Reflective Practices

Keeping Fit for Purpose

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The German philosopher Fredrich Nietzsche once said, 

He who has a why can survive any how.‘ 

When your brain is cloudy and you are filled with indecision, it’s difficult to make decisions that will get you where you want to go. When your inner monologue becomes so overwhelming that you can’t finish a thought, let alone something on your to-do list, it may sound tiring.

While many people emphasise the importance of a positive attitude, it is preferable to have a straightforward mindset. This is the formula for success. When we are unsure of who we are or what we want, a significant portion of our brain space is consumed. The most effective way to increase your life’s certainty is by Being True to Your Purpose. 

Once the idea is set, once the purpose has been defined, NOW IS THE TIME TO CREATE A SHIFT. AWARENESS WITH PURPOSE IS CONSCIOUSNESS.

In Coaching one way to stay on your purpose, is to practice Reflective Thinking.

What are Reflective Practices?

Reflective practice is a process that helps turn experience into knowledge

(Gilbert and Trudel, 2001). 

As such, it is critical for a coach’s professional development. In practise, it can be challenging to determine the optimal way to do this, how it fits with coaching supervision, and, perhaps most importantly, how to find the time to do so. Nonetheless, because we ask our coaching clients to reflect, gain new insights, and experiment with new behaviours, we understand how critical and valuable it is to do so.

Reflective practise can manifest itself in a variety of ways. It can be conducted individually or in a peer-to-peer group setting; it can be conducted with a supervisor or as part of an action learning group.

Reflection can be focused on specific client work, client feedback, or patterns and themes that emerge across sessions or clients. It could also be on novel approaches and techniques that are being tested.

Reflection on training and other opportunities for learning all contribute to the Coach’s practical integration of new knowledge, ideas, and approaches into his or her coaching approach and ability to deal with unexpected and more complex coaching issues.

Within reflective learning and practise, the term ‘intentional process’ refers to a conversation that has a clear purpose for all parties. The purpose of this course is to develop and grow in three areas: reflective learning for improvement (i.e., improving our coaching practise); reflective learning for transformation (i.e., challenging assumptions and why we do what we do); and finally, learning about learning (i.e., improving our ability to reflect and use reflections to develop individual and organisational coaching practise.

According to Eric de Haan (2012), reflective learning and practise within supervision serve two purposes. To begin, reflection enhances a coach’s potential action and practise. The other advantage is that by reflecting on reflection, one can learn how to strengthen the processes of others. 

Reflective learning and practise are critical components of coaching, coach supervision, and mentoring: they involve an attempt to improve dialogue and to receive feedback and challenge regarding the client-coach, client-organization, and coach-supervisor relationships.

If you are not getting the most out of your work reflection or are having difficulty prioritising this activity, you are not alone! While there is no one-size-fits-all solution, there are a few things you can do to determine what makes taking time to reflect purposefully and effectively work for you. We have a special person to talk about at The Coaching Conclave 2021.

Get in touch with Dr. Alison at The Coaching Conclave 2021. Alison’s message is clear. 

“We are all currently living in an exceedingly demanding global circumstance. While coaching and mentoring can provide support, opportunity and development to leaders, how do we as coaches and mentors take care of ourselves?  Supervision and reflective practice is increasingly regarded as an essential factor to support the ongoing development and well-being of coaches and mentors.  It provides an opportunity for practitioners to come together to explore and reflect on what is happening with their client work and how they can support themselves to stay fresh, re-charge their batteries, learn new approaches and methods.”

About Alison

Dr Alison Hodge is passionate about enabling individuals to realise their potential through their work, to meet their own goals and in turn meet their organisations’ goals.

As an accredited Executive Coach and Executive Coaching Supervisor (EMCC Global) she works globally as a coaching supervisor and with supervisors-in-training. She is a member of the Executive and Senior Faculty member with CSA (https://coachingsupervisionacademy.com) and graduated with a DProf in Coaching Supervision from Middlesex University London in July 2014.

Alison has found that a powerful source of understanding for both the coach and supervisor lies in their relationship and interactions. When both parties are involved in co-creating the supervision relationship, the potential learning for both parties is tremendous. Through reflection on practice in supervision we gain valuable data and insights that may inform what is happening in the organisational system in which team coaching is taking place. She has extensive experience of working with groups, group and team facilitation and group process

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