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When I was the Worst Coach in the World

I met with a colleague a few weeks ago, and he told me "you are simultaneously the worst and the best coach in the world".

Why would he say this? Well, I had taken a referral from him several months ago and was discussing the outcome.

This referral was a client who felt quite lost and demoralized, even somewhat depressed.

As my custom, I had him do a no-cost intro session as our first session. I asked a fairly typical coaching question:

"If there was no risk of failure, where would you want to be in one year?"

At first, this was a novel concept for the client, but we worked at it and emphasized the inevitability of this dream. We created a world in which this was no doubt that this client would achieve his goal, the only unknown was exactly which path he would take to do so.

Self-doubt and questioning did not exist in our world. The client truly shifted to a new belief about himself and his capabilities. It was a privilege to see his transformation.

The session ended, and the client went on his way. Several weeks passed and I did not hear from him until one week I saw his name pop up in my calendar.

On the day of our meeting, I signed onto Zoom per usual and waited for the client. Moments later an upbeat and cheerful man started speaking to me. He began regaling me with all his recent accomplishments.

I was confused, where was my discouraged client struggling with setting goals? I went to my scheduling client to make sure I had the correct client. But there he was, I hadn't mistaken him for someone else, he had simply changed this much in just a few weeks.

During this second session, we essentially just spoke about all the things he had accomplished and his new sense of self-efficacy and optimism. It felt like he only booked this second session to tell me how well he was doing.

That was the last time I heard from him, making me in a way the best and worst coach in the world. The 'best' because we were able to accomplish such transformation in just one session, and the worst because this is a poor business model for any business.

I wanted to share this story with you today as a way to showcase that the difficult part of change is believing. Believing that it will be a success, believing in ourselves. Once you can believe in yourself, anything is possible - even a one-hour transformation.

Of course, believing in yourself is often easier when you have someone to believe in you first. This is my honor and my privilege for so many, to believe in them first, to be the kindling for the fire of belief. The fire that is required for setting and accomplishing the big goals. The ones that many people avoid because of fear and doubt.

So what would you do if you knew 100% that there is a guarantee of success?

Photo by Felipe Cespedes from Pexels