The man opens his eyes, moved to tears. He is speechless. I give him the time and space. After a few moments of silence, I ask him: “What did you see?” The man says a few names of people he knows and then is overcome with emotions again. He is in a precious space of safety in which vulnerability can unfold and blossom. After that he starts describing what impact he had on this people and how grateful they were. How the gratitude touched him and that he wanted to do more for people, much more.
This is a snippet of a coaching session in which we explore for life purpose. This man is a coaching client.
Here another example of the same life purpose exploration:
The man opens his eyes and looks at me confused. I ask after a few moments;”What did you see?” He starts describing the place he grew up at. Then he stops. I ask him:”What impact did you have?” He says: “I don’t know.”
This man is also a coaching client.
Lets take a look at both of these men from a factual and objective viewpoint. Both clients are men, approximately the same age group, same demography (Caucasian middle class, both Europeans), similar education, similar family situation (wife, no kids). Both of them I talked through the same visualization for life purpose exploration. So what is the difference?
One was able to visualize and feel the place completely. The other had a a hard time getting into it and didn’t experience much.
There might be a myriad of explanations: one had bad day, the other didn’t. One is frightful the other one isn’t. One feels safe to open up, the other one doesn’t. One is caught up in his own stories, and the other one isn’t. And so on.
I believe that many of these possible barriers can be overcome with immersing coaching clients into a virtual/augmented reality. Because our response to stimuli in virtual (VR) and augmented reality (AR) are just the same as in real life. People who are uncomfortable in real life with spiders, will be so on VR & AR. People who respond positively to smiling faces and gratitude in real life will do so in VR & AR.
To summarize, lack of imagination (for whatever reason) was standing in the way of one client and opening up new possibilities for another. Would the man not responding to my auditive stimuli (speaking him through the visualization) respond to the same life purpose exploration embedded in VR & AR?
Looking at the results that have been achieved in therapy, a good guess would be that the chances are 30 to 40% higher with the support of VR & AR. That means instead of having 2 out of 4 clients that respond to this visualization we will have 3 or even 4 out 4 people benefiting from the amazing experience of finding their life purpose. In brief, going from 50% to possibly 90% success. All people are reaching the top of pyramid of humans needs (Maslow pyramid). How great would that be for the coaches/therapists and the people they work with?
Fellow coaches & therapists: Have you go similar stories? What obstacles do you encounter? Please share.
Nadja Muller-den Blijker
(Image: Survival Evolved & Hitman Absolution)