Sometimes the Emotion doesn't fit the Desire
Often people have dreams and desires that they have not pursued. These dreams have never past the "I wish" stage and have not been evaluated as to whether they are worth following. As a coach leads a client down the process of exploring the possibility of such dreams being fulfilled the client may demonstrate emotions that don't fit the desire for their dream. I experienced this in a coaching session where I was trying to encourage the client to picture themselves having fulfilled a dream that they had wondered about for quite some time but had done nothing about investigating the possibility of its reality in their life. As they described what it would be like to have reached that dream, they reacted emotionally in describing the expected response of their achieving that dream from the people they care about.
As the session progressed, it became clear that for the client what was important was achieving a sense of accomplishment that was acknowledged by those they loved. Realizing that they weren't particularly motivated about the dream that they had stated at the beginning of the session, I went back to the place in the conversation where the client demonstrated emotion. What the client cared about most was that the people closest to them would acknowledge their desired achievement.
I began to engage the client to identify what were other things that they were more motivated to complete that would give them the same sense of achievement. They proceeded to light up and identify something else that would take less time to complete but would give them the same sense of satisfaction.
Sometimes for the client the initial dream is not exactly what they are motivated to pursue but because you force them to think about what it would be like to fulfill that dream emotions are demonstrated that relate to other things that are important to them besides this particular dream that they initially voiced in the coaching conversation. Here are some tips to drawing out the underlying dream:
1. After having spent some time helping the client visualize their dream with details and feeling, have them return to the present and ask them, "How motivated are you now to pursue steps toward fulfilling the dream."
2. If the client shows low motivation then go back to the place where they demonstrated emotion and ask what was significant about what they said at the moment that prompted the emotion.
3. Identify what they state as being significant and then ask them what that can look like.
4. Ask them how motivated they are to pursue this secondary dream. Usually you will find that this secondary dream is more of a motivator since it is closely linked with the emotion they demonstrated related to what surfaced as significant apart from the original dream they had begun the conversation with.