I’m part of an email support group for coaches and other professionals. In it the question was asked:
In your private practice and business, how have you found a way to manage your own personal professional supervision? Do you employ a private spiritual director/professional supervisor/psychologist/business coach?
This was my reply:
I have what I’ve dubbed a ‘board of directors’. 🙂 A group of people that help to direct me, my life and business.
They are a mishmash of people and we never all meet together to discuss me. That seems a little narcissistic, but something I’ve toyed with and continue to think about.
But generally, the group includes:
Mate – we walk weekly together and chat about life. We are also in the same house church and share a homeschooling connection, so there is overlap.
Mentor – exiled-Christian, retired psych/pastor, 80 years old. He’s my encourager and bouncer of ideas for my business and the work I do. We first met years ago, had a split and then reconciled. He’s now probably my biggest fan and support with the work I do. Quite amazing actually.
Dad – just general chat/financial things
Sister – random business stuff…and she looks after our kids!
Brother – personal accountability. He seems to just ‘get’ where I’m at.
Mate’s (3-4) – personal accountability on the phone, over dinner, random times, when I need it
Group coaching – SAYES program, business coaching and designated mentoring through this etc
…I’m sure there are others.
My philosophy has always been that I need to be attentive to my own heart/feelings/emotions and find people to plug whatever holes may be appearing. At the moment, for example, I’m looking for someone (or a group/organisation) to invest in the Youth Group Coaching Process I’ve created. I’ve realised I don’t want to develop this on my own, so I’m looking for support in this and seeking a variety of people to help.
I don’t have a ‘professional’ perse, but my psych friend probably fits that role. He draws out of me the gems that may be hiding or the blind spots that are destroying me.
I do feel like I have some shitty stuff in my life that is holding me back at the present. I’m working it through with friends and family, but having an outsiders view would probably break things wide open…pardon the pun! #sorrynotsorry
For me, it’s also about identifying needs and then searching to fill them. The hard part can be that often I go to the wrong people for the advice I’m searching for. It’s like going to a physio for a toothache…they have an opinion but no ability to do anything to fix it!
Spiritual direction is something I’m considering also. Because I’ve heard great things from this and from the people who engage with it.
I’ve also learnt to just let stuff go when a client walks out the door. I can’t afford to worry or be overly concerned with how they’re doing when I’m not talking with them. I’m there to support and encourage them, not to take on their life and live it for them. I can’t let their stories/baggage/struggles become mine.
Added to this, I also journal a lot. Privately. Not a prayer journal or anything but simply a “get the crap out of my system” type of journalling. I don’t do this every day, but when I feel myself getting grumpy, angry, tired, short with the family, anxious etc, I journal away my stress. It seems to work like magic! Just like our bodies excrete the crap daily, I need the same for my mind.
I use the PSR method: Privately (on your own…not in public!), Safely (writing, in a journal, not to another person, without restraint), Often (daily if possible…for 5-10 minutes. Then pull up pants and be done.) I also use this with clients a lot and have seen amazing results in a person’s mental health.
And that’s about it. We really do become the sum of the people we hang out with, so it’s important to find great people who help and support you.
Q: what about you? What type of people and support networks help you to flourish in your life? Let me know in the comments below. ↓