Monday, June 5th, 2017 at 1:05 pm

How movement can bring new perspectives in coaching

Whilst working with my coaching clients I often find that introducing a physical element into the session can really help to shift perspectives. Whether this is simply stretching, moving about the space, or coaching whilst walking, out and about.

One approach I have found to work successfully on a number of occasions is the physical exploration of Robert Dilts’ Logical Levels. Dilts’ model stemmed from the work of anthropologist, Gregory Bateson and provides a framework to help organise and develop ourselves. Whilst it’s great to be coached using the model, it’s a helpful tool to use on yourself if you’re stuck or trying to get a new perspective on something.

How does it work?

The model can be used like a ladder, or laid out as ‘stepping stones’ on the floor, with each marker representing one level of the ladder:

Robert Dilts









One way the model can be used is to explore the issue at hand from the perspectives of the different levels. For example, at the first level, you can explore the issue from the context of the environment, examining where you are and who is involved. Next, look at what behaviours are triggered by the issue, and then what skills you’re tapping into, and so on up the ladder.

What I’m often surprised about is how often the thinking has shifted as we come back down the other side of the ladder; asking on the ‘way up’ how things are now from these different perspectives, but re-framing this to ‘how things could be’ from on the way back.

There is something about the physical exploration of this framework which helps to develop new types of thinking, with often profound consequences when we reach the purpose level.

So next time you get stuck on a problem, I invite you to get physical with your thinking!

Harriet Attwood (Associate Coach)


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