THE TRUE POWER OF MODELLING
Today for many was the first day of School. For us that happens next week.
It was however a day for firsts. My baby boy, my big 6 year old had to get a tooth pulled, and not just any tooth, a molar.
Now with my experience the dentist is a place that I fear, a place I had 7 teeth pulled, by a dentist that didn’t believe me when I’d say it wasn’t numb, and I could feel it.
As we know our experience sets us up. However what do we do when we haven’t had an experience?
We Model the people we love, the people we trust.
So, I knew (thank goodness for coaching) that my boy would be guided by me, he would react the way I did, because this could either be just a normal thing or this could be a big thing.
Now my first big thing was teaching the dentist that under no circumstances was she to talk in code or try and make something that was going to sting (the needle) seem like it was just taking medicine. We need him to trust her, we need him to know when she says this will sting, then it will sting and most importantly when she says this won’t hurt, it won’t hurt.
The rest was down to me.
How I behave will determine his reaction to the dentist for the rest of his life.
So I was cool, I was calm, I was even excited. This was a regular trip to the dentist, he was going to sit in the spaceship chair, wear sunglasses inside and he was going to get to spit into the basin that sounded like an airplane toilet. I asked him our regular questions; what do you think? what do you wonder? And he was regular, even this morning brushing me off because he was busy doing something else ( I just may have tried to talk about it a bit much, Let’s be honest I got into my own head, made it about me and tried to talk out my fear) SO i took my queue from him and we didn’t talk about it.
Secretly, and no one can tell him till he is way way older. I had stomach cramps, I had diarrhoea. On the inside i was a wreck. On the outside, I was Mummy, I read ‘The day the crayons quit’ (Side note. totally worth the read, a great book) and Spiderman, I helped put the head back on a transformer. We drove and chatted about his birthday party on Sunday and how all his friends are coming.
He climbed up into the spaceship chair, told the dentist not to pull out the wrong tooth, and was so proud that he had secretly been practicing keeping his tongue still. He casually asked to hold my hand for the bits that would hurt, and asked the dentist if he could get a cuddle from mummy after the bits that hurt, because mummy’s mutant power, is to make anything better, with that comment: It was all I could do not to break down into a sobbing mess. With great power, comes great responsibility (thank you, spiderman).
Needle done, cuddle from mummy and then he confirmed for me that modelling truly is amazing, he said ‘right, i’m ready’ and opened his mouth. 30sec later tooth was out and he was laughing about cotton wool in his mouth and how swallowing blood must be good because it is still on the inside. Love my boy!
Every day coaching amazes me, I love that through modelling the behaviour of those that we trust. We can truly do anything. Whether it is going to the dentist or creating the business of our dreams, find someone you trust who is doing the things that you want or need to do.
I’ve also learnt something amazing, what we believe about that person is all that matters. I wasn’t being very resourceful on the inside, however I was projecting exactly what my boy needed, and because of that he learnt how to respond in a new situation.
My clients all enter a new situation at sometime through their journey, and I now know, no matter what is going on inside, I can project the confidence and courage they need to jump into the unknown feet first and with a smile.
Melissa Adeson, Certified Professional Coach