I was speaking with a potential coaching client recently about coaching and mentoring and about the choice that they had. We spoke about two paths.
The first path is where you take your own path and you find your way yourself. My experience of this path is that it can take a little longer. I might have to learn from a few mistakes. I might feel lonely. I might find this path doesn’t end up where I want to go. Equally there are other times when it is the right path for me, I need to make my own decisions, to listen to my own counsel and to forge ahead with what I feel is right, to have that singular focus.
The second path is the path that we could take with a coach or mentor. This is a different path. This path requires investment of time, energy and money. This second path may seem less attractive initially. Do I want to invest my money in this? Will I get the results I want? Do I even want the results I say I want? When I have committed to this path, I have company; I have found it easier, with fewer obstacles but at some point this path naturally ends and I come to two more paths again.
The two paths are different. There is no right path. You will probably get different outcomes. Typically when I choose the first path I invest more time in this path and it can have a few blind turns. The second path for me is often straighter and smoother but sometimes I experience resistance before taking the second path because I don’t know if I will get what I want. Or sometimes I don’t feel I know what I really want.
So what is the right path for you? With my potential client we discussed the options. With the first path you will probably get similar results to what you are getting now. Most of the time. Not always but mostly. The second path requires investment. Is that investment worth it? I don’t know. It is only your perception of where the two paths lead that determines the value of the second path. How different do you think it is to the first path? What is that difference worth to you?
Who should I travel the second path with? Are they the right guide for me? Is this the right time for me? What is the right time? Is there ever one? What value do I truly place on my different outcomes?
Experiencing coaching and mentoring before you choose your path can help you to understand the differences in the paths but even then there is still a substantial amount of trust and faith: in both yourself and a potential coach or mentor.
Above all I believe the secret is to choose a path. Don’t allow it to choose you. Don’t wander blindly up either one but rather be proactive in your choice. Be clear on the difference and make the best choice for you in this moment.
Otherwise you live in the land of maybe. I don’t believe you or I want to live there.
Make that powerful choice. Which path will I take?