As a teacher, life coach or mentor, there are about five categories of people you might meet in your journey. You can meet them during conferences, counselling sessions, casual interactions, and the rest.
1. Those who don’t know what to do and are not interested in knowing what to do.
This could be quite a difficult category to deal with because there could be a number of simple to complex reasons why they have such attitudes.
You have two key issues to manage – a lack of understanding of what to do and a lack of interest in learning what to do.
Sometimes this category of people could be aggressive or too relaxed. The aggressive attitude could be a defensive mechanism that they learned through past negative experiences, or it could be due to a lack of training.
The too-relaxed attitude could be a result of cultural or religious background that limits the expression of talents and quest for knowledge. It can also result from certain ugly experiences in the past as well.
They could also be people born into homes where everything regarding material riches has been sorted out for them by their parents.
In this category could also be those who have experienced so many failures that they resigned.
Others who belong to this category are people who come from families, cities, or countries where nothing works and has never worked. So, they find it difficult to imagine that things could go differently from what they have known for decades.
1. Listen and don’t be quick to teach. Seeing that they have no interest in learning the new thing you’re bringing to the table, it would be needless to jump in to teach.
2. You’ll need to understand their background and experiences and not be turned off by the apparent aggressiveness or relaxed attitude. Understanding what informed an attitude is key to changing it. If you don’t understand the experiences, you can run to incorrect conclusions.
3. Develop tough skin where insults and hurtful words do not make you react disproportionately. Master your emotions and keep them in check, or else you won’t achieve your goal of helping the person.
4. Appreciate their cultural and religious backgrounds even when you do not share the same beliefs. You don’t have to accept their beliefs or be immersed in their culture. You just need to appreciate that such backgrounds exist, and it is ok.
5. Understand the limiting beliefs and see how to correct them without being viewed as aggressive. What you do not understand, you will hardly be able to change.
6. You will need to show them the importance of what they don’t know. One of the ways is showing what they lose or have lost because of the absence of that knowledge. Another way is showing the benefits of gaining that knowledge.
7. Use life examples, drawn from people they know or who come from similar backgrounds and how such knowledge helped those people excel.
8. Show them practical steps that can take them from level 1 to level 7. This triggers an interest in them to want to know more.
9. Sustain their interest in going for what they should know. Showing examples may have triggered a little interest or curiosity in them, but it must be sustained. When they leave your coaching session, they will return to what they are used to. So, you must find a way to sustain the interest beyond your teaching session.
10. Understand that an attitude that was formed through the years requires time to change. So, patience and constant repetition of these steps are needed if the result will be achieved.
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