Comfort Zone? Does Coaching Really Have to Be Stressful?

(Note this post comes from a previous blog. The date of post is wrong plus possibly any references to other posts).

I like responding to those who comment on my blog… though I don’t aways write this much!

Dear Carmelina,

Thank you for coming out of your comfort zone by commenting on my blog post about my rough day. Sorry to hear you having a bad day. Luckily for me I did write that blog post a few days ago and I’m feeling better now.

You raise some really important issues in your comment and I thought I’d reply at length. In fact over 2 different blog posts!

First after revealing that you suffer from depression you say: “I would be very interested using a life coach but wonder if this is the best thing for me.”

Here’s my reply but it’s not a direct one. Instead my going to talk about a hidden “debate” in coaching, I’m sure you’ll see its relevance to your issue as we go long.

Most coaches all too easily say that it is vital to get out of comfort zone. For many they are reciting what they have been taught and it is orthodoxy.

I take the view that there are occasions where you definitely want to be in your comfort zone and occasions when you’d want to hang outside it to get some important changes in your life.
Let’s look at both sides of this debate….

Against the Comfort Zone

Well, I’m telling you now I have excellent coach and I suffer for it! Erika profoundly challenges me and since I often fall ill in order to avoid things I have an extra-ordinary bad sickness record since I hired her. I’m running a temperature right now. Have done for weeks. I’ve also been angry and depressed (she notes it always seems happen she challenges me to take up more of my power.)

In fact at one point I vomited for about 5 weeks (the medics called this Norovirus, but how did it take hold?), I couldn’t keep my supplements down and relapsed with hypomania.

However, by rattling me, I’m clearing issues faster than I would have done if I had just stayed inside my comfort zone. I’m more honest, more daring and reaching more people than I did at an equivalent stage in my previous businesses.

In fact someone hired me other day to tell them how I’d developed such a strong presence on the web. Previously I had tried for months to get someone to hire me to do that. This time it happened even while trying to promote something else!

Now not everyone could stand a coach like Erika. And (of course) it isn’t really the coach that’s really causing my problems it’s my old patterns of resistance to change.

Erika emphasises commitment because you need to be very committed to go through what I’ve been through and to face my patterns and tap them out. She uses her own EFT- based system called Holistic Belief Reprogramming (HBR).

Plenty of us cling to our dysfunctional patterns and they do us harm. The nutritionist Marilyn Glenville tells a story of a woman with pre-menstrual syndrome (PMS) who asked if Marilyn could put her on a diet that would allow her to keep her PMS because that was the only time she returned things to the shops!

With some people it only during depression that they get rest, take care of themselves, or (and this is my favorite) finally complain about something that has been bugging them.

In fact if you want to really break these patterns learn to get some rest, and complain earlier so some of depression attacks don’t happen then getting out of your comfort zone surrounding your current behavior

surrounding them could be a very a good diet. Then you tap away the stress or use Energetic NLP (ENLP) or whatever to clear away the issue. But you can’t really do this when your pattern is hidden away.

The pro-Comfort zone group

On the other side of the coin is a much smaller group of coaches but they also include one of the world’s best: Michael Neill, who is also on my list of people who have actually recovered from bipolar disorder.

Michael Neill has been a coach, friend, mentor and creative spark plug to celebrities, CEOs, and royalty. 20,000 people receive his weekly newsletter. He routinely doubles the income of his clients.

He takes a very different view: he loves relaxation, daily self-care and discourages huge attempts to change yourself. He encourages you to note the full extent of your resources not just your money or your qualifications but who do you know and who do they know?

Michael Neill points out that all sorts of people have achieved success. Changing to achieve success often doesn’t work and you much better finding ways to compensate for your “less good” parts while making the most of the things you find joyful and inspiring. Love creating new things but don’t like organizing them? Get a team behind you that’s good at that stuff. Exactly what Richard Branson did. He’s very successfully, loves his life and does very little (if anything) to try and “fix” himself.

Having watched him for years he often has some neat dodge or a belief in pain he challenges allowing his clients to stay in flow.

Michael Neill talks about being powered by inspiration.

He encourages focus on well being. He also recommends getting happy first and then going for success that than believing that success leads to happiness. He asks the question “What could God do on your day off?”

Another approach, Wealth Dynamics, is rich in comfort zone thinking, though it may not like to admit it. It’s a system for finding what you are good at and finding business partners to team up with that fit with you. You stay doing what you are good at rather than fixing yourself.

Bringing the two together

My picture of Erika’s view is incomplete she is herself very into relaxing and not pushing desperately towards success. She observes that many people do not really know the value of relaxation. One of her key themes is getting in touch with our intuition. Often to the point of not doing anything until your intuition is clear. She is also very clear that many complementary therapists have issues with money that are holding them back from making the difference they could be making in the world. They are continually being taken out of a situation where they could operate effectively by having to watch the money too tightly.

Michael Neill also says it’s fine to work on yourself. That it does have benefits but it is not a requirement for success.

My position is this. You might want to step out of your comfort zone and take risks to fulfill your life purpose (though try looking for easier ways first or at the same time). Do you have to learn internet marketing if you are great at public speaking and can hire a good web designer or web strategist?

If you are going to push yourself to bring up your old issues ready for clearing. You had better know that you can clear the result either on your own (which is risky) or with a really competent practitioner to help you. Erika is far more than competent – indeed excellent… very few (if any) are better than her. I wouldn’t be going through this process with someone I didn’t trust.

You must always have some comfort zone in your life. If you don’t know where your next meal is coming from or the bailiffs are at the door sort those things first before you do anything else!

Key point: The problem isn’t comfort it is complacency. Often our assumptions need challenging. Change those and our behavior automatically become for healthy.

With EFT you nearly always have to become aware of emotions/patterns before you clear them. That’s one of its weaknesses. Energetic NLP doesn’t have that requirement as it tends to speak directly to the unconscious mind. (Note: Energetic NLP is different from NLP. With NLP the practitioner will need to be aware of your pattern even if you aren’t.)

EFT is very good at clearing the day to day things that bug you that can produce significant improvement to your life as it is.

Could facing your issues outside your comfort zone help you address issues such as depression? Yes, if you have a coach/practitioner who can really help you clear your issues.

Could learning to look after yourself better, adjust the world to you and staying in your comfort zone help? Yes. You could then choose to work with a therapist more gently help you clear the underlying causes.

I know people say “No pain no gain” but that’s only if you believe it. Consider trying a bit of “no pain, no pain” instead. I’m temporarily taking a challenging path but that won’t be forever.

As a coach I seen too many people beat themselves up unnecessarily. In trying to improve themselves they’ve heaped more and more tasks on themselves and got nowhere.

As a coach with my clients I know what approach I most like: the comfort zone.

Thanks again for your comment.


Comments welcome below….

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