What is Transformation? By Martha Lasley
You can think of the kind of transformation described here as drawing new water out of your old well
You can think of the kind of transformation described here as drawing new water out of your old well – by going deeper than you ever dipped before. The way to get your bucket deeper into your well is by taking on powerful questions, instead of jumping at attractive-looking answers. – John Scherer
Transformation is a process of profound and radical change that arises from deep awareness and leads to fresh orientation and new direction. Transformation honors what is, while reaching deep within to find what is emerging – the birthing of something brand new. Instead of denying the past or the present, the transformational process cradles or embraces the life force. Coaches act as midwives to the birthing process – the creation of something new and exciting.
People transform to the degree that they are seen, heard, understood and recognized for the gifts they have to offer. Simply witnessing the process and being fully present can have a deep transformational impact.
In holistic coaching you create an essence-to-essence relationship. You look for and bring out the client’s essence and, at the same time, bring your own essence to the relationship. In this essence-to-essence relationship, both Coach training and client experience transformation. The coach is transformed just by witnessing the powerful shifts in their client. Naming the impact the client has on the coach can serve as a source of inspiration.
Coaching for Transformation is a pioneering model of coaching that holds the polarity between pure client focus and commitment to the possibility of a transformational relationship between coach and client. The primary purpose of coaching is to foster transformation in the client. The coach simultaneously steps wholeheartedly into both sides of the coaching equation by sharing their own transformation if it has the potential to serve the client.
Transformation isn’t merely the end product of a change in alignment. It is also the change that happens within to bring the people you coach into greater alignment. For example, a young father wants to honor his values of family and responsibility, which leads to transformation and a new way of being in the world. Transformation nearly always involves a change in pattern; be it a pattern of thinking or a pattern of behavior. Instead of looking for the big “aha” moment, notice that transformation can happen in any moment. The beauty of the process is that we reach deep within, building on what’s available right now without negating the past.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Martha Lasley is a founder of Leadership that Works, home of the Coaching for Transformation program that offers an ICF accredited coach training certification geared toward supporting nonprofit leaders and social change activists.