“We cannot teach people anything. We can only help them discover it within themselves” -Galileo Galilei
This is a primary thought I keep with me as a coach. It helps keep me in check and reminds me what my duty is as a coach, as a community member and as a leader.
Of primary importance is for me to work on myself and to constantly learn and discover. By doing this, I lead by example and make room for others to express their own style and learning discoveries. By having the mindset of not being able to teach anything, I can discern what is my own personal stuff and get it out of the way so I can clearly see the other person and listen to their experience. I am a much better coach when I can point out how I see windows, doors and/or opportunities versus telling another how to crawl, walk or bash through them.
Good coaches get results, respect, and awards—just ask the three managers recently inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. But what makes a coach or mentor good?
One school of thought says they should hold their mentees to specific performance benchmarks and help them reach those benchmarks by targeting their personal weaknesses.
But new research suggests a different tack—namely, to nurture a mentee’s strengths, aspirations for the future, and goals for personal growth. Indeed, studies suggest that this positive approach is more effective at helping people learn and change; for instance, it helps train business school students to be better managers, and it is more effective at getting patients to comply with doctors’ orders.
—The Neuroscience of Good Coaching By Marshall Moore | February 18, 2014
With the new research definition above, I think I am a good coach. Mostly because I am willing to learn all the time. I am willing to try new things, to see all different types of perspectives. I am willing to step aside so my boxers can exercise their strengths and increase their skill. I want to spend the rest of my life growing and becoming more of me. Becoming more of me allows my gym members and competitive boxers to become more of themselves. I am surrounded by an entire gym full of all types of boxers who take responsibility for their efforts, whether they succeed or temporarily hit the mat. I am surrounded by folks who are seeking to express their truest self and that is inspiring and invigorating!
We are headed into January preparing two competitive boxers for Golden Gloves and preparing countless Fitness and Recreational boxers for their metaphorical Golden Gloves. May we all, shadow box, burpee and punch our way together to every desire we have in and out of the ring!