CLEAR – Create Changes Gracefully in Five Steps


A Coaching Model By Crystal Thompson, Transition Coach, UNITED STATES

CLEAR – Create Changes Gracefully

Finding oneself and one’s path is like waking up on a foggy day. Be patient, and presently the fog will clear, and that which has always been there can be seen. The path is already there to follow – Author: Rasheed Ogunlaru

This is a coaching model for those looking for the clarity necessary to create changes gracefully in their lives. These changes can be self-driven or a result of unforeseen conditions. Before we can leap into change, we greatly benefit from reflection and clarification as to what our needs and wants are.

This model allows one to enter the space of connecting and creating intentions for change. This flows through the steps, ultimately achieving reflection around the clarity that was unearthed through the coaching process.

I have discovered in my exploration of the coaching experience that there are a number of slight shifts that can surface in just one session through the process of uncovering what needs to become more evident. These modest moments of clarity can be as simple as a new awareness around how one came to be wrestling with a current situation or can offer a new glimpse of light around a topic that felt too distant to access. The CLEAR coaching model is a framework to support the client in transforming a distorted version of their reality into a crystal clear pathway to guide them to their desired goals.

The client and coach each bring valuable gifts to the coaching process that offer the opportunity to clarify what truths exist for the client. This model emphasizes the process one may choose to move from obscurity to clarity.

The word “clear” can be used as an adjective or as a verb:

  • Adjective: (of the substance) transparent; unclouded.
  • Verb: remove an obstruction or unwanted item or items from.

The synonym for “clear” in the coaching context: understandable, surfacing, making sense, finding a match, becoming more apparent.

In coaching, “becoming clearer” or finding clarity” is having new awareness around a perspective that the client had been using while viewing the situation with a particular lens and suddenly seeing it from a different vantage point. It is the act of sifting through current beliefs and discovering things that may not necessarily be true, exploring those deeper, and unveiling new and different truths. When the significance of something shifts and the clouds move away, we can move into acting differently.

The Clear Coaching Model

CLEAR Transition Coaching Model Crystal Thompson

The Clear Coaching Model Has Five Steps:

  1. Connect with your client, create the coaching agreement
  2. Listen actively to what your client says (verbally and non-verbally)
  3. Engage your client deeper to explore underlying issues and limiting beliefs
  4. Arrive at the new awareness and perspective, initiate an action plan
  5. Reflect on new learning and new possibilities

1. Connect With the Client

This is the most important step of the coaching session. This step is where the client gets to clarify what they hope to achieve in the coaching session. The space is set for the client to explore what is coming up and what direction they’d like to take. This opportunity is for the coach to establish trust and support the client in clarifying their focus for the session. The coach will confirm with the client the goals they set forward within the Coaching agreement.

2. Listen Actively

The second step is to listen to the client actively. This is the phase where coaching presence is paramount to honing in on verbal and non-verbal cues. This offers the space for the coach to hear what the client is saying and what is not being expressed. The coach can use this opportunity to understand the importance of the issue and why it is now surfacing for the client. Within this active listening piece, the client begins to feel a sense of trust and safety as the coach maintains a non-judgmental approach in being present for the thoughts and feelings of the client to emerge.

3. Engage With the Client Deeper

The focus of this stage is to engage the client in exploring more proactively the depth of the situation. This step offers light into potential limiting beliefs and allows the client to see what the underlying issues may be. This is an opportunity to explore, through powerful questioning, ideas that help to identify thoughts and emotional blockages that lead to beliefs that can be inhibiting.

4. Arrive at a New Awareness

The fourth step introduces new awareness to the session. This is where the “shift or breakthrough” in the client’s current thinking may happen. The coach may help identify a contradiction or fissure in the client’s story and belief system that may offer new insight. This insight can lead to a new awareness in perspective. When the client arrives at that place, the coach is to hold space as the client explores the unique sensations that arise from pulling back the curtain and seeing something with a new lens for the first time. The coach can support the client by acknowledging and offering intuitive observations to allow the new possibility to surface.

5. Reflect on New Learning

The final stage of this model is the point of reflection. This is new possibilities open up for the client. As the client looks at the new learning, they can launch into commitment through action steps to move forward. The coach explores ways the client can carry this new learning into other facets of their lives. This final phase embodies accountability and a space to review the goals outlined in step one. Within this arena, the coach encourages support structures and helps the client to identify who or what may encourage them with accountability.

Clarify your purpose. What is the why behind everything you do? When we know this in life or design it is very empowering and the path is clear. Author: Jack Canfield

Application of the CLEAR Model:

The CLEAR model can be used in many applications. Often, our client has no idea where to start and is incapable of defining the underlying issue of what is keeping them stuck. With the CLEAR Model, the coach can follow this process to facilitate clarity for their client. Once clarity is achieved, the client can identify areas that need to be addressed to shift towards change. Here are some thought-provoking questions that can begin to clear the path to a deeper dive for the client:

  • What would be valuable to focus on today?
  • What would you like to achieve by the end of the session?
  • What would it feel like to know what you need?
  • What impact will this have on you?
  • What becomes more evident when you look at it from that perspective?
  • What is true for you?
  • What do you think is behind this?
  • What else is surfacing?
  • What becomes possible now?
  • What do you see now that you didn’t see before?
  • What would your ideal scenario look like?
  • How would you benefit if ____ was different?
  • How do you want to move forward?

CLEAR Model Framework to Begin the Journey of Living Life

Coaches serve as thinking partners enabling clients to find clarity and new perspectives to live a more fulfilling life. An effective coach fosters awareness through powerful questioning and assists their client in seeing their true potential. When the client discovers clarity in a situation, it can be similar to the effect of the fog rising from old beliefs and patterns to an acute fresh frame of mind. This coaching model serves as a framework to begin the journey of living life with clear intentions and tools to see one’s life from a fresh vantage point.

Learn How to Create Your Own Coaching Model

Your Coaching Model reflects your values,
philosophies and beliefs and must communicate who you will coach
and the problems you will solve.
Read more about creating your coaching model


Franklin, M. (2019). The HeART of Lazer-Focused Coaching: A Revolutionary Approach to Masterful Coaching. Thomas Noble Books.
Reynolds, M. (2020). Coach the Person Not the Problem: A guide to Using Reflective Inquiry. Oakland, CA: Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Inc.

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