I just came home from an amazing meeting! What made it amazing?

Well, the main factor was the person with whom I was meeting—my consultant/coach/cheerleader/expert on all-things-marketing and internet—Anita AC Clinton. Four years ago she signed on to assist me in actualizing my vision for The Good Death Institute. Thanks to her, I have been able to make progress in actualizing this dream (and sometimes nightmare) of making the illness/aging/dying process less terrifying and even positive for growth.

But The GDI is a topic for another blog.

The 2nd factor was the process of focusing with another on my goals.  Enhancing creativity exponentially.

What I want to write about today is the coach-client relationship: how it can enhance life in the Evening of Life.

It doesn’t matter what your project is (and I think that everyone should have at least one project); working with a coach activates the elements essential to actualizing it:

  • Grounding – Goals/Objectives/Tasks
  • A Partner with skills and experience in the project
  • Accountability
  • Future-focus
  • Celebrating

The movie, The Bucket List, gave insight into the crucial role goals play in the quality of life as we age. The term quickly became a popular meme.

Why wait till one is diagnosed with a potential or actual terminal illness? Why not do it today? Why not start the process of shifting desires from daydreams to reality?

Consider engaging the services of a coach.

Why do I think that everyone should have a project/goal that is his or her heart’s desire? It is too easy for others and the wider world to fill one’s time and absorb one’s energy. I have seen it too often—folks who got to the final days only to discover that their own dreams died of starvation long before their bodies gave out.

Of course, it might be that the care of a family member or friend is your project—a reality I know and treasure all too well. Even more crucial than to have someone outside who can assist you in remembering your own self-becoming.

Accountability is a crucial element in this process. Did I do what I said I was going to do? Yes or no. If yes, what’s next? If not, what was the reason? Sometimes it is a matter of circumstance and logistics and sometimes it is more a matter of self-sabotage. Opening one’s process to another in this way makes space for input that can make all the difference to successful actualization.

The aging process brings diminishments that require medical care both acute and chronic. Can really get in the way of other projects! So easy to drift into being an extra in someone else’s movie! This summer I had cataract surgery on both eyes—a six-week adventure! Just this week I got letters telling me to make appointments for a regular mammogram and colonoscopy. Add in appointments for surgery follow-up, new glasses, semi-annual blood work and a physical, and almost every week for the next few months could find me at the hospital and doctors’ offices. Add in the aches and pains normal to a body in her 7th decade. Then add in the occasional cold/flu/allergies. Way too easy to drift into the role of the identified patient. How not? How to offset the drift?

For me, I need a dream that I am actualizing task-by-task, day-by-day. A dream big enough to make the diminishments a pesky nuisance instead of destiny.

Thank you, Anita AC Clinton!