I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free
I recently listened to Dewitt Jones talk about his life as a National Geographic photographer in the 2017 TED talk.
He said that every time Geographic sent him on an assignment, his charter was its vision: Celebrate what’s right with the world.
I had an epiphany. The epiphany answered a question I and many other coaches ask ourselves from time to time. Why are we doing what we are going? It is surely for money and status as a profession. However, is that all we coach for?
Marianne Williamson asks
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness
That most frightens us.
We ask ourselves
Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.
As coaches, not only do we need to believe we are children of God, but we also need to ensure that those who come to us go away feeling comforted that they too are children of God.
The inadequacy we feel along with our clients stems from our own false limiting belief that we are imposters. The fear is that we have the potentiality to be something far more and that the possibilities are limitless. Our limiting actuality doesn’t allow us to see these possibilities. In the process, we play safe and shrink ourselves, and in turn, shrink those we serve.
On a descending scale of losing a loved one or fear of losing oneself ranks highest. Many others come way down, based on invalidation and inadequacy that Williamson refers to. However traumatic inadequacy may be based on what one has experienced, and however horrible the experience of losing a loved one is, especially as a mother, how can we shine in the light that we rightfully own? Can we permit our shining so that others can shine too, even ones we lose?
The light we often are reluctant to acknowledge is that we are inexhaustible, infinite, immortal energy despite the decaying temporary sheath of the body-mind we are wrapped in. All we can see, identify with, and be comfortable in is this darkness of matter we are encased in. The light we are afraid of is the unbearable lightless of our energy being.
Dewitt Jones talked of the little kid in British Columbia who changed his world for him when he asked, ‘does your camera have juice?’ as he struggled with bad weather. Let me ask, ‘Does your body-mind have energy?’
All you need is a glimpse. The light then stays forever.
As coaches, we are all aware of awareness. We all realize the importance of self and social awareness. Are we aware that we are energy beings, and not matter beings? When you understand you are an energy being and experience it at least once, then you can really be a coach. You’ll then understand why you are a coach.
The Sanskrit word guru, which can expand to mean a coach, is interpreted as a wise one who leads another from darkness to light. Today most of these gurus are in darkness themselves afraid of the light and pretending to be wise, as many coaches are. A guru or a coach must live in the light and life that light vulnerably, not knowing, in order to inspire others to relinquish their dark spaces. The guru and coach must shine.
If all we seek is wealth and power, recognition and status, knowledge and ego, we are deep in our darkness. When we shed these seeking the light of serving others to move from darkness to light, hopefully, we may see the light ourselves and truly be coaches.
This is my journey, and this is why I am a coach.