My dad leaned over and showed me his inkjet printout of a private water craft (PCW) or jet ski. “This is what I’m thinking about getting next,” he put out there kind of sheepishly.

At 80 years old, mobility was limited, as was energy. But the aging exterior belied a young boy who grew up on the water and was feeling terribly claustrophobic.  He lived just a few steps from the water and yet it might as well have been miles away for all he could do.   He was landlocked.

Have you ever felt ‘landlocked?’  In coaching we use the term ‘stuck.’  You just know there must be a way out but you can’t find it. You are stuck on the edge of the shore looking out at the horizon of possibilities and wondering, how, do I step into those possibilities?

My dad was standing on the shore, desperate to get out into that open water.  But how?  He tried to solve the problem the same way he had always solved problems – buy a solution.  At this stage in his life, a fixed and dwindling income was causing a constraint that seemed impassable and so he was moving towards ignoring it and ‘paying’ the consequences further down the road.

We talked.  I asked him a few questions.  He wanted to be able to fish and not have to deal with physical demands of launching a boat, the expense of upkeep, etc.  He knew those days were behind him.  What else didn’t he want to deal with?  As the list grew, there just didn’t seem any other options.

What if he didn’t own, then what? Suddenly a world opened up to Pops.  Off to the computer he went to research options.  A few phone calls later, he had the answer – rent a fishing boat.   He could do that 25 times and still it would cost less than a PCW would have:  And now – no maintenance, no pressure, no winterizing, no repairs, no launching, no towing.  Literally pay and go.

Smiling ear to ear he reflected, “I’m no longer landlocked.  That feels really good!”

Welcome to the world of coaching.  Coaching is a powerful tool that helps a person no longer feel ‘landlocked’.  And that can feel really good!