Like many of you, I create stuff hoping to positively change others’ lives. I use books, blogs, articles and tweets to introduce ideas. But I often worry that little happens after the writing is read.
Marshall Goldsmith talks about these same worries in his new book, Mojo. Goldsmith writes: “I [have gone] back to many of my clients and assembled data that answered the question ‘does anyone ever really change?’ … Our database has grown to more than 250,000 respondents. My conclusion is unequivocal. Very few people achieve positive, lasting change without ongoing follow-up.”
So for the book I’m writing, I’m trying out a new idea. I’m calling this process self-coaching, and I’d be mighty grateful for a few good women and men to help me test it.
The test will be simple. Every two weeks I will email my partners (you could be one!) 2-4 pages on one of the following communication topics: (1) really listening, (2) seeking common ground, (3) emotional alignment, (4) withholding judgment, (5) asking real questions, (6) suspending assumptions, (7) being a witness to the good, (8) establishing a third-point for conversation, (9) precise conversations, and (10) staying detached. Note: these topics may change as I get deeper into the project.
Each email will come with a super-simple self-coaching strategy and guidelines on how to self-coach yourself on each of these topics using the strategy. Your job, should you wish to accept it, is to try out the strategy and answer a few questions at the end of the two weeks. I’m looking for your feedback on how effective each self-coaching activity is for you and what I can do to improve it. If you have a video camera or tape recorder, you might be asked to record yourself during some conversations. The recordings are only for you to listen to so you can gauge how well you are doing.
Some of your comments (if this process works) may be included in my communication chapter in the new book. I’ll also publish the strategies on my blog after getting feedback, and I’ll include comments in the blog. That way, everyone who is interested can be in on the party.
To each person who provides honest answers on all of the self-coaching strategies, I’ll send a free copy of the book hot off the presses. I’ll also thank you in my book. I hope, though, that the real reward will be that you dramatically improve your ability to communicate and build relationships. I really hope I have the same experience myself.
So that’s the plan. One strategy every two weeks. A chance to try the strategy out and provide feedback. Your comments could be in the book and be on the blog. A free book. A chance to improve your relationships and communication.
If you’re interested, send me an email. The first strategy, on listening, will be emailed to my self-coaching partners this weekend. Deadline, if you want to participate, will be this weekend as well.
My email is: firstname.lastname@example.org