One of the reasons why I find coaching so powerful is because it assists us in diving deeper into our own awarenesses, making us more conscious about our actions (which in turn affects how we relate to the world around us and determines the quality of our life experience).
Did you know that you can use simple coaching tools on a daily basis to improve your self-awareness?
First … Let’s talk about the react-respond gap.
Have you had the experience when something in your experience sets off a reaction in you (or triggers you), and you find yourself putting forth a reaction that you know isn’t your best (of course, you find this out when you’ve calmed down and think about how you could’ve responded better — if only you had the awareness and time to think about it)!
Instead of responding elegantly, we find that we succumb to reacting and giving out a reflex response.
What can we do to respond more elegantly, instead of reacting to circumstances around us?
I have found implementing coaching tools in my life to be immensely transformative in lengthening my react-respond gap.
The knee-jerk responses that I used to have to people and situations (that ultimately eventuate into lose-lose scenarios) have considerably lessened, with most challenging situations now posing as huge growth and intimacy opportunities to bring me closer in my relationships with others, myself, and Life.
Six Tips to Enhance Your Self-Awareness
1. When something around you acts as a trigger, commit to taking a step back and having your own process — instead of feeling the need to react immediately.
Take as much time as you need to process what’s happening before responding.
This is an empowering (and self-loving) gesture as you are now choosing to respond consciously and deliberately, instead of reacting from a reflex of disempowerment/pressure.
2. Ask yourself WHY.
Why are you being triggered?
Why are you feeling (upset/disappointed/disconnected/etc.)?
When we start looking closely at what is triggering us and name it, we gain more perspective and understanding on ourselves.
3. What is it really about?
I often find that what we initially think we are upset about isn’t what we’re really upset about!
Using this simple process of asking ‘okay, what is it that I’m actually upset about?’ helps us distill to the real issue — which we can then address instead of continually addressing a myriad of different ‘surface’ issues without getting down to the core of the trigger.
(For example, you might feel upset with your partner for not doing the dishes at the time he said he would … but upon further reflection realize you are actually upset with feeling unsupported at home with seemingly overwhelming tasks.)
Knowing that means you can now open up a conversation on what the core issue is to create real transformation and healing, instead of recreating scenarios that trigger you.
4. Put the focus on yourself and ask yourself ‘What do I require to shift this right now?’
When we are in a triggered state, it seems easier to start placing the focus outside ourselves. Instead of focusing on what we require to be happier, we start worrying about what others will think and what they would want.
By asking yourself what YOU require you put the focus back on yourself to find the solution.
Perhaps you require to distance yourself physically from the issue for some time, perhaps you require to open up an honest conversation, perhaps you require to adopt a different mindset and see things in a different light … whatever it is you require, only you can tap into it by allowing yourself the time and space to do so.
5. Have a mindset that your response is perfect, no matter how you choose to respond.
The WIN is in your ability to respond instead of react, and when you have done that and honoured your own process of choosing a CONSCIOUS response — you’ve won.
Let that be your measure of success!
6. “I am not here to be right — I am here to be happy“.
I also carry this reminder in the back of my mind everywhere I go, to remind myself that my goal above all is to be happy and it is safe for me to let go of the need to be ‘right’.
I have found these simple coaching tools to be immensely helpful on a daily basis in improving my connection with myself and others.
Try them out and let me know how you go!