As a life, executive and organizational coach in the helping professions, I often encounter folks who are trying to ‘fix’ others.
Deborah Adele, author of “The Yamas & Niyamas: Exploring Yoga’s Ethical Practice” has a beatiful and wise way of speaking about this.
‘When we are unwilling to look deeply and courageously into our own lives, we can easily violate others in many subtle ways that we may not even be aware of, thinking that we are actually helping them.
Thinking we know what is better for others becomes a subtle way we do violence. When we take it upon ourselves to ‘help’ the other we whittle away at their sense of autonomy. Nonviolence asks us to trust the other’s ability to find the answer they are seeking. It asks us to have faith in the other, not feel sorry for them. Nonviolence asks us to trust the other’s journey and love and support others to their highest image of themselves, not our highest image of them. It asks that we stop managing ourselves, our experience, others, and others’ experiences of us. Leave the other person free of our needs, free to be themselves and free to see us as they choose.’
Powerful words and indeed, the foundational philosophy of the ‘coaching relationship’.