• Chris Hardy

How your Coaching Relationship can be like a Crucible.

This article is for you if you’d like to create change in your life. You’re aspirational, you believe in better, for you and for those around you.

And perhaps you’re open to exploring the power a good coaching relationship can bring into your life. Power that will support you to create the growth and difference that you want.

Sounds good? Read on..

We’re often let down by our closest relationships. Our partner, our boss, our parents, our friends act out in ways we don’t agree with. And we can loose trust.

We distance ourselves and become isolated. Unable to seek support. Unable to trust.

And this is coupled with an inner need for change. Knowing that others can help with this change we’re left in a searching place, seeking support, seeking intimacy and trust and power.

As we stare down the barrel of life changes we’re afraid, you’re afraid. I’ve absolutely been there and have been extremely afraid myself.

The fear of the unknown can paralyse you into inaction. You stifle yourself, deciding that this safe spot is actually OK, even if it’s painful, the pain is better than the unknown. Especially an unknown journey into (and through) the darkness when you don’t have that powerful person by your side to say:

“Yes, you can do this. It’s scary, yes. And have courage. I believe in you and I will be with you until you’re through.”

It’s for these reasons that when considering working with a new client I usually like to slow down the process. Often there’s two months of us interacting, coaching, talking on the phone, both of us taking action, them reflecting on the changes that are happening, and then, and only then, I ask if they want to commit to a longer journey together.

This slowing down forms what we call ‘The Crucible of Coaching.’

A crucible is a container for transformation. They come small enough to fit into your hand and large enough to contain several tonnes of molten iron. Here’s a few examples…

Can you feel the metaphor? Of how a coaching relationship is like crucible.

A crucible:

  • is a powerful container, a strong place within which I to do alchemy.

  • takes time to be created itself and is necessary before transformation happens.

  • can crack if not cared for, if this happens it needs repairing or replacing.

  • is designed to be super heated and retains a it’s integrity in the midst of chemical transformation that happens within.

And so we make special effort, especially at the start of working together, to ensure our crucible is pure, powerful and stable.

Practically this looks like creating, and sticking to, agreements.

Rather than expectations (I expect you’ll turn up to our meeting on time), we create crystal clear agreements (We are on time fo fall meetings, and if anything needs to change we let each other know as soon as possible.)

We go far with these agreements for they are the stuff of our crucible. And as we know, a good strong crucible sets the stage for powerful transformation.

Agreements mean clarity, integrity and power. Right from the first conversation I’m calling out self-belief in the person I’m with to show up in a way that is in 100% integrity with their word (another agreement).

The money invested in coaching forms part of the crucible. It creates focus, attention and belief in a possible and beautiful future.

We have agreements around not taking anything personally. And so last week somebody I was in conversation was able to ask me about my motives for working with them, and why I was so keen to do the work together. Great question, nothing personal, and it opened up a really interesting conversation for us both.

Reflect on where we started this article; with you seeking to create support and powerful relationships that will help you create change in your life.

What I’m offering is that a really good coaching relationship can do that for you. Obviously you need to find the right coach for you, and you need to be committed, and have the investment available to you.

And then crucially make sure that you feel the power, trust and integrity in your relationship before making any commitment.

Seven years in the industry and more than £25,000 invested in myself during that time has taught me fair few lessons about diving in too quickly without taking the time to build a good crucible.

I’m now working with most clients for a minimum of one year, with a recent proposal to work with one incredible man for three years. I can, with courage and clarity, say to this man that I know it’ll be an awesome journey, and I know it’ll work. Mostly because of the work we’ve already done together in building a crucible. And because of the transformation I’ve witnessed in those around me

If this article has you intrigued to explore working with me, or joining one of my upcoming groups, then good. Just reach out via WhatsApp (+44 7881651889) and we can take it from there.

What I hope is that with me, or with any other coach, you spend the time upfront to build a powerful crucible. Slowing down at the start will mean more power, transformation, growth and change later on in the relationship.

And I’m all open to your comments and feedback on any of this thinking. It’s an exploration for me to be putting my ideas about coaching into the world and part of my practice is to be really open to feedback, comments and constructive criticism.

Thanks for reading.

Much love,


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