Sunday, December 06, 2009

The Story Worth Telling

The story worth telling is the one that strikes closest to the heart of the matter. When I first started teaching and broke my model of coaching into proficiencies, ways of being and logistics, the participants got a great deal out of the class but it wasn’t personal. It didn’t sink in as deeply as I wanted it to. And then I started using examples to illustrate the various bits and pieces of the proficiencies and uniqueness of the Shadow Coaching™ model. That still wasn’t enough.

So one day I decided to watch myself in action as I shadowed. I was with a client I’d been working with on and off for almost a year and I was able to look at the intricacies of what I did. That’s when it hit me that the best way I brought forward increased awareness was when I used a story….a story that was personal, not generic, that would illustrate not only where my client was at the present time but where he could go if he made certain choices. We created his story in real time.

That’s when I decided to use a story to pattern my training around. Not only did the story bring context to our work in class, but gave a commonality to how we could build the model in real time as I took the participants through the life of a specific corporate client.

Stories, narratives, have a way of reaching beyond models, concepts, and ways of being to what’s real. Everyone can wrap their heads around something real. Not everyone has as easy a time taking concepts and making heads or tails of them.

Coaching via narrative is becoming more and more the norm. Any mode of teaching, mentoring and training can sink in so much deeper when applied and put into context via a story. It’s also the best way for someone to see inside of who we are…telling the stories of our lives, our past, moments in time that will always stay with us for one reason or another.

How many of you have taken the time to share the stories of your past with those special people in your life? These stories create a three dimensional image of who you are… more than a photograph or resumé…it’s you in the context of life. You and that image have traveled very far together to become who you are right now. Write these stories down…share them….let others get a glimpse.

It’s one of the reasons why I blog. I’m more that the Shadow that runs through the halls of an organization coaching clients. It’s a way for those who know me, heard of me or have never met me at all to see a bit deeper into who I am and why I have become what I’ve become.

Welcome. I’m happy to share with you.

…and wish you the best!
Donna Karlin

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