After the long Christmas break. I recently got back in the chair in the therapy room. I found it interesting that after spending the last month furiously preparing for this most wonderful time of the year. Finding myself by in the peace and relative calm of the counselling room was a welcome breath of fresh air.
It’s also interesting to me that the gap between your last and next session can be so varied. Due to the Christmas period it would have almost been a month since I last saw my clients. My placement was closed on what’s should have been my first day back, I had arranged a room as one of my clients wanted to be seen earlier.
For me it felt awkward to be in the room. Like I hadn’t quite adjusted back into the relationship. It felt new and I felt quite distanced from my client. They were filling me in on the wealth of things that had happened and I was trailing behind picking up all the ‘things’ and trying to look at them, however felt like I was just gathering.
I recognise now, this would have been a great opportunity to be congruent and work with immediacy, however, at the time I lacked the presence of mind to do so.
“Go placidly amidst the noise and haste and remember what peace there may be in silence…”
It has allowed me to think of the preparation I need to do before getting back into the seat. In my normal working week, I have my routines and am aware of these subtle changes in how I work and how I care for myself. However, a more extended break left me feeling unprepared for being back in the seat with the wealth of emotion and challenge that a client may bring in with them.
Christmas and similar kinds of breaks from routines are a great way to wind down and stop. What I’ve learned that when I have wound down and maybe stopped, it’s important to begin to allow your self to ‘wind up’ and get my therapeutic cogs rolling again so when my client comes in at 100 miles per hour, it’s easier for me to keep up with them… Lesson learned.
In other news…
As a consequence of Christmas and New Years and beginning. I had also planned 2019 as being a new start and origin of a different kind. This was my plan to sort of quietly launch my private counselling practice. And yet I found as January hit, that perhaps I would wait, I mean what did I know anyway and who was I kidding and this needed more thought… a message or two later and I was receiving an enquiry about my practice, and after recommending my voluntary practice, my supervisor alongside my little blog site. I suddenly found myself on the cusp of a potential new client. Y’know, a real one, not like the dozens of clients I’ve worked therapeutically with over the last decade!!!
Imposter syndrome is a funny little fella. Creeping in every now and then to say hello, how you doing… a little reminder to shake of my self-doubt and have a good word with myself. So my flyers are done and a couple are up around town. I’m not rushing but reminding myself to “go placidly,” (for it is all I can do) “amidst the noise and haste and remember what peace there may be in silence.”
So this new year brings me learning, as it always does, if I allow myself to be still long enough to listen. Like the pond where I go fishing, where I can sit and wait and watch, and see. For it’s when I see that those conditions we so often think of are there, I am infinitely more able and more comfortable becoming who I am, flaws and all, compared to who I think other people expect me to be.
A Thirsk Counsellor