While training with International Coach Academy, Power Tools were the bane of my existence. A coaching concept to help shift the perspective of clients, at the time a Power Tool felt too much like mental slight-of-hand, as if a few well-timed questions gave me the ability to trick my client into moving from doubt to trust, from trying to committing, or from reacting to responding. It all seemed too easy. Too magical. Akin to a magazine article proclaiming ‘Ten Days to a New You!’
But coaching isn’t magic (although it can feel that way sometimes). Change doesn’t happen overnight. And, as a coach, it’s not my job to shift a client’s perspective. The client can do that all on their own. My job is to remain present, to remain curious and to ask a few well-timed and on-point questions. When I do my job well a client can move from doubting themselves to trusting themselves, from trying to achieve a goal to committing to a goal, and from reacting to a situation to responding to a situation.
My changing perspective began when I experienced first-hand how substituting one word for another had the potential to displace a less than desirable attitude for one that offered joy.
Such a simple thing. Changing one word. Simple, in fact, to the point of being embarrassing.
How many times do you find yourself saying a version of any of the following:
- I need to get up
- I need to go to work
- I need to do the laundry
- I need to email (fill in any name)
- I need to cook dinner
What would happen if we changed those needs into wants? As in:
- I want to get up
- I want to go to work
- I want to do the laundry
- I want to email (fill in any name)
- I want to cook dinner
I told you it was simple. But did you feel it? Did you notice a shift in how you felt about each one of those sentences? A shift from avoidance to engagement, procrastination to anticipation and drudgery toward achievement.
Words have power. They have the power to influence our perceptions and perspectives. Words are tools we use to find clarity and understanding. When we understand their power, we see our world through a different lens.
Words are tools.
They’re…wait for it…Power Tools.