Executive Coaching

Working collaboratively, and in strictest confidence, I help facilitate your exploring your habits; guide you in becoming aware of which habits impede your performance and success; and co-designing and implementing appropriate changes.

I do this through visual, and hands-on observations, where I determine the patterns of behaviour you use when executing a task. (read more)

For example, D was the European Supply Chain Director of a blue-chip organization and was responsible for a $600M budget. He was experiencing problems with his boss. His boss was unhappy with his level and style of communication. D spent almost all his time travelling throughout Europe with regular US trips for HQ reviews. D did not realize it but all the rushing from meeting to meeting, and incessant deadlines was causing him to contract into himself. When we started working together he was very tense and limited in his optimism for the future.

On one of his trips D came down with suspected pneumonia and had to attend the local hospital for tests. They over-ran and he was late for his appointment with me. He had been given the all clear, but looked very unwell. As he explained all this to me I noted his breathing rate was 23 breaths per minute; on the verge of hyper-ventilating. Rather than proceed with a regular coaching session I offered to work with his breathing. He soon reached a more normal rate of 14 bpm. He found this had a profound effect on his sleeping and we repeated the breath work the next session. While we were working he had very strong releases of muscle tension throughout his body. He suddenly exclaimed that he knew what the problem was! Within minutes he designed a solution.

The learning for me was that as long as he was contracted in his body, he was similarly contracted in his mind and thinking. When he opened his body he was also able to open his mind and expand his thinking. He is now a senior vice-president in that company.

A further example involves J, a primary school teacher in her early 30s. She was experiencing increasing problems with her voice. Over the years she has developed a hoarseness that would sometimes rob her of her voice. Her doctor had referred her to a throat specialist who, in turn, referred her to a speech and language therapist. J has assiduously engaged in the exercises prescribed to eliminate the hoarseness, but without success.

She came to me and as we worked together I identified a habit she had of pulling excessive tension into her neck and throat muscles. As she became aware of this she was increasing able to reduce this tension, and as she did her voice improved somewhat. But it was not yet fully clear.

We discussed what was happening now, and the onset of the hoarseness. J recalled some minor hoarseness problems while she in teacher training. Working further with her I found a very strong holding in her left ankle. It was very difficult to flex her left foot. When I drew this to her attention she began to tell me of an incident in which her foot had been caught in a car door slamming on it when she was 16. As we discussed this, J began to carefully release the unnecessary tensioning around her ankle. When she stood up she was amazed at the changes in her ankle and could not believe how smoothly it was working. As we both listened to her speaking it was clear her voice had also cleared fully!

J had evidently been holding tension in her ankle for some 16 years without realizing it. This was what triggered her tensioning in her neck, which was originally intended to stifle the scream she wanted to make when the door slammed against her foot.

These are just two examples of how my work helps. If you feel you could benefit from working with me please contact me now.

When we experience pain we can become overly caught up in protecting ourselves and avoiding further pain. Think back pain or headache! This too, limits our performance.

The outcome of all this is increasing levels of stress and muscle tension as we try to push through; stabilise ourselves; or improve our accuracy.

When we are stressed, or under pressure, and have to get things done, we tend to ignore very important signals from within. These range from straightforward pain signals, to proprioceptive signals, to physiological signals.

In the absence of knowing what these signals are trying to tell us, we rely on habits and on what worked the last time we were faced with demands and challenges like these. The result is we sub-perform, or achieve our goals at too great a cost.

Many organisations address this by extensive pre-training. But it still doesnt always work. Many people do not realise they are being driven by fear as they barely engage with change.