Coaching and Podcasting Combine for Lessons
Ideas for these blog topics come from anywhere and everywhere for me, and often they just seem to combine thoughts from one part of my life with something from a very different sphere.
And so once again I’ll write about how some seemingly random discussions have come together for me in a way that allows me to share ideas that can be useful to families and those who advise them.
Regular readers will likely be familiar with the fact that I’ve done coach training and certification, that I’m a huge fan of the Purposeful Planning Institute (PPI), and that I have also been on a number of podcasts, on both sides of the mic.
All of these will come together this week in this piece.
Listening Without Judgement Is Where It Begins
Whenever people ask me about the coaching training that I did years ago with CTI, I almost always end up sharing the importance of listening without judgement, because that’s one of the two main takeaways from that whole training.
(The other is “being with”, for the record.)
Of course knowing that you need to listen without judgement and being able to actually do it does require a LOT of practice, but that’s a whole other post.
Being able to listen to someone speak, while suspending your own personal judgement about what you are hearing, is not as easy as it might sound, and for some people it’s almost impossible.
But if you want to be a resource for people who work with their family members, or who own assets together with their siblings, you won’t get far without that ability.
It’s Much More Than Just Listening
At first I really only thought about the listening aspect, but I had a recent A-Ha moment that put this subject back on my radar.
During one of the recent weekly Tuesday Thought Leader webinars hosted by PPI, the guests were Sandi Bragar and Cammie Doder, who co-host a podcast called Money Tales, where they interview guests about the role that money has played in their lives.
During the webinar, Sandi noted that it was important not to judge people as you interview them, and I naturally thought to myself “yeah, listening without judgement strikes again”, but then it hit me.
They’re interviewing people, so they aren’t only listening, they’re also asking!
Asking Without Judgement
So many of our conversations contain questions and answers, therefore much of the listening we do comes in response to our questions.
As you work with people with the goal of helping them through situations, you need to ask about a lot of subjects.
If you want to truly understand someone, which is pretty useful when you are trying to make their lives better in some way, it’s kind of important for you to get their true thoughts.
It should not surprise you that I think that what you ask them, and perhaps even more importantly how you ask them, can be pretty important.
Of course as mentioned last week in Yes, AND… Don’t Neglect the Follow-Through there is no magical “secret list of questions”
And even if there were, you need to know how to ask them (without judgement).
Being Curious for All It’s Worth
The good news is that once you realize how key it is to park your judgement at the door, it actually gets easier with practice.
Engaging and flexing your curiosity muscles can also be a big help, and if you truly want to be a trusted resource to a family, you really should be curious about what makes them tick.
Of course simply being curious doesn’t necessarily force you to ask less judgemental questions, it could actually take you even further in the wrong direction if you get too “inquisitive”.
I’m flashing back to when my kids were young and I can hear my son objecting to my dirty look with “What? I was only asking her a question” after an exchange with his sister.
Judgemental Family Members Are the Norm
It’s actually quite normal for the members of a family to judge each other; many have been doing it for decades.
We can’t expect them to change much after getting so much practice.
And that’s an even better reason why we, as the outsider, need to offer them something different.