Using “Mindfulness” as a Coach

Mindfulness as a CoachI’ve been amazed in the last two or three weeks how many coaches have made twitter comments and blogs about using “Mindfulness” practice to make you healthier, calmer, more creative, successful etc. However, there is so little written by anyone about how they as a coach are using “Mindfulness” apart from signposting their clients towards mindful practice.

So in this blog I wanted to share a few “Mindfulness” coaching ideas that I use as a coach when I am working with my own clients:

  • Preparing for a coaching session, either on your own, or with your client as they arrive for a session, particularly if they are stressed and fraught. A few minutes mindful breathing or a short meditation is a wonderful way to start off your time together.
  • Maintaining your focus in a mindful manner in the coaching session and being aware of what is going on for the client. Giving them some of the “unbelievably beautiful attention” that Nancy Kline writes about in “Time to Think“.
  • Remaining emotionally detached and not allowing your emotional empathy to take over. “Mindfulness” practice enables you to pause mentally and decide what emotions to embrace or not when working with your client.
  • Using positive psychology techniques in a mindful way:
    • Strengths cards or questionnaires
    • “Savouring” exercises
    • Going outside for a walk whilst you coach and appreciate the great beauty of the world
    • Recognising positive emotions in voice tone, words and body language and pointing these out to your client
    • Meditation and visualisation techniques
    • Auto-biographical memory exercises, remembering events/times when the client was at their best and what it felt like.

These are some of the great ideas you can use as a coach. Do you have other ideas you would like to share? Please get in touch or leave a comment below.

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About Lis Merrick

Lis Merrick is Managing Director of Coach Mentoring Limited, the ISMCP Accreditation Chair (European Mentoring and Coaching Council International Standards for Mentoring and Coaching Programmes), a Visiting Fellow of the Coaching and Mentoring Research Unit at Sheffield Business School and she was the EMCC (European Mentoring and Coaching Council) UK President from 2015 to 2018.

3 thoughts on “Using “Mindfulness” as a Coach

  1. Many coaches practise “mindfulness” themselves, but do you use “mindfulness” techniques as part of your coaching? –

  2. I do agree that going outside to appreciate the beauty of the world is important in coaching, but there is one bit that holds me back when working with clients.

    A depressed or very confused client may not be able to see the beauty. Helping them figure out what beauty is (to them), is essential to taking this next step of seeing all the beauty in the world. They are blinded as to why something is beautiful, and as a coach we can’t just say, this is beautiful, and this isn’t. Often it is connecting to a higher source to help us see the light.

    How do you define beauty? Why is that thing beautiful to you? How is beauty of an intimate object deeper than a surface beauty?

    • Hi Max, thanks for your reply and I think your response is very interesting. Remember I am writing about coaching here and not from the perspective of a therapist or counsellor but I do hear what you say.

      I also like the questions you ask about different realities of beauty, as a post modernist, holding different and perhaps competing perspectives on beauty is a fascinating view on life.

      thanks Lis

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