Many people focus on improving their Interpersonal Communication, but often they are not aware of their Intrapersonal Communication* and how it affects their life.
What I like about System Coaching, is that we can apply it to individuals, not only to groups of two or more people. Each of us is a complex system: we play many roles in the same time (son/ daughter, employee/ entrepreneur, husband/ wife, friend, etc.). We have to juggle between different priorities and needs, while focusing on creating the life we want. Not to mention the limiting beliefs, often hidden in our unconscious mind. How can we better manage this complex system, all those inner roles, while facing the external challenges in the same time? Well, System Coaching can help you learn how, and improve your Intrapersonal Communication as well.
Here’s an example:
Alexandra Mihai (Alex) is an experienced journalist passionate about politics. Beside creating an online newspaper alhayatwadounia.com, and growing it to 100.000 visitors, she’s looking for a job. She’s also a student in Political Science, which limits her time allocated to finding a job. But there are a lot of things she can do to put herself in a better position!
We recently had a discussion that helped her better understand her strengths, and how to leverage them.
We start by identifying her main current roles: “daughter”, “student”, “journalist”, “girlfriend”, and “job seeker”. The “daughter” suffers a lot from the recent loss of her mom. The “student” had to miss some exams (because of the trip in her country of origin), and now has to catch up with university courses and exams. The “journalist”, struggles between the passion of writing, less time for it, and the lack of concentration (caused by grief). Although her boyfriend is caring, and understands her situation, the “girlfriend” suffers as well: she cannot give as much as she would love to, and feels guilty. The “job seeker” puts a lot of pressure on Alex’s shoulders, since money are a big issue for her right now.
Until we start exploring them, these inner roles were doing their own battles, sometimes fighting each other on who must grab Alex’s attention and keep it longer. She wasn’t even aware of all that.
We gradually explored each role to better understand its strengths, struggles, needs, etc.
We moved on to noticing how these roles can help each other, and Alex, instead of fighting for her attention and energy.
The “daughter” was suffering the most, so we asked the other roles at least to understand her situation, and be more compassionate. The “journalist” helped the “job seeker” to better present itself, focusing on its strengths, experience and education, and target companies that could benefit of those skills. It even took on a temporary role of “observer”, to better describe her background – and they (“journalist” and “job seeker”) started to collaborate to create a simple website that will highlight Alex’s skills and background. Did I mention that Alex speaks five languages?! Yes, five!
With the “journalist” and “online newspaper owner” on our side, we start brainstorming how Alex can leverage the power of this newsletter, to add more value to its 100.000 readers and bring some additional income. First thing that came to mind was to connect with companies who already know how to leverage such an audience, and offer them a chance to reach out to these readers with valuable content, while helping her build a stream of income. Promotions were also considered, and a few more ideas came out.
By getting some piece of mind (because the “job seeker” got some help), the “student” was able to focus a little more on his study.
The sudden lost of love and attention made the “daughter” cry for help. The “girlfriend” responded with generosity to her request, showing to Alex more love and affection than before. She quickly understood that when you don’t feel loved enough, you cannot give to someone else (to her boyfriend), so she (the “girlfriend”) has to take care of the “daughter” first, and the overflow of love would benefit Alex’s relationship as well.
Alex felt a little released at the end of the session. With a game plan in her hands, she could even put on a smile.
Alexandra gave me the permission to write this blog post. If you’d like to help one way or another, you can reach her at Alexandra_Mihai2002@yahoo.com
This example show one way of how System Coaching works. Different situations and factors could shape in a different way a System Coaching session for individuals.
What’s most important? Helping the system reveal to itself, so it could become more creative and resourceful!
In a future post I will talk about System Coaching for teams.
If you want some help to overcome your challenges, or to accelerate your path to success contact me.
Gabriela Casineanu, M.Eng, MBA, ORSC
Organisation and Relationships System Coach
*Intrapersonal Communication: the way you communicate with yourself, how you handle your own internal dialog. The Interpersonal Intelligence was described by Thomas Howard Gardner, in his theory about Multiple intelligences. I wrote about this topic here.