ALETHEIA Coaching: A Leading-edge Approach
Coaching as a profession, beyond sports coaching, started in the 1980s with Thomas Leonard. As the profession matures, new methodologies are emerging that expand the range and potency of what coaches can offer their clients. In the book A Guide to Third Generation Coaching, Reinhard Stelter articulates three generations of coaching methodology. ALETHEIA offers a fourth generation approach. Indeed, each generation of coaching provides a specific style of coaching support and, therefore, we need each of them.
1st and 2nd generation approaches: Structure-centric Coaching
Borrowing from sports coaching, the first generation of coaching focuses on solving problems, improving performance, achieving goals, and winning. And given this focus, this style of coaching remains popular among those who solely focus on external results. Recognizing the limitations of only focusing on external results, a second generation emerged that focused on producing internal improvements. Second generation coaching is about opening new and positive future possibilities and leveraging inner resources to realize them. Both first and second generations are structural approaches.
The job of a first and second generation coach is to uncover the structural issues that thwart their client’s success and then design structural interventions to help them succeed. A coach taking a second generation approach observes the client and listens for the client’s structures of interpretation and narratives - how the client interprets their situation, relationships, behaviors, and themselves. Then the coach designs new ways of interpreting, new narratives, and new practices which help the client to embody a new way of being and develop more skillfulness.
The efficacy of structural approaches depends largely on the coach’s knowledge about and sensitivity to structures. Coaches who take a structure-centric approach must amass a large and multi-faceted knowledge-base about cognitive, emotional, somatic, relational, and spiritual issues and how to address them. This creates a significant challenge for beginner coaches as their knowledge gap is both wide and deep.
Structural approaches can be powerful. There is no doubt about this. However, if not used with sensitivity, structural approaches also have the potential to be emotionally wounding. The evidence for this is unfortunately too plentiful, even among skillful and masterful coaches. When the coach views the client only through a structural lens the client can often feel unseen in a fundamental way. Feeling unseen in ways we deem important triggers narcissistic wounding. Addressing this issue requires the coach to be finely attuned to the client in real-time suggesting a more process-centric style of coaching is needed.
3rd generation approaches: process-centric coaching
The third generation of coaching methods are process-centric approaches. Being “process-centric” means focusing on the flow of client’s self-experience in real-time as a sensitive way to attune to what is arising and unfolding for the client and within the coaching relationship. Process-centric approaches are very powerful for deepening self-awareness.
The job of a third generation coach is to support the client in staying in direct contact with their experience through working with bodily felt senses and imaginal felt images that arise in response to the issue being explored. Our felt senses and felt images are rich inner resources for understanding the nuances of ourselves and our relationships. Further, as they arise, appropriate and life-affirming next steps emerge. Through this, clients learn how to get unstuck and skillfully navigate complex situations. This ability is more and more crucial in our face-paced and complex lives.
Process approaches are also very powerful. However, process-centric approaches often struggle to address issues and experiences that are recurring in the client’s life, work, and relationship. Recurring issues are structural issues.
It turns out that we need an approach that addresses both structure and process as they arise in real-time in the present moment.
4th generation approaches: Presence-centric Coaching
Fourth generation coaching methods are Presence-centric. Such approaches are founded on the understanding that Presence itself is the catalyst of unfoldment and development. Thanks to the popularity of books like The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle and Presence by Otto Scharmer, we have all learned about the benefits of being present. Unless we have studied the topic of Presence deeply, we often naively understand Presence in binary way - being either present or not. At the surface, this is true. However, Presence is so much more. Presence is what we are in our Wholeness. And, our Wholeness can be expressed through many different Qualities of Presence. For example, we can be trusting, loving, valuing, courageous, open-minded, resolute, joyful, passionate, powerful, and many more. Presence is the ultimate innate resource for addressing our most pressing challenges and living a fulfilling life.
The job of a fourth generation coach is to support the client in uncovering and experiencing what is arising in the present moment as an ever-deepening unfoldment and embodiment of various Qualities of Presence. As structures arise, the coach helps the client relate to them from Presence in a way in which they unfold their depth. As process figures such as felt senses and felt images arise, the coach helps the client to feel them from Presence in a way that they deepen. Ultimately, working with structures and process in this way enables the client to uncover the innate resourcefulness of their own multifaceted Presence and embody their innate Wholeness.
Fourth generation coaching also has the possibility to deepen into Nondual realization, a radical realization of Absolute Completeness and Unity consciousness.
In the Advanced Coaching Program Level 1 and Level 2, you will learn a fourth generation approach that includes Parts Work, Process Work, and Presence Work. These three approaches are interwoven and seamlessly integrated in a way that will enable you to work skillfully and confidently with exactly what is arising in the coaching relationship in real-time … and, in a way that deeply develops the client’s way of being. In Level 3, you will learn how to support clients in deepening even further through Nondual Work.
ALETHEIA Coaching is one of the most advanced coaching methods currently being used. It marries evidence-based approaches to Parts Work and Presence Work with the timeless wisdom of Presence Work and Nondual Work to form a grounded approach with unparalleled potency for supporting human development.
The core of ALETHEIA Coaching is relationship. All development occurs in relationship. In the Advanced Coaching Program, you will learn how to build and deepen an unfolding partnership with your clients. And through this relationship, you will learn how to skillfully help your clients relate to what is arising in a way that generates profound integral unfoldment - unfoldment of themselves, their relationships, their career, their vocation, their bodies, and their lives.
The limit to the depth you can go with your clients, is the depth you can go within yourself. Therefore, the core of the Advanced Coaching Program is your development as a coach and as a human being.