Lessons from the Certifiers

by Nina East, IAC-CC

Mastery #7 – Helping the Client Set and Keep Clear Intentions

Last month we talked about Mastery #6, Clarifying. Regardless of their training or coaching specialty, coaches agree that clarifying is essential. Equally agreed upon is Mastery #7, Helping the Client Set and Keep Clear Intentions.

No matter what type of coaching you offer, helping the client stay focused on goals, feel capable, and be inspired toward next steps or experiences are all intended outcomes of your work. The content or focus area of the intentions may differ, but the need for them will not. For example, business, career and executive coaching may tend to focus on achievement, accomplishment, specific tasks or measurable outcomes, while spiritual and life coaching may focus on awareness and experiences, with outcomes that are less tangible or measurable. Either way, all of these are goals you help the client set and keep.

When helping the client set and keep clear intentions, the role of the coach is not to set the goals for the client, or even to determine what would constitute success or progress. Instead, the role of the coach is to help the client clarify the direction of progress and remain mindful of what is most important.

We’ve all had clients who take a lot of action but don’t really get anywhere. (We may even do that ourselves, at times!) Just because they are busy does not mean they are moving in the direction of their goals. In fact, a common avoidance strategy is to stay really busy so they don’t have to face the difficult actions or scary issues associated with the intended goals. Often the client is not aware that they are using an avoidance strategy. Therefore, a key distinction in this mastery is recognizing the difference between progress and movement, and helping the client recognize this distinction for themselves.

Members, continue reading here.

To join the IAC, click here.


Nina East is the IAC®’s Lead Certifier and the founder of www.PersonalGrowthPrincess.com, a site for business owners and professional women who are enthusiastic about personal growth. As a coach, she helps personal growth professionals turn creative edge thinking into practical tools and resources, and helps coaches master the art of coaching.  


Please send your questions on the IAC Coaching Masteries® and the certification process to certification@certifiedcoach.org.

Scroll to Top

IAC Login