Clients often want a magic solution handed to them. ‘Tell me how to make myself thin/rich/attractive/employable,’ goes the unspoken plea. Coaches, for their parts, often find wonder in the ‘Aha!’ moments when clients say, ‘Now I see what I can do here.’
The real magic happens when clients identify for themselves the key that enables them to achieve the results they want. They observe exactly how they've been getting in their own ways and see what they can do differently. They find the difference that makes the difference.
Strategies are like a bead necklace that strings together individual components that create a behaviour pattern. They begin with an external or internal trigger. For example, your alarm going off acts as an external trigger to run your getting-dressed strategy. The trigger sets you off on a series of processes that may include brushing your teeth, taking a shower, examining your appearance in a mirror and saying, ‘My goodness, I look better with my make-up on.’ Your getting-dressed strategy ends and may trigger the eat-breakfast strategy. Or you may skip that one and go right to the drive-to-work strategy.
Alternatively, a sub-strategy may run within a strategy. Perhaps you reach a decision point within the getting-dressed strategy where you realise that today is Wednesday, ...