Center for Coaching Certification

Setting Smart Goals to Create Change

by Beth Donovan –  www.CoachBeth.usBeth Donovan

A SMART Goal is:

Specific, Measurable, Actionable, Relevant, and Time-bound

Smart goals create change by providing clarity, direction, a measurement of success for efforts, and motivation.

In creating a SMART GOAL, being specific means that you have decided on what change you want to create.  Be as specific as possible and keep it simple so that you can call it to mind quickly. For example: I will drink 2 quarts of water daily.

Measurable means to set up a way of measuring success.  For example, I will drink 8 glasses of water per day.  Track progress towards goal success in a journal or app.

Actionable is vital.  We all want success, so setting ourselves up for it does benefit us.  Making the goal actionable is akin to making it a no-brainer.  It’s something you’re sure you can take action toward.  The idea is set a challenge that you feel confident facing.  Example: I will drink 8 glasses of water per day by setting my water bottle in front of me every hour.

Relevant is knowing it matters to you and the reasons.  Relevant is knowing that the goal makes sense.  Example: I will drink 8 glasses of water per day by setting my filled water bottle in front of me every hour because drinking water helps me feel good, have energy, and be healthy.

Timely is giving yourself a specific timeline for action and specific time to achieve your desired end-result.  Example: I will drink 8 glasses of water per day by setting my water bottle in filled front of me every hour for one month so I develop a new habit.

There is a definite progression in a SMART GOAL.  Creating one is as simple as writing SMART and filling in the blanks. This is a “Baby Steps” approach, really.  As we succeed at each SMART goal, we believe in ourselves more.  Success begets success.


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The Importance of Letters: Why a Coaching Certification Matters

By Diana Fritts The Importance of Letters: Why a Coaching Certification Matters

Obtaining a certification is valuable in any profession, and coaching is no different. In such a rapidly growing industry, showing your commitment to your career through further training and certification is crucial to remain competitive. For example, consider Maryville University’s report that there is a growing demand for training specialists who can help bring about organizational change, whether it’s for personal development or technological innovation. Whichever profession you choose, training makes sense.

There are plenty of benefits that a coaching certification can bring and understanding the impact of getting a coaching certification will help one determine whether to get one or not. Read on to discover why getting a certification is important.

It’s a stamp of excellence and self-accomplishment

A study from researchers at Umeå University note that certification makes one feel and look good. In other words, certification provides a way to challenge one’s capabilities, provide self-actualization, and a sense of worth as it signals the competence of the owner. Whether you get an Associate Certified Coach (ACC), Professional Certified Coach (PCC), or Master Certified Coach (MCC) all will signify that you’ve gone through a specific number of hours of coach-specific training from an International Coaching Federation-accredited program.

It can keep you ahead of the game

The best thing about getting a coaching certification is that it keeps you ahead of competitors. Compared to other coaches without certification, you will look more credible to a client. Not to mention, writers from HuffPost note that holding an industry-recognized certification, such as an ICF Certification, can help you grow your skills, knowledge, and proficiency — even if you’ve been in the industry for years.

Corporations and clients prefer it

Certifications don’t just help a coach, they help a company too. Aside from helping the coach advance within a company, it can also help employers evaluate potential new hires and employees, analyze job performance, and even motivate employees to enhance their skills and knowledge. Not to mention, companies may trust an individual more if they have submitted to a combination of accredited training, coaching hours, and assessment and compliance for standards of practice.

It demonstrates a level of commitment to clients

Within coaching certification training, one will go through all kinds of courses and learn new things — one of which is coaching competencies. Cathy Liska notes that learning these competencies, aside from the myriad of other things you will learn, will demonstrate both self-respect and respect for your clients. This is because you will respect yourself by giving yourself opportunities to learn new things, and respect to your clients by demonstrating that you want to give them a higher quality of service.

At the end of the day, whether you get an AAC, PCC, MCC, or no credentials at all, it’s all up to you. While holding an ICF credential does not reflect all the skills you may have, it does reflect a tangible level of commitment that will help demonstrate how you can provide the best quality of professional care for your clients.


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Creating Change with a Positivity Journal

by Beth Donovan – www.CoachBeth.usBeth Donovan

I keep a record of positive things that I see, do, hear, think, and discover.  I call this my Positivity Journal.  I make it a daily goal to write 3 positive things about myself and my day in it each evening.

A Positivity Journal gives you a spectacular record of your success and insight to what you are doing to succeed at creating change.

Keeping things very positive is crucial.  Use positive, proactive words (for example those on the positive word list from coach training).  Poisonous words like don’t, didn’t, try, maybe, etc. are self- defeating.  You are looking for a record of positive successes.

The great thing about a Positivity Journal is that you can look back at how you were succeeding to move past bumps in the road.  You have a road map to your own success.

It also puts your brain on POSITIVE!  Positive thoughts and language help create change in and of themselves because they can rewrite the neuro pathways in the brain.  Once this starts taking place, change starts becoming easier.  The more positive thoughts you can think, the more your brain neuroscience will change.  This is helpful in overcoming a stubborn habit.

Building a new habit is like any building.  Building requires the addition of materials.  Adding positive things and thoughts to life is building.

Removing is a negative.  Consider when people destroy something.  They remove materials and leave a hole where the materials used to be.  Habits are easy to pick back up where there is a hole.

By building and creating positive change, the hole gets filled.  It is much easier to stick to new changes and succeed.


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Helping Your Client Create Motivation

by Beth Donovan –  www.CoachBeth.usBeth Donovan

Coaching clients often want inspiration and motivation.  Tap into their inner expertise and bring out their brilliant nature.  They know what they want.

Help them remember WHY they want it.  A WHY is a strong motivator.  It is the very reason that they created their goal in the first place.  Perhaps your client wants to release weight, for example.  The WHY might be because their knees hurt or they miss out on playing with their children like they want to, or it may be because they want to feel good in their clothes and have more energy.

Asking questions to provoke the WHY and building their self-affirmation can truly support them to see the possibilities for the future when motivation wanes.

An affirmation story is one tool that a coach can co-create with the client in very positive, flowing language.  It helps the client envision and create their desired future when recorded in the client’s voice and listened consistently.

Recognize accomplishments and reward them along the way.  Motivation is built in a positive and proactive way using rewards.  Ask the client how they recognize and reward themselves.

Simply having a coach for accountability check-ins and brainstorming is motivation.  People will perform well just to share progress and success with their coach.  Coaches can also brainstorm with clients to create extra motivation when their clients run out of ideas.

Coaching is ideal for garnering motivation because it deals with exploring where a client is, where they want to go, and supporting them creating an action plan to get there.  Along the way, motivation is a natural occurrence in coaching.  It is simply part of the conversation of how to get from here to there.


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When Abracadabra Doesn’t Work…..Try WOOP to Engage Positive Change

By Christie Carney Christie Carney

Recently, a client reached out with urgency to push beyond her weight loss challenge.  Her hope was to quickly hone in on her blocks and move forward.  Perfect, I’ll just use my magic wand that I received for Christmas with a one-and-done wave and a catchy spell.

Just kidding of course.  If only we could make sustainable change with such expedience and finesse.  Back to reality, this client has a big life and I wanted to consider her sense of urgency and how to partner with her for tapping into navigating her goals.  Then, I remembered an article I read that referred to a tool called WOOP.  That’s right, WOOP!

WOOP stands for Wish, Outcome, Obstacle, Plan.

Renowned researcher and author of Rethinking Positive Thinking, Gabriele Oettingen, describes how to use positive thinking to envision the desired goal and raise your motivation to attain that vision with WOOP.

WOOP aligns perfectly with coaching.  Here’s how the process rolled out with my client Desiree who desired to lose 20 pounds by her 30th wedding anniversary party on New Year’s Eve.

I asked what her WISH was and to positively visualize herself on New Year’s Eve – how she looked, how she felt, and to engage all 5 senses in her imagery.  Additionally, I asked her to envision how she achieved her goal.

Next, I asked her desired OUTCOME for this goal and what powerful emotions she associates with achieving the weight loss.

Then, I inquired, what might be the challenges to achieving the goal, and to identify the possible OBSTACLES.  This required deep exploration and honesty on her part.  We discussed how she will preempt herself when cravings, excuses, and distractions arise that divert her from her goals and actions.  This was a painful process.

After taking a hard look at the obstacles, I asked, how did she know she will still lose the weight?  Then, she visualized overcoming the challenges to achieve her desires and developed a PLAN, which included focusing on the response and action to obstacles.

The weight loss wasn’t quite like magic.  She did lose 18 pounds by December 31st, was the belle of the ball, and achieved her vision.  Woop, Woop!


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Today is the very best day

by Susanna Theo Theo

Each day I take a moment to recite this phrase aloud with 100% belief supporting every word. I have the freedom to set the tone of my day both for myself and for my students. This action is selected with conscious commitment. The path I choose to walk is paved with stepping stones constructed of positivity and success where all things are possible.  Positivity begins with me.

As I am vested in my own road, my students become part of this, too. Each day and every moment is a living example. My students are not just on lookers, they engage as part of the example. Co-creation. The students have the chance to hear, see, feel, and experience if only for a split second. Positivity is like a seed: once planted it grows and grows. Quickly, students see the simplicity of including this shift in their everyday life through their own efforts: attendance is solid, they become more engaged, and they see progress in rising test scores.  Daily I watch the transformation.

Positivity does begin with me, therefore, I am at the ready.  Today, a student walks into a session with body posture and face revealing the weight of worry and stress. Their eyes reflect their thoughts spinning around in their mind questioning things like: how can I balance work and school, or pass an upcoming test? In a split second, I say “Today is the very best day!” Instantly, tense muscles relax as their face lights with a smile.  Now, the focus is solely on achievements where their smallest dreams will become real.

Today, I say, “It IS the very best day!”


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Impact of Using Positivity

by Pete Liska Pete Liska

Positivity and being positive affects more in a person’s health, career, relationships, and life than most people realize.

Being positive helps your whole body.  Positivity increases your energy level and you are more relaxed.  Positivity benefits your health by reducing stress.

Confidence increases in those who are positive and maintain a positive outlook in the workplace.  Confidence, in turn, helps increase motivation.  Positivity also aids in decision making.  Being positive enhances self-respect and confidence.  Positivity and confidence work hand in hand to earn respect and build credibility.   Additionally, positivity and confidence will increase engagement and productivity.  This increases opportunities professionally.

For me, working with social media, I recognize the language in posts matters.  When posting on social media, positivity engages.  People are drawn to positive words and positive posts.  It helps people be happy or stay happy.

Focusing on positive thoughts, feelings, and language improves relationships too.  I learned in the Science of Positivity class that positivity opens the mind and heart.  It helps build confidence.  Positive language and thoughts change your feelings in a good way.  Being open, confident, and positive helps those around you feel better as well.

Positive people are respectful.  Respect is contagious!  Being positive and confident in yourself helps to connect and engage with others.  This enhances relationships.  People notice those who are positive and maintain a positive attitude.

Being positive supports a great attitude.  Additionally, maintaining a positive, glass half full attitude makes one more grateful.

Being positive and grateful helps all aspects of your life and benefits those around you too!

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Science of Positivity

by Vonetta Wade, CPC Vonetta Wade

Prior to taking the Science of Positivity course, I thought I already knew enough about positivity.  I’m a fairly positive person, and many people tell me I have positive energy.  I just wanted to learn ways to reinforce what I already knew.  I didn’t know I was in for a surprise.

The class brought meaning to what positivity really means, what it does, and why it’s so important.  I had never thought about these things before.  Positivity is a science.  There is tons of research and evidence surrounding the benefits of positivity.

Positivity is important to our mental health.   Having positive emotions is extremely important to living a fulfilled, confident, and successful life.  Research shows positivity increases energy, optimism, and creativity.  This supports the need for coaches to research, understand, and actively practice positivity, and support positivity in our clients for successfully reaching their goals.

Our brains naturally pay attention to the negative, so a large percentage of our thoughts are negative by default.  The good news is the mind can train the brain.  We have the ability to switch from being negatively reactive to being consciously proactive for operating and responding in positivity by choosing positive language and habits.

Below are a few takeaways:

  • Be aware. Oftentimes, we go about our day on autopilot, not being fully aware of the language we are speaking to ourselves and others.  Because negativity is the default, awareness is a huge first step in our ability to recognize and change it.
  • Once we are aware, we can consciously begin replacing negative language with positive language. For example, instead of thinking or saying, “I can’t” we can choose “I can”.
  • Positive language leads to positive feelings, which leads to positive actions. Again, changing your language can change your brain and can ultimately change your life.  This is powerful information for coaches and our clients.


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The Role of Influence in Your Coaching Practice

By Eric Bloom Influence with Eric Bloom

As an executive coach, the study of influence has multiple advantages for your business and for the person you are coaching.

From your perspective, the proper use of influence-based concepts and techniques can help you more effectively win coaching assignments, increase your coaching effectiveness, and enhance your professional reputation.

From the client/coachee’s perspective, sharing your knowledge of influence concepts and techniques with your clients can enhance their influence in the workplace. This in turn, can increase their current job performance, position them for promotion, and accelerate their upward mobility.

Two of these key influence concepts are “Influential Presence” and “Situational Influence.”

Influential Presence is your ability to influence others based on your stature, skills and personal attributes.  In my book, “Office Influence: Get What You Want from the Mailroom to the Boardroom”, I divide the components of influence in the workplace into five distinct categories:

  1. Personal Attributes – Internal: confidence, trustworthiness, loyalty, courage, vision
  2. Personal Attributes – External: follow-through, leading by example, friends and allies
  3. Professional Stature: job title, awards, accomplishments, professional experience
  4. Interpersonal Skills: emotional intelligence, active listening, public speaking
  5. Business Skills: teambuilding, mentoring, negotiation, goal setting

The combination of these five attribute categories determine your influential presence and how seriously you are taken by your coworkers and clients at all organizational levels.

Situational Influence provides insight into your ability to influence a specific person (or group) on a specific topic at a specific time, based on your relative level of knowledge and organizational/social power over/under person you are trying to influence.  Situational knowledge, as the name alludes, is the depth of your knowledge in the topic being discussed as compared to the topical knowledge of the person or group you are trying to influence. Situational Audience refers to your relative organizational power as compared to the person or group you are trying to influence.

In closing, by continually enhancing your Influential Presence through personal introspection, training, and experience, and keeping an ongoing eye on situational influence, you can enhance your coaching profession and help advance the careers of those receiving your thoughts and advice.


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About the Science of Positivity Class

by Juanita Bulloch Bulloch

Science of Positivity is a continuing education class offered by Center for Coaching Certification that I recently attended.  My experience is that there is a lot of information available on positivity mostly emphasizing word use and affirmations, both of which I use and find helpful.

To really get noticeable and sustainable effects, the science behind positivity must be acknowledged and applied in words, thoughts, and actions.  Seeing the science of positivity as a holistic approach supports/allows us to be whole, in integrity, not living as a Pollyanna, instead as someone who acknowledges the dark days and challenges AND uses science of positivity tools to move to a higher frequency more easily.

It really is about changing our habits, our default programing or subconscious behaviors.  To change a habit requires conscious choices for words, thoughts, and actions, using conscious mind until our new way of being becomes our subconscious or default program.

The biggest awareness for me is that what ever I desire to change has to become a part of my physical body and its actions, be that chemical or movement.  What comes first, I don’t know.  Is it the smile on my face that triggers different words to come out of my mouth that causes me see the world as beautiful that then inspires me to take action to become healthier and engage with other like-minded positive humans or the converse of that scenario?  I do know the process is not linear.  Science now gives us technology to measure and track our responses and positivity levels.  What’s that saying in business?  What gets measured gets done!


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