Happiness is an option

“But what is happiness except the simple harmony between a man and the life he leads?”
-Albert Camus

As soon as the desire for happiness is named and has entered the scene during the dream stage, one can start inquiring about it. People change in the direction in which they inquire. It is possible to motivate the coachee during this stage of dream as well as the next one called design, a stage where he starts planning and prioritizing processes, based on an appreciative way of asking questions and envisioning the future. Appreciative inquiry enhances a person’s capacity for collaboration and change. The design stage and the next one in the 4D’s model called deliver correspond to the points where ‘a shift happens’ and ‘movement happens’ in the reverse U-shaped coaching process curve.

Life mapping can be very helpful to motivate the client and make him unstuck from where he is stuck. Coaches can design a map that will include the client’s present position as a small village. Include in this map every defining element of his personal equation, name them and position them, and finally, introduce happiness as another village in this map. In the end, engage the coachee in an appreciative approach to design the path that can forward him from where he is to the option of the village called happiness. Call it an option, describing that the map exists along with everything discussed and that the path to happiness is realistic, attainable, and awaiting him to overcome the final barrier.


Although one may be certain that the barrier is such that it cannot be broken, it is possible to overcome the problem by applying the best of what is found in one’s arsenal. This helps coaches determine how they can motivate the client to focus on his strengths so he pushes the barrier as far as he can, even if is only a very small proportion. Having done that, coachees can then be assured that they are able to repeat the effort and double the effect. When this is completed, they can continue the next day with the same effort and same effect, and then the day after that, and so on until a certain point is reached where the barrier will simply fall down by itself. It is time to get started.

“A person starts to live when he can live outside himself.”
-Albert Einstein