That Coaching Question Broke My Brain

Written by on December 30, 2017

Have You Ever Asked a Coaching Question that Seemed to Break Your Client’s Brain?

“That question “broke my brain”. It made me laugh and it made me think. Sometimes coaches ask questions that break their clients brain. That’s not the goal of the coaching question, no one wants to be known as the coach that broke their client’s brain.

The purpose of a question is to explore at a deeper level to gain insight and awareness that can be used to move forward or to expand thinking. 

When the brain gets stumped by a deep question, there is an opportunity to go in a different direction to find the answer and that place is usually to the heart. If one is new to coaching, they may respond to  inquiries from the brain rather than responding from the heart. Most of the time no one notices and no one challenges this way of interacting. The gift of a question that seems to break the brain is the enlightenment or new perspective it gives.

The win happens as the question expands thinking or to brings clarity to a challenge or situation.

How do you know when a question has an impact on fixed way of thinking? Here are some things to consider:

  • The they often say, “that’s a good question” or “no one has asked me that before”.
  • They will have a long pause and get very quiet. Let the quiet open space for the to process. Silence can be uncomfortable, but silence is golden. In the silence, is an opening to access inner information that may have been locked away too deep to reach before your question.

Questions are powerful, not because they hit the target. They are powerful because they connect with meaning. That’s when the transformation happens.

When a  coaching question breaks the clients brain, hold steady because it usually means that the question has also opened the clients heart. The open heart is where lasting transformation and change happens.