Collaborative Coaching to address Procrastination

Posted by Leslie Zeigler

In my last post I wrote about my sister Gail , who has been struggling for a long time with  her difficulty in getting her children’s book ideas edited and published.  As mentioned in my last post, she was feeling  frozen in fear that she would be perceived as a fool if  she risked  putting her ideas out there.   As I had written, I offered to work with her to hopefully help move her along.  In conversation with Deborah,  she too felt interested in collaborating with me to help Gail in this process.  In this way both Deborah’s expertise and mine could enhance the chances of Gail being able to get started to take positive actions towards her goal. When I let Gail know that Deborah, too, was on board to help her she felt so touched and excited.  Her first step was to email Deborah one of the children’s book ideas which she has written .

Upon receiving the feedback from Deborah, Gail reported to me how she felt so supported and encouraged that it was helping her to quiet her fears and begin to think about the suggestions that  Deborah had offered her.  Deborah encouraged Gail to send out her one book idea that was ready to go to another publisher, but to also consider creating a book idea that was based on her own most passionate interest (as her current book idea was based on what she thought would be easy to market).   This suggestion has  enabled  Gail to use her imagination and she already has several wonderful children’s book ideas floating  around in her head as yet not on paper.   And in addition to that,her whole feeling about herself as a creative person has been greatly enhanced  and is now moving in a more positive direction.

Another exciting turn of events has happened.   Gail has begun to experience some memories from childhood that she feels shed light on possible ways of understanding some of her current fears.  She remembers having taken both piano and dance  and sewing lessons as a child  but recalls always feeling helpless.  She remembered sewing a blouse and a skirt, but the seams were not straight, which upset her.  This memory has helped her arrive at the insight that she has taken this attitude of learned helplessness into her adult life.  She said, “instead of realizing if i just practice I can do some things, I gave up from the start.”   She added,  ” …there are my thoughts as we embark on this exciting adventure to overturn– years  of bad thinking patterns.”

So I too feel energized and excited  to begin this process to help her overcome her learned helplessness and begin to help  her to  quiet her fears and risk believing in her creative potential.  I feel we are off to a strong beginning.


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