Moving between independence and dependence
One way to look at meditation is to see how it teaches us to always come back to our anchor. Without such a dynamic, there would be no need to practice letting go of the distraction and coming back to the anchor.
It’s a dynamic that repeats itself in a multitude of situations, including coaching.
Whatever issue a coachee brings to a coaching session, it is connected with some form of anxiety or avoidance thereof. In his effort to support the client, the coach will seek to stay connected and tuned in to his client and his task. It is an effort that is necessary to do the work but it can lead to the coach succumbing to the client’s dilemma without noticing it.
It is the same dynamic as the one we experience in meditation.
Something becomes an attention magnet and pulls the person’s attention away from the task they’ve set themselves. To be able to come back to the task, they have to notice that something else gained their attention. Being pulled away from the task is letting go of one’s anchor, it is becoming dependent on whatever it is that is distracting. That object, thought, or feeling has gained power over that person’s presence.
The ability to move away from distraction is through regaining one’s independence. It requires one to reconnect with oneself as well as differentiate oneself again from the other. Much of the work to be done here is based on one’s ability to know and stand by one’s position. It is how independence is learned and established.
But, naturally, in a coaching situation, there is a need for both. For being attuned as well as self-differentiated. Allowing oneself to be dependent as well as to be independent.
Being subject to only one of both would harm the relationship between the coach and the coachee as the coachee would either not feel supported, or the coach would not be able to grasp the dilemma.
Knowing how to choose one’s dependence in the relationship is a sign of independence. It leads to the ability to find a balance between independence and dependence that eases one’s contribution to the relationship.
And as in meditation, a way to do this is to set oneself a goal or intention for the coaching session. It can be the client’s request or something the coach wants to work on during the session.