Podcast Episode 8
Coaching with Presence and Awareness
As we navigate a world filled with constant distractions, it can be challenging to stay present and mindful. As coaches, we know that developing these skills is essential not only for our personal growth but also for our relationships with others. In this episode of the Coaches Commonplace, we share our experiences and offer practical advice on how to cultivate presence and mindfulness in your daily life. We explore how these skills can help you to strengthen your relationships, become a better coach, and live a better life.
Join us as we dive deeper into the world of personal growth and development. In addition to discussing presence and mindfulness, we also explore the concept of attaining mastery in the things we pursue. We believe that by focusing on the things we care about and committing to continuous learning, we can achieve true mastery and live a more fulfilling life. We also discuss the importance of adding value to the lives of those around us. We hope that you find this episode insightful and inspiring, and that you come away with some practical tips that you can start using right away.
This week on the Coaches Commonplace:
- Why humans are so drawn to information
- Attaining mastery of things we care about
- Setting relationship goals and visions to keep them happy as they evolve
- Being present and practicing mindfulness
- Becoming a net contributor
Dean Miles [00:00:00] To which you can then hear him off the mic say, get the corporate jet and get this mom home. Now, what do you think happened to trust? I mean, it was an immediate game changer for sure, because he he was present. It never was about the policy change, the whole culture and that one moment.
Brilliant Miller [00:00:20] Dean Miles, how are you, sir?
Dean Miles [00:00:23] Brilliant. Miller chat. And I wrote a little poem for you. Brilliant, Miller. With intelligence and wit so rare with the kind heart. It’s always there. Hey, not bad. Not bad. Not bad.
Brilliant Miller [00:00:43] Thank you, then. Welcome to another episode of the Coach’s commonplace book, where it’s my aim. And I know you’re enrolled in this effort with me to help coaches, particularly new and aspiring coaches. Live a good life. Be a great coach and earn recognition and money. So with that as the context for our conversation. What are we going to talk about today? I’m going to talk a little bit about Matthew McConaughey and his book, Greenlights. What you’ve been learning from reading it.
Dean Miles [00:01:13] Yes.
Brilliant Miller [00:01:14] Going to talk a little bit about what I’ve been learning from reading George Leonard’s Mastery, a book I’ve really been enjoying. And then we have a few ideas related to principles of good living. Something about how to be a great coach. Something that will help you be more effective to get more out of your coaching sessions. And then also something that we think will help us earn recognition and money and people listening to earn recognition of money for the great work that they’re already doing or that they could be doing. How’s that sound?
Dean Miles [00:01:45] I like it a lot. And I will say this. Hit that subscribe button. Hit that thumbs up button. I feel so dirty even asking these things. But man, does it make a big difference. So it does. Everyone knows the game. Everyone knows how these things work. Now, YouTube’s not new anymore.
Brilliant Miller [00:02:05] Nobody knows how they worked in those algorithms are not public knowledge. This is a black box.
Dean Miles [00:02:11] This is a good point. This is a good point. Regardless. Hit subscribe. Hit the thumbs up button. It’ll make brilliant happy. And that’s what we all want.
Brilliant Miller [00:02:21] Thank you. You’re welcome. So, Dean, let’s start with let’s start with what I like to refer to as our information diet. I like to think of humans as in full force when we are continuously ingesting information. I have a theory about why that is, by the way.
Dean Miles [00:02:38] And we’re all ears.
Brilliant Miller [00:02:40] So human beings are emotional creatures first. I believe as much as we like to think we’re logical, rational creatures, and as emotional creatures, we are always in search of experience. We want to know, right? It’s why we’re attracted to car crashes and headlines, but also things that are beautiful or novel, right? Is we want the range of human experience. We want to experience it all without having to experience it all. We can do that by living through other people’s accounts or other people’s experiences and the rapacious, the hungry, the insatiable part of us. That’s an emotional creature that wants to learn and grow and experience. That’s a way I’ve heard art referred to as a life acceleration device. So whether it’s art or whether it’s the news, you know, that’s what I think this is all about, as part of why we’ll never be satisfied. Even though we’re writing more and reading more than ever before. Yeah, that’s my theory.
Dean Miles [00:03:35] Yeah. Boy, there’s an upside and downside to that. I agree. I saw just in response to the big pivot with A.I. that we’re currently experiencing is that they may call this the age of intelligence, which I think is interesting, but, you know, but there is that dark belly of what you just said and yet will probably never be satisfied. All right. Yeah, I don’t like that aspect. But nonetheless, I think there’s a lot to this. What a time we get to live in to have access to knowledge. Right. And have this knowledge transfer. This is a good book. I really enjoyed it. Greenlights by Matthew McConaughey. I’ve had a lot of friends talk about it and finally got it. And on page 152, he’s got a quote there at the bottom. And I just can’t stop thinking about it. It’s it says, The art of Running Downhill. Don’t trip yourself while running downhill. That mountain you want to climb. It’s just around the corner. Don’t invent drama. It will come on its own. And I think we do that right when all of a sudden things seem to cost a little bit. Things have kind of come together. I’m not saying it’s all worked out, but it feels downhill. I like this challenge by Matthew McConaughey of just there’s an art to this. There’s an art to just in the narrative, know what? The metaphor. It’s not even coasting downhill. It’s running downhill. How does one run downhill? Well. Is that next mountain that’s calling you? Come on up around the corner. What do you think about that?
Brilliant Miller [00:05:21] You know, this reminds me a little bit of what Gaye Hendrix wrote in the Big Leap called The Upper Limit problem. Have you heard have you heard of this book?
Dean Miles [00:05:29] No.
Brilliant Miller [00:05:30] He’s got this profound idea that and I’ll summarize as best I can, but it’s this idea that when things are going well or when they’re just okay, that many people will screw it up by inventing a problem. You know, people who whose relationships don’t seem to work, where they can never find their keys or they’re constantly, you know, like crashing cars or whatever, or maybe getting sick or different things like that, that the theory is that we self-sabotage. On the way to climbing that next mountain, we trip ourselves while running downhill.
Dean Miles [00:06:06] I like that. I read a quote, I think yesterday of everything that you think has been stolen. It’s actually right where you left it.
Brilliant Miller [00:06:16] It’s very Zen. It’s very.
Dean Miles [00:06:18] Sad.
Brilliant Miller [00:06:19] Well, speaking of Zen, I’ve been reading this book, Mastery by George Leonard. I have. I know this is kind of a classic in terms of personal growth. But it’s a little bit of a sleeper. And I’m finding it really fascinating because George Leonard started practicing Aikido when he was 46, and then he studied and ended up teaching Aikido over the next 20 years. And he has lessons from his own experience living and then also in martial arts and different other different disciplines. But part of what I love, he has these five keys to mastery. And the third, I think it’s actually the second one is practice, which is so perfect for coaches, right?
Dean Miles [00:07:03] Yeah, that’s so good.
Brilliant Miller [00:07:04] We have a coaching practice, but what he distinguishes is the difference between a practice as a verb and a noun. And the idea of, you know, when we think of practice as a verb, it’s something we do. You know, maybe you go to the driving range or whatever. You play the piano, you maybe do a few scales, you’re practicing. But he says that a true key of achieving mastery in anything is to not think of practice as a verb, but instead of as a noun that you turn your practice into a practice. And what is your practice? And how interesting that is. Isn’t that a cool thought?
Dean Miles [00:07:40] It is a really cool thought. The part that scares me is the that top word on that book. Read the top word out loud, slowly.
Brilliant Miller [00:07:50] Mastery.
Dean Miles [00:07:51] Mastery. So now we’re. We’re not just practicing. We’re not just. Kind of just doodling around. Mastery. Yeah, that takes practice as it now. Go ahead.
Brilliant Miller [00:08:05] Yeah, that’s right. And even I’m thinking now of Steven Press filled. You know, he’s written this fantastic book, The War of Arts. But the creative process, we all encounter resistance. It’s for anybody involved in any creative process or building a business. I think it’s it can be a great book to read every couple of years at least. But he’s also written a book called Turning Pro. It’s about this idea of committing. Right to being a professional at what you do and not a dabbler, not, you know, a dilettante, something like that. And I think that’s an interesting thought, as well as just making that decision, making a commitment.
Dean Miles [00:08:45] Yeah, well, it really starts to get to. We’re not talking about you on your good day anymore. Right. Right. We’re talking about the off days and how to what level can you minimize those? For me, that’s that’s getting to that place of mastery. I’m reminded of just the guild process. Art’s use this, electricians use this. Right. Different specializations where you go from a student to a professional. No student to an apprentice, to a professional, to a master mastery. Sometimes I think we throw that word around and don’t really feel the full weight of what that word is. I’m taking a class by this doctor. Shrink a morale. He’s in the hundred coaches that Marshall Goldsmith’s started, but he’s also a very well-known. Besser it like Harvard and I think Columbia of their master programs. And the classes are on creativity and personal mastery. And man, as this pushes me, I’m just the mental chatter that I have. Mm hmm. And. And these mental models that I just have grown up with, and he makes the statement that we’ve been trained our whole lives to be unhappy. Just that alone will knock this south Louisiana mind off the chair. Well, I’m.
Brilliant Miller [00:10:20] Going to capitalism be without unhappiness of the masses.
Dean Miles [00:10:23] Exactly. That’s exactly right. Yeah. Dr. shrieked. Mama doesn’t allow for me to ask those types of questions. It’s like, yes. And say yes, grasshopper. Good question. But I think for coaches. There is something about pushing yourself to that level. The goal needs to be mastery. Now may take a lifetime, but it needs to be the goal. I’ve reference before Marshall Robert Hargrove wrote a book called Masterful Coaching, and it was really one of the first books that I got my hand on. When I made the decision to go full time coaching and I just got lucky that that was the book that got pushed to me. Because I started off in the very beginning with a very clear, articulated goal of what masterful coaching looks like. And I’ve been I’ve been chasing. I’ve been chasing that now for the last 17 years. In moments I feel like I’ve get I’m getting close. But I mean, there’s a big gap.
Brilliant Miller [00:11:25] On the path.
Dean Miles [00:11:27] On the path.
Brilliant Miller [00:11:28] Love it. Well, let’s talk now about a principle related to good living. Right. And I am firmly committed that anything that helps you be a better version of yourself will help you be a better coach, help you be more effective. And as we talked about principles related to good living. Before we were recording, we talked about relationships. Now, that’s a big, big topic and we could go a lot of directions with that, whether it’s intimate relationships, whether that’s friendships, whether that’s familial relationships. And even there are so many things, whether you’re a parent or whether you’re a sibling. But with this, I want to just explore with you a little bit about and I know this might sound a little strange. What about the idea of having relationship goals? Right. And let me ask you this. So let me start this conversation with this question. If you were to guess just four people and I don’t know. I haven’t I haven’t done research on this to give you my own estimate. Right. But if you were just to say what percentage of people are satisfied with their relationships with the quality of their relationships generally with the people that they work with, the people with with whom they cohabitate, with the people who gave them birth? Like, what do you think people’s general I mean, I guess by definition, wouldn’t it be about 50, 50%? Yeah, most people would be average.
Dean Miles [00:13:00] Yeah, my mind went to 33%.
Brilliant Miller [00:13:04] It was like a satisfaction. So, like, suboptimal?
Dean Miles [00:13:08] Yes.
Brilliant Miller [00:13:11] And if you think about that, and that’s probably I know that was like a. It’s kind of a weird question to ask, but if you said, like, what is your satisfaction with the quality of your relationships with the people in your life? And you ask people to rate that on a 0 to 10, zero is completely dissatisfied. Ten is couldn’t be happier. Right. Right. I’ll bet you’re right. I’ll. But it’s between like a three and a four. And obviously that’s going to vary in these different areas. But if you start to ask what. What could we do that would make a difference in the quality of our relationships and more specifically in our own experience of our relationships and the experience of those with whom we’re relating. What would what would those things? What was something you might do?
Dean Miles [00:13:53] You know what comes to my mind. And I’d love for people to put make comments below. A lot of coaches and I use it just a wheel of life. Mm hmm. And have people you know, it’s a good intake type of of a form to use of just to get where’s here and then what would be the goal. And relationships are part of that wheel of life. And it is shockingly typically one of the lowest. Physical health tends to be low. But then relationships are also low. Yeah. When I mean when I. When I start digging with with a coaching client. So what’s the very next thing you’d like to do? And maybe even more specific of, you know, what would you like that number to be like? What would be realistically and some sort of a time period that you would like to go and do. And it starts back with this mental chatter of I’m not a good friend. I don’t know how to make friends. I move too much. I work too much. There’s this all of these excuses that just kind of keep people in this mindset of, I’ve been hurt before and I’ll probably be hurt again. So what’s the point?
Brilliant Miller [00:15:09] Yeah. Yeah, I think that’s pretty common. In fact, I had a teacher point out to me that many intimate relationships one partner will sabotage the relationship even when it’s going well, because they’re afraid that they’ll get hurt or, you know, they’ll get laughed. And so rather than live in this fear. Right. And the paradox is that the better the relationships going, the more that fear increases. And so rather than enjoy it or preserve it or even enhance it, like it’s not uncommon for people to screw it up.
Dean Miles [00:15:42] Yes. If I in Sweden, if I think about coaches as I’ve met people that have wanted to get into coaching, one of the things that I try to bring to the forefront of, it’s really lonely. Yeah, because their relationships we have the client. It’s not about you, it’s about them. And there’s people that I’ve coached for over a decade that probably don’t even know that I’m married or have kids. I’m exaggerating. They know some of that. But. But it’s just never about you. And so is this. You’re alone in your house now doing all these Zoom coaching sessions or phone sessions or you’re traveling and you’re just alone in the hotel. You’re that guy sitting at the bar alone. Yeah, it’s really, really lonely. And I find coaches in not even reaching out to other coaches because there’s just a fear of, I’m going to find out. And that’s good. I thought it was because you’re better than I am, or I’m afraid that you’re going to take my material and take my clients. Have you experienced that today? I mean, do you hear those types of conversations?
Brilliant Miller [00:16:40] Not not really. I mean, the thing about coaching being lonely like that for sure. Right. And as you’re saying, like a coaching relationship when you’re in it, it’s not about you. So even though you’re with a client, it’s about the client. Right. They’re leading, I think, in an effective coaching conversation. They’re leading the conversation. So that part I mean, that part definitely resonates.
Dean Miles [00:17:05] So I’m an NFP. I’m a number seven on the Enneagram for those Enneagram lovers. Just meet them a people person. Meeting people is easy for me. And I wrote a book a long time ago is called Heart Smarts, Guts and Luck. And it’s the luck part that they’ve talk about. Think about 100 individuals. So 50 and 50 on the bottom 50 is just the goal is meet people. Just meet them, churn through, meet, meet, meet, meet, meet did some never go by the top 50 could be in that bottom 30 that you linger with a little bit longer that one day could be in your top 20 of your relationships that you’re building into. As I say, it takes a long time to have an old friend. I really like that statement. Yeah, but you’re going through the bottom 50. That might be in your top 30 that one day might be in your top 20. And so Scott Ossman, a friend of ours that Bruce and I have, was telling a story, friend of his Italian guy lives in Paris to use the train transit systems and he will leave about an hour and a half sooner than he needs to because he’s always looking for someone to meet on the train. And if he has it, go a couple of stops longer or go and have tea or coffee with them. He’s built that into it. I thought, what an amazing intentionality of now my words of going through the 50, that there might be enough connectivity that could be in your 30 that one day could be one of your 20 that you have live a long life with.
Brilliant Miller [00:18:49] That’s interesting. I wonder what his relationships are like with his neighbors. How well does he know the people right around him? Or is he just meeting people on the train? That’s a good point.
Dean Miles [00:19:01] Yes, He has a little distance from from your neighbors if you don’t like them. Right. Take a different path.
Brilliant Miller [00:19:07] Well, this, too, on relationships. Again, I know this might be a little strange, but I also think if we acknowledge, you know, most relationships are suboptimal, at least I would say most people experience many of the relationships as less than fulfilling or less than meaningful, less than enjoyable. And not to say everybody needs to be your best friend and everybody needs to be let up. And you’re around them all the time, right? But for the ones that that do matter to you, whether it’s again kids, whether it’s spouse, whether it’s an older friend or coworkers. This idea of having relationship goals, even if you don’t share them with that person. Right. But having intention, having clarity, having a vision for yourself of what might this look like? I think that’s I think that’s an interesting and useful thing. In fact, my wife and I learning nerds that we are we sat down and we wrote an ideal relationship vision. Back in 2017 and we revisit it. Every we used to do it every week when we had our date night, which we dedicated time to. Now it’s probably at least once a month. But what we found is that relationships evolve as we know. But there are certain things that matter to us that we want to continually return to. We want to reorient ourselves to about the kind of partners we’re committed to being, about how we’re committed to resolving differences or misunderstandings. Right. The kind of parents that we’re committed to doing our best, you know, to raising children in a certain way and so forth. And I will just tell you, I mean, you know me well enough to know that I just I think language is magic and written word in particular is another level of, I think, power of just speaking something or even thinking something. And to have that written down and to be able to. To return to it, you know, to be able to align on it has been really, really powerful.
Dean Miles [00:21:12] Yeah, you end up being reminded about it. Melanie and I took a class by eye shape or cell. A global well-known designer. And it was designed the acts that you love to design, the life you love, design the long, the long life you love, design the honest life you love actually full And what? What’s the blank? What do you want to design?
Brilliant Miller [00:21:37] I’m glad to know that’s the accent. Not that the.
Dean Miles [00:21:39] X was.
Brilliant Miller [00:21:40] Okay, right?
Dean Miles [00:21:42] I saw your eyebrows. I was like, Oh, I think he thinks they’re so Marlene. They did this of design. The community that we love. And it was an interesting just deconstruct and then reconstruct of what are we looking for? Like what superpowers do we bring into a community? What values are we looking for in that community? What what’s the kryptonite that really can access it? It’s hard enough to find relationships just as one human being to another human being. To do this as a as a couple, to find another couple or three couples or five couples that there’s another line for. I think it’s probably stats are better to win the lottery then then to find that.
Brilliant Miller [00:22:30] In this this attempt is why people join things like churches, too, right?
Dean Miles [00:22:34] That’s exactly right. Yes. And so as we’re I’m 53. My wife is 54, will turn 55 this summer. We’re seriously looking at these 55 plus intentional communities.
Brilliant Miller [00:22:48] Yes.
Dean Miles [00:22:49] That’s just because there’s some built in this relationship thing. I, I found this quote. It’s an unknown author is that the best relationships are the ones you never saw coming. Which makes me go on the other side of this of this intentionality of Will you be my friend? What about you? Yeah. And this desperation. As opposed to the best ones are the ones you never saw coming where you’re just open to it.
Brilliant Miller [00:23:23] Mm hmm. I love that. That reminds me of a quote that I want to Google here and see if I can find.
Dean Miles [00:23:32] But while you’re while you’re doing that, there’s a couple other ones. Our friend Tony Robbins. The quality of your life is the quality of your relationships. Before we start a record, you and I both have another quote we’d like of Show me your friend, and I’ll show you your future. Yeah. They’re really important, these relationships. Did you find it?
Brilliant Miller [00:23:57] No, I didn’t. And I won’t. I have it in my notes. It’s just really beautiful. It’s this really beautiful phrasing from Yogananda. Who talks about it, talks about always being on the lookout as you meet people for friends. He says from previous incarnations who will smile, who smile at you in a way that you recognize them. And he’ll talk about always be on the lookout to add these friends to your constellation of friendships. And then he goes on to describe that. Through that, through these friends, you will see the great one. Smiling back at you. You know, it’s it’s just like the soul is such a beautiful concept. Little bit, little bit mystical. But I just love that idea of, you know, not everybody is we were talking about this, that, you know, people enter your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime, perhaps. Right. And this idea of, you know, a single relationship can change the entire trajectory of your life, for better or for worse. Yeah. But the joy that’s possible by going through life with this. You might even say anticipation or an openness to this person could be a lifelong friend. This person could be a kind of soul mate, a member of my spirit tribe or something like that, you know? And whether you’re deliberately seeking that or it’s just it happens, you know, spontaneously or synchronistic, we.
Dean Miles [00:25:28] So yeah, being a person who’s lives their life by I’d venture now because see those that are watching the podcast know my three core values. I’m addicted to those relationships where I meet someone and I feel like I’ve known them my whole life. There’s just such an ease about it. I expect to meet people like that. And so you do. And then you do things that.
Brilliant Miller [00:25:59] Well, and you and I were on a call. I think you’re on Marshal’s birthday. And were you on that call?
Dean Miles [00:26:05] I missed it. I missed it.
Brilliant Miller [00:26:07] And I loved it. Someone said, there’s your biological family and then there’s your logical family. And this community is my logical family. It was really it was really kind of cute. It was fun. Okay.
Dean Miles [00:26:19] Yeah, that’s good. Well, I’ll in the pun on this from my side. Brilliant. I really just want to. Those that are watching this. This is a big deal. Like, don’t just move past this. If you’re if you’re Wheel of Light, if you’ve scored below a six in relationships, you need a pause. Talk to somebody. Set a goal. Get out there. Join the your local chapter or your ICF chapter. Write those types of things. Go find a cause or a passion. Go meet people. You’re going to be a better coach when you have healthier relationships.
Brilliant Miller [00:27:00] Yeah, 100%. Hundred percent. Okay. So let’s talk about on the topic of being a great coach. Something that you and I discussed that we thought would help coaches to be more effective, to enjoy their coaching sessions, more themselves, to get more out of it personally. Is the idea of practicing presence what might be called mindfulness, which I hate? I actually hate the term mindfulness.
Dean Miles [00:27:31] That’s something that really came from a deep place, right?
Brilliant Miller [00:27:35] Some and I don’t hate I don’t hate many things. I just I don’t like it because I think it’s so easy to misunderstand. And someone suggested once that what we call mindfulness should maybe properly be called mindlessness. However, mindlessness already has a pretty undesirable connotation in our culture. But that idea of just being present, being with whatever is and whatever it isn’t, without judging, assessing, analyzing, fixing, even trying. I think there’s something really beautiful that becomes possible or that we become present to when we manage to do that. So that’s kind of my assertion, right? But this idea of presence, which I use that word presence as something that matters when coaching. Let me ask you, Dean. Why do you think? Why? Why? If you were one on one mentoring a new coach or somebody you know, who wants to deepen their capacity to effectively coach others? You were going to talk with him about presents, which tell him.
Dean Miles [00:28:48] I’ll start off with how I failed miserably at it. Came into coaching is going to be a big shot. Was very successful in sales, very successful in pharmaceuticals. And thorough, understood what it meant to be president and what it meant to add value. Recorded. So my initial coaching sessions to four to get my credentialing sent it into the professor. His name was Ron. I won’t give you his last name because don’t go find him. He’s actually a good friend of mine. Now. The two Professor Ryan listens to my recording, calls me up and says. That was terrible, right? I’m shocked. Like what? A scale of 1 to 1010 being massive for coaching his idea. I’m a round up and give you a three. You said you were really doing damage to this client. Again. I’ve already quit Merck. I’ve already got a single out. And here’s what he said. Dean, you’ve mastered the art of fake curiosity. My friends, that is not mindfulness. That is not being present. I was present until I wasn’t. So I was present until I found a solution. Until I knew where I thought, how they should live their life. And then I was no longer present. I’m now I’m now creating the formula. I’m now creating a solution. I’m just waiting for them to stop talking. You know, Wah wah, wah, wah, wah, wah. Like the Charlie Brown teacher voice. And then when they finished talking, then I was just going to wow them with my masterful coaching. That took some undoing. Of by being mindful, by being conscious, by being non-judgmental, by being fully present, also includes not trying to figure it out. It really is just. Trusting it and listening and blurting. It’s possible. It takes practice.
Brilliant Miller [00:30:55] I do think it takes practice. And I read a book recently called The Monkey as the Messenger. Now like LaRosa, and he refers to something I’d never heard this term, but I love the term. He calls it a mindfulness push up. But what he means by that is when we become aware that we are unaware. Coming back to awareness. Right. Just in this conversation as I’m having a conversation with you about being present, about practicing mindfulness, I catch myself by not being fully present in the irony of that, but then coming back to it and practicing a mindfulness push up. And I do think to use that analogy a little more, it is like building a muscle. That we can cultivate. Right. And why? I think it matters with our clients. We’ve talked a little bit about this in prior conversations. But first of all, I think one of the greatest values we can offer our clients, even if it’s not what they come. Asking for. Is the ability to actually hear them, to see them to hold space. Right. To witness. Another human being unfolding or growing or struggling. And if we are distracted in a way we turn, we turn from that or we close ourselves off to that.
Dean Miles [00:32:22] Right.
Brilliant Miller [00:32:23] And I, I think that humans, in a way I mean we know this term Ubuntu about I am because you are. We need each other this idea from African culture. But I think in some way human beings need other people in order to grow. There are certain forms of growth that actually require another person. But what do you think?
Dean Miles [00:32:51] Yeah. You just saw my eyes. Probably light up there for a second. Carl Lewis. The sprinter, the runner. My saying is that’s his name right now. Carlos, this is. I think, couples Summer Olympics ago. Won three gold medals. Two new personal bests, a new one, a new and also a new world record. When the NBC reporter asked Karl. Carl, nice race out there. Do you think you could have you could have run faster? I mean, what an unbelievable question. Already. He’s won three gold medals, two new personal best, and in this particular race, new world record. And the reporter said, do you think you could have run faster? To which Carl. He knows this reporter squares up and looks at him and he says, You know what? I’m confident that if there would have been someone in front of me, I could have dug even deeper and I could have gone faster. It made it makes me think of what you’re talking about of this, that mindfulness, maybe even combining with practice and combining it with relationships, to have someone either to go with you or to have someone who’s in front of you. You’ll find yourself digging even deeper that even the fastest man who’s ever lived on the planet is saying. I gave everything I had. There was nothing left. But I am pretty confident. If someone was in front of me, I would have beat them. No. Love that image.
Brilliant Miller [00:34:35] That’s interesting. You know, with with presence in coaching. And this is true for people who speak. Publicly or people who interview others for podcasts or for job interviews for any, you know, anything. I think this ability to. To be present, to be aware. Right. Just to to pay attention to things like body language generally, but facial expression, tone of voice. You know, I. I’m still amazed by this and I’m still processing it. It’s kind of a working theory for me. But this idea that the body never lies, you know, people can act for sure. But I do think there seems to be something very universal about the human nervous system and the way the way that emotion is conveyed through even, you know, posture, breathing.
Dean Miles [00:35:37] Yeah.
Brilliant Miller [00:35:38] And I’m reminded when I heard Sadhguru say, in India, we don’t ask people how they’re doing. We just look at them like.
Dean Miles [00:35:47] Wow, that’s really good. I like that a lot.
Brilliant Miller [00:35:50] Yeah. And, and I think in coaching, you know, regardless of language or upbringing and so forth, and I know and I’m here, there’s a big generalization, but in some ways human beings are pretty essential. There’s something essential to all humans is as unique as we are. And when we’re coaching, if we’re not present, I think we’re missing a lot of opportunity to help our clients become aware. Right. And this idea, I love this. Just saying, you know, I noticed you hesitated right there. Tell me about that. Or I noticed the tone of voice changed. Or I noticed you blinked a few times. What’s that about? Right. And it’s not even trying to figure it out ourselves, because, heck, they might not even know.
Dean Miles [00:36:38] Right.
Brilliant Miller [00:36:39] But just the at the first of all that you saw and you can reflect it back and then being willing to ask that and let them. Go deeper on that thing after they have an awareness of it and see what comes of it from there. And without being present too, that could be easy to miss those those opportunities.
Dean Miles [00:37:01] You bring up such a great point. Brilliant. And I often mean, what a great reminder you just gave me. It took me all the way back some 17 years ago when I was doing my certification training, and they would give you these these modules to then for the week or the two weeks go practice it. So one was immediacy. So if you heard a car horn in the background. Try to use that car, that car horn in the coaching session. Let’s use that as. What was the caution? What was once blaring in your own reality right now. So even for this, I just couldn’t. If you look above you, there’s the top painting. It’s not just an island. There’s two there together right now. Even the island, the remote island has a relationship. Yeah. And so to build out the metaphor, but I like those challenges are when I’m paying to that level of attention. Yeah.
Brilliant Miller [00:38:08] No, I love that too. And this idea of where rapport becomes more available or we can deepen it when we’re present. Right. Someone told me when I was studying public speaking. Someone suggested that a hallmark of a really effective speaker is that they are. This. This is how I would describe it. They are with whatever is going on. If the technology doesn’t work, if someone cell phone goes off right unexpectedly or if something happens, they drop their laptop off the stage and and many speakers will just kind of ignore that. And it’s, I think, a little bit strange when those things happen because we’re having a shared experience in the auditorium and the speaker but then the speaker is dis a voting right. It’s something where there’s more rapport available. If it was, well, that was unexpected or, you know, they can make a joke about it. And there’s always have to be humor, but at least to acknowledge it in some way. And now. There’s this coming together of an experience. And just like you’re saying, if there’s a car horn that’s blaring and you’re able to your present enough to weave that into your conversation. That there’s something that becomes possible in the sharing of an experience that wouldn’t have if you weren’t present to that. I think there’s something really powerful about that.
Dean Miles [00:39:31] So powerful. I’m reminded of this story was 1999. I was with Pfizer Pharmaceuticals. It was classic just mistrust between the sales group and management. And there was a merger. It happened. So we had two different cultures trying to come together and they brought all 7000 of us and a real intimate conference room. So we walked in and brilliant. There’s two microphones set up. There’s 7000 of us for an open Q&A.
Brilliant Miller [00:40:01] Wow.
Dean Miles [00:40:02] So the two the two are executive directors for this merger are a male and a female, and it was blah, blah, blah. So let’s open up the Q&A. Who has a question? And so a friend of mine, single mom, African-American, raises her hand. And all of us are thinking, this is not a good idea. Like there’s nothing about this that feels safe. She then stands up to the mic and says, I have a question about our work leave policy because my daughter’s in the hospital and she’s not doing well. But I was told, you know, I needed I need to come out here for this. Regional says sick leave policy is this and corporate says this. And so could you just kind of, you know, help me understand what our leave policy is? And so one of the the executive directors comes to the mike and I mean nails the policy like that’s the eye crossed like wow this person memorize our book and it says to our partner is there anything I missed? Now the other person is present and is really paying attention. He then comes to the mike and he says couple of things. First, we really messed up because there’s just two microphones out there and we’re always sending the wrong message. And then second, how is your daughter doing?
Brilliant Miller [00:41:17] Mm hmm.
Dean Miles [00:41:19] To which my friend and drops are her knees and she’s holding on like she’s like, she may not make it through the weekend, but I was told that I didn’t come to this. I’d be fired immediately. Wow. It’s what You can then hear him off the mike. Say, get the corporate jet and get this mom home. Now, what do you think happened to trust? Well, then, I mean, it was an immediate game changer.
Brilliant Miller [00:41:40] Oh, for sure.
Dean Miles [00:41:42] Because he. He was present. It never was about the policy. Yeah, He heard the quiver in a mom’s voice. Powerful. That changed the whole culture in that one moment.
Brilliant Miller [00:41:53] Yeah, that’s. That’s a cool story, then. Well, thanks for sharing that. Can you on the power of presence. Okay. Well, the last part of our conversation here today. So let’s turn from that to a discussion of. Earning recognition and money. As a coach, how can we share our gifts be recognized for sharing our gifts? Attract more people to want to be our clients. That kind of thing. When you and I were talking about this, we talked about this kind of goes in with relationships. Again, this idea of the groups with which we deliberately associate as a way of either learning, as a way of finding opportunities, as a way of having fun, developing friendships. What have you. Talk to me a little bit about what you see as the wisdom of. And as I’m asking this, I’m already like the thing that’s coming up in the back.
Dean Miles [00:43:03] I’m gonna love it.
Brilliant Miller [00:43:04] And I’m not talking about networking. Like, heaven forbid. But let’s talk about the power of deliberately putting yourself or starting by putting yourself in a group, joining a group or starting a group of like minded professionals, coaches or otherwise.
Dean Miles [00:43:24] Yeah, I think there’s a step before that, and I love how these things all tie together. Brilliant. Almost like could do this on purpose. But in this building, the relationships and even what you and your wife Heather have done. Of putting it on paper. What’s the goal? What are we wanting to do? I think it’s what would you want to be recognized for? So it’s not just an agency accomplishment, but just maybe character qualities. We recognize that you’re kind. We recognize that you’re available. We recognize that you’re present, being recognized, that that you’re a man of of your of your word. I think those are noble things to be recognized for. To be known for. I think if you start with that, I think some of the networking stuff takes care of itself. Yeah. What is that? Where did that take you?
Brilliant Miller [00:44:17] Yeah, I think. I think that’s true. And that’s that’s a work in progress or an opportunity. You know, if people haven’t taken the time to write that down for themselves, things like value statements, things like a life purpose statement, things like we talked about those relationship visions, you know, that there’s clearly an opportunity there. And even if they are written to return to them, to refine them, to expand them, to share them either, you know, in appropriate ways with others or just to live them. Right. Right. I’m reminded of what Gandhi said. My life is my practice. And and I love that. And and so I think that’s what you’re saying is a really is a really wise starting point, too, because groups have qualities or organizations have qualities. And we can ask, you know, like, where will I find people who are driven? Where can I find people who are successful? Where can I find people who are kind or helpful? Right. And taking the time to be thoughtful about the kinds of groups or the kinds of people we want to associate with after or maybe in conjunction with having done that for ourselves. There’s a lot of wisdom in that. And the thing that I was that I was really intrigued by this. Is this idea that part of the value of finding a group is that. A group of supportive. People can help. It can help us experience more effectiveness or power in living the story we want to be living, right? Like if you say I’m a whatever, I’m an effective coach or I help, you know, CEOs get to the next level or I help, you know, single mothers build lives they love or whatever it is that your client is and the things that you help them do that a group. Who is also on that path or who’s engaged in that effort or who are those kinds of people? It can be a place where as you’re finding your voice, you’re finding your message that you’re getting practice, you’re finding your legs, and you’re being seen as that in that. Courageous space. On your way to sharing that more broadly. And I think there’s there’s incredible power in in looking at it as a group supporting you and living the life you want to live with, the narrative that you’re committed to.
Dean Miles [00:46:45] It reminds me of this story of, you know, you’re you’re kind of. Reaction to the word networking, which I can appreciate, and I think a lot of us can. But I want to I want to go on the other side of that. When Melanie and I moved into a new city. We attended a church. It’s a small a very small town. And there was a physician, there was probably about ten years or so, seven, eight years older than I was. And there was something about him. Brilliant. And now I’m pursuing him. I want to go have lunch with them. Man. This guy just won’t give you the time of day. Just shaking me off. Right. Shaking me up. He’s been kind about it, but he’s playing hard to get. Now, in the meantime, there’s a guy about seven years younger than me, and the dude’s driving me crazy. Area near where this is going. He’s want to have lunch with me. I’ve always been the chaser. I’d never been chased. I’ve always been pursuing and doing the networking and have never been the object of being networked. And that’s when I realized I’ve been selfish in this networking game. Right? This networking relationship. I need to be. I need to be looking for who’s who do I want to be around because they’re going to make me better. But I also need to be easy for those that are that see something in me that I can make them better. And that was just a real life lesson when I had that DAH This kind of aha moment of I’m treating this way, this guy, the way this doctors treating me. Get into the story. The doctor and I became really good friends, and then I became really good friends with the guy younger than me. So I think there’s something about looking both ways. What do you think about that?
Brilliant Miller [00:48:42] Yeah, I think I think that’s true. And, you know, the law of reciprocity, I think, is real. It’s a real thing. And reputations are real. And character is real. And, you know, if people know in any community over time, especially who’s who’s a giver, who’s a taker, you know, who’s in that kitchen. I like that kind of thing. So, yeah, that and I like that. You know, I love that that story had a happy ending.
Dean Miles [00:49:14] It did. Well, and also think about you’re going to be recognized for something.
Brilliant Miller [00:49:18] Right.
Dean Miles [00:49:19] To what level do you want to participate and what side of the coin that’s on? Yeah. Yeah.
Brilliant Miller [00:49:29] Well, Dean, as we begin wrapping up this episode of the Coach’s commonplace book. Let’s do a wiffle. We feel like expressing. What are you remembering? What what we feel called to work on? What are you committed to? What’s a request you have for people listening? Anything. Anything in that direction?
Dean Miles [00:49:49] Yeah. I think about these particular categories. There’s insight, there’s abilities, there’s willingness, there’s practice. The ones that I find come easier. Is giving insight. And being reminded of my ability or inability. What’s harder is what am I really willing to do? Like one breath short of death. Like how hard, how much pain and suffering am I willing to put into this? And then more serious about the practicing. Hmm. When I move past the abundance of insight and the abundance of ability, especially being in the United States and we have all kinds of opportunities and really look in the mirror and invite my friends to to really aggravate me in this space of Dean. What are you really willing to do? And tell me about your practice.
Brilliant Miller [00:50:55] Love it.
Dean Miles [00:50:55] And by the way, I did not just give you permission. That was all hypothetical.
Brilliant Miller [00:51:00] I. I got.
Dean Miles [00:51:02] I’m teasing.
Brilliant Miller [00:51:03] I got it. Well, thanks.
Dean Miles [00:51:05] That’s what I feel like sharing. What do you feel like sharing?
Brilliant Miller [00:51:09] I feel full. And I feel. I feel good. I feel. Bill challenged. You know.
Dean Miles [00:51:19] I look at that chest out.
Brilliant Miller [00:51:25] I’m just thinking, you know what? What’s coming up for me right now? And who knows where these connections come from, which synapses lead to which one. But I think about a program I did with the teacher a few years ago in Santa monica, and he he talked about love cannot flow through tension. Hmm. And whether that’s physical constriction in the body, just the conscious relaxation or it’s tension between, you know, people that the experience of the participants in a relationship like that or in a body like that is typically not one of love. And. That idea of, you know, how can I release tension in order that love flows through me? And then, you know, then I think about Gibran’s words that work is love made visible. And you know what that makes possible. So just a part of that. Seemingly endless stream of conscious thought, which we sometimes tap into and are a part of as human beings on this planet in this wild, wild time.
Dean Miles [00:52:32] Yeah, which is why we have a commonplace book. So we can capture some of the stuff. Right.
Brilliant Miller [00:52:37] That’s right.
Dean Miles [00:52:37] And share it. And then share it. Right.
Brilliant Miller [00:52:41] All right. Well, thank you for making time again. Let’s do it again in the next couple of weeks.
Dean Miles [00:52:45] Yeah. My pleasure. Looking forward to it already.
Brilliant Miller [00:52:47] All right. And to everybody listening. Thank you. Hope you made your own notes and that you will take the action that feels appropriate to you to move your life and the world forward to being a little happier, a little healthier, a little kinder, a little more sane and enjoyable. Until next time, take good care. We’ll talk to you later.
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