I never read much. Neither as a child nor as an adult. But I have devoured some books again and again. As a child, it was mainly three stories:
- The Neverending Story
- Jim Button and Luke the Engine Driver
- The Night of Wishes: Or the Satanarchaeolidealcohellish Notion Potion
They're all from German writer Michael Ende. Today I try to bring these books closer to my children, but when it's Michael Ende, they are more into Momo. I never found access to this book as a child, but today I discover many things in it that help me to develop.
Creating space for solutions
In the story, Momo is a little girl with the gift of listening to people. She lives in an old amphitheater. No one knows where she comes from and why she's alone there. To her come all sorts of people with their problems. They seek advice or someone who decides something for them or they need someone who listens to them. And Momo can listen best of all. She listens so well that when people talk to Momo about their problems, they usually come up with the solution themselves because Momo gives them the space to do so.
That has so many parallels to coaching. You also visit a coach with a request, a problem, a difficult decision or to share yourself. A coach also has to be able to listen well while speaking much less than his client. He or she must be able to give space so that the clients' concerns can unfold, unravel and reconstruct into solutions.
Why listening is so essential
Coaching is about enabling the client to find his or her own answers, to solve his or her own problems, to create a way for himself or herself to take the next step in whatever matter. Being present, being focused and listening carefully and with empathy from is an ability that is becoming increasingly important in my view. So I try to cultivate this for myself in coaching sessions. In business I usually talk a lot, speak fast and am rather extroverted. As a coach, I mainly listen. Like Momo.
What do you think? Let me know!