I am fresh from a mastermind retreat with established coaches and brimming with excitement and gratitude. You know how it feels to be energized by powerful conversations?
The rich relationships and collaborative learning are even more valuable when we harvest the gems and use them to transform our mindsets, habits and results.
The moments with the biggest impact in my retreats are when powerful questions get asked at just the right time. The right question can do more to motivate a coaching client into playing a bigger game than reading a whole bookshelf of inspirational books or attending several ‘how to’ seminars. Why is that? Questions, when phrased and timed well, entice us to go inside and look around the many rooms of our heart-mind. We emerge knowing ourselves better than we did before.
Here are seven great coaching questions to ask your clients, or yourself!
1. What do you want?
2. What’s holding you back?
3. What is it costing you to continue holding back?
4. How do you want to change your mind’s programming on that topic?
5. What new habits will you put in place to fortify your new mindset?
6. What is the most meaningful action you could take now?
7. What new skills or support systems will ensure your success?
These are just simple coaching questions. But even the most successful coaching clients will get continual value out of these kinds of questions. The right question can help anyone zoom past obstacles and into a power zone of action and attraction.
Anatomy of a Powerful Question:
– Come from a place of genuine curiosity.
– Are direct, simple and usually open-ended.
– Generate creative thinking and surface underlying information.
– Encourage self reflection.
A question is most powerful when neither the asker nor the responder knows the answer, until the question is answered. Think about it. If we can ask our coaching clients questions that bring out fresh information, we’ve brought about growth and transformation.
Keeping the Inquiry Alive
What makes the right question even more powerful? When you probe for deeper answers. One question may only scratch the surface. If you want to coach in the most masterful way, take the question to its deepest conclusion by asking the simple follow up question: And what else?
See how this simple follow up deepens the question and draws more from the coaching client:
What do you want?
And what else?
What’s holding you back?
And what else?
What is it costing you to continue holding back? And what else?
See what I mean?
The best treasures are buried deep. Try these questions on yourself and then use them to support your clients as well.
Cristina Madeira is a Certified Executive Coach.
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