Resonance In Coaching and Leadership - International Academy for Deep Transformation

Resonance In Coaching and Leadership

Coaching, like any deep communication, calls us to the heart of the great paradox of the human condition.

When we sit with a client, we find ourselves on one side of an unbridgeable gulf, between the privacy of our own thoughts and feelings and those of another human being.

We sit together as separate beings, totally alone in the silence of our own thoughts and perceptions. Yet, we also enjoy an amazing capacity to empathize, intuit, embrace and share each other’s thoughts, feelings, and essence.

The magic of coaching happens neither in our absolute separateness, nor in its negation. Rather it occurs when our separateness and our connectedness are both lively and present.

When our separateness is lively, yet held in a deeper sense of communion, we encounter a kind of ‘resonance’ within ourselves and between each other.

Within this resonant responsiveness deep transformation happens naturally. Not only in the world of the client, but inevitably in that of the coach too.

Without that resonance, arguably nothing of importance happens in the coaching relationship at all.

Between Self and World

Resonance is the active reflection of our multi-levelled nature. Subjectively, in ordinary waking consciousness, we walk alone. Our bodies appear as autonomous self-organizing structures independent the one from the other. And yet, socially, culturally, and economically we are interdependent.

In our localized autonomy, we are woven from the same threads as every other part of the great web of life. We are rooted in the material, part of the great matrix of life. For all our separateness, we are nature knowing itself.

Consciously, we can claim autonomy, but physically we are complex instants of self-organization in the material vastness of the Cosmos.

Like everything else in Nature, we are patterned according to the same principle: differentiation within interrelationship. We are not only parts, but participants, participating in the multi-faceted unfolding of Life – our own unfolding, a reflection of, and element within, the Greater Unfolding.

It is this sacred relationship that resonance in coaching mirrors and honours whenever we touch and are touched by it.


Resonance arises when we come into a deeper alignment in our own being, while sharing that alignment with another.

Resonance is that deep and subtle recognition that we are not only absolutely separate but absolutely profoundly and mysteriously connected.

Resonance does not negate our differences. Rather it tunes them to a finer note in which the best of both are possible in a heightened togetherness that illuminates our irreducible uniqueness.  We enjoy heightened awareness of a common field that permeates and surrounds us, while appreciating that that field puts into relief each person’s absolute specialness.

In resonance, we reciprocally raise each other to another level of coherence. In that meeting of heightened autonomy and communion, great things are possible. Boundaries and blocks to resolution shift and transmute. New possibilities emerge.

It’s not for nothing that, when we fall silent and touch such a moment, we say: an angel passed.

Triggering Resonance

Resonance is a familiar experience to most people, but it is not always obvious how and why it arises, nor what makes it disappear.

Resonance appears sensitive to our openness and alignment. Inner conflicts are no friends of resonance, nor are mistrust and emotional distance.

When we are honest with ourselves and with others, there is often a shift towards resonance. Even if it is our inner conflict that we share, if that is the deeper truth, resonance can grow.

When we open courageously to an unspoken and unpalatable truth, if that truth was previously the ‘elephant in the room’, resonance can emerge.

Resonance arises with growing personal and interpersonal alignment. It is the reflection on the perceptual level of our very cells coming into harmony with each other. In truth and connection, we can become like tuning forks, and our resonance creates an influence that we can feel and is felt, as other tuning forks begin to resonate with us.

As such resonance spreads. When we are highly aligned and open, we resonate, sending an invisible wave of influence that brings the consciousness and cells of those around us into alignment.

Resonance and Leadership

Resonance of course is not just for a one-to-one relationship. Resonance can be felt even more strongly among many people. With resonance, differences resolve, and great insight and creativity become possible. Groups and organizations become focal points of creativity and spontaneous communal achievement.

Resonance is a leaders’ dream. And in the next issue of eCoaching we will turn our attention to the question of whether and how a leader can be a source and focus for such resonance.


Peter Wrycza, PhD
Founder, International Academy for Deep Transformation

April 2012