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Starting from the minute we are born, we all experience a wide range of emotions. Some of these emotions are positive, and some of them are negative. Positive emotions give a sense of fulfillment and boost our motivation and confidence. Negative emotions, on the other hand, demotivate us and put obstacles on our path to personal and professional growth and success. As a life coach, you are not immune to negative emotions. After all, you are a human being with feelings. Even though both of these words are often interchangeable, there is a big difference between feelings and emotions.
Feelings are related to our perception of the world that surrounds us. They are conscious responses. You can feel pain, or you can feel energetic, or tired. The reason why they might be mistaken with emotions could be simply a linguistic thing. We use the same verb "feel" both for physical and psychological situations. Feelings can also be caused as a response to an emotional trigger. But in general, feelings are more conscious, like feeling hot, or sick.
Emotions are, in general, subconscious responses to situations like anger, sadness, anxiety, panic, for instance. These are all connected to our unconscious mind and manifest themselves as reactions to whatever we perceive and/or receive emotionally. Emotions are chemical responses.
Just what are negative emotions that Spiritual Life Coaches experience anyway?
No one wants to experience negative emotions! YUCK! Nevertheless, everyone experiences them. If emotion drags you down, gives you a sense of unhappiness, unease, it is a negative emotion. Since we can't escape them, we need to learn how to turn them into a positive outcome. In that sense, we can learn from a negative experience, and develop a habit to use it constructively. Instead of giving, we can choose to stand up and move on.
Let’s explore the impact that negative emotions have on Spiritual Life Coaches
You can read more about my personal journey as a Spiritual Life Coach and get a really close look at my process on my personal blog. When you interact with your clients, you will be exposed to a wide range of negative emotions, thoughts, destructive behavioral patterns, and more. Because your clients would not need your guidance if they did not feel the weakness or hopelessness. To help people face their negative thoughts and emotions, you will need to learn how to beat the feelings that drag you down.
In her book "Dealing With Clients' Emotional Problems in Life Coaching" Windy Dryden says: "If you know anything about jazz, you will know that before you can skillfully improvise on your chosen instrument, you will need to play it properly. This requires you to play and learn musical scales and chords. When you have done this, your improvisation will be based on a sound foundation." In other words, as a life coach, you need to have mastered dealing with negative emotions so you can provide help for others.
What are some of the pitfalls in this situation? What if you get caught off-guard and find yourself going down? How will these negative emotions impact your career as a life coach?
You know you will face challenges in your career like everyone does. Some challenges will be bigger than others and they will put obstacles on your path. Maybe you will feel like giving up because you are not successful enough, maybe you will feel so drained and will have a hard time to find enough motivation to face another session.
One of the toughest negative emotions life coaches face is feeling defeated. Many things can cause a life coach to feel this way. It depends on a lot of different things. Since when have you been working as a life coach? Have you been trying for a long time or have you just started but are expecting quick results? Especially if you recently quit your 9 to 5 job and put all your energy and savings into your new business. Maybe you are not good enough at finding clients and advertise yourself/ Maybe you don't have a good enough online presence. Whatever the reasons may be, you are not alone. Many coaches face this problem and find themselves in this situation at some point in their careers. On the one hand, you are trying to help people, but on the other hand, you are trying to sell yourself, so they hire you. Two very conflicting feelings. Many people don't know how to deal with this as life coaches, and unfortunately, they give up.
Feeling depressed due to lack of creativity and inspiration is another tough challenge that life coaches face daily. Life coaching might be a business but requires a good dose of creativity. Your personal touch, your unique ways to guide and help people are what sets you apart from the other life coaches. In a sense, it is a form of art. You can be a life coach in the comfort of your home by doing it online if you can create an online community. However, even if you don't have a strong online presence, you can take your job outdoors and plan different activities with your clients. It can be a meeting at a restaurant or a coffee shop, it can be a walk in the park or a hiking trip in the afternoon. you might also feel lost because you can't determine a good niche for your business. Niche is everything. Be as specific as you can be. Do you want to help people over a certain age? Do you want to help mainly women or men? Do you want to address specific problems like marriage or relationship? Do you want to help people to get to the next level in their business? Do you want to do one to one coaching or do you want to be a group coach? You need to determine exactly where your strength is. Once you can manage to do that, you will see that the creativity will flow easier than you think.
Do you feel a lack of self-confidence? Are you suffering from imposter syndrome? Whether or not you have the education and certificates needed to become a life coach, you might feel intimidated by how much competition there is out there, and it can be a tough feeling to deal with. Fear of failure and lack of confidence are two things most life coaches face commonly. You are not alone. Why would anyone want your services? What makes you think you have what it takes to start this business, and what if you can't help people the way you hoped you could? You can try simple NLP techniques to boost your self-esteem and regain your powers. for instance, do you speak the same language as your client? To create a strong rapport with your clients you need to understand how to use your body language and how to choose the right words. That's why having a specific niche is important because it will give you the opportunity to develop specific communication skills. NLP encourages you to focus on the outcome. Your clients want to see an outcome. NLP teaches you how to be flexible and look at things from different perspectives. Try to use mindfulness meditation techniques to become aware of what is happening around you and what is happening in this present moment. It helps you distinguish between what is important and what is not. Once you develop strong rapport skills, you will see that your clients trust you more and listen to you more carefully. Try the dissociation technique for instance. Identify the negative emotion. Whatever that may be: fear, anxiety, anger, panic... Imagine you are watching yourself on a big movie screen and you are examining yourself. you are now the observer. When you start observing your feelings and emotions, you will start to see a change in the way you experience and reflect them. It helps you distance yourself from negative feelings almost instantly. When you deal with other people, try using the mirroring techniques. Because people are drawn to other people who are like them. This technique might work well when you are trying to sell your services to potential clients. You learn how to mirror someone's body language or their words. you can repeat their sentences mixed within your sentences to give them the impression that you are valuing their words and listening to them carefully. It makes the other person feel heard and understood. Mimic their moves.
Another negative emotion a life coach experiences often is the feeling of being undervalued by their client. Accept that not everyone can be coachable. Some people are simply arrogant, some people will always be argumentative and there is nothing you can do about it. Some people downright insult you because they pay you so they feel like they have the right to do or say whatever they want. In these situations, know that it is OK to end the relationship or coach and coachee interaction. It is OK to deal with difficult people but you don't have to accept the disrespect and insult. Knowing you have the power to lead the interaction and you have the absolute right to say NO, will make it easier for you to set your boundaries and not let others step all over you simply because they pay you.
If you are just beginning your career as a Spiritual Life Coach, don't quit your day job until you have created a sustainable income from your coaching sessions. When you quit your 9 to 5 job too soon, you are setting yourself up for stress and panic, and both of these emotions are a recipe for failure. Learn to be patient and don't expect overnight success. Especially in the life coaching world, things take time, but the effort to get there is well worth it. And of course, getting expert help from a mentor who knows their stuff and has a systematic approach to teaching you to thrive helps. YEP! I’m talking about my Spiritual Life Coach Certification for Badass Butterflies program. I’ve got a five-month accelerated version and a 10-month version for those of you who need more time. Check out the program and then book in a complimentary Discovery Session to discuss your coaching vision and to learn more about it.