How To Pivot In A Life Coaching Session

life coaching pivot

Have you ever found yourself in a life coaching conversation where you had to pivot? Maybe you took a quick “mind vacation” and missed some key information. Or maybe your client took you off course with a topic that didn’t relate to their goal. These are moments to turn things around with a pivot.

Here’s an example. Imagine that during a recent conversation about exercise, you missed some of your client’s conversation. Maybe you checked out and when you “woke up”, your client was talking about the politics of her tennis team. Apparently, you went to sleep somewhere after the word exercise. What you need to do is rescue this coaching session.

After replaying this conversation in your head you ask yourself if you understood the essence of the interaction, however you are unable to recall the details. You’re lost and it’ obvious! Owning this mind vacation is critical.

How can you pivot and start to address the situation? Simply say “I’m sorry, I’m not sure I heard you correctly. Can you tell me more about why the situation with your tennis team is so upsetting?” This simple question can be a game changer! The client can share their feelings, get to the root cause of the frustration and feel heard and understood.

When should you pivot in a life coaching session?

  • When you need to get out of a rabbit hole
  • To regain a client’s trust by actively listening
  • Redirect when a client is sharing information that is not relevant to the goal

Three tips to effectively Pivot in a life coaching session.

  • Take notes to stay engaged and on topic

Your notes can lead you to ask a great question which allows you to pivot in the coaching session. Taking notes helps to keep you stay engaged in the conversation while actively listening. Taking notes helps you to record key words the client uses, therefore, when you repeat those same words back, the client knows they are being heard. This builds trust. 

Check out this article about note taking on Thrive.

  • Rephrase Your Question

If your previous question led the client down a rabbit hole, rephrase the question to get the   conversation back on track. This could sound like “Let me rephrase my question”.

  • Own Your Behavior

Owning your behavior builds trust. Try something like this; “I’m sorry. I did not get the last thing you said, can you share more?” or “I think my last question got us off track. Let me ask that a different way”

What does a life coach do to effectively pivot?

The best coaching definition includes active listening. A life coach is someone who not only helps create goals and plans but is engaged with the client. For those moments when you do need to pivot, note taking is key to getting you back on track with the client.

Check out our BLOG on Getting Out of the Quicksand on Moxiecoach.com

Similar Posts