Socrates: believed that every person has full knowledge, so through maieutics he helped reach that knowledge, answering through the person's own conclusions.
Plato: emphasized the importance of dialog as a method of self-knowledge.
Aristotle: speaks of the passage of "being" (first nature) to "must be".
Nietzsche: defined the will to power as a prism from which we see the world, which ends up being specific to each individual.
Gallwey: designed the inner game, taking care of the interferences that limit the personal potential, basically limiting definitions and beliefs about oneself and the reality that surrounds us.
Whitmore: promoter of coaching in Europe, took some of Gallwey's ideas and developed them to create a method of his own.
Goleman: defined emotional intelligence as the ability to feel, understand, control and modify your own mood and the mood of others.
Bandler: studied the behavioral patterns of humans to develop models and techniques that could explan the magic and illusion of behavior and human communication, and called it NLP.
Leonard: founder of the North-American coaching, focusing on increasing self-esteem and challenging the customers to take action, to give the best of themselves.
Definition of coaching
Process of thoughtful and creative accompaniment with customers that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential.
It is a process of generative learning, which includes the person's transformation in order to take him toward a more conscious, complete and satisfactory life.
Coaching is a discipline that gives us the tools to be able to "create" our own self. The coach’s role is to be a companion who acts like a mirror, facilitator, catalyst of the consciousness. In addition, Coaching also accompanies us to accept what we do not control, seeking a personal transformation to become the best version of ourselves.
The origins of coaching
Classic Greece and Socrates: Socrates is recognized as the first philosopher who oriented Greek philosophy towards the daily lives of his fellow citizens. ‘Living well’ and how to achieve it was the purpose of his thought (reached when a person knew oneself through reason, managing to reach the truth, understood as unique and unchanging). It was considered as impossible.
The coach is the professional who guides the process, metaphorically the "vehicle" that leads to a person or a group of people from a given origin to a desired destination. Regarding Coaching, it is the process in which the coach and coachee intervene.
Coaching as a modern methodology:
Gallwey developed the "inner game" which develops within the mind of every individual, where the obstacles are internal, difficulting the concentration, and consequently the result of the activity.
Whitmore took some Gallwey's and created a method of his own.
Influences from other disciplines
Greek philosophy: the vision of Socrates, Plato and Aristotle led to the metaphysical paradigm, which considers the human being as immutable. Coaching is inspired by the Greek's purpose of self-knowledge of the person, although Greek philosophy considered transformations as impossible.
The existentialist philosophy: implies that the individual is free and, therefore, fully responsible for his actions. Coaching interprets the man as responsible for his destiny, oriented to the what and how rather than trying to understand the reason for his essence.
Humanistic psychology: considers that only the study of consciousness will help the understanding of a human being endowed with free will. It focuses on the customer and it is coachee who, with the help of the coach identifies, builds and presents solutions to his needs. Coaching uses concepts such as consciousness, potential, freedom, self-realization, and will.
Systemic thinking: the properties of a system can´t be described in terms of its separate elements; their understanding is presented when they are studied globally. This is a fundamental concept in Coaching when the search for the customer means working in his relationship with one or more people. Feedback is also an important concept.
Emotional intelligence: ability to feel, understand, control and modify your own mood and the mood of others. It is not a measure that is established since birth; it must be developed through life.
Neurolinguistic programming: study of the mental processes in order to obtain a formal and dynamic model of how the mind works and the human perception. The NLP attempts to define direct patterns (or "programs") about human behavior related to the language.
Biology of knowledge: self-generation (cells viewed as machines, able to reproduce themselves) is the fundamental condition of life. The key element of the conscience is that all learning is possible thanks to its own ability to observe and to behave.
Leadership and management: the new leaders know that the best victory is the one in which everybody wins, so he/she ceases to be authoritarian and controlling and transforms into an inspiring and encouraging agent regarding the potential of his people.
Neuroscience: neuroplasticity demonstrates the ability of the brain to alter its own structure as a result of experience and learning. In Coaching, learning refers to this deep change process that transforms the person.
Eastern philosophy: the zen points out the path to the self-discovery.
Mindfulness: ability of the mind to be in the present moment. The coach, in the session, can use meditation and conscious breathing to encourage their customer to pay full attention to the present.
Purposes of coaching
The ultimate purpose is to encourage the customer’s learning, in line with his/her defined objectives and with what he/she intends to carry out.
Raising awareness with regards to the client's way of viewing the world.
Encouraging a transformation
Developing skills/competences that will strengthen the client as a person, so that he/she achieves any objective.