to see if it’s finally working.
(If you get this, please disregard)
to see if it’s finally working.
(If you get this, please disregard)
Just to make sure this works properly before launch.
This is just to see if this works properly.
What a treat to open my email and see this:
“I wanted to let you know that I achieved my MCC from ICF Global. Attending the Masterful Coaching class with you helped me to see the areas I needed to work on to demonstrate MCC capabilities. That class was the start of the journey to bring my coaching skills to the next level.” – Lynn Schaber, MCC
Wow. What a wonderful acknowledgment. I humbly receive this and share it with you to let you know what’s waiting for you.
If you’re going for your MCC, PCC or even ACC, or heck, you’re not going for any credentials and you just want to discover what’s possible in your coaching, to reveal what you didn’t know was missing, and to access a deeper and more confident coach, then I highly invite you to join in
We’ve just started a couple days ago and will resume on Tuesday, November 24 from 5:00 pm – 7:oo Central / 6-8 Eastern.
And it’s still at an amazing “end of year, helping you in these times” discounted price of a low $800, or two payments of $400 each.
SPECIAL OFFER: if you are interested, let me know at email@example.com and I’ll send you the first call “Revealing Your MasterFull Coach” to listen to,
If that’s all you want for now, then it’s my gift to you.
If you want to join the rest of the course, then come on in and you can use either of these two links below to lock it in.
But do it before Tuesday, because you don’t want to miss this next amazing and powerful lesson that reveals a the coaching BRACE that will completely redesign how you see your coaching and your clients, and go sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo much deeper.
Hey you fantastic, amazing and MasterFull Coach (yeah, you). First off, I want to thank you for signing up and being in my MasterFull Membership levels. I hope you are enjoying the various benefits–calls, videos, etc.–and I also have a special invitation for you, in case you’re interested.
I know you’re passionate about discovering deeper coaching, and I wanted to give you a special offer/invitation to come to my first class of The Fast Pass to MasterFull Coaching as my guest.
Tuesday, November 17 from 5:00 pm – 7:00 Central/ 6:00 – 8:00 Eastern
We’ll kick it off by discovering exactly what a Masterful coach looks like. Not just regular good coaching, but “holy-heck-how-do-they-do-that?” MasterFull Coaching.
Along the way, we’ll reveal all the additional benefits that this course provides and explore in more detail the Science, Artistry and Performance of MasterFull Coaching.
And even more importantly, how to identify YOU as a Masterful coach. Once we determine that, then it’s simply a matter of learning how to recognize, embrace, connect and grow that part of you.
Oh yes, and we also begin to explore your Coaching Confidence—what it currently is and how to begin growing it bigger, deeper, higher and stronger.
And then we bring in a simple, yet ridiculously powerful and profound exercise: the five words that will open the doorway to your MasterFull coaching.
In other words, this call introduces to you the foundation that we are working with and identifies our end point. The rest of the course goes about exploring and discovering HOW to deepen your coaching knowledge, skills and confidence–easily, deeply, and powerfully.
IF that’s all you need, then it’s my extra special gift to you.
And if you want more, then you’ll easily be able to continue with the other 9 sessions of this module and really watch your coaching expand, grow and explode
And of course, you can always contact me if you have any questions.
Tuesday, November 10
from 5:00 – 7:00 PM Central / 6:00 – 8:00 Eastern
No matter how long you’ve been coaching, how good you are, you WILL discover something powerful on this call.
Come as my guest. I’m here to help you truly BE the coach you are here to be.
And if you want to continue with Module 1: Have Your MasterFull Foundation, it’ll kick off Tuesday, November 17 for 10 AMAZING MASTER CLASSES)
Visit www.mastermycoaching.com for more details or register for it now to lock in your place.
This is one of the most powerful, solid, coach growing courses available.
If you do not feel that you got more than your investment, I will GIVE you a complementary MCC Mentor session
This is the module ONE of the Full course that coaches are calling:
“the best bang for the buck” ,
“it was like drinking from a fire hose”
“encompassing the whole coaching experience”
“I really wish I had done this earlier in my coaching” and,
” the best investment you make in yourself since your original decision to become a life coach!”
And now it’s your turn to FULLY BE the coach you are truly here to BE
I’ll be waiting to welcome you.
-ben dooley, MCC
It’s time to truly BE the coach you are here to BE
Just a friendly reminder that I’ve been adding new posts and videos for your enjoyment and learning.
NEW Blog Newsletter installments chronicling my journey to get my MCC (the ups and the downs)
NEW VidBits digging into how to handle “I don’t know” from your clients, and other problematic client issues.
NEW Coaching Skills Forum Calls, exploring the worlds of
Go check em out (after all, you’re a Member with access to all this stuff.
And keep checking cause there’s more exciting stuff coming around (Webinars, teleclasses, etc.)
This has been so far quite an exciting journey in the pursuit of getting my MCC.
I set myself on a focus to accomplish this level of my coaching certification, and I had a strong, compelling and personal purpose driving me.
I created a structure that would help me keep my focus, raising the bar and reminding me of how I want to show up in my coaching.
And because I’ve spent years digging into my coaching skills, I explored and broke down clearly what was required, not just by ICF standards, but beyond that.
All the while I was growing my coaching, challenging myself and setting higher standards.
I reached out to my community and found many opportunities to coach different people, stretching different muscles, trying new things, all the while accumulating a large pool of recordings that I could sift through to find the two calls that best represented my coaching. (All of these appear in more detail in past BITS, but if you missed them, just toss me an email and I’ll be happy to send them to you.)
I knew this stuff, and I knew it well. After all, I am a trainer of coaches—advanced and MasterFull coaching, no less—so this should be a slam-dunk. A lock in. A guarantee. It was clear that really all I had to do was just go through the motions.
I gathered all my materials together. Added up all my hours. Accumulated all my credits. Identified the perfect recordings. And sent it all off to ICF. Now came the wonderful task of… waiting.
And I waited.
And I waited.
And after a couple months went by, that long awaited reply came from ICF.
I had failed.
I’d like to say that I would be the first to admit that my ego got in the way. But at the time, my ego was still in the way, which prevented me from noticing its impact, let alone admit it.
You see, I had spent all these years focusing on “What is MasterFull Coaching–in fact, was teaching it to other coaches—and there began to grow a strong undercurrent internal conversation that was along the lines of, “If you achieve your MCC by coaching the way that you teach, then you will not only achieve that status and recognition, but you will also confirm that your way of coaching is what works.” (Now, if you have been following this storyline you’ll probably recall that I had basically slighted those coaches who teach “their” method of coaching or evaluate and give feedback based on “their” process, as though that’s the only one.
So to those coaches, I apologize. As I’ll now admit, it’s an easy trap to fall into.)
[LESSON: It’s important to remember that your way is not the way. Nor is it the only way. There are multiple ways, and we are more empowered the more we open ourselves to those other ways.]
So here I was, receiving the dreaded email that informed me I had failed my MCC exam. The thing that I had been working so hard for fell through. The thing that was a slam-dunk, easy-peasy-lemon-squeazy, walk-in-the-park, just show up and it’s yours… I didn’t get it.
I went through all the wonderful “self-coaching conversations” and told myself that “failure was part of the journey” (which is true) and reminded myself of my prior EXAM FAILURE story where I wrote at the end I believed that because I had failed, certain things weak spots, old habits and blind spots were revealed and discovered that needed to be attended to. Habits that perhaps hadn’t been caught by my supervisors and mentors, but revealed themselves when placed under the stress of “exam performance” (which is also true), but the truth of the matter was, I was pissed, hurt, frustrated, embarrassed and very disappointed.
So after the initial frustration, embarrassment and disappointment wore off, I recovered myself and got back on the track of learning from this failure. After all, I had heard the same report from ICF that everyone else did, “there is a 90% failure rate the first time for MCC.” Sure, I told myself, it would have been great if it turned out I was one of those exceptional ones that got it the first time (what a credit to my awesomeness that would have been) but I knew I could handle this.
[LESSON: Everyone falls, fails, makes mistakes, gets stopped and overall doesn’t always get what they want. It happens. What’s important is the recovery. Getting back up. Learning from your mistakes, being more aware of what obstacles are present, getting stronger and smarter, make whatever adjustments that are necessary and continue to move forward.
SUB-LESSON: It’s easy to say, and it’s easy to take that stand for your clients, but it’s a much different experience when you’re in the middle of your own failure. So coaches reading this. Remember what it feels like. Be compassionate and understanding to your client and their feelings. That doesn’t mean ‘buy into’ them, You can still challenge them to shift out of it, recover, learn and all that great coaching stuff. Just don’t forget that they’re likely unable to do much depending on where they are in the process.
FOLLOW UP NEW LESSON: There is a wonderful “coachy” awareness that learning comes from failure. In fact, it’s likely even more true that you may realize. In many ways, learning—deep learning—ONLY comes from failure. The brain, when it gets something wrong, is kind of jarred from the anatomy, and then there’s a space to open up and replace that information with new data. And this isn’t just when we fail from the big text or exam, or when we fail from the big game, or whatever, but all the little “failures” along the way. In this case, all the coaching sessions that didn’t work powerfully—what happened? All those calls that didn’t seem to work—why not? All those clients that were challenges, those moments when I wasn’t showing up fully, those times when the coaching didn’t click—for whatever reason—those are all little mini-failures along the way. But they aren’t devastating because we are still setting our sights on the bigger goal. We have accepted those little failures are part of our learning and growing. Much like the baseball player who continues to strike out during practice. It’s practice. So those failures are ok. There are no (or drastically minor) consequences involved.
However, remember coach, that “learning from failure”, while true, is what happens AFTER the shock, pain, anger, disappointment and other impact of the event wears off, we must also respect the moments in and after the event. That anger, pain, resentment, frustration, fear, and whatever is a very human, and actually important, experience. So we as coaches need to honor that. I tell you this, because the last thing anyone who in in the pain of failure wants to hear is “all the learning” crap.]
I was feeling a bit burned, frustrated, embarrassed and angry. So it took me a little time to let that subside. And after a bit of recovery time, I was again ready to learn, grow, adjust, improve and all that wonderful stuff… just in time to have the feedback/evaluation form from ICF pop in my mailbox.
Great (I smiled that sarcastic, “this is bs” smile). Perfect timing.
Although I had come to terms with my failure, I still really wasn’t sure why it had happened in the first place. And part of the recovery process—a critical part, if we’re going to step into that “learning from failure” stage, is when we are able to actually identify where the errors were, where the cracks and problems were. That’s really the only way we are going to be able to learn and grow from them. (Cause, like, if you don’t have that awareness, you’ll keep doing the same mistakes, right?)
However, as I’m reading through the “feedback”, I’m becoming even more confused than I was before. I’m seeing things like “good job… excellent… wonderful…” only to see at the bottom some sort of comment like “Would like to have taken the client deeper.” What the heck does that mean?
I mean, I know what it means. But it can mean many things. “Going deeper” can take so many different forms. And so, I have absolutely no idea what “going deeper” the evaluator in this evaluation is referring to. Not only that, but let’s say I “go deeper” in that particular way that evaluator is expecting, or would “go deeper” in their own coaching (in other words, their way) there’s no guarantee that it would be recognized and graded favorably by any other coach. So I’m left back at, “What the heck does that mean?”
(I hate it when I get empty comments like that, or when I work with coaches who have received those comments from other mentor coaches or supervisors.
NOTE TO SUPERVISORS: Nebulous comments like that aren’t really helpful. Which is why I always offer more supportive insight, suggestions, and specific comments that the coaches can actually learn from. BS magic “fixit” answers like, “just get curious” doesn’t really help. “Be with your client” doesn’t help. And “Go deeper” is bland, unclear and unhelpful. Look, we don’t do this with our client’s right? That’s not coaching. And it’s not teaching, training, learning or growing.
Consider this. You’re taking a math quiz, and you get it back from your teacher only to get a bunch of red marks all over it and a big “F” on the page. And then at the bottom the teacher says, “Add better”. Now, is that helpful? Can you learn from that? Can you get better, stronger and more solid in your mathematics?
So of course, when I get something like this, it starts to set me on edge. Which, I’ll admit, is not a very powerful place to learn and be open and discover.
ANOTHER NOTE TO SUPERVISORS AND MENTORS: Do you get it? When you offer this unhelpful help that isn’t pointing the coach/client to a place to learn and grow, you’re actually sending them deeper into their own confusion and trap and stuck.)
Reading through the feedback even further, I came across another comment that really frustrated me, because it LITERALLY expressed the evaluating coach’s own perspective of, “An MCC coach would do this in this situation.” Which I can agree with, and vehemently DIS-agree with.
Let me clarify. In the recording, my client was working through some “Saboteurs”. My impulse was to explore the different ones that were showing up and help the client discover she was able to still hold onto her power and not succumb to the power of that fear. In fact, the work we did was quite exciting, almost like discovering her anti-saboteur super powers, loaded with armor, weapons and magic spells. By the end of the call, she felt much more empowered and strong, ready to take those fears and voices and old things on with new strength and groundedness.
The evaluation/feedback said that “an MCC would look to explore the gift that was present in the saboteur.”
Ok, I’ll acknowledge that this a wonderful approach, and can be considered even an advanced approach to working with a saboteur. Rather than try to “banish” “abolish” “get rid of” or otherwise, try to change the client’s perspective into something “good”, we can learn into the experience, explore the learning and gift that lies within the fear and conflict.
I’ve done that approach many a time. And while it is a wonderful coaching experience, I would also argue that it doesn’t define MCC coaching. It may be what an MCC coach does from time to time, and perhaps even that particular MCC who was judging does it with wonderful results. But doing that approach alone doesn’t mean it’s automatically MCC coaching. Are you kidding me? Even from my own experience, I’ve done that very technique and the experience was, shall we say, less than MasterFull. (Which confirms even more with was clearly a “this is what I would do, and I am an MCC and therefore, this is what MCC coaching is” kind of comment. Which also rubs me the wrong way.)
[LESSON: I knew it before, but this really hit it home for me: There’s clearly a distinction between MCC coaching and MasterFull Coaching.]
This whole “feedback” experience frustrates me. I’m not getting what I feel to be clear feedback, in order to learn and grow stronger, to be able to provide what is truly needed, but instead I get personal opinions and “you should have done this instead” that really sound and feel like, “you didn’t do it my way”. And all this adds to the feeling like I’m trying to win some sort of lottery with this exam.
Instead of showing up and presenting my own skills of coaching, it seems I have to now try to predict what specific actions and approaches the evaluator will prefer so that I don’t zig when they would have zagged.
Which instantly sparks my performance anxiety and the urge to “do it right.” Which is not MasterFull Coaching.
But I knew I wanted this. It was important to me. I had spend enough time building up to this; there was no way I was going to let a single failure stop me. After all, with a reputed 90% failure rate, and “everyone fails” and “it’s how you get back up” and all that stuff, I knew that this failure would ultimately make a great story to share with other coaches.
After all, my original CTI failure experience turned out to be a great story—one that many coaches have come across and found to be so helpful. Why not this one?
So even though I wasn’t sure why I failed, and therefore not sure what adjustments I needed to make, I set about scheduling more coaching calls.
This time, I turned to social media and sent out the request. Initially embarrassed that I (Mr. “wonder-coach”) had failed, I also anticipated that my courage to admit it, in tandem with my commitment and request for help, would bring more coaches to agree to be my client.
And I was right.
And, as I suspected coming off the heels of this failure, the coaching was a little harder to maintain at a confident level. Even though I was skilled and experienced, those nagging phrases of “Would like to have gone deeper” and “an MCC coach would have done…” kept popping up throughout the sessions and I kept becoming self-aware of how well I was doing, following some sort of internal checklist and that “observer” was constantly evaluating my work “real time”.
“That was pretty good.”
“Thanks. Now let me get back to my client.”
“All right. But make sure you take them deeper.”
“Yes, I know. But what the heck does that mean? It’s such a generic phrase and comment.”
“Well, if you were really a MCC coach, you would already know.”
“That’s not true. I just don’t know what is specifically expected of me.”
“Yes, you do. It’s the 11 Core competencies. Just do that.”
“Great. By the way. How is the coaching going now?”
“You just missed a perfect moment with your client.”
“Yeah, but that’s because I’m talking to you.”
“Well. an MCC coach would have caught it.”
“That’s not true.”
“Of course it is. Otherwise, how will you go deeper?”
“Leave me alone and just let me coach my client.”
“All right. But don’t say I didn’t warn you.”
(I’m sure you’ve had conversations like this as well.)
[NOTE: It’s not just a high-level exam that brings this “performance” mode, but any time the stakes and expectations are high—when a client or company is paying big money, when you’re doing a sample to see if they want to hire you, and even when they come to you with a big problem and they’re expecting you to help them fix it. That “performance” and “doing it right” urge and agenda can come in at any time and hijack the coaching.
Which, in my case, it did.]
However, that’s not to say I didn’t do some good coaching. On the contrary, there were some beautiful clients that showed up and I got to do some wonderful work with them. It’s not that I was completely hijacked and all the coaching failed. Again, as I listened back and reviewed, there were some really nice things that occurred. But was it ICF MCC Exam-worthy? That I wasn’t completely sure of. And the doubt and questioning kept nagging at me, much more deep than before.
Before I thought I knew what it was. But now it was clear that it wasn’t what I thought it was, but had no idea what it was instead. So I was doing my best to basically learn and grow from nothing.
I selected two new recordings and sent them off. Feeling like in my own journey and exploration I must have discovered what was missing. I certainly did what I could to “take the client deeper.” And in fact, another saboteur conversation (different client) popped up that we got to work on. And this time, we explored the gift that was present.
(You know, like an MCC coach would do?)
(I’ll admit, there was a little chip forming on my shoulder and I was feeling a stronger urge to prove myself—now reinforced by the unhelpful help that was offered. Which, again, looking back, might not have been a solid place to come from and bring into the coaching.)
But there it was. After another couple of months, two new recordings, resubmitted.
And once again, having fallen down and gotten back up, gone through the journey, I was back in the stage of having to just sit and wait another two to three months for that wonderful email to arrive telling me that I had this time passed and was now an MCC coach.
(This is Part 5 of a larger series chronicling my MCC journey–preparation, success, failures and everything else in-between. It will be an exclusive access to the higher Membership level, “MasterFull Access” which also includes monthly Master Class Webinars, CCEUs and excluisive special MCCecrets videos. You can go here for more information, and to lock in your membership status today at a special discounted entry price.)
Part of the process to submit for my MCC is that I needed to take an “exam”, as it were to demonstrate my coaching level and skill. This consisted of providing a couple of recordings to showcase my coaching for the ICF to evaluative.
Proud of my new venture, excited for the journey and convinced this would be an easy slam-dunk, I boldly went out on Facebook to announce to all the coaches I knew my new endeavor. “This is it,” I declared! “I’m finally going for my MCC.” And followed my announcement with a call for help and support. [LESSON: ask for help and support. You don’t have to do it alone. Not only was it literally true in this case—cause I needed someone to coach—but it was also a wonderful way to get support and cheering.]
The response was wonderful (after all, you’d be amazed how people just want to help—you just need to ask [SEE ABOVE LESSON]). As I had hoped, coaches who had been following me over the years through my calls and newsletters and stuff all came running to my aid, offering themselves as clients (after all, who wouldn’t want awesome MCC-level coaching, right?). It was fun scheduling the calls, and even more fun doing the actual coaching. (It’s also great practice to work with new “clients” with new problems to keep your muscles fresh. UPDATE: Looking back, I realize that it would have been much more beneficial if I had reached out to non-coaches (normal people) to serve as my client. The growth and practice is much deeper, and also very real. I will say that the recordings I submitted I made sure were real people, working on their real—and non-coaching-issues.)
However (and this is something that I teach in my class), it’s important to remember that when you know someone will be listening to the recording and evaluating your “performance”, it’s all too common to suddenly have that self-awareness kick in.
Yes. Even though I’d been coaching for almost 11 years, and I’m something like “Mr. Coach”, and I train coaches with Advanced coaching techniques. I still fall into this trap. It’s a common experience that we all experience, especially when we’re being evaluated by something that’s important to us. We want to be sure we’re “doing it right.” Unfortunately, when we shift our attention to “doing it right” then we’re not really being with the client in a good coaching way.
Hence the problem.
On the good side, I knew from my teaching and experience that if I just do these “coaching exam demonstration” calls a few times, I’ll begin to get used to the “performance/evaluation” factor and will be able to coach with a better focus.
Such was the case. Sure, the first few were a little self-conscious, but by the third or fourth call, my coaching began to re-find its groove. [LESSON: the more you become familiar with the experience and the environment, the less uncomfortable it becomes. And the less uncomfortable you are, the more you are able to shine.]
Once I accumulated a number of recordings it was time to go through them and review to see which ones would be usable. There were some that I instantly ruled out as unusable. Although it might have been good coaching, it wasn’t something that would be appropriate to send to ICF for review. If I was going to be reviewed by ICF, I needed to be sure that I was including all the elements that they would be looking for: the 11 Core Competencies.
I didn’t expect it to be so hard to review my calls—each of them sounding awesome and wonderful. I don’t mean to sound ego-filled, of course there were spots here and there that might be a little sticky, but overall it’s just wonderful to witness good coaching. And even more exciting when you’re the one doing it. However, to be sure, I allowed myself a little distance of time so that I could hopefully review the content a little more objectively.
I waited until a month passed after the calls so I would hopefully not remember the content and conversation so clearly. But even then, while listening, the “coach within” would hear the client say something and start to ask a question, only to hear me ask the same question as the listener/evaluator.
Clearly I was doing something right if I was going the same direction twice (yes, I will concede my ego was doing a lot of talking).
But as “brilliant” as these calls seemed to be, I will also admit that while listening to them, I could also hear certain things that didn’t work. I was able to look more objectively at the coaching through the Core Competencies.
Looking back, I wish I had done what I so highly recommend and with other coaches ask of me—send some recordings to be evaluated and reviewed by a third party.
But again my ego got in the way.
“Come on. You’re a teacher of coaches. Not only that, but you teach coaching Mastery, right?”
“Well, actually, I refer to it as MasterFull Coaching.”
“Well, not really. There is actually a difference.”
“Whatever, but it’s top-level advanced coaching stuff that you teach, right?”
“And this is content and learning and skill stuff that you pretty much discovered on your own, right?”
“All that exploring and conversations and studying and deepening that you do. Let’s face it, you’ve really discovered some amazing stuff that other coaches don’t know and need to know.”
“Well, sure, but…”
“And let’s not forget that you don’t coach like anyone else. You’re not by the book. That’s part of Mastery, right?”
“Well, sometimes, but…”
“So wouldn’t it be awesome if you did this all by yourself, the first time out? You would really show them all. What a boost it would be to your business.”
“Of course. Think about it. You can then say, ‘This is how I became an MCC. I did it my way.’”
“Yeah, isn’t that a Frank Sinatra song?”
“Just go with me, here. You got this, man. You don’t need anyone else’s evaluation. You know all this stuff.”
“Um, I guess so.”
Now, I’m sure you can see where this is going.
[Remember that lesson I pointed out at the beginning of this section? “You don’t have to do it alone.”? Yes, it’s one thing to know it, but a whole ‘nother thing to actually do it. Which points us to another LESSON: Knowing and Doing aren’t the same thing. Only New Actions create New Results. However, you can’t have new Actions without New Knowing. New Knowing is great, but it can’t just stop there and stay in your head. You have to follow through with action. Just stopping at the knowing (and talking about what you know isn’t quite at the Doing stage) won’t get you where you want to go.]
Looking back, I realize that wasn’t a very MasterFull way of thinking at the time. But I persisted and sifted and thought my coaching was gifted, and then I managed to narrow the lot down to the two calls that I deemed the best. These were the ones. These exemplified excellent coaching. With these two, I was going to easily acquire my MCC status. Slam-dunk, here I come.
With all the hard work done, all the paperwork and the hours and the training logged and CCEU certificates provided, and my two brilliant recordings now selected, the only thing left to do was to upload and send to ICF and wait for the wonderful news.
Which would take a few months.
But then again, all good things come to those who wait.