Notes from a Coach Sheltering in Place
Tips to stay engaged with work and the larger life picture while sheltering in place.
I can honestly say that the month of April 2020 was the busiest, most complex and fulfilling month of my coaching practice to date. My clients have had an array of experiences, and I have had the honor of holding space for them. I feel the need to mark this unprecedented global moment in time and specifically how it is impacting me as a coach and my coaching clients and trends I’ve noticed.
I coach all kinds of people going through a lot of different aspects of life. They have experienced promotions, new leadership challenges, new skill acquisition, layoffs, downsizing, perspective shifts (small and large), illness, death, addiction, powerlessness, sadness, frustration, celebration, boredom, health improvements, improved diet and exercise adherence, new ideas, breakthroughs and breakdowns.
I work over wifi, so I was already established with a home office set-up and routine. I noticed my need to shake up my home environment along with my clients, and also learn from them as they adapted to new ways of working. For example, between meetings, I switched rooms to give my clients new backgrounds to look at, and give my body some movement. I offered to do voice only coaching while clients walk outside so that our sessions didn’t feel like another obliged video meeting on top of the many new video meetings that now fill their calendars.
Here are some tips and tools I’m playing with to stay engaged with work and the larger life picture.
Sleep hygiene. Get 8 hours of sleep. Do not work in bed. Wake up and go to sleep at roughly the same time every day. I make my bed every morning before leaving the bedroom. If you start your day consciously doing this one small simple thing really well, you can start building from there. One small thing consciously after another.
Diet. Listen to your body, and give it what it needs to be healthy. Don’t bring the junk food into the house. Be honest with yourself about what you’re eating, when and why. If you’re prone to food issues, get support now.
Exercise. Put it on the calendar for every day of the week. 45 minutes of daily walking outside plus 20-30 minutes of strength building at least 3 days a week. Do what feels good for your body. Try out different times of day, different kinds of exercise, and notice what your body responds to and what works to keep the actions consistent. Do you need a live class to keep you engaged? Do you need an accountability partner?
Connection. Reach out to people who boost your spirit, are positive, don’t drag you down or drain you. Notice when you have an abundance of positive social energy and reach out to people who might need a dose of that from you. Take the risk to share your heart openly. If you have a history of addiction or any mental health needs, do not hesitate to ask for support. If you have a spiritual practice, engage it.