Coaching to Motivate Change Part 3 of 3

Add depth to the coaching techniques covered in the first two blog posts of this series with this post on applying neuro-linguistic programming concepts for effective motivation.

Because each person is their own best expert, they follow their own thinking and decisions. The way a coaching client focuses on goals and the words they use to think or communicate the goals influences their outcome. Often clients are unaware of how the words used make a difference in their thinking. For example, the word ‘try’ means that it is okay if it does not happen; it limits success.

In neuro-linguistic programming, meta programs describe focus. One of the meta programs compares moving away from thinking to moving toward thinking. For example, if a client wants to change their stress level, moving away language is, “I don’t want to be stressed.” The brain focuses on the word ‘stressed.’ The coach asks the client, “What do you want to be?” The client might say, “I want to be relaxed.” This creates a focus on being relaxed.

If the reason for a client changing is external pressure, a client is less likely to succeed. Applying the neuro-linguistic programming techniques, a coach considers the meta program on motivation: internal versus external. The coach asks the client what it means to them personally to make the change. With the questions, a client explores their internal motivation. The coach motivates the client to make the change by empowering the client to identify their own reasons.

Both neuro-linguistic programming and Stephen Covey promote being proactive. A coach works with the client to proactively plan action steps that move the client toward the change.

Throughout the coaching sessions, the coach incorporates positive language in the conversation. This is intentional – being positive motivates.

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