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CIP_Basic Communication Skills

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>> Hello and welcome back. Previously, we focused on the aspects of effective communication that involve actively and deeply listening to your clients. Now we're going to explore the other side of the coin. Taking a look at the things you can say and do to communicate effectively with your clients, to build rapport, draw them out, and guide them forward. In this lecture, we'll take a look at three of the basic and most frequently used tools of communication that coaches typically implement. Specifically, we'll explore mirroring, reflecting, and summarizing. We'll also talk about how to appropriately address misunderstandings. Let's jump right in. First, one of the more basic communication techniques you'll need to practice as a new coach is mirroring. Now this technique is really simple. Mirroring involves repeating back what the client has said, in order to build rapport and ensure clarity and understanding. All you're really doing is listening to the client and repeating back the key words he or she said. This helps the client feel heard and allows for clarification. Mirroring is a really great tool for rapport building, even though it may feel a bit awkward at first. As simple as this technique sounds, it can really do a lot to foster a connection and help make your client feel comfortable. As you learned in your Health Coach Training Program, mirroring can also involve matching a client's tone, body language, or gestures. When you utilize this skill, it shows that you're tuned into your client. Imagine two good friends engaged in lively conversation. They're talking rapidly and gesturing excitedly. There's a synchronicity that occurs. This is an example of mirroring that occurs naturally. With time and practice, you'll mirror naturally with your clients too. When you're just starting out, the key is to be a little subtle and a little creative so that it doesn't come off like you're parroting or mimicking the client. You want to hang on to the keywords and match the significant body language. It's not about copying everything that they do. Here's an example. Your client says, "I put in a lot of really good effort at the gym this week. I went all four days that I planned, and I did cardio and strength training each time just like we talked about, even though I didn't really want to go and I struggled to get out of bed each morning." Mirroring this client might sound like "You put in a lot of really good effort this week showing up to the gym and sticking to your plan, even though you didn't want to." Next, let's talk about reflection, which is another basic communication skill that all coaches should know and use. Reflecting goes a step beyond mirroring as it isn't just a repeat of words, but it also conveys the emotions, thoughts, and nonverbals that the coach is picking up on. Reflecting builds rapport, but also nudges the client to explore what they're saying further. Reflecting demonstrates active listening on the part of the coach, while giving the client an opportunity to hear the power and the weight of their own words. There's something really powerful about that. And maybe you've witnessed this in your own life. When you express a thought or belief and then have the opportunity to hear it out loud, coming from someone else's mouth, it can inspire deeper thinking and discovery. It's a chance to stop and think, "Yes, I really do feel that way" or sometimes the reaction is more like, "Actually, when I think about it, that's not quite it." So let's work with the same example to help distinguish mirroring from reflecting. Your client says, "I put in a lot of really good effort at the gym this week. I went all four days that I planned, and I did cardio and strength training each time just like we talked about, even though I didn't really want to go and I struggled to get out of bed each morning." Reflecting back to this client might sound like, "I'm hearing that despite your initial resistance you stuck to your exercise goal this week. And it sounds like you're feeling proud of yourself." See how this is less about repeating the actual words and more about conveying back the meaning. This is a simple reflection. Simple reflection sound a lot like mirroring because they're pretty much just a paraphrase that starts with "it sounds like" or "what I'm hearing is." There are also double-sided reflections. And these are useful when you hear conflicting information from a client and you want to point out this discrepancy in a constructive way. Double-sided reflections are great because you're using the client's words, not your own, to point out that they're saying one thing and doing another. You can use these to point out discrepancies in words, emotions, or behaviors. The goal is to engage the client and encourage learning and self-discovery. So an easy example here is a client who's working with you on the goal of crowding out sugar for the month. Yet, when you go over his food journal with him, you see that he's still drinking sodas at work and eating cookies at night. A double-sided reflection would sound something like this, "Help me understand. On the one hand, you've told me that your number one goal is to cut out sugar this month. And on the other hand, you're telling me that you're still having soda and cookies most days. Can you share with me more about that?" This is a safe way to get the client to talk about why they're not staying accountable to their goal without feeling judged. There's also something called an amplified reflection, which is more complex. An amplified reflection is when the coach makes an educated guess about what's going on using other cues they're picking up on from the client. The coach is adding meaning and reflecting the emotions they heard in the client's voice or demeanor. So with an amplified reflection, you're essentially affirming their struggle, their effort, or their mixed emotions or whatever else it is you're picking up on. Using our last example, maybe this is the second time this has happened, and you decide to approach this client with an amplified reflection. This could sound something like, "Help me understand. On the one hand, you've told me that your number one goal is to cut out sugar this month. And on the other hand, you're telling me that you're still having soda and cookies most days. It seems as if something is standing in the way of you and your goal. What happened?" The key here is not to jump to conclusions or sound judgmental. You're gently cracking the door open for them to open up about what's going on, not trying to expose the full picture. And finally, you can also use reflection as a way of integrating and connecting your client's previous experiences with their current thoughts. This can help clients to recall previous commitments, thoughts, and feelings. You might say, "Based on your experience you shared with me last session, I get a sense that cutting out sugar is your top priority. But it sounds like there are some challenges that are standing between you and your goals." As with everything else, the coaching tool of reflection takes practice, and it'll get easier and easier over time. With enough practice, this skill will become second nature. Okay, so moving on, another profoundly important and related coaching communication is summarizing. Summarizing involves concisely reflecting back the main points that the client has shared. New coaches should jot down notes with the client's permission to help them keep track of their ideas and issues being discussed. These notes can be used for summarizing long responses at the end of the session or the beginning of the next session. Summarizing helps the coach to see if they've heard the big picture accurately. The client can either affirm, reject, or clarify what the coach presents. Summarizing is great because it ensures that the client knows that they're being heard. Not only does this technique help build rapport by showing that the coach is paying attention, it can also help the client move into greater clarity if the summary doesn't resonate with what they really want. This can reduce the client's resistance and encourage further discussion. You can initiate a summary with, "What I hear you saying is" or "Let me know if I got that right." Okay, now we're at a good point to take a look at how to handle misunderstandings. Sometimes during the course of a coaching relationship, a misunderstanding or miscommunication will arise. Now this is bound to happen. It's only natural since there are many filters, hidden assumptions, and biases that exist between the giver and the recipient of communication. As a coach, you can usually patch up any misunderstandings swiftly and sincerely by acknowledging it and asking for clarification. This will help build trust and rapport. Here's an example. You could say, "Gosh, I'm sorry, I misunderstood. Thanks for clarifying that. I'm really grateful you took the time to explain. Now I have a clearer sense of what you want." The key here is to be sincere. So come up with a simple sentence like this using your own words and use it when misunderstandings arise. All right, so now you have a good idea of how to use three basic communication tools with clients, mirroring, reflecting, and summarizing. Mirroring involves repeating or copying something a client says or does. This enhances your connection and invites him/her to go deeper. Reflecting is all about paraphrasing what a client has said. It can also convey an interpretation of what isn't being said, like emotions, thoughts or other nonverbal cues. Repeating a client's words out loud can help them feel the power and the truth of their own words or hear if what they're saying is a bit off base. Reflection conveys active listening and builds rapport while helping the client build clarity. There are simple reflections which can sound a lot like mirroring, and more complex types like double-sided reflections and amplified reflections. Reflections can also be used on an advanced level to help clients integrate and connect with previous experiences. Summarizing is a concise way of providing an overview of what the client has shared. Providing a summary builds rapport by showing the client that he/she is being heard, allows an opportunity for the coach to check if they're understanding the client correctly, and gives the client an opportunity to move forward. When helping clients connect the dots, misunderstandings on the part of the coach can occur. When this happens, it's best to address misunderstandings in the moment by calmly and sincerely acknowledging that you made a mistake and then asking for clarification. Take some time this week to practice these basic communication skills. In addition to using them in your buddy coaching sessions, you can even work them into your everyday conversations with family, friends, and coworkers. That's all for this lesson. See you next time.

Video Details

Duration: 11 minutes and 32 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
License: Dotsub - Standard License
Genre: None
Views: 21
Posted by: ninaz on Sep 9, 2019

CIP_Basic Communication Skills

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