More than a decade ago, one of my first clients pointed out a quirk I had that I wasn’t aware of.
“Whenever you say, ‘Here’s the thing,’ I know you’re going to tell me something I need to hear,” he said.
At the time, I was surprised, but as I evolved as both a counselor and a coach, I realized that he had done for me what I strive to do with my clients: point out patterns, help them see what they can’t see, and affirm their strengths.
If you’re looking for truth telling, you’re in the right place.
I’ve done my own therapeutic and personal development work. I still do both. So, I know what it’s like to sit in the client chair. I know the vulnerability of it. I know the quick inhale before I’m going to say something out loud that until that point, I’ve only kicked around on the gerbil wheel in my head. I know the agony of waiting, not being able to meet the other person’s eye, when time stands still, and there’s a moment when I’m not sure if the therapist or coach could hear both the overt and the underlying content of my words. I know the relief of being seen – really seen and understood. I know the frustration of backing up and trying again, saying what I can’t quite articulate, yet giving it a go anyway. I know the bumps, the trials, the celebrations, and the triumph of recognition, clarity, and connection.
Look, here’s the truth: sometimes I’ll miss what you’re saying. Sometimes we’ll stumble in our work together. We’ll also make progress. If I don’t get it the first time, it’ll come back. There’ll be another story, another example, another phrase, another pause. The truth emerges if we’re both showing up to do our work. I won’t work harder than you, but I’ll dig in with you.
My coaching training (I’m a CPCC through The Coaches Training Institute) taught me to listen. What I mean by that is I don’t just hear and respond but I also integrate the content and weave seemingly disparate threads together. Together, you and I create meaning from what’s both said aloud and what ripples through the undercurrents of an exchange.
I’m unusual in that I was trained first as a coach and later a therapist. I call my counseling license (LPC through the state of Colorado) a byproduct of my Credentialing Gremlin, a race to gather letters after my name so that I would be seen as a legitimate. It wasn’t until I finished my licensing process that I realized I was like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz. I had the power to access my skills all along – I just had to believe in myself. All I need now is a pair of sparkling ruby red shoes with heels that I can click together, and the metaphor will be complete. (I’m not missing the irony of boasting about my credentials while dismissing them at the same time.)
Here’s what important for you to know about my credentials: I identify more as a coach than as a therapist. So, if you know that you need deep, intense work and you want guidance around diagnosis, medications, and acute issues, you’ll be better served by someone else.
If, like Dorothy and me on the Yellow Brick Road, you’re trying to find your way home, you’re in the right place.
You’re in a place where you can delve into the depths of your struggles and surface with clarity, hope, and determination. Contact me for a free phone consultation so that we can talk about what brings you here.