Self-Care for the Coach
Originally published in Coaching for Transformation
Allow your work and your recreation to be one and the same… Serve others and cultivate yourself simultaneously… Understand that true growth comes from meeting and Solving the problems of life in a way that is Harmonizing to yourself and to others. —Lao Tzu
What are the ways we care for our mind, body and soul? How much meaning, inspiration and purpose do we want in our lives? How regularly do we exercise and take time for spiritual practices? How does diet support our optimal functioning?
Using a journal to reflect on our own self-care, we can ask:
How is our energy level? How are our spirits? What inspires us? How is our health? Do we want a change of viewpoint?
Life balance and living in ways that are deeply nourishing is part of walking our talk as coaches. Through the process of self-reflection, we can also access greater wisdom, creativity and happiness.
Instead of looking for a textbook definition of balance, we find our own pathway to satisfaction. What is the cost when we do not provide the self-care we need? Since we are always making choices, what is the choice we want to make regarding self-care? The most valuable resources we have as coaches are our health, energy, empathy and clarity of mind. Connecting with these resources allows us to use our coaching toolbox more creatively.
Self-care supports us professionally as well. People hire us mostly because of who we are, so the success of our business and our effectiveness as a coach depends upon self-care. We share universal needs, but each person has different priorities. While one person needs eight hours of sleep a night, another only needs six. If our inspiration and self-care are intact, we can work the right amount and fall more deeply in love with our work.
To look at the whole spectrum of values and how they manifest in our lives, use the life balance wheel, such as the one in Chapter 10, Strategy and Action.
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