’s the answer? You know the answer. All right, so here it is for the new people that may have not been listening and aren’t sure what the answer is.
00:22:37 I don’t mind that you do both. I don’t mind at all that you do group coaching and one-on-one coaching. Group coaching can only build a certain level of skill. It doesn’t mean that you can’t become a better Coach doing group coaching. Group coaching is really facilitation, and facilitation is a little bit different than one-on-one coaching. I group coach all the time, and I love group coaching so I’m not saying that you can’t group coach. By any means, I think group coaching is a fantastic thing. Of course, all the business Coaches say, “Group coaching so you can triple your income and quadruple your income because you have ten clients rather than one,” and there’s some truth to that.
00:23:24 I strongly suggest that, especially in the beginning, you always have one-on-one Coaches as well. The one-on-one coaching Clients are going to help you increase your trust, increase your confidence, and give you more opportunity to build your skills than any group coaching. With group coaching, you could ask one question and then have ten people answer it, and there goes 45 minutes. You may have coached a little bit but not much. You can do hot seats and go into somebody in depth that will help you as well. Usually, group coaching is about a topic so you can’t really, or most Coaches I should say, don’t really explore as freely as they do in one-on-one sessions.
00:24:13 I am not against group coaching. I say knock yourselves out, create a group-coaching program, awesome. If you want more confidence, if you want to trust yourself more, if you want to embody the skills of the “Art of Coaching” in Fearless Conversations, then I strongly suggest that you have one-on-one clients.
00:24:31 I’ve been coaching like I said for over 23 years, and there have been times that I didn’t coach individual clients at all. When I was filming for six years, I’ve done over 600 episodes of reality television; I was coaching individuals every day inside my TV shows. I didn’t have private clients outside of that. I was coaching all day long private clients and doing group work as well. I didn’t have “private” clients.
00:25:00 When my last TV show ended, I took a break from coaching one-on-one clients because I’d been coaching one-on-one clients for a long time at that point, and I just did group coaching. I found out very quickly that I wasn’t getting as satisfied. I wasn’t deepening my own experience, my own work. I wasn’t getting asked the difficult questions. I wasn’t going deep with my clients in group coaching. For me personally, one-on-one coaching is something that I always want to have going on in my life and in my business. Whether that’s two one-on-one clients a week or four one-on-one clients a week, or again whatever number that is. I want to have some one-on-one Coaches all the time so that I keep refining, having better discernment, increasing my skills, and becoming a better Master Coach.
00:26:03 It’s very difficult to become a Master Coach when you’re only doing group work. Like I said, nothing against group work. Just make sure that you’re giving yourself the permission to work one-on-one so that you can go deeper, wider, nudging; so that you can support that client in becoming who they are meant to be. Who they are born to be beyond anything they thought was possible. Isn’t that exciting? We get to do that every day. I love it. I love every bit of it.
00:26:31 Meet me over at the Master Coach Mindset Insider’s Club at so that you can download the worksheet for today to help you integrate and embody what we talked about. Of course, what I want to know is what did you get from this session. I always want to know what you get from this session so meet me over in the Facebook group. If you have signed up for Insider Club, you get regular emails from me. Go over the Facebook group and share with me what’s moving through you so that I can hear.
With that I say, as always, Be Fearless.