The word “reflect” means to bend or “shine back” light rays or images, as in your reflection in a mirror. But reflection, as in shining a light on an experience, is one of the most meaningful ways of learning. We learn by thinking about, and talking about an experience. One of the best ways to reflect is to journal. Another, perhaps even more powerful way, is to be coached. A coach’s role is to evoke reflection, and to facilitate insight and clarity, so that there is intentional forward movement.

As a coach, I do several things that generate reflection. Firstly, I get you to think about what you want in your life in general and in the long term – what’s your vision for yourself? What’s working in your life and what isn’t? What makes you come alive? We do this through a “visioning” session near the start of our work together, when you feel ready. Out of that we draw up long-term goals, which may change as we progress, but we keep checking in on them.

Secondly, together we decide on a focus for each session; your needs will drive this. Sometimes this is obvious and you know exactly what you want to discuss, and sometimes our reflection on what feels important to discuss, and where you want the session to go, is a highly valuable exploration in itself.

Thirdly, as you reflect and explore, I may directly reflect back to you what you’ve said, maybe to pull it all together and help you see it differently. Sometimes hearing the most significant part of what you’ve said, in your words or in different words, is enough to spark new insight.

Fourthly, as a coach I always try to ask powerful questions, that will help you think about your experience in new ways. For example, “What story are you telling yourself about this? How true is this?” or “Can you think of an image or metaphor to describe how you feel?” Sometimes we may call on the wisdom of the body and I will ask “What are you feeling in your body right now? What emotion underlies that sensation?” or ”What shape/gesture does your body want to take when you think of this option?”  These kinds of explorations make up the bulk of a coaching session. They can result in powerful “aha” moments, and inspire you!

And finally, I will usually ask, after your deep exploration, where you would like to go from here. This is where we will get to intentions, maybe a detailed plan, or maybe one small step, and then look at possible obstacles to that step or plan. This part, too, can generate important insights about our habits and behaviours, and what gets in the way of change. A plan will provide a way forward, and generate hope and excitement, which will in turn fuel behaviour change.

All of this is reflection. It’s having someone support you in shining a light on your life, your struggles and dreams. Coaching provides a wonderful reflective space to do this.

If you would like to give yourself the gift of time to reflect in a safe, collaborative way, do contact me for a free discovery session. No cost, no pressure.