Sharing the Value of “What Could Be” Through Coaching
Rachel Fore | September 2022
After more than 20 years of working, I am at a unique place where I can see experiences that shaped me and evaluate the contributions I want to make in the human-serving field before I retire. With years spent in the corporate world peddling products and services; a decade working for my own tribal nation, Cherokee Nation in Tahlequah, Oklahoma; and my more current systems-level role in human services, developing healthy communities is the most important outcome when it comes to the work that I do. Healthy communities can only exist when people are seen, valued, and heard for who they truly are.
My coaching journey began in the last two years through formal training systems, but looking back at my career choices, coaching was always an important part of how I led those I had the opportunity to supervise. As I engaged in formal coaching training, the experience gave me many more skills and insights to add to what I already practiced and helped me to understand the impact coaching can have on myself and others. Coaching has provided the opportunity for me to contribute to the many communities I am part of by helping people connect their values to their life’s work. Watching and guiding this kind of personal and professional growth drives my work, and connection and relationship are at the heart of how I engage with people.
As I engage in connection and relationship with those I am coaching, I am always drawn to the “what could be.” How do people experience the world around them? What do their perspectives show them? What are their values, and how do those values drive their interactions in the world? Working with clients in this space and being a part of someone’s process of discovering “what could be” is an honor that I take seriously. Helping clients think deeply about what they are experiencing and the reason they chose coaching allows me to live out my community-focused values as clients discover or bring forth their own. Each coaching experience feeds my belief in the value of connection, and honoring how values drive interactions helps create the connection between coach and client.
Helping people discover how their values impact their behavior is one of the elements of coaching that deeply connects me to this work. As people start to live intentionally guided by their values, their focus starts to center in on “what could be,” which helps bring forth their authentic self. In today’s world, we’re barraged with nonstop information, and it can be hard to determine the right decisions, right paths, or right next steps. Some people default to a very technical decision-making space, and that doesn’t always match who they want to be in this world or in their work. The deeper work of living one’s values is something that coaching keeps at its core. The coaching relationship can help those who are looking to live more authentic lives (at home and at work) by bringing deeply held values into their interactions regularly.
As we dream of “what could be” in the coaching relationship, we can look to our values as the foundation of the dream and work together to build a path for clients to attain that dream. This experience is client led as they discover through each session what creates the steps on the path for them to move along. Being able to be a traveler on this path with the client is something that I honor.
As I continue in my own coaching journey, I see myself as part of a bigger picture that creates spaces where people can live out their values, bring forth their authentic selves, and experience well-being as an ever-present feeling. Being a coach affords me the opportunity to contribute to healthy communities through connections and relationships and be a part of that systems-level change that I wish to see in the human-serving field.