People who succeed in their profession usually won’t think about whether Introvision Coaching (or any form of coaching at all, for that point) could be beneficial for themselves – and why should they? After all, they are successful! They’re in the driver’s seat, things are running smoothly, work is fun – what’s there to improve through this coaching thing?
Through our experience with countless managers in coaching, we have come to learn that even people who do a really good job are not immune to stress. Even they are afflicted by inner imperatives, there are conflicts in the family and/or relationship, they suffer from anxiety or unhappiness. There are sleepless nights because a project turns out to be more difficult then it seemed at the beginning, or missed weekends because the mind is preoccupied by work issues. All of the above are additional stress factors on top of the “normal” stress that comes with the job. This accumulation of various stress-inducing factors will lead to a reduction of equanimity, whether you like it or not.
But more often than not, equanimity is exactly what employees seek most in their superiors, especially when they themselves are stressed out – which, according to all relevant studies, applies to most jobholders. Add to that an interesting phenomenon that has been demonstrated recently through research, namely that to increase an individual’s stress level (as indicated by an increased release of the stress hormone cortisol) it is sufficient for them to experience stress in others, and you will reach one conclusion: stress is contagious! Even if you’re not feeling stressed at first, but you are surrounded by stressed people, you will eventually feel stressed yourself.
Given these interactions, it is ever more important that managers can react calmly so as not to exacerbate the stress of their employees further, even if the stress seems to be processed without problems. In order to maintain a calm and serene composure, it is useful to know which factors can jeopardize this goal.
So how about yourself? Are you, for example, one of those people who are repeatedly accused by their family that you spend a lot more time at the office than at home, and that even at home, your thoughts are at the workplace? Most executives we deal with know this accusation all too well. This simply shows that there are still some concerns that follow them home from work, even if things are running smoothly at the job.
Very often this hints at a more or less subliminal fear of failing. Especially those who are successful often feature the imperative, “I must not fail under any circumstances!” As a manager once said to me: “Failure? I cannot even think about that!” If you find yourself on a difficult path because the task ahead is highly complex or the project seems overwhelming, or if you generally work at a demanding job, it is worthwhile to check whether there might be an inner imperative which commands, “I have to take care of this business – I must not fail at this!”
However, anyone who has internalized this imperative will deal with the fact of failure internally, if only on an unconscious level, for example at night, in dreams or half asleep when we tend to get vexed by these concerns. This kind of stress can be reduced relatively easy through Introvision Coaching. Once you have identified the imperatives that the mind finds to be targeted, they can be resolved. Thus, the inner conflict can be dissolved, and the ensuing stress factor is gone. You may still be occupied with possible difficulties or with unexpected problems, but now in a rational and creative way.
Other managers are stressed by additional factors, e. g., in their private life, on top of the professional stress. There may be conflicts in the relationship, with children, parents or in-laws; for example encounters with parents or in-laws that tend to end in open conflict on a regular basis. These quarrels require loads of energy – and are virtually unnecessary due to the fact that they occur based on inner imperatives that have been dragged around for ages and which may be grounded, for example, on the assumption that “I must not disappoint my parents!,” or, “I must not hurt them in any way!” On the other hand, the individual in question might feel frustrated because of his relatives’ seemingly disrespectful behavior, which instantly triggers old patterns within.
Of course, a professional will still try to focus on his work after a conflicted situation with parents, a partner or children; this can be trained, and professionals are usually well versed in this discipline. But they will need to invest additional energy for this because they have to suppress thoughts and feelings of frustration and anger through a certain amount of inner force – specifically due to the fact that these unproductive energy leaks won’t go away without a fight when they are attached to and powered by an inner imperative. In the process, people will feel more stressed than at days when everything was going well. That it the reason why it is beneficial to work on such old imperatives, even if you have build your life around them and it doesn’t seem to bother you in everyday life.
Here’s an example: a client was successful in leading a small business, but naturally had a high workload in the process. Nevertheless, he made sure to take the time to call his parents on an almost daily basis –even though every single conversation with them was frustrating for him. He made an honest effort, but his parents were still never satisfied. Day in, day out they kept complaining about him not visiting often enough, that life was bad, nobody cared for them – their lamentations knew no limit. And he was severely irritated by the situation. But once he realized that he exposed himself to this continuously because he was strongly attached to the imperative, “I must make sure that my parents are feeling good!,” and was able to eliminate it, he was finally in a position to respond to his parents’ tirades in an entirely different manner. Although he continued to call them just as often, and listened to their whining patiently, he could now handle it differently on the inside – and was no longer bothered by it. The formerly prevailing feeling – “This is really irritating!” – was suddenly gone because for him the inner conflict – “I have to make sure that my parents are feeling good, but they’re not”– no longer existed.
Employing the Introvision Coaching method can help to resolve such internal conflicts in the course of a single session. Those who have experienced it are usually amazed at how relaxed, all of a sudden, they can handle people or situations that had been linked to bad feelings for years or even decades. Incidentally an additional effect may occur: due to the fact that communication systems tend to change as a whole as soon as one of the communicating parties changes, other parties within the system often suddenly begin to react in unforeseen and welcome ways.
In a coaching session with a top executive who was responsible for a project that spanned across several European countries, the task at hand was to do something about his “Rambo-like” demeanor which had elicited various complaints in the past. He had the reputation of mercilessly pushing through his interests, which proved to be more harmful than beneficial to the project in the long run.
An analysis of the problem showed that the driving force behind his disproportionately robust behavior was a conflict with his father, who had thrown him out of the house as a grown up, sacked him from the company, and hardly exchanged a word with him for the last twenty years. During the coaching process, the client worked with this conflict, approached his father, and was finally able to reestablish the relationship because he did so with a new-found inner attitude. As he changed his way of communication, his father behaved differently as well and they managed to find a new level together. And all of a sudden, the client’s problems with the project and its international staff were blown away as well.
The elimination of inner conflicts can have a huge impact on every possible level: once this stress is no longer present, there is room for an inner calm that makes work so much easier – for the manager as well as for the employees. And it really doesn’t take all that much!