Sheldon Kopp was a renowned psychotherapist and author whose most famous book was If You Meet the Buddha on the Road, Kill Him! According to the journalist Oliver Burkeman, Kopp used to explain his job as a psychotherapist using a fascinating metaphor.
He would stand at the open door of his consulting room as a new patient rushed toward him, eager to fling himself into Kopp’s arms, to have his problems solved. But then, he’d stand aside, so the patient would crash onto the welcome mat.
The patient would have no option but to pick himself up, by drawing on internal resources he hadn’t known he possessed.
Like Kopp’s patients, our coaching clients show up with a plan for sorting their life out, and for co-opting us into the scheme. But what they really need is to have that plan forcibly put on hold.
Talent sees talent
Andrew Moss is a member of Project Kairos—my program for high-level coaches creating high-level clients. He is an extraordinary coach who has spent 30 years coaching and advising top performers, from Olympic athletes to entrepreneurs and innovators.
Andrew is fascinated with talent shows and he sent me this video of a young singer-songwriter called Hunter Price on America’s Got Talent. It is an example of really great coaching: https://youtu.be/XfsHaAsVD4g
Simon Cowell isn’t impressed by Hunter Price’s singing. In fact, he cuts him short within 31 seconds!
He tells him a hard truth, “Hunter, I think what you were doing was very generic…”
Then he compliments him, “I think you have a great voice, so what’s missing?”
He sees almost immediately that Hunter doesn’t know how to answer this question. So he follows it up with a more interesting question, “What artist do you look up to?”
Hunter replies, “I want to honestly be like Taylor Swift…”
The audience laughs but Cowell gives a nod of recognition. There’s something unique in a 25 year old man giving that answer. Talent recognizes talent.
He invites Hunter to sing one of his own songs. And within 12 seconds of him singing the first notes of his song, the audience erupts in cheers. They feel him.
After the song is over and the audience end their applause, Cowell asks Hunter what inspires him. He replies, “Well, when I sing, that was probably about 120 seconds that made every person in this room forget about every negative thing in their life…”
There’s a huge round of applause. But Cowell ignores the popular opinion. He says, “I’m going to be honest with you, Hunter. I don’t believe a word of that…”
There’s absolute silence in the room.
Cowell does a pattern interrupt and asks for a low and a high point in Hunter’s life.
Hunter shares briefly how he’s lived alone since he was 18 and there have been times where he’s not had enough to eat. He gets a nod of approval from Cowell and that’s it—he’s done it. He’s through to the next round.
Cowell is a talented coach.
You are a talented coach. And your clients need you to see their talent. They need you to hold them to a higher standard than they can for themselves.
To paraphrase Sheldon Kopp, your client starts coaching by insisting that they want to change. What they really want is to remain the same and to get you to make them feel better.
Don’t play that game.
Transformation requires that your clients let go of familiar ways of doing things, without yet knowing what they will do next.
Hold your clients’ feet to the fire. Hold their hand if needed. But hold them—in your mind—as far more powerful than they know.
PS. If you are a leader with a track record of success behind you and you’d love to coach a handful of high-performing, high-fee clients, I designed Transition Excellence for you. If you’re a high-performer who wants to create clients by invitation and referral only—no internet marketing needed—download the Transition Excellence Prospectus. I wrote it for you…
PLUS… Whenever you’re ready… here are 4 ways we can help you build the confidence, skills and the powerful language you need to enroll high-performing, high-fee clients.
There are just a few days left… If you sign up for any of my programs between now and midnight on December 31, you can pick one of our 3 self-learning programs (valued from $695-$995) and we’ll include that for absolutely no cost.
- Being an Exponential Coach – Would you like to learn everything I know about how to level up as a coach? This is a self-paced learning program based on 8 principles of Exponential Coaching. The feedback from people who have taken this course has been fantastic. This program is run by Mindvalley—not my team—but it’s a great low cost entry point into my world. Your Investment: $695
- The Intensive – 9 days focused on one thing: creating your very next client. I will teach you the skills, the language and the mindsets you need to master – in order to enroll high performing, high fee clients. You will be surrounded by our community of extraordinary coaches. I’ve run more than 25 Intensives over the past decade and only one didn’t sell out. And this is the only Intensive I am running in 2021. Your Investment: $1397.
- The Intensive Leadership Team – For years people have asked us, “How do you create such amazing Intensives?” The answer is simple but it’s not easy. We train people to be leaders—from the inside out. If you want to master leading and delivering extraordinary transformational experiences—for 5, 10 or 250 people, you can apply to join our team. And, if accepted, you’ll come behind the scenes to witness how we build a high-level team, plus you’ll experience small group coaching from me and my Faculty. (Important: This opportunity is only available if you have attended a Rich Litvin Intensive—at least once) as a participant. Only 10 spots available. Your Investment: $5397
- Project Kairos – This is my highest level Client Creation program. You’ll join a group of 30 top performers. You’ll have me as your coach from January to September 2021. You’ll have powerful Deep Coaching in a Group Setting, plus a private Slack group for Q&A with me, and for mutual support with the group. You’ll build the skills, the confidence and the powerful language you need to enroll high-performing, high-fee, elite clients. Your Investment: $13500 (Plus, you receive a complimentary ticket to the Intensive)
PPS. Don’t forget to choose your gift:
- Be Remarkable – Learn how to stand out in a world where everyone’s an ‘expert’. Learn how to sell your book, your program and your coaching in a noisy world. ($
- Create! – Learn to leverage the power of your creativity—to create tools, intellectual property, articles, videos, podcasts, interviews, webinars and more… This is the secret sauce that lets people experience your coaching before they become clients. ($
- Coaching Elite Top Performers – Learn how I coach extraordinary top performers, from Navy Seals to leaders of billion dollar corporations. Begin with my Deep Coaching Assessment, to analyse where you need to improve the most. ($