Sports, Motivation & Psychology

"Every situation can be improved"

She is a coach with a passion. There's no doubt about that when you talk to Claudia Brinkmann. She has left her career in financial services behind to devote herself entirely to the "human factor". Style PASS talked to her about the small and big challenges of life.

Style PASS: What makes a good coach?

Brinkmann: I think it's important to look at what background the coach has. I rely on a systemic approach: If the client has a problem with a colleague at work, for example, I ask: What impact does the problem have on other areas of life? And what is actually the cause of the problem? And: I think a free preliminary meeting to see if the chemistry fits is important.

Style PASS: You work holistically, psychologically?

Brinkmann: That's right. But systemic also means looking at the environment, i.e. not just at myself, but also at the surroundings, in order to gain a different perspective, a different reflection on a topic. Sure, we have our patterns, we repeat things. Seeing through these patterns and discarding them when they no longer serve us is part of our personal development.

Style PASS: You don't necessarily always repeat things because they're "right," but simply because that's how you've learned them.

Brinkmann: Absolutely! Sometimes you can't get out of your patterns, reflection is very important to adjust patterns if necessary.

Style PASS: The journey is the destination? How do you go about it when someone comes to you for coaching?

Brinkmann: I am very specialized in one topic, which is "personal potential development". Behind this is the thesis that we are born with certain talents and passions, then comes education and societal imprinting, then we often stray from our actual path in life. Some are able to realize their talents and gifts better than others. If we do something that does not correspond to us, an incoherence, a dysbalance is created. Many people distance themselves from themselves through external pressures and expectations. I try to bring my clients in contact with themselves and to give space to their own talents. The goal is happiness at work and in private life. I work out concrete solution strategies.

Style PASS: "You can' always get what you wan't" - the Stones once wrote, in economics this is called the "law of scarce goods". How do you see it?

Brinkmann: Good quote! I would say: If it's about true passions, about two or three heart issues, you can always give them room. For many people, even small changes are enough for better satisfaction. If I like to help people, maybe I don't have to become an independent coach, but I can maybe do coaching training and become an in-house coach where I work.

Style PASS: You incorporate philosophical aspects into your coaching. What all can be meaningful and how do you achieve a meaningful life?

Brinkmann: Ultimately, everything is energy. And when we get into a good energy, we attract it. Many doors then open, opportunities suddenly arise. The psychoanalyst Carl Gustav Jung called this synchronicity.

Style PASS: Some discussions in life are not even held because they might be "dangerous". Coaching provides a neutral space?

Brinkmann: Absolutely. Often it's enough to take a different perspective. I can ask neutral questions. This opens up new possibilities and options for the coachee.

Style PASS: Are job satisfaction and personal happiness related?

Brinkmann: They are definitely connected. A woman who is unhappy in her job because she can't contribute to it and therefore doesn't feel well - that has an effect on her charisma. A happy person has a different charisma than an unhappy one. This has an effect on every relationship. Surely everyone has experienced that, that you let out your frustration on your partner. Of course, it works the other way around when we're happy.

Style PASS: We spend most of our time at work. If things aren't going well there, it's understandable that we're unhappy. What are the main problems in jobs that you encounter again and again in your coaching?

Brinkmann: Basically, when one's own set of values doesn't match the values at work. For example, if "justice" is important to me and that has no meaning at work, I keep bumping up against it. Value conflicts cannot be resolved. Other questions are how to be involved in the job or how can I develop myself further? Recognition at work, demarcation and work overload are also frequent topics.

Style PASS: Is there a solution for every problem in life?

Brinkmann: I am convinced that every situation in life can be improved.

Style PASS: Your own talents, your own passions. In biographies about the singer of the century, Elvis Presley, it is noted that Elvis was unhappy because he often had to interpret songs that he considered inferior, probably due to his contracts and the expectations of many people in his environment with regard to commercial success.

Brinkmann: Yes, good example. The artist Elvis didn't seem to be hurt by his singing talent, but by the way he thought he had to use it.

Style PASS: Happy is he who ...?

Brinkmann: Whoever is authentic. To stay with the example of Elvis: He might have been happier if he had consistently made songs that were critical of society or whatever his true passion was ...

Style PASS: If you are really in your center, really authentic ...

Brinkmann: ... it's so fulfilling that you don't look left or right anymore - and you're just happy.

Thank you

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Questions: Mirjam Bauer

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