I recently read a blog post that is quite popular on WordPress written by Kate from the states. How I Afford to Travel… And You May Not Like What I’m Going To Say. It was pretty interesting and fun to read. She tells how she uses her personality strengths and a lot of wit to afford to work and travel abroad simultaneously.
The solution Kate devised for herself was unorthodox. You’ll have to read her post to decide if you agree. At very least, it was somewhat risky. However, weighing her personal strengths and considering her self perceived obstacles in light of her values, she decided in a course of action to achieve her goal. A course of action she claims to be happy about.
What does this have to do with strength based coaching?
Kate demonstrated an approach to dealing with her perceived problem that is similar to strength based coaching. She assessed her strengths and threats in light of her goals and values to develop a solution that, though unorthodox, works for her.
As a coach, it is important that we help the client to find the unique solution that fits their personal strengths, overcomes their obstacles in light of their goals and values.
Were I her friend or older brother, I might have lots of advice for Kate about what to do next. I might say that she’d brilliantly set herself up to return from abroad and capitalize on her unorthodox journey. I might wax eloquent about how she could start a motivational speaking career, and speculate about how easily she could become a television host on OWN. I might even muse about the several book deals she could sign for her life story.
Yet if I were her coach, none of those things would be appropriate. My job would be to provoke her to a similar sort of evaluation of her strengths and obstacles in light of her goals and values. Having done that, I’m certain that Kate would continue surprise and delight us with the sorts of solutions she came up with for herself.