Why Wait? Let Your Presence Dance in This Moment!
As the global pandemic reached my homeland, Canada, I intuitively added core elements of the ICF Core Competency of Coaching Presence to my stress management toolkit.
Those gifts aligned with presence, which we bring when coaching clients, have been fabulous in optimizing self-care and alignment during this time of uncertainty.
“Is present and flexible…dancing in the moment”
In this historic time, many moments involve levels of stress-producing unpredictability; it can be challenging.
Through mindfulness practice, I’ve learned the power of centering into the present moment. It involves observing any moment in a focused yet open, flexible and spontaneous way—not judging whatever surfaces—a totally familiar approach to coaches.
For me, bringing mindfulness—presence—to work and life results in an internal energy dance!
“Accesses own intuition and trusts one’s inner knowing—“goes with the gut”
The pandemic resulted in the cancellation of one of my key business contracts. Anticipated revenue was suddenly gone! After processing for a couple of days, my faith—and mindfulness practice—kicked in. I let go of overanalyzing and catastrophizing and shifted back into the dance of presence. As always, connecting to the present moment helped me access my intuition and trust in my inner knowing. My gut sense was that all would be well—and it has been!
“Is open to not knowing and takes risks”
A respected health care professional recently shared there’s no risk-free environment. Stress levels can heighten as societies worldwide phase in re-entry to workplaces, schools and/or public spaces. We’re all learning to accept—or at least tolerate—having to assess multiple daily risks. On the upside, I’m building my risk-tolerance and becoming more open to new and ever-changing dance moves of life and work unknowns.
“Sees many ways…and chooses in the moment what is most effective”
As has been the case for many, my husband, Michael, and I have spent more time than ever with each other in recent months. By far, it’s been wonderful, though, there has been some challenges at times. Can anyone relate to this?! I hear a ‘YES!’”
After a timeout following a heated exchange one day, we explored how to use this time together in more effective ways. One idea was to find out more about each other, even though we’ve been together for 30 years!
I know Michael’s favorite songs, yet I sensed to ask which song brings him calm (versus which one of his favorites results in that feeling.) To my absolute surprise, he shared a song I never heard of. I learned something new about my husband! Michael then played the song on his phone, and we started dancing in the moment—now a regular routine!
“Uses humor effectively to create lightness and energy”
At the outset of the pandemic, I started facilitating a weekly class within a two-month virtual program. Like many, without an option for hair appointments, my natural silver-white “highlights” were surfacing! As Week 2 of class started, I was inspired to dance in the moment by announcing a contest: Guess the correct length of my highlights by program’s end and get a one-hour pro bono mentor coaching session. The contest brought levity and lightness through that time.
“Confidently shifts perspectives and experiments with new possibilities for own action”
As I approach a milestone birthday this fall, I created a balanced action plan to optimize my health, which includes addressing weight. Rather than framing it as a game plan for weight loss, I chose to view it as my “gain plan”—a plan for gaining wellness and energy while losing a number of pounds equivalent to my milestone age! I’ve experimented with new possibilities to stay on track. During our “stay-at-home” period, I incorporated daily freestyle dancing!
“Demonstrates confidence in working with strong emotions and can self-manage and not be overpowered or enmeshed by…emotions”
Last month, fear surfaced when our city made national news as the pandemic “hot spot” in Canada. Apart from the situational facts, I started telling myself scary stories with lots of “what ifs?”
As coaches, we avoid getting caught up in clients’ stories, so I decided to give that gift to myself! In doing so, the fear lessened and confidence increased.
Thankfully, all resolved positively for our community. Last week, our city made national news again. This time, it was noted as “a rare success story” in relation to effectively dealing with the virus.
This article is written in the spirit and hope that my experiences shared may help others through this current time and any other life storms. With that in mind, I’ll end with a favorite quote, by Vivian Greene: “Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass, it’s about learning how to dance in the rain.”
Copyright © 2020 Carolyn Hamilton-Kuby