My first business coach, who in so many ways was truly a wonderful coach and mentor, taught me a lot about boundaries. She was the first person to really open my eyes to the dangers of over-giving and allowing yourself to be treated (or treating yourself) like a doormat.
I will be forever grateful for all she taught me in this area. I really learned how to respect my time and respect my boundaries because of it.
And this is a big “but”.
Her attitude, which mirrors the attitudes of many coaches and practitioners these days, was one that veered on the side of slight stinginess when it came to GIVING to clients.
Only give clients the amount of session time you contracted for.
Put a strict limit on what you share and what you don’t.
If more is required, charge more.
If you, as the coach, are being asked by your clients to stretch, don’t pay attention. It’s not part of the job.
My attitude, has always been different. It’s a simple philosophy that yields incredible client results:
For many coaches, this may be a no-no, but I’m proud to admit: I give my clients extra time when they need it. I hop on the phone for a quickie 5 minute convo if necessary in between sessions. I reach out just to see how clients are doing. I add extra calls onto group programs if I sense more from me is required. I make myself available as much as I can. I comp clients into other smaller programs I lead if I think it will benefit them.
To be clear: This isn’t over-giving. I give only only with love, and only only if it feels aligned to me and if it isn’t a drain to give. Never out of duty. Never out of fear. Never with regret. And never with leaky boundaries or container.
And here are the results of Generosity in your practice:
- Clients get better results because they get what they need from your work together
- Clients trust you more because they see that you are really there for them, that you truly care
- The coaching relationship becomes a corrective container for clients who never really felt seen or heard, or who have issues with scarcity and not having enough, or who feel they don’t deserve support. The healing that is possible when you add generosity & largess to the mix is enormous. It’s incredible to watch.
Would love to hear your thoughts on this one!
I’ll post it over on the FB group here; join in on the conversation!