What do you want to spend your heartbeats on?

When I graduated from my first Life Coaching training course many years ago, I was taught it was crucial to facilitate action with my clients.

“Get the client to take action.”  

“Get the client to set goals and hold them accountable.” 

“Make sure you keep the client focussed on the future.”


Wow, how my coaching has changed – for the better!



Simply Doing ‘something’?

Taking action for the sake of simply doing ‘something’ is a crazy idea. So is focussing on the future if a person doesn’t know how to be ‘in the present’.

If we don’t stop and give ourselves adequate time to mull over options and explore situations from various perspectives, it is likely we will jump into action in a direction that does not truly resonate with us.

Last week, I had a call with a woman who expressed her desire to be coached through a work transition. 

She shared her resistance to signing up for the ‘usual’ productivity, achievement-based coaching style. When I inquired into what she meant by achievement-based coaching, she explained that a previous coach was focused on getting her to do more. There were lots of lists and lots of deadlines but she didn’t find what she was looking for, and she became more stressed.


It’s OK Not to Know

She contacted me because she had read some of my posts and thought I might approach things differently. She was seeking help but she didn’t know what she specifically wanted in her life. She said the thought of doing more worried her and made her feel anxious because of her lack of clarity. I think that makes a lot of sense, don’t you?

Why would you want to take action when your direction is not clear?

When a person comes into coaching, they generally do not know specifically what they need or want. They just know that some ‘things’ such as their work, career, business or relationships are not entirely where they would like them to be. They often experience feelings such as lethargy, frustration, overwhelm and anxiety. Regularly they will speak about feeling stuck and unmotivated.


The Wrong Question

To begin a coaching session with the question, “What do you want to do?” is the wrong starting point. 

This question and similar questions force us into our heads, and they give us a ‘comfortable’ place to respond without having to dive deeper into our creative unconscious where our truth lives.


The Right Question 

Over many years of coaching, I believe THE most important question to ask my clients is, “What do you really want to create in your life?”

Once this is clear, taking action and setting goals becomes automatic and feels natural, because knowing what you want to create will fuel your passion, AND will motivate you to do what is deeply meaningful to you. 

This is a totally new approach.


You Can Choose!

It has taken me over two decades to realise how important it is to begin coaching at this fundamental place of inquiry. 

At the heart of my coaching style is my belief in your ability to tap into your best self. 
You do not need fixing.
You don’t have to settle for second best.
You don’t have to change your personality or put up with habits that are not working for you.

Lasting change is possible, and it doesn’t take months or years of counselling.

What it does take is a desire to live your best life, and sometimes that involves making decisions to change your thinking or your behaviour. 

Today, numerous methods are available to help us achieve contentment, purpose, success and fulfilment. If this is something you’d like to explore for your own life, please contact me, and let’s set up a time to chat.

Our first step is to get to the heart of what is deeply meaningful to you and what you want to spend your heartbeats on.



Monica O’Brien is a professionally trained and accredited Coach and founder of Creative Edge Coaching www.creativeedgecoaching.com.au. She blogs on issues about creativity and small business development for conscious artists and business entrepreneurs. 

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