Sometimes, when coaching, a client is reacting to circumstances instead of planning intentionally. As a coach, part of the process expertise learned in coaching certification is shifting the client focus to being proactive.
The reasons for being proactive seem obvious: if someone is reactive they are giving up control and if they are proactive at a minimum they can influence outcomes. Being proactive means making choices. Proactive people think ahead and plan their actions. Proactivity is forward focused and that is the intention of coaching.
The way a coach creates a shift to being proactive is through the questions. Here are a few to start with:
- What is possible for you to do?
- What is within your control?
- How can you influence that?
- What steps can you take?
- How do you want to advance?
- What level of input do you have?
- What level of influence do you want to create?
- How can you increase your possibilities?
- What options do you have?
Being reactive means waiting for someone else or waiting for something else. Being proactive means initiating action. While there are circumstances with multiple limitations, a proactive approach means focusing on what is possible, creating strategies, and being specific with action steps. Sounds like coaching!