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This was the sixth session and the last before a short half term break. I wasn’t really concentrating as my head was full of thoughts from previous post.

We started off talking about next steps training wise. You can do a level 3 fast track which condenses the year’s learning into six months starting in January but quite honestly I think that would be too much and it takes up Saturday which would eat into the weekend quite relentlessly. There’s a Wednesday afternoon session which would suit me.

We recapped the previous session on triads and giving feedback, emphasising that the major inhibition is fear of causing hurt or being hurt by it.

We then talked about questions and we found it incredibly difficult to articulate what to ask, let alone the when, why and how we were asked to. To what extent is every question a nudge of some sort that takes away from the client’s ability to choose where she goes? Your own curiosity needs to go.

It’s necessary to own the question: “I’m hearing…”, “I’ve noticed…”, “I’m feeling…”. This makes it clear that you’re interpreting what is being said and allows for correction to get you closer to what is actually being meant by what is said.

I’ve abandoned this post and revisited several times before being able to proceed. Why? I’m not sure. I wasn’t proud of myself.

When it came to the sessions I listened to a person talk about social anxiety, about how, after an incident, she withdrew and couldn’t leave the house for a while and struggled to talk to people. She was articulate and strong. She knew what was wrong and she had coping mechanisms. She was making progress. And I froze. I couldn’t think of the right thing to say and she spoke quickly so it was hard to keep pace with her. The first thing I said was “how did that make you feel?” and then I laughed at how stupid that phrase sounded and then I worried about her thinking I was laughing at her rather than at me and I unravelled. I apologised in feedback more than once and said it was me and not her but I worried about whether I’d upset her although she seemed fine. In fact she said that I seemed distracted and not as focused as I usually was so was I alright?

I think the more serious the issue someone reveals in these sessions, the more difficult it is to say the right thing and the more I weigh what I’m going to say. I’m worrying about saying the right thing and not hurting the person. When someone is just talking about having had a bad day at work then that is easier than dealing with a deeper issue that requires more sensitivity. I didn’t provide that sensitivity and couldn’t.