What is Integrative Coaching?

How do we take account of the whole person?

Who we are, is how we coach… Coaching is not about deficits; it’s about building on the ocean of capabilities you already have.

While studying for my Masters in Integrative Psychological Coaching at Metanoia, London South Back University some years ago, we were tasked at the final stages to “write and demonstrate our own unique model of coaching”; to show the lens we viewed coaching through and our intent in terms of developing our coaching ability; where were we in our growth?

I chose to look at the growth aspect by utilising the model of Stages of Development – Kantor/Garret. It looks at how we grow in aspects of life from “realising yourself” to “showing up” to “occupying the ground” to “affecting the field”.

There are boundaries in there that stall us, and there are resources and qualities in ourselves which push us though the boundaries, such as consistency, humility, practice and letting go.

For those who know me, you know I love the sea, rivers, mountains, snow and all the creatures of the natural world. To depict the model, I superimposed the Kantor/Garrett diagram on to a big picture of many rivers leading to a “Loch of Growth”, then on and out to a “Sea of Possibilities”. There are “banks” on the loch of clear skills areas, and these are populated with facets of my life experiences such as:

  • Managerial / Leadership banks (Simon Western – Coaching and Mentoring 2012) – having been an Accountant and Director of Finance for many years, giving me an understanding of business, teams and making things work in organisations
  • Psychology banks – from many years of study and practice plus a masters in the field
  • Networking banks – the understanding of systemics and power and the interconnectedness of everything
  • Banks of the Soul from my own spiritual practice
  • Banks of Embodied coaching from my Leadership Coaching qualification and practice (Wendy Palmer)

Each one of us has the journey of our life to draw on too. My life journey and experiences along the way all make me the “coach I am”. I’m unique, but hey, I recognise that each one of you is too.

Coaching is about working with the whole person, in relationship with the whole coach, and the combination which creates a “we-ness” (not an official word!) is where the magic happens.

Are you curious about creating a picture of the “whole you”?

Download the full case study as a pdf