The second Climate Coaching Action Day, a global initiative launched last year by Coaching at Work, took place on 4 March. Here’s a roundup of some of the events
This year’s Climate Coaching Action Day was marked by a host of inspiring events, facilitated by individuals and organisations across the globe, including professional coaching bodies, the Climate Coaching Alliance (CCA), Climate Change Coaches (CCC) and Positivity Coaching.
The International Coach Federation Foundation’s Morel Fourman and Saima Butt explored ‘Climate Change? Call the Coaches! Delivering Greatest Possible Contribution to Humanity and the Planet’. The Foundation’s Cristina Custodio described navigating climate change having lived through Hurricanes Irma and Maria in her native Puerto Rico, exploring how coaches can help others face up to climate change and work for environmental justice.
Four CCC team members shared how they’ve niched their coaching practices in service of the environment in areas including green career transition, connecting to nature, eating for the planet, climate entrepreneurship and developing leaders in sustainability. Their webinar was attended by almost 100 coaches, with another 70 accessing the recording.
“We received fantastic feedback, much of it centred around our generosity, authenticity and openness about our own experiences,” said one of the presenters, Megan Fraser.
Coaching at Work editor, Liz Hall and The Conscious Leader CEO Mark McMordie, both mindfulness teachers, led a ‘compassion space’ to start the day.
Greece-based Positivity Coaching hosted an hourly social media ‘Choose Life’ videothon on themes including how can coaches help with awareness of environmental issues through their work, ‘green work’, and how the coaching mindset is (an) ‘eco mindset’, taking a holistic approach.
The CCA hosted its most ambitious 24-hour event to date to mark the Day (see its co-founders’ report, below). Events included a webinar on ‘Coaching with Nature’ with James Farrell and Diana Tedoldi (read their article on this in the next issue).
Listen to the event
- Liz Hall interviews Dr Alister Scott, leadership coach, sustainability expert and co-founder of The One Leadership Project on ‘Going Towards Pain, Fear and Grief in Embracing the Scary Reality of the Climate Emergency.’ Listen here: https://bit.ly/2RXxsvO
- To access some of the CCA event recordings, go to: https://bit.ly/3xcKC8t
What’s mine to do?
The Climate Coaching Alliance’s co-founders Eve Turner, Josie McLean and Alison Whybrow report on the third 24-hour event as part of Climate Coaching Action Day
The Climate Coaching Alliance (CCA) was delighted to join in the Day of Action, holding its third free 24-hour event, with more sessions, contributors and participants than ever before.
Our first 24-hour conversation on Coaching and Climate Change as part of the first Climate Coaching Action Day on 5 March 2020, and our second, with the tagline ‘From Permission to Action, Global and Local’, in October, had a common programme, operating once an hour each hour. But the third, ‘What’s Mine To Do?’, was by far the most ambitious, with CCA members invited to put on events in any language. This resulted in 112 webinars in eight languages, across 40 hours.
With such an extraordinary range of exhilarating, moving and stretching sessions we can only give a taste here, and we are so grateful to all those who contributed and took part.
Thanks to CCA member, Stuart Pickles, we began with a special pre-event conversation themed ‘Love in action will save us, shared in a spirit of vulnerability and generosity’ with Tom Rivett-Carnac, chief political strategist for the landmark 2015 Paris Climate Agreement and his coach, Jo Confino, a sustainability activist, journalist and Zen mindfulness practitioner. Rivett-Carnac is the co-author with Christiana Figueres of The Future We Choose (2020) , a guide for us to play our part in tackling the climate crisis. The theme of authenticity shone through: “I bring my presence, I bring who I am, the art is being who we are.”
Confino shared three ways to deal with the coming decade which will be crucial in whether we can avert irreversible climate change and ecological and biodiversity collapse:
- Accepting our current situation Our civilisation, like all living things, has a life cycle. Some things will die so that others can be born, and we’re encouraged not to waste energy fighting against what’s inevitable, while not being passive
- Letting go of our preferred and predetermined outcomes We can give our all, but without attachment, and allow what will be, that which is waiting to emerge
- Acting with love ‘What would love do now?’ may become a powerful coaching question.
Other CCA events included by New Zealand’s Brendon Marshall, Across Schools lead teacher at Te Iti Kahurangi Kahui Ako, Auckland. He shared a project he’d initiated empowering 16- and 17-year-olds to engage with climate change in their communities and use social media for a positive purpose.
His simple yet profound approach included using coaching questions to help students plan, take action and evaluate. Teachers from a UK school were inspired to introduce elements of his approach as they start to work with 12- and 13-year-olds.
Marshall now plans to set up an Education and Climate coaching pod within the CCA community to explore other possibilities.
Asia’s highly active CCA pods included engaging sessions from India to Thailand, the Philippines to Sri Lanka. Preeti Mann and Saurabh Mittal described deciding to live sustainably in the hills after experiencing city corporate life, realising that happiness is a choice. Mike Keshwar described walking around the Ganges to encourage local communities “to plant trees on her banks… The Ganges is a divine river so she can take care of herself, the trees are to protect the river from flooding the villages.”
Indranil Sengupta and Rabia Tewari urged us to take responsibility, describing cleaning a stretch of the Mahim Beach in Mumbai with support from local fishermen, gaining UN recognition for their initiative.
One session, repeated over the 24 hours, asked, ‘What if we become good ancestors?’ guiding a ‘What if…?’ visualisation of a sustainable future.
Co-presenter, Helen Strong, said this exercise “is an amazing tool for unleashing the power of the collective imagination in reframing and addressing many of the problems facing humanity today. More than ever before, we need creativity and imagination to enable us to move to the next level in our evolution.Giving people the chance to experience the sensory realities of potential futures helps secure the place of these realities in our hearts and not only our heads.”
Professional coaching bodies at the events included: European Mentoring & Coaching Council, Association for Coaching, International Coach Federation, Association for Professional Executive Coaching and Supervision and Coaches and Mentors of South Africa (COMENSA).
COMENSA’s Musa Nxumalo explored the theme of eco-anxiety, reflecting that “people have a strong appetite for these types of conversations, as long as they are practical; relevant to coaching and the work they do, so that they can translate what we talk about into actionable steps in their private spaces – at work and at home.”
He shared a point raised in the session that talking more about climate topics is itself “a doing”. “It is action.”
The themes of purpose, spirituality (non-religious), action through community, in schools, businesses, government, with politicians and indigenous wisdom, were among those explored as we (Eve Turner, Catherine Gorham, Jackee Holder, Lily Seto and Peter Hawkins) addressed the phases of Hawkins’ Eco-Cycle Model: Curious, Informed, Aware, Engaged and Active.
The importance of nature and humanity’s need to “let the ecology do the coaching” shone through.
What CCA event participants said
- “Community and connection are the key words I go to sleep with”
- “Wonderful insights about how to bring more nature into coaching and coaching into nature. Also how integrated this is with vertical development … and living on purpose, intentionally”
- “The message is clear. We need change. The Earth has spoken to us. She is asking us to protect her, and by doing so, allowed all living beings to thrive. We need collaboration, connection, compassion and commitment! “
- “We are in this together and we have more in common than we think”
- “There is no right answer to implement change, every actionable and intentional step is valuable”
The CCA: join us
- The CCA is planning its fourth 24-hour event, again community-based. It’s free to join the CCA, which was set up in November 2019, and has grown into a community of more than 1,000 global members.
- For more information go here: https://bit.ly/3vf2L3I