Engage a coach to save humanity from itself

Humans are a clever species. Look at the world we’ve constructed. The very name homo sapiens describes us as wise. But somehow we’ve come to live in a way that is inimical to our nature and destructive of our wellbeing. The organisations in which we work are part of the problem. They are incapable of maintaining bonds of trust with their employees, and obstruct our efforts to sustain our closest relationships.

This is the thesis of A General Theory of Love by Thomas Lewis, Fari Amini and Richard Lannon which attempts to explain the science behind our fundamental need for human connection. Written by three professors of psychiatry, it was published in 2000. In my layman’s reading, its scientific authority has been overtaken by more recent neuroscience. But its date of publication is significant. At the start of a new century, the book aimed to debunk the mythology – whether psychodynamic or behaviourist – which shaped our understanding of emotions through the 20th Century. Insofar as these mythologies remain influential today, A General Theory of Love remains a relevant read. Indeed it seems prescient in its cultural criticism of how Western societies have developed so as to deny our physiological need for attachment, and the social maladies that thereby arise.

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Why coaching works

Coaching reaches parts of the brain other approaches don't
Coaching reaches parts of the brain other approaches don’t

During these past three months, I’ve resumed my Masters studies in coaching – which partly accounts for the lack of posts here.  Aside from earning a living and maintaining family life, most of my spare capacity has been absorbed by keeping across the reading.  So it’s high time to put the studies aside and renew my acquaintance with my blog.

One of the things that strikes me is how my attitude to coaching has subtly shifted since I was last here.  I’ve always paid a lot of attention in coaching to my clients’ conscious sense of self.  I often tend to explore people’s values and aspirations, and what it would take to achieve better alignment with one’s values.  What this often flushes out is that we tend to hold a range of values that may contradict each other – such as the perennial tension between work and personal life.

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