Connecting the Dots: a facilitator’s perspective:

The Hope Interventions inspire not only the participants but everyone else involved in this project. One of our facilitators shared a great story on how clients are reacting to the work being done in the Hope Project and how she sees herself in the process.

One of my Hope client referrals was an intelligent, well-educated woman who has been out of the workforce for a number of years.  She understands how to look for work, but has been struggling with her implementation of her job search.  She felt intense pressure to move forward and feels deeply discouraged when she does not follow through on her job search goals or ideals. When reviewing her HCCI scores, we could see that the areas of challenges were in goal setting and planning along with implementing and adapting.

We worked through her “Circle of Strengths”, learning about the client’s skills, strengths and values. Our next activity was “Walking the Problem” which allows the client to work through a challenge that they are currently facing. The client chose her fear of cold calling as the challenge that she wanted to work through. As the client was describing her “problem”, we referenced her “Circle of Strengths” on multiple occasions to make sense of why this felt so difficult for her. She realized that she values being a knowledge expert and has perfectionistic tendencies. It would make sense that cold calling feels terrifying to her because she is concerned that she will be asked something that she doesn’t know and that she will come across as being incompetent. When the client sat in the solution (which she defined as being able to make the cold calls confidently), she felt great! But she struggled to identify the steps that had moved her into that place of solution. She used the metaphor of an “opaque wall” between her current situation and the solution. We tried to envision different ways of moving around the barrier and it wasn’t until we started talking about her motivation for working that she started to be able to generate some ideas on how to move forward towards her solution.

The client commented that it was very helpful for her to get another view of herself and to get help in “connecting the dots” to understand why she was struggling to move forward while also helping her to see what she has to offer an employer.  I often think of myself of holding up a mirror to the client, helping them to see themselves in another way! I love how the various activities that we work through in Hope provide different perspectives, yet are very much linked.