Afraid of Being Seen As A Coach? Gain Confidence When You Learn These 10 Traps Every Coach Should Avoid.
Be honest: do you have a fear of being seen? If you answered “yes,” you’re not alone!
Today I want to share a story about one of my incredible clients in my life coaching program Mentor Masterclass. We’ll call her Jennifer.
No matter how hard she tried, Jennifer kept bumping up against some very limiting beliefs. She was afraid to post much on social media and talk about her own work. She was becoming very emotional in her responses when family members would question her ability to become a successful coach, which left her feeling very triggered and unsupported. Meanwhile, Jennifer’s husband kept mentioning how her investment in her coaching practice wasn’t working as far as he could tell, because she wasn’t getting any paying clients.
…All of these seemingly-separate things came down to Jennifer’s paralyzing fear of being seen.
Fear of being seen often comes from a lack of confidence as a coach. Once you truly recognize the impact you can make as a coach and what you’re capable of, that fear of being seen starts to melt away. It takes lots of attention, focus and setting sovereign boundaries to get past it!
In Mentor Masterclass we do deep work around creating confidence and working with the intimate relationships in our lives. The people we love most are often soul contracted to be active mirrors of our deepest fears (the ones we are not facing).
I’ve learned over the years of serving the women in Mentor Masterclass that if you ever want to have confidence as a coach, you must have training and an arsenal of tools you feel excited about bringing to client sessions.
One of my favorite tools is called neuro-linguistic programming (NLP), and I’m sharing powerful NLP training here on the blog today. I’ve also noticed over the years that once clients feel confident in their ability to use these tools, paired with intimate support from me and their sisters inside MM, their fear of being seen vanishes.
In Mentor Masterclass, each student has plenty of coaching session practice with her partner, and on calls where I listen and give feedback to help her learn her uniqueness as a coach and grow as a leader. We even go out and practice coaching skills in our own lives – a minimum of four hours a month, but ideally four hours a week!
When my students do this, their confidence grows as they naturally learn to avoid the 10 traps coaches fall into in coaching sessions. I’m teaching you these traps and how to avoid them here today.
As for my client Jennifer, once she became aware of the 10 traps and learned how to avoid them, she became excited to post on social media, gracefully navigated family conversations that used to trigger her, and began to make money from her paying clients which shifted her husband’s doubts about her coaching investment.
Her confidence was through the roof and freedom was her new normal! And I want this for you, too.
When you learn to avoid the traps we’re exploring today, you’ll be able to instill confidence in your clients and help them connect to the larger purpose in their lives.
Trap #1. Diving into the details and missing the bigger picture. Coaching is about knowing when to give someone space, so make sure your clients have enough of an opportunity to express themselves. An NLP technique you’ll learn as a coach is to pace and lead your clients. Pace your clients’ reality when you listen attentively to them, then lead them along a path with your questions.
Make sure they have time to open up! If you cut them off, or jump right in with feedback, you’re not allowing them the space to hear their own thoughts, access their own insights and go through a deep process of discovery. Everyone else in the world cuts them off, it’s your job to hold the most solid, spacious and powerful container for your client to be truly present to what IS.
Trap #2. Getting caught up in your clients’ long stories. As a coach, you’re probably a great listener who easily builds rapport with clients, which is of course a wonderful thing. But I recommend having a phrase ready in the back of your mind for when you need to cut a story short and steer your client back to what’s most important in the session. An example: “Can we just pause for one moment? What’s the essential question in your mind as you tell this story?”
We need to avoid trap #1 without falling into trap #2. Yes, listen and give them space. Create a space where you keep them on track to what is relevant, useful, and empowering. If you become a place for your clients to bitch and complain you’re no longer a professional coach. Your job is to guide your client powerfully and efficiently and sometimes that means you need to cut them off. It’s not rude, it’s expert.
Trap #3. “Rescuing” your clients. When you overstep your boundaries as a coach in order to “rescue” your clients (for example, by offering to contact people for them or writing their to-do lists) you’re actually taking away your clients’ power!
One of the most incredible gifts we can give our clients is holding them as strong and capable. Your client is in charge of doing the work. Trust that they are capable, always.
Trap #4. Being entertained by the drama. Once again, it’s a positive quality to be engaged in your clients’ stories about their lives. Just make sure you’re not (accidentally) being entertained by the gossip! If your clients sense this from you, they’ll find themselves entertaining you with one crisis after another. This dynamic gets in the way of the real work your clients need to do. They need your help to step back and look impartially at their lives.
Trap #5. Feeling like you need to know it all. New coaches are often relieved to find out they don’t have to know all the answers. In fact, coaching is one of the few professions where trying to take the reins and prescribe solutions produces negative results. So instead of saying, “You should try this” you might instead say, “What solutions have you thought of”?
If you feel pressure to have an answer it’s a sign you have gone too far into your ego. This happens to both new and seasoned coaches. It’s important to remember that your job is to give your client permission to be the know-it-all. Your client has everything they need within them. It’s your job to apply the love, skill and pressure that creates the diamond insights and motivation.
Trap #6. Slipping into the role of parent or child. Whenever you’re engaging with a client, you’re drawing from your own family relationships even when you don’t realize it. You might slip into the role of bossy parent or of a child trying her best to please her parents.
If you’re ever coaching clients who you feel have more experience than you, for example, just remember you’ve been hired to provide the fresh perspective they need. Be aware of how common it is to slip into family dynamics with your clients, and try to steer yourself back to a healthier coach/client relationship.
The most powerful way to work on healing your pattern of falling into this trap is to work with your own inner child.
I share more about the importance of this work and how to begin today in this blog post: Your inner child, do you know what she needs? Why every life coach should know. You’ll also find access to begin an intimate and guided conversation with your inner child. If you desire my support in having a successful and life changing conversation you can use this 11 minute guided meditation, now.
Trap #7. Losing track of time. Staying true to boundaries you’ve set around time is an important part of creating structure for your clients. Agree upfront about what will happen if your client is late – and stick to it. Establish a concrete start and finish time, and create a focus for each session.
Running over the allotted time is not a nice thing to do – it’s a disempowering thing to do for the both of you. Yes, there are times your intuition will tell you it’s important to extend a session. However, this should be rare and it should be established with clear reasons and intentions behind going over your set time.
Trap #8. Falling in love (or friendship) with your clients. You have a professional relationship with your clients just like doctors, accountants and lawyers do. Sometimes you’ll find yourself forming a close connection with your clients, but make sure you stay within ethical boundaries of the coach/client relationship. You’re of course free to form a friendship after the coaching relationship is over (how beautiful!). Honor their healing by allowing yourself to embody the role of coach throughout your contract.
Trap #9. Making excessively long action lists for your clients. Most people already have busy lives when they come to coaching. Sticking to a short list of a few powerful to-do’s is likely to serve them best and end in success. When your clients don’t feel overwhelmed, there’s a much better chance they’ll stick with the plan they created while you coached them. There is no reason to rush to heal or create the idea of a false finish line.
Trap #10. Not parting ways with your clients when the time is right. Although some clients will stay on to work with you for weeks, months, or even years, coaching shouldn’t be an open-ended relationship. As their work progresses, you’ll witness your clients evolving from “doing mode” into “being mode.” You’ll see them start to connect their actions to the larger purpose of their lives.
While it’s good to acknowledge that parting ways feels sad sometimes, it’s even better to come from a place of gratitude for having clients you know you’ll miss. Don’t try to keep clients for life – you’ll diminish the power of your coaching and what you’ve accomplished in your time together!
Carry these 10 insights with you and you’ll grow into a coach who truly loves what she does and uses her skills to bring transformation to her clients’ lives to make this world better.
If you feel called to continue this work so you’ll feel confident and clear in your coaching skills and beyond, click here to experience a week of self-discovery. I’ll be right there to guide you everyday with more powerful skills and insights for your personal and coaching success!
Did any of these traps resonate with you? What’s the toughest one for you to navigate? What’s a trap you’d never even considered before, and how will it change your next coaching session? I’d love for you to share your thoughts in the comments below!
In Mentor Masterclass we learn 358 masterful coaching techniques in a way that promotes ease, flow, natural memorization, confidence and mastery, no matter where you are in your coaching journey. Want to learn more about Mentor Masterclass? I’d love for you to come experience what it’s like to join our sisterhood and life coach training program when you commit to a free week of self-discovery and working intimately with me.
Women who graduate from Mentor Masterclass sell out their services. Their training and coaching mastery creates a reputation that attracts attention and trust. I deeply believe in a feminine approach to creating time and financial freedom that involves high-touch mentorship and intimate coaching. Taking the time for self-care and healing leads to success as a thought leader.
Sign up for the free Self-Discovery Week to deepen your self-healing and coaching mastery practice!
P.S. If you or your clients struggle with the fear of being seen, I’m launching the brand-new Captivate Healer Certification Training. It’s a two-day, in-person event in New York City to guide you through healing your own fear of being seen and helping your clients who also suffer from this same fear.
You’ll feel more confident leading your clients through this powerful fear when you’ve conquered it yourself and learned the techniques to use when it comes up with the people you serve. Stay tuned for more details coming very soon!
All my love,
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