She said – “You teach the world about parenting, what about you?” and I was as much aghast as shocked and angry. My first response (in my mind) was – “Don’t teach me what to do and how to do it”. Good that I walked out of the room without letting out an emotional outburst.
As emotions settled down, I started realizing what happened. As they say, a doctor doesn’t operate on his relative, so maybe what we teach others doesn’t apply in our own family. On dwelling further, I realized, it is not a comment on my capability as a coach. It’s just that when dealing with her, I am no longer a coach or at the least – she doesn’t see me as a coach. So no matter how hard we try to look at each other in that role, it is the father-daughter relationship that takes over.
In fact, I realized, it is for this very reason that we all need a coach.
How often has it happened with us that when an outsider explains and tells us to do something – we happily do it – only to be curtly told by our spouse or family member – “when I told, you didn’t accept, when an outsider told you, you accepted it”. Similarly, employees may not appreciate and implement what the boss says but willingly accept any change when an outside “expert” or “coach” suggests the same thing.
A coach helps one overcome this blind spot or bias. When an insider suggests something, it is perceived to be based on past baggage in our relationship. Also, emotions over-power the unbiased and unprejudiced thought process that one has when dealing with outsiders. A third person perspective is rid of any past experiences and devoid of any judgment on part of the coach. And this makes the coaching process true to its meaning.
As I always suggest, you don’t really need a coach to give you all the answers, you only need one to help you unravel answers that you already have. A coach can help you objectively evaluate your options and not let your decisions get clouded by your emotions.
So even if my daughter is unwilling to consider me as a coach, I realize it does not have any bearing on what kind of a coach I am to the rest.
If you are looking for advice, the best place is to look inwards (within yourself) and the next best place is to look outside (your inner circle) – so that you get an unbiased perspective and you are at ease to evaluate and implement that perspective
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