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Coaching with NLP For Dummies® by Kate Burton

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Asking Powerful Questions

Powerful questions cut through clients' hesitation and confusion to reveal necessary information that benefits both the client and the coaching relationship.

image Evaluate the power of your questions by asking yourself whether they:

  • Demonstrate that you're listening and understand your client's perspective
  • Challenge your client's assumptions
  • Create clarity, new possibilities and learning for your client
  • Move your client closer towards what she wants

This section explores how to ask effective questions during sessions as well as some bigger questions to give clients to reflect on between sessions.

Finding the question that lands just right

One of the NLP assumptions or presuppositions is that ‘the meaning of any communication is the response that you get’. You know whether the question you ask lands just right by the response you get; clients tell you directly, as in ‘That's a tough one to answer!’, or indicate with their body language that a powerful question has stopped them in their tracks.

Finding ways to phrase powerful questions is a process of trial and error. The perfect question for one client may have no effect on another, which means you can't just work from a checklist of perfect powerful questions. You need to test the response, see what effect it has and then frame your next question or statement accordingly.

Allow your questions time to land. ...

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