A coach-friend the other day said that she doesn't talk to her clients about what's happening in her life. That she wants to maintain discretion and build trust. I immediately disagreed.
How better to gain trust than by being honest about your own experiences?
Then again, I thought, she might be right. Could I be sharing too much?
Will you hire me as your coach if I'm still figuring it out myself?
Recently I shared a story about my divorce after sitting on the draft for weeks for fear of the reaction. Would readers think I was a whiner, or worse, weak?
A number of people reached out, mostly privately, after the post was published to say that it spoke to what was happening in their own lives. It articulated something they had not yet. It became a conversation starter with their partners.
I could have lost followers because of it, but I don't think so. In fact, I welcomed two new clients.
I think we want to know the people we hire and care about are real people. We want to see the warts. Sometimes because it makes us feel better about our own.
We want to know that you've been there.
Admittedly, sharing can go too far. We've all seen that happen. The drunken photos on Facebook, and tweets that sound in need of therapy.
We also acutely feel what it's like when someone is holding back. It can sting.
This is the balance I'm figuring out for myself.
Here's what I know: when you share, you prove yourself to be human, and people are drawn to that.
I dare you to share. Show us who you are.
My friend, Sam, did today. I hope you will too.
I bet you'll like the response.