(Distinctions are subtleties of language that, when gotten, cause a shift in a belief, behavior, value or attitude.)

What are some prime differences which make this Distinction? Intent and attachment.

If someone seeks your assistance and you choose to engage, you are probably supporting. Or if you initiate an offer of assistance and they agree, you are probably supporting.

If you’re not looking for a ‘payoff’ (emotional or otherwise); if your engagement is simply because you want to; if you don’t have a need for a positive outcome in order for you to feel okay about your participation; in other words, if you are not attached to an outcome, you are probably supporting.

So what’s the other side of the Distinction? What turns your engagement into an interference?

If you jump in without them requesting, or at least agreeing, you are possibly interfering. It can quickly become about the outcome you want for them rather than what they want. Yes, that is so even when you ‘know what is best for them’!

When achieving the outcome is more important than the person, you are possibly interfering.

Interfering is primarily about you – they may or may not get to benefit.

Supporting is primarily about them – and you get to benefit also.

Coaching Point: Have you got anyone in mind right now you might want to support? What is your intention? Any attachment to an outcome?

Copyright 2020 Steve Straus. All rights reserved.