• shazia nizam

Why life coaching will transform Pakistan


A life coach is someone whose job involves helping people to improve their lives by doing challenging or worthwhile things.

Dictionary definition

Life coaching has been around since the4 1970’s (check) and in recent decades has seen a global surge like never before.

Initially used for sports coaching — to get the best potential from the athlete — it them became a staple of the businessman, the executive, the CEO, the start-up entrepreneur and the billionaire.

As well as reaching their best potentials — it was about navigating crises, making tough / large decisions and having a bigger, better, stronger, more profitable company, more and more through innovation, creativity, diversity

More recently life coaching has been used at various levels of the company game — making sure that people are the right fit for their workplaces and vice versa. It’s been about harvesting a company culture that is nurturing its talent and making the most from their abilities.

So then we come to life coaching. Now, when any person in the company is ‘coached’, they don’t just deal with their life at work — almost always there will be an on-going domino effect in every other area of life as well. Home, relationships, self, family, friends, phobias, hopes, fears, desires, insecurities, and absolutes… the list goes on.

“We cannot solve problems with the same thinking that we used to create them”

Einstein

If your coaching at work deals with bettering relationships with colleagues, bosses, workers then it will inevitably make a difference to other relationships you have and ultimately the way you see the world at large.

How? By making that change you need, inside. By understanding what is involved in the reasons why you feel what you feel and do what you do, you can eliminate hours, days, months, years of your future life that have been solely dedicated to worrying about ‘stuff’. Stuff someone said, or did. Stuff that happened in the past and stuff that hasn’t happened yet.

Life coaching guides you to a clearer and more powerful space from where you will listen to your gut, take heed of your instinct and find the right way forward.

Seeing life from the inside out rather than being dictated to by the outside world and your individual thought created reality is how we change ourselves and change the world. And in actuality it’s by removing those veils that skew our world view that leave us with simply the truth.

Life coaching and Pakistan are two parts of me that have been coming together over the past year alongside life coaching and Islam or rather my deepening consciousness of its truth.

Having spend some time after my fathers death in a space of complete unknowing and unlearning, I discovered that by truly slowing down, I could see the veils, by further letting go of the past and my thoughts around it, I could begin to remove those veils. By seeking knowledge from the place of not knowing, from my Sufi circle, from the practice of adab and the poetic translations and significances of the Quran, I was able to find insights into a way of life filled with love peace and joy.

Last October I ran 2 two-day wellbeing workshops in Karachi and Lahore to guide those who attended to living a life of love peace and joy, pointing them back to themselves, back to their deen and back to their truth.

This came from an overwhelming desire to help Muslims understand the enormity of love in Islam. And how it encompasses and envelops all that we are in humanity, in Islam, in our existence. Just as is written in the Quran, just as the prophet lived his life and his companions theirs. How a life full of gratitude and free of judgement but guided by love, truth and humanity is what our true nature is. Life coaching points you back to that life.

For me life coaching and spirituality are intertwined. Whatever your religious beliefs, if you know there is something greater than you, if you experience those moments of higher consciousness, if you feel deeper when you are free of worry, then we are talking the same language. WE may use different words but out intentions and outcomes will be the same.

Life coaching and leadership lead to mental wellbeing and building a future of for humanity.

After having run mental health and wellbeing coaching workshops in Pakistan last year I experienced people from all walks of life drawn to the work and resoundingly responding to the work in a meaningful way. More that that though conversations with educators, students, street children, drug addicts, entrepreneurs, former politicians, men and women I heard how much people wanted to heal. They wanted to be free from anxiety, free from hopelessness and they wanted to be able to live joyfully.

Again and again I was hearing how factors and people outside of themselves, like family or society or misogyny was the reason that they could not live the life they wanted. Competition to be the best at school, the prettiest, the toughest, the most pious, the sweetest, the most successful in work, in marriage, as a parent, as a child, as a Muslim and so on. There was so much noisy thought around what SHOULD be and how one SHOULD be, it gave little space for original thought, for true thought. But in those spaces, were the conversations happened, the most amazing transformations came to be.

So coming back to Pakistan this autumn is about taking things to another level. Introducing a coaching leaders programme. A 10 day training course over 3.5 months for those educators, entrepreneurs, HR directors, innovators and people in a position to be able to teach others and make a difference.

I didn’t want to come back and teach a small group of people and just leave. I wanted to begin something that will continue and grow after I have left. I have been trained with the ICF (international coaching federation) and Noorworks coaching group and want to pass on what I know to help create a body of coaches in Pakistan.

The idea is to train leaders to become their best as coaches and purveyors of mental wellbeing… To be able to train those that can make significant difference in the field they are in. To be able to train those can then go on and train others.

Beyond that I want to come back and with funding / CSR backing to be able to run a similar youth programmes for 16–25 year olds. There needs to be legacy and if I am able to run training for 30 adults and then 100 youth over the next six months we have a place were this can really grow.

Coaching in UK and the western world is everywhere and there is so much emphasis on mental wellbeing of children, of different socio economic backgrounds, of everyday people in everyday lives. Coaching offers more than tools and techniques to help you through the day, its about guiding you to see how you have the ability to get there, to master your wellbeing all the time. And you are able to pass on that learning, that knowing and that understanding.

“For the past 200 years we have taught our kids that machines will do better. We need to teach our children that machines only have chips and that humans have hearts. The future should be about the competition of creativity, independent thinking not of knowledge. The future is wisdom driven ”

Jack Ma

This Certified Coach Programme incorporates a depth of coaching practise, methodology and helps to enhance the human understanding. It goes deeper into the practise of the art of coaching and those who come through this will be ready to coach clients / colleagues / peers immediately — if they choose to do so. The programme may well bring other creative career paths/passions to light.

The training is designed to produce coaches who are trained to the highest standards. It focuses on self-leadership and awareness as a coach and client.

The only prerequisite is a desire to become a coach, to gain coaching skills and/or to be interested in your own development and that of others. Oh, and to have fun while learning!

Contact info@noorworks for more and shazia@universallydiverse.co to contact me.

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