I didn’t start my coaching-and-neuroscience journey as a true believer. I am constitutionally designed to be the bratty kid in the back of the classroom rolling my eyes and thinking (or saying) “Yeah? Prove it!” I actually started my work intentionally looking for where we were wrong. I was anticipating the moment I could tell the profession we were off track and that hard core, rational science was pointing to an entirely new way of working with people. I thought that would be really cool indeed.
But it never happened.
The more I studied, the more I saw the opposite. Coaching works. Being schooled in the Co-Active model of the Coaches Training Institute (CTI), I focused my research primarily there, and saw again and again evidence from neuroscience of its effectiveness. I shouldn’t have been surprised. As a professional coach for the past twelve years, I had tons of anecdotal evidence that the skills, tools and “being-ness” of this model worked to help people shift, discover purpose and move past limiting beliefs and behaviors.
Why on earth was I so convinced I would find something wrong? Well, my own human arrogance and desire to be right, I guess! And I couldn’t get my head around the idea that something could work so well that wasn’t based in research, that was largely intuited. What I now humbly see is that what we know about the brain, especially as it relates to human growth and development, has been known throughout the ages. We didn’t need neuroscience to show us how to help people move forward. This, we have understood.
Somewhere along the way, I asked CTI if they were interested in my thoughts on the Co-Active model, and they said a big yes. And so I wrote a paper on the Neuroscience of the Co-Active Model. But not because they wanted to prove something. Because I, in my own skeptical (even bratty) way, had found powerful evidence that what we are up to, in a word, works.