It has often been stressed that professional coaches do not manifest precise intentions on client content or results. Coaches are indeed not to influence the content of client decisions, nor to suggest client options, nor to push for coach solutions. They are just to respectfully accompany clients, as partners who fundamentally welcome client identity, allow for their autonomy, embrace their choices, serve their development, support their ambitions, etc. without ever influencing any of these, in any way.
This coaching posture definition may be interpreted in a very limiting way:
- If coaches are not to demonstrate any precise intention on the nature of client content and results, does this mean that while supporting client work they are to adopt a totally neutral, transparent, non-committal, invariably positive accompanying posture.
It has often been stressed that professional coaches do not harbor or manifest precise intentions on client content or results. Coaches are indeed not to influence client decisions, nor to propose specific options, nor to push towards given solutions. Coaches are just to transparently accompany clients as partners, to fundamentally respect client identity, to allow for the development of client autonomy, to embrace their choices, to serve their independent development, to support their ambitions, etc. without ever influencing any of these, in any way.
- Caution: Such a totally respectful coaching posture definition may be interpreted in a very limiting way:
Indeed, if coaches are not to demonstrate any precise intention on the nature of client content and results, does this mean that they must adopt a totally neutral, transparent, non-committal and invariably positive accompanying posture?
Such a non-influential coaching attitude has often been very strongly stressed. As a consequence, many coaches seem to actively hold back from influencing their accompanying process in any way, to the point of almost never interrupting client work, never manifesting emotional involvement, always keeping a neutral, non-committal stance. Such coaches carefully restrain themselves by withholding personal input, intentionally embracing long silences, consciously leaving the whole coaching space open to allow for totally unhindered client progress.
- This posture often comforts unknowing coaching prospects who cynically wonder what coaches actually do if they do not provide concrete, material content to client issues. How can this really be a profession?
To be sure, acquiring a truly respectful coach frame of reference is often a challenge for those originating from engineering, consulting, psychological or other expertise-driven backgrounds, for such professionals who feel the need to guide, to help and support, for those who have developed capacities to analyze and then share what they consider is pertinent information or advice. Such coaches often experience difficulty restraining their natural tendency to input acquired knowledge, to nudge clients along their paths with more or less influential content or relationship-oriented focus, to ask leading questions, to share knowledge or strategic vision, to actively participate in the design of performing action plans, etc.
- But no matter how immediately practical or altruistic these motivations may be, it is still clearly stipulated coaches should not influence the content of client issues or solutions.
Questions may arise, however, as to the measurable added value provided by a totally non-influential coach attitude if it is applied to the whole coaching role and posture.
- Such an approach could restrict a coach’s role to one that merely follows clients, much like a shadow, presence or witness, although sometimes protective and supportive.
- Such a hands-off coach attitude may be perceived as quite laid back, illustrating a form of non-committal absence trained to appear positive about almost any type of client work.
- Paradoxically, such a posture does influence the coaching processes and coaching clients, if only by slowing these down, by allowing ample space for meandering, uncertainty, hesitation, doubt, etc.
Paradoxically, also note that non-communication and non-interventionism are forms of communication and intervention. For quantum physicists as we shall see below, it is an illusion to believe that observation or witnessing does not influence the behaviors and results of whatever is witnessed.
- According to quantum mechanics, we are all actively participating observers of our universe. There is no way we can be outside of what we observe.
This is a fundamental principle of quantum reality, in complete contradiction with the belief that one can observe an experiment from an external non-influential position, and not share responsibility for its results.
Today, such a systemic or quantum perspective, one that assumes observer or witnessing responsibility, needs be applied to the coaching context. When coaches accept they are participating observers rather than neutral onlookers in the coach-client conversation, they can become much more powerful accelerators in the co-creation of new client realities. Assuming such an intentionally co-responsible form of coach presence and responsibility could indeed serve highly performing client progress and achievements. Note, however, that to be true to coaching philosophy and posture, this intentionality is not to be focused on client content, but on the coaching context and process. To phrase this perspective simply:
- The more focused and intense a coaching relationship and conversation, the deeper the quality of the client dialogue .and the more performing the client outcome
This coach-and-client focus and intensity allows new perspectives to emerge more immediately, as would options, action plans and measurable coaching outcomes or client and coach tangible results.
The important words here concern focus, intensity and immediacy. These stress the importance of coach and client capacity to instantly and very powerfully align. This is what helps clients achieve more immediate results no matter the content of their subjects, issues and ambitions.
Focused intensity and immediacy are to be considered coaching process skill-sets. They have nothing to do with the variety of contents that may characterize client concerns in any given coaching situation or relationship. Consequently:
- Coach intense presence, strategies and skills to achieve immediate results can be implemented no matter the client’s field of interest or range of concerns.
An appropriate quantum theory equation for the above intensity or energy-related perspective may be extrapolated from the famed Einstein e=mc2. This formula postulates that energy as measured by momentum, or tangible movement is intimately related to mass multiplied by speed.
- More specifically in e=mc2, kinetic energy (e), think of a client’s ultimate capacity to act, react, shift, change, move or achieve, is equal to client mass (m), such as the weight of a client’s issue, content or body, multiplied the speed of light squared (c2).
Consequently, in order to achieve extraordinarily powerful coaching results very practically measured in the form of accelerated client momentum, this equation interestingly underlines the importance of applying speed, if not lightning speed, to disrupt client perception of an issue, or content or client mass!
- To resume: The heavier the client issue, the more speed is of the essence!
Interestingly, such a quantum-based coaching frame of reference would support all forms of coaching skills, strategies, and processes that favor high speed if not immediacy. Consider:
- Any just-in-time approach,
- Any highly reactive strategy,
- Any impromptu response,
- Any improvised reflex,
- Any short and urgent interruption and reaction,
- Any intuition-based, flash-coaching session.
- In essence: Just do it now!
This approach to coaching could have us seriously question all forms of long, drawn-out coaching processes that include complex tools and preliminary procedures. It would rule out coaching procedures that require over-detailed contracting foundations, multiple preparatory interviews, hour-long coaching meetings that are programmed over weeks, expanded over months.
- In effect, consider that all temporizing strategies just add to client mass: The slower the coaching process, the heavier it gets, both for the coach and the client.
Instead, a quantum-based systemic coaching frame of reference favors coach attitudes, skills and strategies tailored to achieve urgency, intensity, and immediacy by very specifically eliminating the time factor right out of all interstices that may be inserted into the coaching process.
- EXAMPLE: Consider CEO’s telephone call: “Are you available? I have a really urgent issue.” The coach immediately answers: “Yes, I have a few minutes. Shoot!”
The prospect then says she is on a short break, attending an ineffective, blocked meeting focused on finalizing a vital merger between her company and another complementary organization.
She then proceeds to describe their stalemate’s context. Within two minutes, the coach first asks if he may interrupt the client detailed description, and then serves her a short question:
_“If you and them were preparing your wedding, how would you ensure that all keep your focus on your essential purpose, together?”
The client first remained silent, and then uttered: “OK. Thanks. I’ll call you back”, took a deep breath, and returned to her meeting.
- The coaching question is based on an obvious immediate analogy: a merger between two companies is obviously the equivalent of a wedding. The purpose is to unite two partners for life!
The coaching comment just aimed to disrupt client mass and help reorganize it in a different frame of reference. A few days later, the short conversation was followed-up by another short call during which the client shared obvious progress, and two weeks after by third concluding dialogue. During this final call, the coach asked the CEO how much he should charge her for the coaching service. She answered: “Your price is mine. Just send me your invoice.”
Obviously in formal coaching terms, the above real-life example is completely unorthodox; especially if one is to respect formal contracting processes taught in coaching schools and actively supported by professional coaching associations. Stop, however, to consider the following:
- Although drawn out on three calls, the main transformational process took place within minutes, in the first coach-client exchange.
The second call was in fact a simple and short follow-up on incremental details, and the third a more banal conversation serving to validate and conclude the totally improvised accompanying process. This example of a very successful real-life flash-coaching experience merits some consideration.
- The highly reactive entrepreneurial client very rapidly re-focused on purpose to achieve what she perceived to be an extraordinarily tangible added value.
Rest assured that the top-level coach fee was not even discussed. When the subject was approached, the client already knew what she had bought. She already had her results. Indeed, how can one monetize the value of a coaching process that allows a client to instantly refocus, gain millions on the short term and exponentially multiplied potentials in her longer-term future?
Although the client knew the coach from another organizational coaching process that had taken place years before, this event concerned a totally different company with which the coach had no prior contact.
As soon as the coach made himself available and said “shoot” the calling prospect instantly became an embraced client. This immediate availability is priceless for truly active entrepreneurial leaders.
In keeping with immediate coach reactivity focused on instantly achieving results, there were no preliminary interviews to physically meet or organize a structured coaching process. As a consequence:
- The coach was not asked to go through an internal purchasing, selection and administrative process.
- There were no written contracts to sign, no formal evaluations to demonstrate future achievement of measurable results, no three-way meetings to iron-out political contexts, or later to conclude, etc.
Both the coach and the client considered themselves immediately competent to fast-forward into a solution-oriented context.
- Following these three short calls, there were no other follow up conversations or events focused on accompanying the same issue or client any further.
Totally adapted to the client and coach’s agile energy flow, the issue was considered totally solved by the two parties. They moved on to the rest of their lives. Most probably, however, one can bet this client will keep that coach’s phone number handy.
Note again that the above example does not demonstrate much respect for meticulous contracting, action planning and a number of other more formal structuring, protective and controlling procedures such as those often laid out by coaching schools, professional associations, HR internal processes, purchasing departments procedures, etc.
This last observation does not mean that quantum-based systemic coaching makes it a point to avoid such useful professional coaching and organizational contracting guidelines. Much to the contrary:
- Quantum-based systemic coaching just aims to achieve extraordinary results by favoring lightning immediacy to instantly disrupt client mass.
Obviously however, such an intensely reactive fluid coaching process immediately focused on achieving instantaneous client effectiveness and results calls for a complete change of coach frame of reference. This quantum-based coach paradigm rests on a number of contextual prerequisites, some of which are detailed below.
THE NEWTONIAN COACHING PERSPECTIVE
In more conventional coaching, consulting and organizational contexts, clients routinely bring in an impressive mass of content. They expect this content to be central, to anchor the coaching process. This anchoring process is well exemplified by organizational Powerpoint time: clients typically need and want to justify, explain, expose, over-detail, argue, etc. Such client content concerns details on their history, their context, their issues, their goals, their problems, their ambitions, their hurdles, etc.
- In a traditional coaching equation, this initial client focus is the equivalent of providing mass. This mass is delivered to the coach in the form of very pertinent, complete, if not over-detailed historical and contextual content.
This mass-oriented focus is what clients habitually do within their issues and organizations. Indeed, should clients already have achieved very high momentum and related effectiveness, they most probably would not seek coaching support. Consequently, it is to be expected that coaching clients initiate coaching relationships by first demonstrating complete expertise within their issues by taking ample time to expose detailed content. They expect this content to elicit coach interest. They expect to be understood within their difficulties. This ball-and-chain informational approach is normal client introductory behavior.
But lets face it:
- Most often, client content is what bogs them down and slows them to the point of paralysis. It is what weighs them, or stops their momentum. Client content is client mass.
- The more clients deliver content, the more this content slows the coaching process and the more the coach feels client weight or burden.
Note that whether client content or mass is relational or technical is irrelevant: it still is heavy content. Consequently:
- When coaches provide ample time for clients to focus on content, to let client explain, understand or analyze content, to question client content, etc. they are just validating client mass.
- Any coach strategy focused on content clarification and organization does not help create client momentum, or solution-focused energy.
Of course, avoiding client content is counter-intuitive. Focus on content seems to be quite a logical kinetic approach. One naturally believes it is useful to apply strength or power or kinetic weight to an object’s mass in order to have it move.
Note however, that struggling becomes necessary when one applies energy to move heavy mass. Consequently, when coaches focus their energy either on moving client issues, or on developing the client's motivational energy to move their issues, they directly or indirectly attempt apply energy to move mass as represented by the client’s content.
- These strategies are well exemplified by very positive, empathetic, uplifting, energetic coaches who deploy energy and strategies to develop client motivation.
- Note that such kinetic strategies may sometimes work!
These strategies often do help achieve some form of client momentum. Note however, that such momentum may or may not increase or stall in time, depending on the amount of coach and client energy deployed on a continuous basis, throughout a lengthy follow-up process.
So applying energy to move mass is a very logical mechanical or Newtonian approach. In its different forms, such kinetic energy concerns applying means such as increasing personal and collective commitment, people, money, time, personal persistence if not resilience, etc. These classical strategies are generally achieved at a measurable cost in terms of increased input, and they all take time.
- In this type of equation, momentum may ultimately be gained or lost, whenever means are increased, improved removed or defecting. This justifies longer-term coaching follow-up to ensure client result in time.
Such a mechanical, or means-oriented coaching approach is consequently based on classical a Newtonian worldview. Although not based on a quantum frame of reference, it does work to a reasonable, quite predictable degree.
THE FIRST LAW OF THERMODYNAMICS
Newtonian physics also proposes a number of laws that apply to communication and relationships. These underline the intrinsic limits of Newtonian strategies, and could well be studied by managers and coaches. The first law of thermodynamics is among them, and merits careful attention.
- Exerting any energy in any given direction automatically creates equivalent energy flow in the opposite direction. This creates heat and is called resistance.
Applied to a coaching or management relationship, any intention or energy to directly move mass by applying energy in any given direction will automatically provoke equivalent intention or energy in the opposite direction. That phenomenon very simply explains the dynamics of what coaches call client resistance, and that leaders call personnel resistance to change.
From the above law of thermodynamics, one can extrapolate that stalling coaching or management processes are the result of natural, healthy resistance in a context where energy is subtly, indirectly or more obviously exerted to move clients or personnel in a determined direction.
Such a Newtonian perspective has huge consequences in all relationships including those that occur in personal contexts and corporate environments. Consequently,
- The obvious answer to the common question “how to you deal with resistance to change” is “quit pushing!”
Move precisely, “Quit pushing in your frame of reference with your motives, in your preferred direction to achieve your desired results. Quit exerting that form of intention or energy that naturally creates its equivalent in return. You are creating all the resistance you perceive!”
Obviously, this equally applies to managers and coaches when they apply direct energy or momentum in order to try to move mass.
WHAT TAKES TIME IS POSTPONING
A master coach once said that the two most important sessions in a coaching process are the first and last. All the intermediate sessions inserted in a longer coaching relationship are similar to the many folds in an accordion. They can indefinitely expand the process in order to take more space or time. Consequently,
- All folds in time can be eliminated in order to make coach and client progress more instantaneously.
Of course, the next step is to imagine that the first and last coaching session can also be merged into one.
It is likewise true that if clients have been harboring deep bothersome issues for months or years, it is rather difficult to tell them that one coaching session could be more than enough to achieve resolution and move on beyond. One can imagine that it is much more reassuring to tell clients that at least ten, maybe twenty sessions are necessary to solve their difficult problem or achieve their ambitious goals.
But consider that temporizing, or postponing may very often be at hand here.
- When we intimately know what needs to be done and are fearful of the consequences, it may be an excellent delaying strategy to get a coach or consultant, just in order to buy time.
Client linguistics often provides clear indicators of such postponing strategies. Consider the following response to a coach question that asked what the client wanted to achieve during a specific coaching session:
- _”Well, I would like to try to find out how to prepare the first few steps to test an important project I am considering for my future career.”
Reviewing the linguistics of the response can be quite edifying: Well, (hesitation), I would (conditional), like (pleasure or comfort principle), to prepare (preliminaries) the first few steps (partial approach), to test out (more preliminaries), an important project I am considering (undecided) for my future career (postponing).
Here, the coach could safely bet that client linguistics are illustrating numerous hesitating and postponing patterns that may well apply to other realms in his or her personal and professional life. This type of client language may indeed illustrate postponing strategies in initiating a sports program, in changing food habits, in managing personal and professional projects, in establishing a better life-work balance, in engaging in projects, etc. The above phrase formulated by a more determined client could be much shorter:
- _"I want to plan for an important career project".
The fractal hypothesis held by quantum-based systemic coaches stipulates that clients express themselves through linguistics and actions that illustrate very similar fractal patterns in every aspect of their lives. This means that within seconds or minutes such as when pronouncing a phrase, clients illustrate patterns they unfold over hours, days, weeks or months in all their other personal and professional activities.
- Of course, remember that fractal or hologram patterns are not permanent. We are not dealing with determinism.
People, teams, organizations and all living systems generally yearn to evolve their fractal patterns in time. As a matter of fact, the whole point of all their internal and external dialogues and of all their actions, is to evolve their fractal patterns in order to develop and grow.
At any one point in time however, we clearly illustrate detailed aspects of our inner and outer dialogue by projecting out our actualized fractal patterns, in everything we say or do. Consequently, a quantum-based systemic coach trained on pattern-recognition can rapidly perceive client fractal forms and processes and instantly interrupt these with a pertinent nudge to tweak them into more performing ways to proceed.
THE POWER OF INTERRUPTION
Professional coaches know that listening skills and silences usefully create open spaces for clients and partners to explore, expand, create and become. Indeed, Listening skills and silences are often considered excellent indicators of the capacity for a coach to engage in a productive coaching dialogue.
- Coach and client interruption is obviously needed when facing repetitious unproductive dialogues and behaviors that serve to display client mass.
Coach and client interruptions aim to stop reiterated routines enacted by stuck individuals and partnerships, repetitiously predictable strategies deployed by groups and leaders. Consequently, interruptions may be needed much more often than we may initially perceive.
- Interrupting skills should be underlined as a central coaching competency, maybe as much as coach capacity to really listen!
Indeed, let us consider that useless circular behaviors, excessively limiting frames of reference, totally predictable thoughts and actions, long analytical descriptions of historical contexts and perceived difficulties, etc. all relentlessly lead towards the same unsuccessful results. They desperately need to be interrupted.
- When interruptions bring change, they are said to take courage. When they don't rapidly achieve such liberating outcomes, they are equally useful, but often considered to be disruptive.
Consequently, knowing how to really interrupt can be a salutary coaching and management skill. Real interruptions first provide new space and silence:
- They disrupt.
- They offer us the option to stop just filling our lives with the same known patterns of thinking, emoting and behaving.
- They suggest we delve deeper, in order to make room for real innovation to emerge.
Obviously in personal and professional relationships, interruptions should not be immediately followed by contrary options, counter arguments, rebuttals or escalation into other predictable loops that feed ongoing discussions. Interruptions are to be followed by silence. All interrupted partners need to stop and face newly created routine-less void.
- Etymologically, the to interrupt means to break in the middle. Disruption is an equivalent.
Interruptions and disruptions are therefore stand-alone proposals, opportunities for a healthy silent break in the middle of a discussion, a relationship, a project.
To offer a simple and practical example, when facing the need to find time to write an article, to go on a morning run or to do anything new, one first has to interrupt all other activities.
- “May I interrupt?”
One first has to stop everything in order to make a new empty space. Interruptions first create an uncomfortable void: a blank page, an unclear direction, mental uncertainty: what now?
In the void offered by an interruption may often lurk shadows, doubts, hesitations and questioning. Interruptions disrupt established frames of references. They invite us to face the unpredictable. If we are to experience any form of change of content or form, we first need to stop what we are doing, and to stand interrupted.
QUANTUM SPEED IS OF THE ESSENCE
In order to radically question the well-established above-mentioned Newtonian frame of reference in coaching or management, consider a quantum-based systemic approach. We need to focus on the one underestimated dimension in Einstein’s e=mc2 equation: the one that concerns the speed of light. To put it simply, systemic coaching simply does not focus on kinetically moving client content or mass:
- Following any salutary interruption, quantum-based systemic coaching simply offers a set of strategies and skills for coaches and clients to proceed at lighting speed.
Take heed to clearly grasp the difference:
- The issue is not to simply speed up while preserving the same Newtonian worldview exerting more force to displace mass.
- The fundamental question is not how to push more forcefully by reducing allocated time by a given percentile of minutes, hours, days or month.
That would simply repeat the same mistake, and result in an increase of healthy resistance.
The issue in quantum coaching is to go much further than just shortening deadlines by an apparently challenging ratio while remaining in the same pushing paradigm: Quantum coaching aims to achieve the equivalent of the speed of light squared, or synchronic immediacy:
- A first rather obvious is to radically eliminate all linear energy deployment focused on managing allocated means that take time.
The only time that actually exists in quantum mechanics is now. Consequently, the focus of quantum-based coaching is on how to accompany clients to instantly achieve their ends. This strategy could be defined as lightning speed coaching… or even better! In essence, to proceed in the right direction, the questions that now need to be answered by coaches are:
- How can a quantum-based systemic coach grasp the essence of a client’s issue before it is completely explained by the client, by very rapidly interrupting clients as they are still explaining their issues and goals?
- How can a quantum-based systemic coach grasp the essence of a client’s issue even earlier, when first listening to the client by phone? Or earlier… even before having heard the client speak?
Obviously the answers to such outlandish questions could fundamentally shake our coaching world-view. To be more precise:
- How can a coach intuitively react to radically shift client perspectives before the coaching session effectively starts: when agreeing to coaching processes, or when general goals are made explicit? Or earlier when establishing the initial contract? Or even earlier when first meeting the client or client intermediary? Or even earlier… before meeting with anyone?
- How can any completely successful coaching process take place in seconds or minutes rather than in hours, days, weeks, or months?
- How can such flash-coaching processes help clients instantaneously achieve outstanding results with minimum time or other means, at a pin’s drop?
Most often, such questions all first lead to one common answer: that is impossible! We do not know how to readily welcome challenging questions: those to which we do not already have our ready-made answers. A very common, very normal Newtonian reaction would be to say that if such things were possible, they would already be widely known. Indeed they would have already been done.
In everyday reality, the concept that comes closest to a instantaneous reactivity is synchronicity. Synchronicity takes place when two intimately related and apparently distinc events take place at such a speed that it is impossible to clearly define which came first, which occurrence preceded, caused or is responsible for the other.
- You are remembering a particular event of the past, and as if you were of the same mind your partner walks into the room and spontaneously mentions the same memory of the same event.
- You are pondering about a unusual subject, walk by a bookstore, and a new book on the very subject is highlighted in the shop’s display window.
- You think to call a friend who you haven’t seen for an extended period of time, and seconds later, the phone rings and that friend is on the other end of the line.
- You are stuck trying to solve a specific technical problem that boggles your mind, and are accidently introduced to a person who happens to be an expert in the field.
It is easier to perceive the power of such coincidental events when they unfold between partners who have lived years and miles apart, sometimes on different continents.
- Two unrelated research teams make the same breakthrough discovery and publish separately, at the same time.
- The famed and documented Paoli effect links mechanical disorders to the presence of particular people, or unusual states of emotion or mind. Now wht is that connection.
- R. Sheldrake has long documented instant distant communication that occurs between owners and their pets.
Etymologically speaking, note that another word with a definition similar to synchronicity is coincidence. Different from chance, coincidence actually means that two or more apparently unrelated incidents happen in close correspondence without being related by a direct, visible causal relationship. Between coincidental events, linear causality could go any-which way, just like the proverbial chicken and the egg. Each of the concerned correlated incidents are perceived to be totally independent, or could equally be considered as the root cause of the others. In effect, correlated incidents seem to simultaneously occur in time, sometimes at a great distance, as if related to or communicating with each other at lighting speed, or much faster: simultaneously.
Coincidental or synchronic events are generally considered rare and freak occurrences to the point of often being brushed away as chance happenings. They are to be exceptions that are not meant to question our linear definitions of causal or mechanical reality. By definition in this Newtonian perspective, events that do not have an observable causal relationship cannot be linked in any other way, especially if they occur at a distance, continents apart.
The Quantum world view, however, does hypothesize that we could well be living in a form of fractal or holographic universe in which related patterns are repeated across time and space, from the infinitely small on to much larger and more complex systems. In this way, one’s close observation or knowledge of evolving patterns in any system can offer rather precise indications of what is simultaneously occurring in other correlated but apparently distant and disconnected systems.
- Example: Prior to a first meeting with a new client, a systemic coach is very attentive if not rather tense. This new client had been described as difficult, closed, and unpredictable. At the start of the meeting, the coach is rapidly surprised to discover a rather effective, charming, open, honest, and direct person.
The obvious discrepancy between the rather negative contextual description and the immediately positive here and now connection with the client puzzles the coach, and he feels off balance for a minute or two.
The coach rapidly adapts to follow his intuition and the first meeting quickly proves to be rather successful. Coincidently, the first issue this client brought to the meeting was a troubling recruiting discrepancy: The client had met a prospect that quickly appeared to be the best choice both in terms of personality and competency. Everyone previously involved in the selection process, however, had advised the client against that choice, for reasons that seemed totally unmerited. The client was troubled as to what to believe, and what to do.
Making an immediate pattern connection between the discrepancy in his own client experience and the discrepancy in the client’s perception of this prospect, the coach simply asked: “What does your intuition tell you?” In the same way as the coach, the client immediately knew the prospect was to be hired. The rest of the coaching session routinely focused on designing an action plan to rectify the perception gap in the new recruit’s environment. Simultaneously, the nature of the coaching work also provided numerous leads as to how to modify how the client was perceived in the same context. The two issues were related in a holographic way, and their solutions were implemented as one.
Among other fractal-related strategies, quantum-based systemic coaches are routinely trained to perceive mirroring patterns that occur between processes that unfold in their relationships with their clients and the content these clients bring to the coaching relationship. Indeed, whatever the issue brought by a given client, that issue is inevitably to be considered as also present in the relationship between the coach and the client.
- Example: A CEO and HR agree with a coach to undertake a three-day organizational coaching process that would include their forty top executives including that CEO and her executive team. Details for the event are defined and a date is set for five months later, after summer. The coach is later informed that the dates are moved and that the time span of the event is reduced to two days. A call is arranged to re-clarify the objectives and appropriate means with the CEO.
During the call, the coach asks how many participants are to be involved. The CEO answers 32. She carries on to say the event will only concerns senior managers, just below the executive team. The work, she adds, should be focused on a specific issue: Whenever goals and means are clearly defined with this lower level, the managers have a generalized tendency to unilaterally question and modify their commitments without any prior information or negotiation. As if their commitments with the executive team later didn’t concern them!
The coach quickly caught on. The CEO and HR had originally agreed to a organizational coaching event over three days, with the full executive team, plus the 32-member next level. Unilaterally, this whole agreement with the coach was unilaterally changed, was limited to two other days, without the CEO and without the executive team.
- So the coach asked the CEO and HR if they really wanted the coach to solve with the lower levels what they and the executive team were illustrating in their relationship with the coach. How could the coach decently accompany the solution when taken hostage in the system's problem? And how did that not concern the CEO and executive team?
PREREQUISITES FOR SYNCHRONIC CONNECTION
When such fractal, synchronic or coincidental events are compared, they seem to be experienced or observed when a number of conditions or prerequisites are met: The central prerequisite for synchronic occurrences to emerge is that the concerned people or elements need to be very intensely correlated or intricated. This is an unusual type of very intimate, trusting, respectful and authentic connection.
When that condition is met, the concerned actors are intensely correlated, even at a distance. To give a few examples, synchronic events or connections seem to occur much more commonly between partners, lovers, mothers and their children, twins, owners and pets, childhood friends and other strongly bonded or aligned individuals and groups.
- Both as a cause and as a result of this powerfully deep and fundamental, instant connection, attention is focused, energy is high and presence to one-another is deep enough to defy space and time, which indeed both seem to disappear.
Achieving this state of presence to oneself and connection to another is not new. Much the contrary, it is age old. For centuries and worldwide, individual introspective techniques to serve that purpose have been practiced, experimented and shared. Among others, these introspective techniques include deep breathing, relaxation, sophrology and hypnosis, meditation and contemplation, not to forget mindfulness, a more recent concept becoming a buzzword.
As those who regularly practiced these techniques claimed to achieve a number of altered states of consciousness and measurable physical transformations, much has been done to attempt to measure and quantify such results. Consequently over decades and in most of the introspective fields mentioned above, measurable physical indicators of possibly beneficial alterations and consequences have been studied, tested and published.
Depending on the studies, immediately quantifiable benefits can range from slower breathing and heartbeat rates to lower blood pressure, more regular and synchronized brain waves, reduced pain thresholds, altered sensory perception, etc. Other publications have claimed longer-term, more indirect benefits that may be harder to correlate directly, such as better sports performance, better digestion, higher perceptual sensitivity, better relationships, enhanced management skills, lower stress levels, longer and happier lives, success… the list goes on and may become endless.
- It has also been claimed that when ten to twenty percent of a given population regularly follow such personal introspective techniques, a collective benefit can be measured in the larger non-practicing shared environment.
Although these claims and studies are widely published, accessible online and quite well-known to yoga aficionados, personal-development experts, practicing Buddhists and the such, the public at large still treats such information as mere religious, ideological or sectarian belief, if not just plain hogwash.
On a slightly different note, biological and ethnological observation and research on measurable human and animal relational behavior has also come up with conclusions on the measurable effects of shared attention, presence and intimate communication between members of the same species, if not between species and with plants. These studies also escape the attention of the public at large.
Beyond the simple focus on the individual benefits of specific introspective practices such as meditation and others mentioned above, these studies behavioral and bieological studies provide interesting leads as to what happens when two or more individuals intimately synchronize, tune in or get on the same wave length, as we formulate rather common, deep and moving person-to-person communication experiences.
To be specific, when two or more intensely communicating people develop deeply shared intimacy through a focused and touching or moving dialogue based on shared listening, silences, eye contact, proximity, etc. a number of measurable shared phenomena occur.
- In short, intimately engaging partners seem to lose their sense of separation, to develop the perception of a shared or unitary form or body.
When this happens between two or more partners, physical indicators reveal that breathing and heart rates synchronize. Almost imperceptible microscopic blinks and gestures, facial and body muscles, tic-tac in instantaneous, shared harmony. Gradually, blood pressure and brain waves also start mirroring each other to the point of developing what could be perceived as one shared state of mind or being, one shared body of ebbs and flows, one common vibrating existence.
- When sharing deep, respectful intimacy with another, this tuning-in or aligning process is as natural as it is universal.
Beware, however. Some behavioral technicians consider that gross and concious mimicking or mirroring of another’s gestures and facial expressions can create a useful therapeutic or relational ersatz of trust and intimacy. The results of such a mentalist approach to human connection have nothing to do with the heart of the matter, and are relatively limited in their scope. They do not measure up, by a far cry, to the subconsious, natural, cross-cultural, animal, almost cellular synchronizing effect that accompanies the horse whisperer type of deep, respectful, intimate, heart to heart and soul-to-soul listening, attention and dialogue.
- A deep capacity to align from being to being is foundational to systemic coaching.
CONSEQUENCE / RESULTS
As they synchronize essential bodily rhythms, such respectful shared listening and profound attention takes the partners beyond the meaning of words, to the point of uniting their music into one undivided shared presence, one connected being, one common heart and mind.
From that point on, the partners enter a more intimate interactive bubble that seems to exclude non-pertinent stimuli, relegated to the rank of meaningless noise. Together, in order to plunge into their shared meditation, they signal a clear “do not disturb” message to the external surroundings. To be precise however, this is not exclusion per say. The partners have simply eliminated the time-space between them. They have literally become inseparable.
From that point on, heads get closer, eyes lock in, pupils enlarge, all rhythms slow down, as does the quality of time. As words start coming from heart, tone of voice deepens, and its level lowers closer to whispering. Breathing also calms to halve its pace, except for meaningful, emotionally-laden sighs.
From that point on, words can only serve as poetry, to punctuate a much more holographic communication process. These words just occasionally interrupt a more significant all-encompassing flow of much fuller, intensely expressive silences, emotional waves, surges of shared synchronic meaning, instants of blinding revelations, slices of universal knowledge, a limpid pool of mutual understanding.
Once this quantum-level type of truly intimate alignment or correlation has been forged and consolidated between two or more entities, within any collective or natural environment, little can be done to achieve its dissolution over space and time. The benefits of such powerful connections give a real measure of the type of space true presence, listening, respect, trust and intimacy can provide: one that allows for a totally different, timeless, instantaneous perspective of our shared reality.
The effects and consequences in quantum-based systemic coaching are undeniably measurable. The partnered energy merge, accelerate, refine, purify, intensify, focus into a new form of lazer-sharp awareness. This shared presenceis kin to an augmented reality. It merges with wider-reaching presences and meaning: call it the collective unconscious, the universe's vibrations, our spiritual reality, truth from the soul, connection with biological and mineral nature... In this limpid state, question and uncertainty have simply vanished. Only obvious clarity and direction in the form of true meaning persists. Having emerged out of the intricate blinding folds of their day-to-da reality, as one inseparate entity, unified together within and all-encompassing whole, the partners just know. In this crystal-clear state, there is no question as to the nature of our shared purpose, how we need to be and what we need to do.
From this state of awareness, coach and client decisions, action are obvious. They are neither good nor bad, light or heavy, easy or difficult. They are obiously, naturally necessary, sustainable and healthy, They are fully owned, embodied, engrained, unavoidable. They are there to happen. Fast!