Autumn 2020

Coaching Beyond Method and Technique: Surrendering to Service

by Adam Klein

Over the last year I’ve had the pleasure of hosting many free introductory events whose attendees are interested in exploring the topic, “What is Integral Coaching?”

Such a fantastic, living question!

At first blush that may seem like an odd statement. Surely this is an easily answerable question. Isn’t it as simple as laying out and describing the method, going into the various differences of this approach as opposed to others, speaking about the moves the coach can make and how to make them, and so on?

Only, I submit that this is a larger, richer question that has an ever-expanding answer. It is, as Rilke would say, a question to live. It points to the intention infused in the method and the greater purpose to which Integral Coaching is in service. This inquiry also opens the doorway to the intersection of Integral Coaching and you, the reader.

First, a warm thank you to all who have participated in these events— your questions, comments, concerns and hearts of openness contributed greatly to what is arising, and what I am attempting to articulate. In what follows, my hope is to give expression to what has been emerging in these gatherings with all of you.

The Purpose at the heart of our work is:
Everyone uncovers their ability to continuously awaken and deepen so that life flourishes and is saturated with meaning, belonging, and contribution.

Or, alternatively expressed:
You uncover your ability to continuously awaken and deepen so that life flourishes and is saturated with meaning, belonging, and contribution.

This single statement encapsulates the possibility at which Integral Coaching is aimed. It is about supporting people so that they become more aware of their unique beauty and genius in its fullness and nuance. Alongside this awakening, each person also increases their ability to express and experience the various facets of who they are. As each one of us does this, we discover we have a special place in the choir of humanity—and as each one of us sings our notes, the full texture of the music comes through. This is Integral Coaching.

It is also about working with aspiring coaches in such a way that they can skillfully, compassionately, and wisely accompany individuals and groups in this very human endeavor. For the coach, the answer to the question “what is Integral Coaching” calls forth a way of being that embodies these attributes beyond being pro-forma or applying a mere technique. The very mind, body and heart of the coach are transformed as they seek to serve the client. This intention and dedication of service are cultivated in the very way the coach lives.

As such, Integral Coaching is a way of life: one in which the coach surrenders themselves to service, taking on activities of the body, mind and heart that support their intention. It is in this act of surrendering to something larger that coaches discover that the work they do with clients is something they can’t take complete credit for, since it’s the alchemical process of surrendering to service that allows coaching to take place. Coaching helps the client become more aware of their unique voice and have more access to the competencies and capacities that allow them to experience meaning, belonging and contribution.

This is just one take on a response to this alive, ever-changing question. Regardless of what form your service to the world takes (coach, poet, teacher, healthcare worker, etc.), may you find the living questions that animate and connect you more richly to the gift that you are, and thereby bring.





This quarter we invite you to take up a daily practice of reading poetry. There are many online sources for poetry:

…and this could be an opportunity to support your local bookstore directly or indirectly through

Suggestion for how to do this:
Set aside three 5-minute blocks of time to read the same poem. You can read silently or aloud—you might practice reading aloud at least once, as the rhythm of the words when spoken can provide a more textured experience.

After the third reading, journal for a few minutes about how you are impacted by the poem. What feelings, sensations, thoughts are present? What do they suggest about what is being stirred within you?


Working Together

David Whyte

We shape our self
to fit this world

and by the world
are shaped again.

The visible
and the invisible

working together
in common cause,

to produce
the miraculous.

I am thinking of the way
the intangible air

traveled at speed
round a shaped wing

holds our weight.

So may we, in this life

to those elements
we have yet to see

or imagine,
and look for the true

shape of our own self,
by forming it well

to the great
intangibles about us.

Beauty Radiated in Eternity


Beauty radiated in eternity
With its light;
Love was born
And set the worlds alight.
It revealed itself to angels
Who knew not how to love;
It turned shyly towards man
And set fire to his heart.

Reason ventured to light
Its own flame and wear the crown,
But Your radiance
Turned the world
Of reason upside down.

Others got pleasure
As was their fate.
My heart was
Towards sadness inclined;
For me, sorrow was destined.

Beauty yearned to see itself;
It turned to man to sing its praise.

Hafiz wrote this song
Drunk with Love,
From a heart
Carrying a happy secret.


Joy Harjo

It’s midsummer night. The light is skinny; a thin skirt of desire skims the earth.
Dogs bark at the musk of other dogs
and the urge to go wild.
I am lingering at the edge
of a broken heart, striking relentlessly against the flint of hard will.
It’s coming apart.
And everyone knows it.
So do squash erupting in flowers
the color of the sun.
So does the momentum of grace gathering allies
in the partying mob.
The heart knows everything.
I remember when there was no urge
to cut the land or each other into pieces, when we knew how to think
in beautiful.
There is no world like the one surfacing.
I can smell it as I pace in my square room, the neighbor’s television
entering my house by waves of sound makes me think about buying
a new car, another kind of cigarette
when I don’t need another car
and I don’t smoke cigarettes.
A human mind is small when thinking
of small things.
It is large when embracing the maker
of walking, thinking, and flying.
If I can locate the sense beyond desire,
I will not eat or drink
until I stagger into the earth
with grief.
I will locate the point of dawning
and awaken
with the longest day in the world.


How We Become Human

Joy Harjo
W.W. Norton & Company, 2004
Paperback: 272 pages

Aptly named, this collection of Joy Harjo’s poetry opens vistas into the journey of being human. The work in this book spans over 28 years of her life, bringing the reader into the vulnerability of grit and suffering as well as the intimacy of transcendence and beauty. Woven throughout is a feeling of humility as the reader is brought close in to this gift of life laid open. In the introduction Harjo writes, “The poet cannot be separated from place. Even placeness becomes a place.” Embracing listening, grace and voice, Harjo’s poetry invites us into the places and lived experiences of Native Americans,  offering a call to pay attention and be forever changed by the encounter.


Beginning 2021 in the virtual classroom

If this year has shown us nothing else, it is how adaptable human beings are. From families rearranging their routines to accommodate work and school from home, to adjusting our expectations for what is happening in the world on a daily, sometimes moment-to-moment basis, many of us have uncovered an agility that we never knew we had.

With so much in question, many folks have turned inward, asking questions about their life’s purpose. This inquiry has led aspiring coaches to seek out our training in remarkable numbers. The Professional Coaching Course cohorts for 2020 are full, and we are now looking to 2021!

The move to the virtual space has made the work accessible to those who may have been previously limited by geography and travel logistics. Even when it is safe to gather in person again, we will continue to have virtual options for most of our classes.

The dates of the first Professional Coaching Course (PCC) in 2021 are:

Session 1: Feb 18-21, 2021
Session 2: Jun 9-13, 2021
Session 3: Sep 30,-Oct 3, 2021
Session 4: Feb 10-13, 2022
(Pacific Time)

See the course calendar for a full listing of programs beginning around the world in the first half of 2021.

Foundations of Coaching, the prerequisite to the PCC, takes place next on December 8-10. See all current dates here.

New programs

In addition to existing programs moving into the virtual space, several new offerings were also born into the world this year—some brought about by the state of the world and the needs of the community, others that had been in the works for some time. They include:
Circles of Connection
Cultivating Resilience Practice Groups*
Integral Coaching and the Enneagram*
Integral Coaching Forum
Integral Team Coaching*

*Stay tuned for offerings in 2021

In the broader community

The first-ever PCC cohort inside a US government agency completed their year in June, and we are expanding coaching services, courses and bespoke programs inside a number of other corporations and nonprofit organizations. Scholarships have supported several students doing good work in the world to step deeper deeper into their calling.

Watch your inbox for an in-depth year in review where we will share more about these topics and tell other stories from our programs, the business, and the community.


Resilience around the globe

All of our international partners have been navigating this year’s shifts with grace and steadiness, supporting their students, enriching their communities, and inspiring us!

A beautiful relational space in London

Since the start of the pandemic, our  partners at Thirdspace in London have been hosting a weekly community of practice and support called Turning Towards One Another each Wednesday evening. This beautiful offering emerged in addition to their ongoing Turning Towards Life series, now in its third year with nearly 1,000 followers. You can join the conversation live on Sunday mornings UK time, or listen to the podcast. Each of these events provides poetry, music, reading and other resources for you to take forward into your week and beyond.

More success in the virtual classroom

Here is an update from the Centre for Coaching, our partners in South Africa and Switzerland.

In 2019, the Centre for Coaching kicked off its very first PCC cohort in Switzerland, at the Chateau de Bossey, thus enhancing our global footprint in Europe. Just a few weeks before our Module 3 was due to take place, the COVID pandemic threw the world into a frenzy and we all had to learn how to navigate our way through these limitations. This has been an enormous challenge, which we were able to meet, in particular thanks to our close partnership and collaboration with New Ventures West and the University of Cape Town’s Graduate School of Business. We have now successfully completed our Swiss PCC modules, including the final certification module, as well as two of our Coaching for Development programmes virtually and we now look forward to 2021 with renewed hope that anything is possible!

Our first 2020 Pandemic Coaching for Development group also completed their 6-month journey on October 16th and the feedback from the programme has been incredibly positive with a number of our 2020 delegates showing interest in our PCC Programme taking place in 2021. All  Centre for Coaching 2021 programmes will take place virtually.


Dear graduates,

As we reflect on this most dynamic year, we are particularly moved to experience the calm and steady presence you have brought to our community in these times of upheaval.

As soon as the pandemic hit the US and lock downs began, so many of you came forward to offer free coaching to those in need of support. This speaks not only to your generosity, but also to the way you’ve engaged the work of Integral Coaching: continually cultivating the capacity and spaciousness necessary to support others in navigating difficulty, even when you are experiencing challenges in your own life.

When the truth of racial injustice came starkly and unmistakably before us, you have rallied to educate yourselves (many of you continuing the work you began in this area long ago), remained humble and open in the face of difficult conversations, and helped us establish committees to make sure justice, equity, inclusion, and empowerment is woven into everything New Ventures West does going forward.

While our individual practices support us in having and building these skills, what we’ve been feeling particularly strongly in these times is the collective field that we each contribute to. The field comprises our dedication to service, our generosity with our clients and with one another, and the myriad ways we have of tapping into larger truths. Our community has its own powerful way of being: one that has been extraordinarily helpful in this time when so many are feeling lost—and that has helped our company thrive this year, against all odds.

Please keep doing what you’re doing. And join us for our Graduate Community Gatherings scheduled for 2021 (details below). Your voice is vital to the unfoldment of our work in the world going forward.


Sahar and Adam

2021 Graduate Community Gatherings

Bring your voice and help shape what is to come. These events are designed to update you on what has been happening with NVW programs, business, and what we’ve been up to in the wider community; to hear from you on what you’ve been experiencing and how we can support you; and to re-connect as a global community. You are welcome to attend any or all of the 2021 gatherings, happening on:

  • March 16
  • July 13
  • October 13

All meetings are at 4pm Pacific. Convert to local time.

What are you up to?

New arrival? New job? New city? Have you launched a new practice or project? Been published? Performed? We adore hearing—and sharing!—what our graduates are up to. Email [email protected] with your news and photos.

Congratulations and welcome to our new graduates!

Tamara Ahlers, Bassins, Switzerland
Chad Arnold, Boulder, CO, USA
Irina Chernousenko, Berlin, Germany
Monique Cadle, Long Beach, CA, USA
Sean Clark, Hoffman Estates, IL, USA
Lissy Donovan, Laguna Beach, CA, USA
Gesine Eichhorn, Wuerzburg, Germany
Grace Ferry-Favaro, Bern, Switzerland
Stephanie Fujii, Oakland, CA, USA
Dorota Grabowska, Walchwil, Switzerland
Åsa Maria Granados, Geneva, Switzerland
Michelle Grant, Zollikon, Switzerland
Sandra Harik, Lausanne, Switzerland
Bronia Hill, Tiburon, CA, USA
Kris Kent, West Hollywood, CA, USA
Olga Klimanovich, New Malden, UK
Roland Luetzelschwab, Moehlin, Switzerland
Tatiana Matveeva, Geneva, Switzerland
Tracy Mayer Valle, San Francisco, CA, USA
Antonina Munafo, Vaud, Switzerland
Lisa Murgatroyd, Petaluma, CA, USA
Jamieson Odom, Livermore, CA, USA
Elif Ebru Oraman, London, UK
Diego Raiteri, Lausanne, Switzerland
Alejandra Ruiz, Phoenix, AZ, USA
Gay Saxby, Cham, Switzerland
Kristina Smedley, Seattle, WA, USA
Jenn Turvey, Littleton, CO, USA
Beate Vetter, Mex, Switzerland
Elana Weinstein, San Francisco, CA, USA
Evan Willey, Alameda, CA, USA
Faye Witteveen, Zurich, Switzerland

The first-ever Professional Coaching Course in Switzerland, put on by our partners at the Centre for Coaching, completed their year earlier this fall. Here they are in an earlier session, pre-pandemic. Congratulations, friends!


Upcoming Courses

All programs will take place virtually until further notice. Unless otherwise indicated classes take place in Pacific Time.

Professional Coaching Course Beginning February 18
Beginning February 23 (South Africa)
Beginning July 8 (London)
Coaching for Development Beginning March 10 (South Africa)
Foundations of Coaching December 8-10
February 8-9 (London)
Meet the Leader Call December 2
Free Integral Learning Lab November 21
Integral Coaching Forum December 3
Free Coaching as a Guest Client January 30
Book Study Group Begins January 26

View the full course calendar here.