Susanne's coaching and mentoring practice

If some of the questions below are on your mind or in your heart, consider having a coaching dialogue with Susanne

 

*   Are you one of the people who dare to be fully and simply who they are? 

*   Are learning and personal growth high on your list of priorities?

*   Do you regularly make time to enjoy your unique talents and favorite pastimes?

*   Do you strive to create something of enduring value?

*   Do you express gratitude and appreciation to the people who matter in your life?

*   Can you tell me your definition of the good life?

*   Are you trying to be a good person in a seemingly hell-bent world?

*   Do you want to increase your skills to make a greater difference in the world?

 

Be honest … If you have difficulties answering any of these questions with yes, you owe it to yourself to give yourself the gift of exploring them in more depth with the support of a caring and experienced integral LMF coach.

 

*   Do you wish to embrace your long-standing self-doubt and fear of inadequacy and use their energy instead to sustain you and to connect at a deeper level with others?

*   Do you ever say to yourself?
             “It's weak to need and accept help,”  
           “I don't deserve love and kindness,” 
           “Responsibility means a loss of freedom."

If any of these questions has juice for you, and if you welcome mindful self-discovery, then check me out as a coach.

 

If you need support, creative ideas and new practices on how to move in the desired direction, I  will help you to explore and identify where you are currently. I will encourage you to celebrate who you are and the journey you have been on, and then support you to

 

*      manifest more of the fulfilling life to which you aspire

*      revitalize your relationships to yourself and to others

*      find your true spirit 

*      enhance your capacity for seeking multiple perspectives

*      gain deeper levels of self-awareness and wisdom

*      strengthen your resilience

*      rediscover or get in touch with your creativity and sweet spot

*      enlist more of your courage under stress

*      have more compassion for yours and others’ shortcomings and imperfections

*      become more flexible in times of change, crisis and opportunity

*      learn inner practices that will anchor you wherever you are

Those who dare to explore their potential and take action to fulfill it, also gain influence in shaping our shared future and in producing ongoing and sustainable growth in themselves and in those they parent, teach, lead, coach and work with. It's for other's sake as well ours that we need to face our fears, venture forth in life with courage, and share our unique gifts.

My intention:

As a coach I support individuals in understanding themselves and others more deeply and accepting themselves and others as they are. I work from a model of discovering and enlisting people’s strengths, not from trying to “overcome” their limitations and vulnerabilities. I help them draw from their resources (including connecting to others), not from what I see as culturally-supported, unrealistic assumptions about “transforming” people. In my experience, most people need more celebration and blessing, and less critique and challenge before they can actually open to facing their fears and embrace the changes they personally wish to make.

Simply put, I help people say: Yes to life!

My approach:

I assist clients in clarifying and appreciating their current way of making sense of the world. Moreover, I offer clients observations and exercises to help them discover their growing edge and potential as well as to acknowledge difficulties and self-stories that hold them back from living life as fully -- and as awake -- as they desire.

 

To do this, I serve my clients in many roles: as a sounding board and as a mirror for their habits of mind and heart. Sometimes I am like an older caring relative: cheer leading, supporting, soothing. When needed, I may challenge, point out existing tensions, blind spots and discrepancies, or remind clients of previous commitments and insights. Finally, I may offer interpretations and intuitions about what might be going on as possibilities to explore and test.

I draw from a rich repertoire of psychotherapeutic training, expertise in adult development, and the integral model for viewing issues from multiple perspectives (The AQAL Model). After exploring and clarifying what is needed and desired, I often suggest “homework” in the form of exercises to replace old habits with new practices. Based on years of experience, changes in behavior and outlook are best supported in an iterative process of ongoing mindful practice and evaluation-reflection also called Action Inquiry (Coaching\Action Inquiry). Part of a suggested assignment may well be to discover what small steps in experimentation can be taken immediately and what low hanging fruit are in easy reach and then to practice these and reflect on the experience in follow-up sessions.

 

On request, I may also recommend readings, movies, classes to attend, personality tests to take to gain self-knowledge, physical exercises to do, meditation practices to explore, or suggest other forms of inquiry. In principle, I recommend action learning and experimentation over mere analysis and insight. Especially at later stages of development, we may be able to describe beautifully and insightfully how we are ”screwed up” with little attention or intention to rewriting the existing story or well-rehearsed script.

My style:

My mother was a wonderful midwife and wise confidante of many. Like a midwife, firmly and lovingly welcoming people into life is the way I work with my clients as well. Showing and helping them experience the miracle of their own being. People seem to respond to me because I genuinely delight in them and appreciate what it takes for any adult to have gotten to the place they are now. Being a grown up on the journey through life is not easy in this confusing world with its myriad demands, temptations, and complexities.

 

I thank you from the bottom of my heart for letting me be open with my pain and fears around my accident and near-death experience. I am just now finding the internal strength and integration to hold all the new "stuff" that keeps emerging. Your coaching was like Japanese ikebana -- simplicity, clarity, and power. I am saying yes to life!                                                                                  Karen S. USA 06

 

Clients :

I generally work with clients from two different sources with different expectations and requirements.
A) Many come to me on their own or based on the recommendation of others. Some become curious about me as a coach through my theoretical writing and research or through my work at the Integral Institute. B) A different set of clients are sent to our organizations as part of large-scale organizational culture change or staff development efforts.

 

A) Working with mature, self-actualizing individuals:

Although I work with individuals from across all developmental levels, my unique gift is perhaps my capacity to support and challenge clients at the rarer, later stages of development. Because they are more integrated and insightful than most other people they interact with, they often serve as guides and transformational leaders for others. They also often feel profoundly alone. As a seasoned peer, I offer late stage individuals ways to observe, mitigate and face their existential dilemmas and stage-specific ego entrapments.

 

Loneliness, unnecessarily privileging complexity (or being attached to it), and being hyper-vigilant towards one’s own inner workings are such late stage recurring developmental challenges. I can help by reflecting back  what such clients often already know intellectually and by suggesting practices for appreciating and perhaps letting go of their attachments. In the end, no matter how accomplished, we need to accept ourselves as simple and ordinary human beings facing the same fundamental tasks of all human beings: Making sense of experience with hope, faith and love - awake to the preciousness and uniqueness of being alive in the face of mortality.

 

In order to become a better coach and mentor myself, I have trained in many approaches. Genpo Roshi's Big Mind facilitation and my encounter with Zen practice has confirmed what I have learned from my own struggles: Liberation beckons not in the form of striving towards something more or different or better, but in relaxing into what already is. (Genpo Roshi, The Path of the Human Being: Zen Teachings on the Bodhisattva Way, Shambala Press, 2003) The work that is often to be done may include letting go of attachment to one’s self-image or pride in one’s spiritual attainment. In the end, such identifications are also defenses against the raw experience of the agony and joy of living.

 

B) My corporate clients come from all walks of life and all levels of self-awareness. Given the relentless demand for improvement and adaptation to new situations and the rapid changes in the global market place, almost any professional can benefit from the support and insights of an experienced coach. Most often I engage with employees:

(a) who are being offered developmental coaching support as part of a wider organizational
     change effort or restructuring.

(b) who are designated as high potentials or selected for succession planning

(c) who have been put on notice or a “get well program,” and

(d) who are members of executive teams who want to understand their interpersonal
     dynamics better especially if there is continuing unspoken discord among the members
     about “what works and what doesn’t, whether to change, and if so, how best to do
     so individually and collectively.”

 

All of these clients expect me to help them understand themselves and those they interact with better and handle situations of conflict, major change and uncertainty more effectively. I explore their perceptions and interpretations of the situation and suggest practices to deal with whatever issues are salient. We co-design approaches that are actionable for clients and build on their interests and strengths. Practices are then tailored to complement their current capacity (level of understanding), capability (available skills), and competence (level of mastery). The recommendations may include practices from collaborative action inquiry and dialogue work with colleagues as well as skill acquisition, individual growth work, and mindfulness exercises.

 

On a more systemic level, a leader and his/her executive team may want to explore how they can revitalize the company, create a learning organization or create greater congruence between mission statement and established behavior. We offer this kind of consulting through CLM, our new corporate entity (www.TheCenterforleadershipMaturity).  where we collaborate with experts in other areas to offer optimal support in organizational development and change work..

 

Thus, if you are interested in sounding out your personal meaning making or that of a team in your workplace, or of your organization as a whole, do contact me for an exploratory conversation.

 

 

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate,

Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure

 

It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.

We ask ourselves, who am I to
be brilliant, gorgeous,
talented, and fabulous?

 

From Marianne Williamson (1992): A return to Love
From reflections on a course of miracles.

 

 

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