People hire coaches for one simple reason – they want to get more out of themselves and their lives than they seem to be getting on their own.
For example, why are you reading this?
Chances are that you’re looking for something to help you change your life for the better – to improve your circumstances, or make you feel better, or bring you closer to God/Spirit/your essential nature. You think to yourself “There has got to be a better way of being in the world than the way I’m going about it.” You hope going deeper in this understanding will give your life more of a sense of meaning, value, and purpose.
As transformative coaches, we begin with the premise that the starting point for all of these life-enhancement projects is a deeper understanding of the nature of the human experience. People will naturally get more out of themselves when they insightfully understand more about who they are and how the human system works. They’ll automatically get more out of their lives when they insightfully understand how life works. Because when we really understand how something works, from a sliding door to driving a car to gravity, we don’t have to think about it anymore and can just get on with it. We slide, drive, and fall to the ground with a sense of ease and simplicity.
In the same way, when we know where our feelings come from and look to the ever-present intelligence behind our thoughts, we don’t have to overthink things. We can live our lives and follow our guidance knowing that when we’re up we’re up, when we’re down we’re down, and love, peace, connection, and insight are available in every moment, regardless of how we’re feeling.
In other words, if there’s something you want to create or do in the world, knowing how things actually get created and done is of universal benefit. All boats will rise with the tide of that deeper understanding.
So why do so many principles-based teachers and coaches downplay the very benefits that people come to them in search of?
Because when we become overly “intent” on the result we’re seeking, that intensity can start to get in the way of what actually produces results. Instead of looking to see what’s true, we listen for what we think will be helpful to our cause.
- If we’re in the conversation to improve our life circumstances – better job, better health, better relationships, better bank balance – we’re tuned in to practical implications, actionable strategies, and examples of people whose circumstances changed for the better after learning about the principles. When our own circumstances seem to be improving, we’re convinced that we’re really getting it; when our circumstances seem to be circling the drain, we’re convinced that we don’t get it at all or that it’s all a load of crap.
- If we’re in the conversation to feel better, then we’re listening out for anything we think will help us have more good feelings and less (or ideally no) bad ones. We’re primarily tuned in to our mood throughout our studies. If our mood is high, we feel like we’re getting it; when our mood is low, we’re convinced we don’t get it at all or that it’s all a load of crap.
- If we’re in the conversation to bring ourselves closer to God, Spirit, or our essential nature, we’re primarily tuned in to our experience of connection with the divine. When we feel quiet, meditative, peaceful, and filled with spiritual light and love, we’re convinced that we’re getting it; when we don’t, we’re convinced that we don’t get it at all or that it’s all a load of crap.
The problem, of course, isn’t that we’re looking for a better experience of life; it’s that we think hearing more about the principles of Mind, Consciousness, and Thought will be the thing that magically changes our life for the better.
But here’s the thing:
The principles won’t make your life better; they explain why your life is as it is. Learning about the principles won’t make your life better; it will give you a clearer understanding of how life actually works.
Your clearer understanding of how life actually works is what enables you to have a more successful and consistently richer experience of being alive.
Which is to say:
- Learning about the principles won’t automatically make you successful, but knowing how the mind actually works enables you to more easily follow your inner sense of direction, navigate your insecurities, and connect more deeply with others. Your ability to navigate well and connect deeply will in turn almost certainly make you more successful.
- Learning about the principles won’t automatically make you happy, but knowing that we’re only ever living in the feeling of our thinking makes our thoughts and feelings less scary. When you’re not scared of your own experience, you don’t feel the need to control it. And when you’re not using all your mental energy trying to control your experience, you begin to notice that underneath the roller coaster of our thoughts and feelings is the deeper peace, quiet, and spaciousness of pure consciousness.
- Learning about the principles won’t automatically bring you closer to God/Spirit/your essential nature, but knowing there’s something (well, no-thing) at the heart of the human experience helps us keep the divine Mind in mind. And when we find it easier to separate the baby of spirit from the bathwater of dogma, we’re less likely to stay lost in an idealized image of the divine and more likely to find ourselves feeling at home in our true nature.
To sum up, the Three Principles can’t change your life because they already are what your life is made of. But your insightful understanding of the principles can totally change your life, because it allows you to live more in harmony with the way things actually are.
Have fun, learn heaps, and happy exploring!
With all my love,
Some more Caffeine for the Soul
In part one of this blog (click here if you missed it), I posed a question:
How can I best learn from the wisdom and experience of others without discounting what I’ve learned from my own experience and the wisdom of my soul?….read more
I have a kind of a love/hate relationship with Tim Ferriss. On the one hand, he impresses the hell out of me, and he’s my son’s favorite writer/podcaster. On the other hand, he’s one of the few people who my thinking goes into overload reading…read more
I’ve never been terribly good at giving thanks. One of the more infamous stories from my childhood involved my saying, “Thank you for the yucky present” to my favorite aunt and uncle which while it does get me points for honesty seems a bit churlish in retrospect….read more