One of the key concepts that you can learn from a coach is Integrity. Normally we think of that word in connection with honesty and upright principles. But it’s much more powerful than that.
The word derives from the Latin integritatem, meaning “soundness” or “wholeness.” For a person to be whole, to have integrity, means that your principles are aligned with your intentions, actions and behaviors.
Why is this important?
Well, when you create certain intentions, you will naturally pay attention to those people and events which are aligned with those intentions. If I’m worried about money, I’ll tend to see information which is relevant to whether I will have money in the future. If I’m worried about certain relationships, I’ll be extremely sensitive to even subtle signals regarding those people.
But what happens if that’s misaligned with my principles? I get extremely frustrated and waste extreme amounts of energy. Let’s say that I want my principles to be that I’m open and available to help people when they need me. But perhaps right now I just haven’t created the energy to be there for people. This will come out in my behavior: Someone approaches me for help, I’m curt and unhelpful, and as a result they go away feeling bad about the interaction.
What’s happened is that I don’t have integrity between my principles, intentions, actions, and behaviors. In this case, I didn’t get any result that I desired, being both untrue to myself and the other person. They’re less likely to trust me in the future.
So this is where a coach can be a great aid: To help you articulate those hard-to-describe principles and values, design intentions and goals which are consistent with them, and then to help you allocate your time, energy, and attention consistent with them.
You end up having Integrity with yourself. Things flow easier, the right information comes to your intention, and people trust you because you’re consistent and grounded.
It really is quite amazing, and I’ve seen so many great examples of people who have been able to achieve this kind of inner peace.