Drawing out thoughts and emotions (Part 1)
Updated: Mar 27
In my exploration of what some people called ‘Depth Psychology’, I have been receiving psycho-analysis in recent months. There are a lot of angles for me to reflect on the experience e.g. feeling and sensation, mid-life, family. In this post, let me take the perspective of facilitation and coaching.
We had very deep conversation in the sessions. I could not help thinking – ‘What made the analyst so successful in drawing out thoughts and feeling from me?’ Further the question is ‘What can I learn from these sessions for facilitation and coaching?’ Well, there are factors which are specific to psycho-analysis e.g. her particular questioning skills in helping me make association with dream. But there are some which can be borrowed to facilitation and coaching.
First, to start with, I am open to her because it is my own choice to work with her. We had a chemistry session in advance like the those in some executive coaching arrangement. Sometimes, this is applicable in group facilitation. I know of a practitioner who was once asked by a CEO to do a challenging team development work. He sat the condition that he would only take the job if he could interview 1 on 1 every single top team member and no one refused his appointment as the facilitator. (How smart he is! The interviews themselves were probably already interventions!)
Second, it is my analyst’s silence. After she asked a question, or when we were like running out of things to talk about, she managed to keep silent with her gentle eye contact. In particularly, I am impressed with her way to start almost each sessions. She greeted me, we took our seats, and then she just remained silent and waited for me to start! To me, this was more stimulating than questions like ‘So, what would be useful to talk about today?’