It was tempting to run away from this experience, with an easy out that I didn't want to get stuck in that story. I soon realized though that I actually needed to be fully in the experience of what I blurted out so I could find the healing it offered. It proved to be an opening to a very important pivot in my current journey. It was the only way in. Once there, I could see the gift in it and make the shift.
It seems to me that much of what people look to us for in coaching is an expression of courageous compassion. They hope that we will hold space for them in all of their humanity. They want to feel we care for them without condition and from that place we will also be courageous to say what needs to be said . . . and ask the one question they most hope (and fear) we will ask them. They want us to go all in on both and not settle for some bland average. Your strength as a practitioner and their growth depend on it. Why settle for anything less?
I was reminded of this yet again in reading people's reflections on David Bowie's death. One in particular caught my attention as it captured the spirit of narrative coaching as a process that helps people get to and act on the crux of the matter. Read it and ask yourself, "Where can I be more courageously compassionate today?"
Dr David Drake is the founder of the field of Narrative Coaching.