1st Edition

Coaching Beyond Words
Using Art to Deepen and Enrich Our Conversations

ISBN 9780815348740
Published March 8, 2019 by Routledge
124 Pages 16 Color & 9 B/W Illustrations

USD $32.95

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Book Description

In Coaching Beyond Words: Using Art to Deepen and Enrich Our Conversations, Anna Sheather presents a practical guide for those seeking to incorporate art in their own coaching practice. Complete with case studies and art created by clients, Anna explores how coaching with art connects clients to a deeper level of personal awareness and understanding, which in turn leads to meaningful shifts in personal growth, development and fulfilment.

Anna offers the coach an exciting and transformative way to work with their clients by bridging the gap between art and coaching. She covers how to introduce creative approaches, how to support creativity and how to work with the art produced, opening enriching coaching conversations with clients. Anna combines her personal experiences with research that underpins her practice, exploring the benefits of the interdisciplinary nature of art therapy and neuroscience by looking at the field of hemispherical lateralisation to help understand why coaching with art works so effectively. The book also provides a comprehensive guide of how to prepare an art-based coaching session, including contracting, an overview of types of exercises, key principles and approaches to facilitating the image making process, overcoming barriers with coachees and guidance on managing oneself in the process, including managing boundaries. Coaching Beyond Words is the first book to provide an in-depth look at the importance and practicality in interweaving coaching and art, and it forms a complete guide to context, theory and practice.

Coaching Beyond Words will appeal to coaches in practice as well as any art therapist seeking to expand their practice into coaching. Additionally, it would be of interest to creative professionals looking to incorporate coaching theory.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: An Introduction to Coaching with Art;  Chapter 2: Art and Communication;  Chapter 3: Art Therapy and Coaching;  Chapter 4: Art and the Brain Hemispheres;  Chapter 5: Art and Coaching;  Chapter 6: The Principles of Coaching with Art;  Chapter 7: Coaching with Art in Practice;  Chapter 8: Materials;  Chapter 9: Getting Started;  References and Further Resources.

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Anna Sheather is an executive coach and coach supervisor based in the UK. She has been running her coaching practice, Élan Coaching Ltd, for over a decade. She incorporates her passion for art, painting and creativity into her professional and personal life.


"Coaching Beyond Words is an excellent introduction to using art in coaching. The book focuses on the next of generation coaching that moves beyond the normal question and reflection coaching methodology. It is a delightful mix of theory – from art therapy and neuroscience - and practical insights - from contracting to the art materials needed.  I really like the case studies showing the art that clients drew. It brings the concept to life. The book introduces a very practical framework to prepare enable coaches get started coaching beyond words." – Gil Schwenk, Coaching Supervisor

"In her primer to any coach wanting to weave the use of art into their coaching to enhance their practice, and offer clients the opportunity to further their coaching, as the title says, literally beyond words, Anna has generously shared her approach to art in coaching with a passion for two things she believes in: the transformational power of art combined with that of coaching. Starting off with what she wants to share, how working with art deepens and enriches coaching conversations, Anna draws parallels to the power of art therapy but makes clear distinctions from art therapy and acknowledges the boundaries between them. Her reassurance to the coach to be confident in their own ‘art story’ but not needing to be an artist is woven throughout Anna’s approach. Her exploration of how art is perceived in the coaching world and the questions she asks coaches to reflect on for themselves draws the reader in to experience the book on an interactive level. Her use of case studies and their testimonials to bring examples of art in coaching to life is a wonderful balance to the more theoretical aspects of the book.

Coaching Beyond Words is an engaging, interactive, well organized and practical book for any coach wanting to apply Anna’s technique of art in coaching with confidence to their own coaching practice." - Cyndy Walker, MA; HCPC Registered art therapist; BAAT full member