In last week’s blog I spoke about Tim Gallwey and how he revolutionized coaching methodology with the introduction of his Inner Game theory.
As with any successful “revolution” there are followers who help to spread the concept. Sir John Whitmore with Performance Consultants International and Alan Fine with Inside Out were two key promoters of the Inner Game tenets. Whitmore and Fine co-created a broader use of the Inner Game called GROW.
According to Wikipedia, "GROW was developed as a structured framework to use the Inner Game principles to achieve goals." Fine and Whitmore realized that the struggle to achieve ones goals extended far beyond the sports field. However, whether it is sports, business or personal the path is the same. Structure your journey into small well defined steps, focus on each one at a time, and be attentive and constantly aware of what you learn from your ongoing experience. This will guide you best to the ultimate goal or objective.
Recognizing that I am a fervent football fan and one of the Seattle Seahawks’ 12th Man, I am compelled to use a football game as an example of how a coaching model can be successful.
Recently, the Seahawks faced the Saints on the windiest day we've experienced in Seattle in several years. Up 16 points at half time, and knowing that they were about to spend the entire 3rd quarter trying to move the ball against the wind, Pete Carroll and his staff came up with the idea of keeping the players focused on the immediate goal above the ultimate goal. Coach Carroll's message was simple. As a team, our only goal this 3rd quarter is to protect the ball on every down. That immediate goal was placed above any offensive movement or scoring. Fans, with no knowledge of their half-time emphasis were frustrated; "Where is the offense?” The coaches and players chose not to care what we thought. They focused on their agenda, their immediate task, and let the final goal, winning, come to them.
As you might have guessed GROW is an acronym. It stands for:
- Current Reality
- Options (or Obstacles)
- Will (or Way Forward)
Next week I will be looking at the GROW model in some depth as I believe it is an extremely important model in any “coaching” environment. I will define each of the acronyms in detail. Until then here is one rule I have garnered from the GROW model:
Rule : It is impossible to concentrate on the Goal and the Task at hand simultaneously and perform well. Focusing on what we "Should be doing" never works. We simply become overwhelmed and bogged down. Each well executed task at a time, made completely in the moment, is the only way to practice the principle of the Inner Game which you'll begin to see is central to the GROW model.
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