Shawn Asked - I Answered [6 distinct items to look for in good coach training!]

coach training coaching Nov 11, 2022

Shawn's email was an honest inquiry about coach training. He wondered what he should be looking for in coach training and asked if I could chat. So we did.

I looked over the coach training org he was interested in and noted a few things he should ask. If you are considering coach training you should be asking these questions too!

1- How many certifications, programs, or tracks do you need to take in order to actually coach people?

This was a problem for me when I took my initial coach training. I'd finish one certification and they would hold out the next as a "must-do" before coaching. After your first coach training with Bridges, you will be fully prepared to offer an actual coaching session.

2- Will all your training be with a facilitator, or are you ever left on your own?

Many coach training orgs have you "practice" coaching with a peer or fellow trainee. If your sessions are not observed or supervised this can actually be a harmful way to learn as you could be practicing poor...

Continue Reading...

4 Steps To Shift An Aspirational Goal To An Actual Pathway!

I desire to retire well, to be self-supporting and not a burden on my children.

I also want to write a book about pendulums that will help people discern how God is guiding them.

I'm hoping to lose 4 inches in my middle (just keeping it real).

And I dream of being close with my children and grandchildren as we all grow older.

These are all genuine goals for me. I really desire them all. But they will most likely remain dreams if don't add a pathway of intentional action steps toward the goals. 

Sometimes churches have aspirational goals too. 

     We will break the 200-person attendance ceiling, or we will get to 1000 or whatever number...

     More than 50% of our people will be in small groups.

     Giving will increase by 20% in the next year.

Here's the thing. Clarifying a goal is good, but it is only a first step. Drilling down on a desire gives you something to shoot for, but it's like setting up a target...

Continue Reading...

Beware The Drift...

Our church has been doing a series called, "Beware of the drift" on the book of Colossians. It's really got me thinking.

     Likely, no one plans in advance to gain 20 pounds in 10 years.

     Most people don't set out to become distant from family members.

     We're not intentional about building a habit of anxiety.

     We don't hope and dream to neglect our faith.

And yet, we drift toward all kinds of unintentional behaviors and unwanted habits.

Psalm 141:4a says,

     "Don’t let me drift toward evil or take part in acts of wickedness"

What if "wickedness" doesn't only means violence or intentionally hurting another person? Could it also include neglecting priorities or not pursuing what God has for you?

God offers believers so much - as a people group and personally. Let me explain.

As part of God's family, we are all offered forgiveness for whenever and however we miss the mark of...

Continue Reading...

Coaching a 2 Year Old? And Adult Relationships and Restorative Justice

Uncategorized Oct 23, 2022

My young grandson Booker is exceptionally verbal. Recently I overheard him trying to reason with his dad saying, "But it IS appropriate." 

His parents are doing more than teaching him to talk, they are teaching him to think for himself. Okay, truth be told he was about a week from being 3 when this all happened, but still - a two-year saying "appropriate" and knowing what it means is pretty entertaining.

But there's more - I have to share this funny, and insightful, story.

On our last visit, Booker was being a kid and in some sort of mood. His parents gave him some time to cool off and then his dad asked him, "Okay so what happened?" and he said in a sheepish voice, "I had an attitude." 

"And who did that hurt?" 


And here's the great part. "What do you need to fix it?"

Of course, we're all expecting him to say he needs to apologize, but he takes a few ponderous moments and says, "I think we're going to need tape and a screwdriver." 

I had to look...

Continue Reading...

What's Next? I AM

                                                      [Personal Practices]


Did Moses always kind of know he was called to be a deliverer? I'm not sure, but God certainly led him to do a great work.

How about Joshua? His path led him to step in as a successor.

Rahab was led to do a one-time courageous act.

Anna waited till old age to receive a promise she felt God gave her. 

The Bible is filled with pathway stories. They are written as testimonies of faith. 

Hebrews 12:1a says, "We are surrounded by a great cloud of people whose lives tell us what faith means. So let us run the race that is before us and never give up."

What is the race that is before you?!

That's our quest! 

We need to answer that question! YOU need to have an answer to that question!

God built us for destiny and discovery. We are all a part of the ongoing...

Continue Reading...

3 Instances When Coaching Is NOT The Best Option


It's true. Sometimes coaching is not the best option. 

Of course, I'm a big fan, and coaching is likely best more often than we all use it, but there are times when it is not the best or right tool to use.

1- When someone needs to be taught something. 

Recently one of our Next Level Coach trainees was talking about how his coachee didn't know what a SMART goal was. (If you are not sure check out our blog Demystifying SMART goals.) It's hard to help a client set a good goal when they are not sure of the parameters. In this case, it would be appropriate to "take off your coach's hat" for a time, give a brief explanation, and then ask clarifying questions that would help someone make a SMART goal. 

Or maybe the teaching would be more in the form of a story. Many people deal with lies or limiting beliefs that hold them back from moving forward in all God has for them. In fact, I would go so far as to say most people deal with these. If someone is unclear on...

Continue Reading...

FLASH SALE: so kingdom it just might work!

April and I were talking and we believe in this course so much we want to try something drastic to get more people involved!


Here's how we are making that work - this next cohort will not include personal coaching sessions and will not complete the needed hours for a Bridges Coaching Certification, however, you will get the same great content, processing, and facilitation! (You can always hire April to coach you on the side if you like!) 

It's a lot really.

Personal Aha moments abound. Future goals are clarified. Alignment is realized. Trajectoires are shifted!

"Save Your Seat" for this kingdom opportunity!

Want more - Read these!

Does God actually have a personal plan for us individually?

Five True Stories - Does this really work?

4 Reasons People Put Off Destiny By Design, And How They Felt Later


Continue Reading...

Why I Paid April $50 For Just One Question!

Ready for a good story?

Some of you know I recently finished a book that is not yet published (more on that later) but it took me over TEN years to write it!

During that time my husband and I got a redirect from the Lord and moved to Lancaster, PA, where we are both on staff at Worship Center. We love it here. But, in order to be full-time there, I needed to hire people to do what I was doing at Bridges, which turned out fabulously! Sarah Fulton now manages the Coaching Culture branch, April Lonneville oversees the Destiny by Design side, and Michelle Pavasars facilitates the Next Level Coach Training(NXL).

During the very first NXL cohort, I volunteered to be coached by our Mentor Coach, Walt Hastings, while the class observed. 

This is where the famous question from April happened!

My focus for the coaching session was whether or not to finish my book. The complication was that I was juggling a full-time job and running a business on the side but still feeling compelled...

Continue Reading...

3 Reasons "Why" Isn't Really A Good Question - especially in trauma

#askbetterquestions Sep 09, 2022

"What" or "How" are the preferred coaching questions but why?

Here are X reasons why "Why?" is normally a not a best practice Q.

1) "Why" leans more toward the past. 

It can be healthy to look at what happened that made preceded the incident but it's hard to move forward while looking backward. Instead, shift the question to the future and use a growth mindset by asking,"How would you do that differently if you did it again?" 

2) "Why" usually comes across as judgy.

"Why do you think that happened?" can sound disciplinary, like you are trying to backdoor an "Aha" moment. If you need to raise awareness about negligence, that is a different conversation that should probably start out with "Are you open to some feedback?"

There's another common "Why" question that is quite judgy and is more personal than behavioral. It sounds like, "Why did you do that?" it comes across as questioning a person's character, education, or upbringing. Instead, maybe "What led to that?" can...

Continue Reading...

Counseling OR Coaching? How do you know which one is right for you?

Wherever you are in life - God wants to meet you there and walk with you toward your next!

He is always for us, He is nearer than we realize and He has good plans for how to move forward no matter what we are facing.

You may be in a season of transition  - many of us are these days.

Or maybe you have had that one thing on your mind for a long time, maybe so long it only whispers to you now. 

Can I just encourage you? DON'T STAY STUCK! 

If you are not moving forward let it be because you believe God wants you to wait on something, or because you feel He has led you to a season of active rest. 

But don't let it be because you are stuck or you have given up. 

I've seen both Coaching and Counseling work for various end goals, but in general, the focus of Counseling is the past and the direction of coaching is the future. 

The question usually comes down to the issue at hand. What are you facing right now?

     Is there something you...

Continue Reading...

50% Complete

Receive Helpful Ministry & Coaching Tips

Get tips from Cindy a few times a month, and learn about new opportunities grow in your coaching skills!