|From the Editor|
As a graduate student studying writing, my “to-read” list is constantly expanding. While I love to read, the list can seem insurmountable at times. Yet, as life continues to be a whirlwind, I find myself more and more appreciative of the opportunity to read these incredible insights from our contributing authors here at the VOICE. Integrating these new perspectives into my monthly “to-read” list has been a wonderful way to stay balanced and appreciative of the world around me.
This month, our authors pursue many avenues, from the creative vs. non-creative, finding inspiration in our current society, our cultural identities, etc. I hope these articles provide as much support to you as they did for me! Be sure to take note of the exciting changes at the IAC and stay tuned for more updates as these changes flourish.
As always, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org with comments, questions, event notices, or article contributions. We are always looking for unique perspectives and look forward to hearing from you.
Beth Ann Miller is currently pursuing an MFA in Writing and is a native New Englander. She has a professional background in editing and higher education, and enjoys working with youths in the arts. Her stories have appeared in online and print journals and she is perpetually at work on new creative projects.
From the President – Vicki Zanini
Mastery #8, Inviting Possibility – Martha Pasternack
Coaching the Uncreative – John Brooker
Mastery #5 Infographic – Natalie Tucker Miller
Inside the IAC Licensing Committee – Charlie Boyer
Intercultural Corner, Perceptions and Cultural Identity – Jan O’Brien
Open Chat Calls
From the President
“Behold, my friends, the spring is come; the earth has gladly received the embraces of the sun, and we shall soon see the results of their love!” – Sitting Bull
In my part of the world we officially welcome the spring season this month, a time when new growth and new life emerges. The IAC Coaching Mastery #8 immediately comes to mind: Inviting Possibility – Creating an environment that allows ideas, options and opportunities to emerge.
This month I am delighted to welcome a new member to the IAC Board of Governors, Marissa Afton. She joins us from Colorado, and brings a wealth of knowledge and experience with her. Get to know her by visiting our website at www.certifiedcoach.org. We still have several volunteer opportunities available and whether you are new to the IAC or you’ve been a member since the beginning, we invite you to consider submitting your application and “inviting possibility”. Contact a board member for more information.
We also invite possibility by engaging with the IAC community on Facebook and LinkedIn. Our online communities are another environment that allows ideas, options and opportunities to emerge. Your ideas and suggestions matter, so if you have something to share, I would love to hear from you. And check the events section of the VOICE for the dates and times of our upcoming monthly Memberchat calls with Natalie Tucker Miller. If you have questions, she has answers or knows where to find them.
In the coming months you may notice some changes to the website. We are working to improve the responsiveness, making it easier for you to access it from your mobile devices. We’ll also give it a bit of a “spring makeover”. We will keep you informed as we move forward, but don’t expect any major disruptions.
One of the things I love most about my position at the IAC is the opportunity to connect with our members and volunteers. It is inspiring to be a part of an organization that, as stated on our website and demonstrated every day, “envisions a world where coaching professionals commit to continuously learning, growing, collaborating and holding themselves accountable; coaching recipients are inspired to achieve their desired outcomes; and the world benefits in many surprising, life-giving ways.” Yes, my friends, the spring has come.
Vicki Zanini is founder of Vicki Zanini Coaching & Training. As a certified holistic life coach, she works with individuals and groups who are ready to create new possibilities, boost personal effectiveness, and experience a deeper sense of meaning and inner peace. She has been leading coaching groups and workshops for over 15 years in personal development, self-care, creativity, and intuition. Visit her website at www.vickizanini.com.
IAC Mastery #8
Those are powerful words. Each one can be explored and poetically expounded upon. I shall resist, even if it proves to be futile.
I don’t need to remind anyone who is remotely engaged in today’s current world events that we live in a turbulent time in history. For many of us these are times of crisis, loss, grief, fear and stress beyond imagination. For others, it is just more of the same: hunger, poverty, illness, and lack. And still for others, it is a time of pride, hope, creativity, and possibility.
The challenges we face today are unprecedented in recent history.
How can a person make sense of the rapid changes affecting us all, negative and positive? Where do we go for help and support?
Why Life Coaching?
I have recently been told that thousands of people search “life coaching” every day. I imagine that this number changes with the challenges people face; and by the way, these challenges change every day as well.
Life coaching is a collaborative relationship in which the client develops a personal or professional intention with the support of the coach. Together they determine steps to support that intention with goals and action steps focused on that intention. This strategy has proven powerfully effective in facilitating positive change and transition in a person’s life. It invites possibility.
One approach to life coaching is to travel around the “circle of life”, the name I have given to my personal life coaching business. These are the steps and stages on this journey: This is a way to invite possibility for our clients.
With a life coach a client will gain insight, gather tools and learn skills to continue the journey around the circle of life with beauty, dignity and grace.
Because we are not only teetering on economic depression (setback, readjustment, re purposing, call it whatever you like), we now seem to have social, environmental, spiritual, and health challenges that the earth’s people have never faced.
We are “peaking out” on resources, patience, reasons to fight, purity, kindness, good grammar, neat handwriting and graciousness.
Too many of our children are wayward; too many of our elders are sad and defensive. There is too much abuse, too much neglect, too much fear and not enough calm.
Too many marriages are unsound; too many rhythms interrupted; too many seasons and cycles rushed. Too many of our neighbors are unknown to us; too much of our food is grown too far away.
Too many cultural and spiritual practices are obscure or extinct. There are too many droughts, too much rain, not enough jobs and too many dropouts. We live with extremes and often feel disconnected.
This is our life right now. It is our crisis, if you choose to see it that way. It is also our opportunity if you choose to see it that way. This is our opportunity to center ourselves on the circle of life; to be peaceful, kind, creative, resourceful and willing to be in relationship with our earth and our universe rather than at odds.
To risk making a broad generalization, it seems to me that everywhere I turn someone else is being called to change the way they thought life should be. We are all being called to ask for help, dust off our dreams, help someone else, and see with new eyes.
We are asked to be bold, brave and beautiful. We are asked to recommit to love, kindness, honesty and peace. It is time to make a choice: ask yourself, “Will I choose to see crisis or opportunity?” Either way you choose, the stream of life flows towards healing, making healing always possible. It is time to heal ourselves, our families, our communities. It is time to heal the beauty between us.
What is one way you can reconnect to your dream right now?
Because now is the time. Invite possibility. It really is that simple.
Martha Pasternack, MMC www.CircleofLifeCoach.com
Coaching: Coaching the Uncreative
Recently a coach asked me, “As someone who facilitates teams to innovate, how would you coach someone who thinks they are not creative, to be more creative?” Here are my thoughts.
Everyone can be creative
Everyone can be creative; we just have different ways of approaching it. Dr. M.J. Kirton, creator of the Kirton Adapter Innovator (KAI)1 style profile says2:
“Those who are adaptive in style are characterised by precision, reliability, efficiency; seen as methodical, prudent, disciplined. Those more innovative in style are seen as thinking tangentially, approaching tasks from unsuspected angles; undisciplined, unpredictable.”
So, it is likely that clients who consider themselves “uncreative” have a more adaptive style. However, as Kirton explains, “One must remember that adaptors and innovators can have equal capacity, insight and creativity.”
Four issues that inhibit creativity
Having reassured them they can be creative, address four issues that may be inhibiting their creative ability. They:
They view creativity as idea generation not a whole process
Research (e.g. by Parnes Osborne3, Basadur4) shows that creativity is a complete process. While models vary slightly, they all agree that there is a beginning, middle and end, e.g. stages such as Find opportunity, Explore opportunity, Generate ideas, Create a solution, Plan and Implement the solution.
People who think they are uncreative often think this because:
I reassure the “uncreatives” they can use their strengths at other points in the process and explain that there are tools they can use to help them generate ideas.
They judge too quickly
At each stage in the creative process there are steps to diverge and converge thinking. Divergent thinking encourages people to explore. It is important that people do not judge either their own ideas or the ideas of others during this step as it inhibits divergent thinking. Those with an adaptive style often have quick and good judgement; a strength, but not when diverging. Therefore, advise them to defer judgement until the time to converge thinking.
They create mental boundaries
People often create boundaries or “walls” to their thinking, “boxing themselves in”. They:
How can they move these walls, make the box bigger (rather than think outside it!) and encourage divergent thinking? Coach them to:
They use inappropriate tools (or have inappropriate tools used with them)
Creative thinking is a skill you can learn by using the appropriate tools. Some of these tools are intuitive (e.g. finger painting and guided imagery) and some logical. Kirton describes some of the characteristics of adaptive people as “methodical, prudent, and disciplined.” Therefore, when working with adaptive people use more logical tools. This tool is very useful for logical thinkers to create ideas:
This multi step approach to generate ideas uses what we know about the opportunity as a springboard to create new ideas. It has six parts:
You can find full details here: http://www.yesand.eu/how-might/. You can find other examples here: http://www.yesand.eu/learn-from-us/creative-tools/.
To sum up
To coach people who consider themselves uncreative, encourage them to:
John Brooker is a former Senior Vice President of Visa.
Do you have a question that you’d like to ask the certifiers? Submit your questions here: http://certifiedcoachblog.typepad.com/blog/ask-the-certifiers.html.
Please send your questions on the IAC Coaching Masteries® and the certification process to email@example.com.
Licensing Committee Corner
Last month, we called your attention to the new licensure requirement, beginning January 2015, that ALL licensees must have at least one coach who is IAC Certified at the Masteries Practitioner (MP) level or higher. New licensing information is being sent to all applicants and current licensees to keep everyone informed and up to date.
The Committee reviewed and approved four applications for licensure this past month. Thanks especially to Pepe Del Rio for his translating skills, as several of the applications were submitted in Spanish. Thanks, also, to Natalie Tucker Miller for joining us for a lively half-hour discussion session!
The language issue is an important one for us as an international association. This affects licensure as well as certification and is an issue that we encourage the Board of Governors to continue to study and resolve.
We plan to continue our efforts to review the licensure purposes and refine the application procedures. We are most appreciative of the IAC Certifiers, who provide opportunities for licensees to learn more about the IAC and the Masteries.
Your questions and comments are most welcome. For further information about IAC licensure, contact the Licensing Committee at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Recently, while waiting for a flight at London Heathrow airport, I overheard a group of young professionals having a discussion about culture and identity. One woman, I’ll call her “Sue”, was expressing her frustration about how some people make assumptions about her nationality. Sue is of Korean descent. Her mother is originally from South Korea and Sue was born in the US and she grew up in South Carolina. She identifies culturally as a US American and I also heard her saying that she has difficulty relating to her mother’s South Korean origins because she, personally, has no experience of it. There is obviously much more to Sue’s situation and sense of identity than what was expressed in the airport lounge, but her frustration is not uncommon.
As mentioned in my February article, culture is learned and nurtured. In his book, “Perception and Identity in Intercultural Communication”, Marshall Singer writes “Learning who we are and how we do things and how we see the world occurs in much the same manner as learning our first language. We just hear words over and over again, and gradually – very gradually – we come to identify those words with particular meanings. In the same way we also learn the attitudes, values and belief systems our parents and other group elders teach us.”
Our learned identity influences the “lenses” or filters through which we view the world and how we perceive others. Developing cultural self-awareness helps us to avoid stereotyping and making assumptions and this in turn can serve as a valuable step towards connecting effectively and productively with our clients.
We would love to have your input so do please join us for a discussion on the IAC LinkedIn group!
Jan O’Brien IAC-MCC www.culture-conscious.com
Join the IAC Open Chat in March to share your thoughts, ask your questions and get to know more about the IAC. This month, bring your ideas for the future of the Open Chat calls, so we can address the things that are important to YOU!
This call is open to everyone and anyone interested in expanding the path to coaching mastery.
Date: March 11th, 2014
New IAC Coaching Masteries® licensed schools and mentors
We’d love to get your feedback on any issue related to the IAC. Do you have any questions, concerns, encouragement or ideas for improvement regarding membership benefits, certification, the VOICE, the direction of the organization or anything else at all? Please send an email to email@example.com. Please help us improve.