As with the many lessons learned while rebuilding ONEProject, this journal entry is about the lessons gained through self-coaching. It is about how we are fortunate to have coaches, mentors, friends, family and colleagues around to remind us how often we need to get out of our own way to achieve our goals. The key is to be able to recognize those that can help us see these lessons.

I was reminded of this during our ride for Parkinson’s. Two days into our ten day ride I was given the nickname of Eeyore. “Eeyore, I said. Why Eeyore?” I was told that every time a challenging section of the climb lay in front of us, my body language and actions expressed exactly what my mind was telling itself. In other words, as Eeyore would say it…, ”oh no another hill”. I was then reminded about the messages through talks, presentations and meetings shared with groups before our ride.

How I was demonstrating my own ability to meet the challenges and inspire others was not in alignment with the messages I was giving to everyone around me. It was time for self-reflection.

Accepting the observations was difficult yet transformed the remaining eight days of cycling into an experience and lessons in self coaching and personal leadership. One of which is recognizing how our own personal presence affects and impacts our messages with others.

If you had the chance for self-reflection could you answer the following questions in your current role? What resources do you have that will help you stay present? How will you know your message has been received as intended? Who do you trust on your team that will support you when challenged? When we are clear about the meaning of our objectives and being truly present, you will increase the chances our message is being heard. Once heard, improved performance is sure to follow.

Twelve cyclists set out on the third day inspired to share a common vision, common objective and make a difference. Every climb, every push of the pedal and every action from day three was about the message of Parkinson’s and for my dad. That morning Eeyore was left in the hotel room and the road belonged to twelve cyclists whose message continues to inspire those living with Parkinson’s, their families and the organizations where self-reflection and coaching is a part of leadership practice.

Marc Bowles cycling
Marc Bowles cycling