In my coaching work with clients, sometimes we focus on transactional changes (i.e. immediate, near term) but the stronger and more meaningful work revolves around transformational change – identifying something that the person wants to do differently or grow over the long term, and then getting very clear about obstacles and assumptions that might make it difficult.

“Am I clear on what I want to change?”

“Do I know what that would look like (ideally), when it happens?”

“What’s my go-to move when things get difficult?”

These are questions we sometimes work through during a coaching session. They’re also questions I ask myself after a session with my coach. Just taking 10-15 minutes to reflect on what was going on for me in the session, and what I’ve committed to doing. Working something like this at the end of the day to “power down”, or even at the end of the week can help fight the “coming in hot” feeling, headed into the evening or weekend. It can help you recover from stressful moments in the workday, much like extra hydration, mobility & cool down work help you recover after a workout. Also helps us be more present with the people who love us.

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about clarity and how we talk to each other. “Clear is kind, unclear is unkind.”, is one of my favorite quotes from Brené Brown. Doing inner work on ourselves, or even looking at how we communicate within systems at work, the same question comes up – “Am I being clear?” and/or “Are we being clear with each other?” This rolls into a few things that have come to mind this month that I found interesting, and maybe you will too.

  • Nice vs. Kind – HBR wrote an article recently about “The Hazards of a Nice Company Culture” (10 min read), and wow there are some good points here. The “niceness” can sometimes show up as decisions only made with consensus, ambiguity with smiles & head nods all around, and what I sometimes call “confuse and delay”. What if the kind thing to do was to be clear about what we need? Clear in how we communicate expectations with others? There are lots of ways to learn how to do this.

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