The Destination® Method: A Transpersonal Coaching Strategy
The Destination® Coaching Method is a marriage of the Heart and the Sword. It is the union of compassion with precision tools for personal transformation. It is empowered compassion in action as positive, practical prayer. Realizing that every thought is a prayer, the skilled Destination® Coach, as a kind of Taxi-Driver, uses many tools, including NLP, to resolve unnecessary suffering in a climate of mercy, one client-determined destination at a time.
The Destination® Coaching Method evolves education into coaching: Education is any interaction that results in additional skills. Coaching is any interaction that results in additional skills and an expanded awareness that every behavior is positively intended, and each client is fundamentally innocent. At the deepest level, the Destination® Method evolves coaching into ministry by pointing out universal innocence. Although people can engage in terrible activities, all beings are fundamentally innocent irrespective of their behavior.
Destination Coaching is the Destination Method in action. Destination Coaching is an ethically grounded process of positive, practical prayer, identifying and enriching a client's mental representations so that he can change his behaviors and get what he wants. A Destination Coach is like a taxi-driver who intelligently and empathically uses her skills to take a client from where he is to where he wants to go.
Destination Coaching is founded on sensory-based data and spiritual values. A Destination Coach assumes that emotions are the response we make to the meaning we give to what we mentally see, hear, feel (contact), smell and taste. A Destination Coach acknowledges her client's innocence, while compassionately helping him, through Telos Tools, to open to greater authenticity, humility, mercy, forgiveness, grace, wisdom and love.
A client comes to Destination Coaching because he wants something. He cannot get what he wants because he is stuck. None of his current skills help him achieve his outcomes, and he cannot find another way. His inner maps or mental representations (thoughts) of what he experiences are impoverished or ineffective. Knowing that every thought is a prayer, the Destination Coach teaches precision tools for changing these maps. When a client changes his inner maps, he changes his emotional state. This is deliberately using positive, practical prayer. It is as simple as that!
The Destination Transpersonal Coaching Method in a Nutshell
1. TDM was created by Rev. Dr. Robert Dee McDonald.
2. TDM is a transpersonal or spiritual coaching strategy that helps produce physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual results, according to the stated destination of a client. A TDM Coach is like a taxi-driver, taking passengers from where they are to where they want to go, using a variety of positive practical prayers, Telos Tools.
3. TDM holds that the cause of unnecessary suffering is ignorance of the spiritual nature, operation, function and purpose of one's conscious and unconscious minds.
4. TDM defines the conscious and unconscious minds as follows:
a. Their nature is immeasurable goodness.
b. Their operation is representational.
c. Their function is to produce measurable goodness.
d. Their purpose is to awaken the self as immeasurable goodness.
5. TDM holds that the conscious and unconscious minds of each person are in love with that person, and every thing done by the conscious and unconscious minds, despite the creation of suffering, is evidence of that love.
6. TDM holds that all human suffering, no matter who or what caused it, offers a variety of universally desired gifts, for example, compassion.
7. TDM holds that people are empowered to arrive at their destination when they learn how to literally change their thoughts in a climate of kindness and mercy. That is, a compassionate TDM coach offers to teach each client the skills to notice their own thoughts and change them, using Telos Tools, in order to achieve their stated goals.
8. TDM is harmless because positive practical prayers either help clients change their thoughts (prayers) or the clients keep the thoughts (prayers) they started with.
Necessary and Unnecessary Suffering
Emotional suffering is a prerequisite for compassion. The emotional suffering that we endure is necessary to understand and identify with other people. To face that which we cannot consciously control creates the potential of humility. All pain, all emotional suffering offers us a gift. Often the gift is an undeniable wake-up-call to pay attention to a part of your life which is no longer working. The most common gift of emotional discomfort is compassion, a deeper willingness to engage in the human community. If your life were totally pain free, if you had never suffered in any way, you would be unable to commiserate with other people.
Our emotional pain becomes unnecessary when we awaken to life, find meaning in it, and become more aware of our interdependence with others. Unnecessary suffering has two conditions:
1. You have discovered the gift of the pain.
2. You have the means to resolve the pain.
On the other hand, when you are unable to find the positive function of your pain or when you are unable to find any solution to the pain, then your suffering is necessary. Whether our suffering is necessary or unnecessary, we need each other's tenderness, compassion, and deep understanding. We need the qualities and values of the Heart. We also need effective tools to reduce or eliminate our suffering. We need the Sword as well as the Heart.
The Heart is an ancient metaphor for spirit, love, understanding, compassion, sympathy, empathy and acceptance. The Heart is not a technology. It compassionately accepts emotional pain as it is and where it is. When the Heart encounters a problem state, it embraces the struggle. It does not work toward change.
Human compassion helps us know our pain. The loving arms of tender understanding help us embrace the full weight of our emotional suffering. Gentle attention lightens our load. A friend who carefully listens to our story reduces the self-doubts we added to our personal struggles. When someone cares enough to be touched by our suffering, even for a moment, we feel understood and accepted as we are. Usually we still feel pain, but we are often more able to bear it.
Simple listening is itself a healing activity. Good listeners open their hearts to hear another's story with acceptance and mercy. Acceptance through listening is the hallmark of the art of interpersonal healing.
We love to talk with people who are well trained in active listening skills. With a positively oriented listener, we usually feel safe enough to explore our feelings more deeply. The good listener is not "non-judgmental." It is not possible to not assess, make distinctions, evaluate and judge. So, of course, the good listener makes judgments. But he or she has made a prior decision to listen for and respond to the positive function of whatever is communicated.
If a listener remains positive as we search through the labyrinth of our many-layered emotional issues, we often come to a new understanding or insight about why we are the way we are. Sometimes we are fortunate enough, through our own and another's heartfelt acceptance, to discover a new level of mission, vision and purpose.
There are many heart-oriented approaches to suffering: Ministry, Rogerian Client-Centered Counseling, Gestalt Therapy, Neo-Reichian Body Work, Breathwork, Process Oriented Psychology, and Re-evaluation Counseling, and others. Each of these methods helps us explore our feelings until we come to understand ourselves in terms of where we are and where we want to go.
These methods help us reveal our emotional histories, feel our feelings and deepen our self-understanding. They help us accept ourselves as we are, pain and all. Through these emotional approaches, we continue to learn the lessons of the Heart. Through them we can learn to love more fully, understand more completely, and feel compassion more deeply for our own suffering and the suffering of others.
However, the Heart by itself is powerless to bring about specific change. The Heart helps us to understand and love ourselves and our pain. It even helps us have insight into the source and meaning of our pain, but it cannot employ specific action to alleviate our pain. It cannot take us from where we are to where we want to go.
The Heart is not a tool. It is an emotional and spiritual attitude, based on the presumption of universal innocence. Therefore, any healing that occurs solely in the presence of heartfelt compassion, understanding and acceptance is necessarily non-specific and unpredictable.
If we want specific, predictable change, we need more than compassion. In the face of unwanted and unnecessary suffering, we need tools, step-by-step procedures, and precise positive, practical prayers to bring about a desired change. We need more than the qualities and values of the Heart. In a word, we need the Sword.
The Sword is a metaphor for skillful action that gets results. The Sword represents the focused, goal-oriented tools, procedures and technologies we can use to heal ourselves and others. Consciously or unconsciously, all effective healers use the Sword, i.e., positive, practical prayer, in one form or another, to alleviate human suffering.
If you are a healer, you've probably discovered that insight and understanding are only half of the story. The other half of the story is this: When a client articulates an ecologically sound and sensory specific goal, it's your job to offer the tools which get him from where he is to where he wants to go.
We need clarity and expertise to build an effective solution to our particular pain. After we acknowledge and accept our emotional suffering, we need a friend who has useful skills that go beyond good listening, a friend who knows exactly what to do and how to do it. The time for exploration, understanding and insight is over. It's time for a change. It's time to take action.
When someone sincerely ponders our suffering, and then skillfully arranges a specific solution for our pain, based on a deep and respectful knowledge of what we feel and want, we are often relieved even before we experience the results. Our spirits are lifted as soon as we realize that someone knows enough and cares enough to teach us how to heal ourselves. As we take prayerful action, we become free to breathe deeply again. As we learn new skills, we increase our freedom, power and independence.
The Marriage of the Heart and the Sword©
The Heart by itself is impotent. Tenderness and compassion are powerless to produce specific, predictable results. On the other hand, the Sword by itself is meaningless. Without love, achieving a goal is an empty gesture.
The Heart and the Sword are profoundly effective when they work together. The marriage of the Heart and the Sword gives birth to empowered compassion. The Heart gently reveals what is needed. The Sword creates the step-by-step procedures to achieve it. Together they create the possibility of Destination Coaching, which uses Telos Tools.
The resolution of unnecessary suffering naturally flows from the marriage of these two very different perspectives: Process Orientation (Heart) and Goal Orientation (Sword). Healing a wounded heart is more than the relief of pain, more than the single-minded accomplishment of a goal. It is also more than simple insight. True healing comes from an integration of the Heart and the Sword in a climate of innocence and mercy.
True healing is the result of balancing these two orientations. When we bring together insight and action, meaning and rules, purpose and discipline, we become full participants and wise stewards of our lives. This wisdom can then extend to our families, our communities and the world in which we live.
If we wish to compassionately use postive, practical prayers with tenderness and understanding, we must recognize and develop the qualities of the Heart. You and I are responsible for the level of kindness we bring to the prayers we offer. You and I are responsible for the marriage of the Heart and the Sword. This is the genesis of The Destination Method.
The Client and the Effective Destination Coach
All coaching approaches presume that someone wants something. In the Destination Method a client wants to move away from a present state and toward a desired state, from inner pain to inner peace. The client may not use the words "inner pain" and "inner peace" to describe his present and desired states; however, without a beginning and an end, there is no point to the Destination Method, no way to measure its effectiveness. If the client doesn't want anything, if he is satisfied with the way things are, he is not a good candidate for Destination Coaching.
It is possible, of course, that the client doesn't know exactly what he wants. With exploration, however, he may discover that at the very least he wants to know what he wants. And that desire, that wanting, though vague at first, is necessary and sufficient to flesh-out his part of the coaching context. Because the client has an outcome, because the client wants something, a Destination Coach has a chance to accomplish her mission, which is to help the client achieve his outcome, to assist the client in moving from a present state to a desired state, through positive, practical prayer, to help bring her client home.
To be effective the Destination Coach needs to be aware of her part of the change matrix. If she has not done her personal and professional homework, if she comes to the session only partially prepared, she cannot fully accomplish the coaching mission.
What fundamental convictions, practices, models, skills and Telos Tools does the fully prepared, Destination® Coach bring to the change context? These are the central questions that we answer during the ten days of our flagship course, Healing The Wounded Heart©.
Counseling vs TDM Transpersonal Coaching
1. Are trained and licensed to diagnose and fix a client's broken car (metaphor).
2. See people who don't want to see them, e.g., sent by a doctor or court.
3. Look into the client's past to develop client insight, which is thought to therapeutically heal something broken in the client.
4. Might see the same client for the same issue for months or years.
5. Believe there is something wrong with, or broken in, the client.
6. Diagnose various mental illnesses.
7. Create an up/down relationship.
8. Keep their personal experience hidden.
TDM Transpersonal Coaches:
1. Are trained to teach clients better ways, using Telos Tools, to drive a car to their destination (metaphor).
2. Only see people who want to see them ~ teaching them Telos Tools to achieve one client-determined goal at a time.
3. Start with the present and look to the future for what the client specifically wants.
4. Teach clients how to quickly change their thinking in service of their goals, using positive, practical prayers, called Telos Tools.
5. Believe every thought is a prayer, no one is broken and everyone is innocent.
6. Are unable to diagnose mental illness and do not work with mental illness.
7. Create an equal or partnership relationship.
8. Are often open and self-revealing