by Catriona Futter
What inspires you as a Christian Coach? How often do you reflect on your motivation and inspiration for becoming a coach? And how much of that remains true for you today?
I have the joy and privilege of facilitating the Coaches in Europe CCNI Community. At our final meeting of 2020, we talked about inspiration as we head into 2021.
There were four key themes that came out of our conversation, and with their permission, I share them here.
Jesus came to give us life to the full (John 10:10). And He promised that “if the Son sets you free you will be free indeed” (John 8:36). And yet we so often see people living trapped and far from free, including those who believe in Jesus and His Word. Trapped in comparison with others, negative mindsets, lack of self-belief, analysis paralysis that prevents forward progress. The Enemy has many ways to keep us trapped. As coaches, what inspires and excites us is the privilege and challenge of working with clients to help them let go of these chains–be they mindsets, belief systems, or other obstacles, and walk into the freedom to be who God has made them to be.
Spending time in God’s Word to see His truths and reset our own wrong beliefs is important to ensure that we are bringing His truth and His perspective to our clients and not clouding our coaching with our own. We are inspired as we take time to regularly remind ourselves of who God is, what He says He will do, who He says WE are, and what HE is empowering and equipping us to do in His service. And we build trust for our futures and for our coaching relationships as we remember God’s faithfulness and His direction by His Spirit in all that we have done before. And specifically, we can gain insight and inspiration from looking at how Biblical characters, especially Jesus, coached those around them.
Learning and Growing
As people and as coaches, we never stand still. Having our mind, soul and spirit open to notice, reflect and learn keeps us on our toes and keeps us inspired to be more for God, in His strength. Be it the wealth of webinars in the CCNI library, keeping up to date with reading or listening to podcasts that stretch us in our thinking, and being part of like-minded communities–making time for this is important. There are lots of resources available, but we need discernment to find those resources and communities where we share positive and Spirit-led mindsets and values of people who provide challenge and accountability. I was reminded by Kim Avery in a recent podcast of hers of the words of John Dewey, the American philosopher and psychologist:
“We do not learn from experience…we learn from reflecting on our experience.”
Thus making time to learn, to reflect on our learnings, and to see what God is showing us about Him, about ourselves, and about our coaching is important to keep us inspired. There are many forms of reflective practice, and for us, journaling remains top of the list.
Investing in ourselves
You know what they say in aircraft safety announcements: put your own oxygen mask on first. We cannot give what we do not have. I know that when I am leaking irritation and resentment to those around me, that is a clear indicator that I need to stop and take stock, and step away because I have run out of energy and inspiration. We invest in ourselves because God commanded us to love others as ourselves. We invest in ourselves so that we can be a better tool to help others, and to ensure that we continue to grow in the skills that give us keys of transformation for others. Time to invest in ourselves by stopping and be-ing rather than do-ing allows us to keep our focus always on God and His plans for us. This in turn keeps us from slipping into striving, performance or human-driven productivity. It is always about Him. He resources us as we invest in ourselves so that we can resource and inspire others.
So as this year begins, what inspires you? What can you take from those four themes for yourself? Where is God speaking to your soul about what you need?
And what will keep you inspired? For our wee community, we listed being outside (hills, water, animals, sky, sea–all fabulous reminders of the Creator who we trust and believe in), laughter and sharing, community, focused thematic Bible study, hearing others’ stories of how they learn and grow.
And as a final question, posed by one of our community:
Whom can YOU inspire?
Consider those in your community, your family, your church. Who do YOU know who is open to be inspired by you? And what are you inspiring them to both be and do?