Updated: Jul 12
As someone who has worked both with and for a company that studies behaviors and motivators, I have an interesting perspective on exactly how useful and important understanding these subjects can be. And many times it starts with finding life’s answers through self-awareness. Having been a life coach previously, I was tasked with trying to help others find their way in the world, be it regarding their careers, personal lives or both. One client in particular had a life changing effect on me by what I learned through working with her. The story below will illustrate how important it is to truly understand your drivers and behavioral styles. Armed with this information, you can accomplish anything you set your mind to, and can help you avoid the things that won’t serve you well.
My journey as a life coach
A few years back I was attempting to gain a certificate for life coaching and I needed to complete a case study for course completion. My assignment was to choose one client to work with, gratis, for six weeks then write a paper on my findings. As part of the process, I was required to use assessments to uncover information about my client provided through the life-coaching program.
Wanting to fully understand the process, I took all the assessments myself before administering them to my client. I found them somewhat useful and interesting. We studied needs, values, strengths, intelligence and learning styles during our 6-week journey together.
Goals of the client
My client had two goals in mind, one professional and one personal. She not only wanted to find her “forever career path,” she wanted to uncover the reasons why she was still single. Through coaching practices, we were beginning to discover some of her success blockers. Slowly her questions were beginning to be answered but not at the speed and depth in which she desired.
She was gathering insight slowly but the outcome of our sessions was not producing true, lasting change. After the six-weeks of sessions were complete, I continued to work with my client to ensure her progress and long-term success. But at that time I still didn’t have the answers myself to what might uncover the information we were both anxious to find. As her coach, I was still searching.
A touch of serendipity
In a strange twist of fate, I was hired shortly thereafter by a company that studied behaviors and other facets of the human mind. Since this new company also offered assessments, albeit different ones, my client was open to taking these additional assessments to dive deeper for our sessions. We studied: behaviors, motivators, emotional intelligence, soft skills and how you value your external and internal world.
After reviewing the results from this new insight, my client suddenly began to make great strides. In past sessions she would walk away with a highlight or a small take away but now she was beginning to gain deep insight. The steady crawl became a brisk walk that quickly evolved to a fast and furious sprint of self-discovery!
She began to understand pivotal reasons for her choice to remain single and who she was looking for in a life partner. Additionally, by the time we finished our sessions she had chosen a completely different career path than she was currently in and acquired a new job where she was being rewarded for her natural talent. The key for her was to maximize what she authentically brought to the table. Finally knowing what to look for, my client went out and got it!
A happy ending - for both of us
It was invigorating to see the changes in my client both through deep fears and blind spots as well as the powerful strengths and critical drives that were uncovered. In the beginning, I did not know what I was missing to help her make a solid breakthrough. Once we explored her behaviors and motivators deeper, everything changed. Having the right tools - when a person is open and ready for growth - will provide the information that can be truly life changing, as it certainly was for my client.
The moral of the story is that each of us has things that drive us to take action every single day. Things that truly matter to us and inspire us. Getting to understand these drivers, along with understanding who you really are, behaviorally, can help a person find the path they need to follow in work and in life to feel rewarded, inspired and truly happy. Finding life’s answers through self-awareness is the first step to living the life you’ve always dreamed.
Cassandra Nelson is a solutions consultant for TTI Success Insights. Cassandra specializes in transitional coaching, helping individuals shift between caree