As a supervisor myself, I have struggled to find supervision that supports me within my roles as coach and coaching supervisor. Yet, here I am advocating supervision for other coaches, so what is going on?
Firstly, this sits firmly with me, (not the other inspiring supervisors that are holding a safe space for their supervisees, which includes my own supervisor) due to me committing to and trusting the process!
So, what has been my hang-up? This is a very recent revelation within my reflective process which is unfolding within – guess what? My own supervision and also finally acknowledging and connecting with the part of me which is Highly Sensitive.
Yes, I have found a supervisor that fits with how I want to be supervised and brings support, learning, reflection and fun to our monthly sessions at a depth that suits me.
I have held a fear of exposing myself emotionally and professionally within my supervision which has allowed me to ‘park’ my need for really thorough, supportive supervision to coach/counsel/validate who I am as a supervisor and coach.
This is also inclusive of rejection being a huge add-on to professionally stepping out there and owning my own valid space and the safe experience I offer my coachees and supervisees.
I have had a long history of being supervised for the last 19 years I have had different types of supervision; 1-1 and group which have included the following areas; management of role, development of skillset, caseload, tutorial and very little around emotional or personal development which is very person-centred. There has been really inspiring supervision from invested supervisors and tick box supervision with a lot of comparison to others and even being dominated by the supervisor around their own stuff!
I know my giving of supervision is thorough, person-centred and orientates towards finding the gaps and seeing where change can happen with the supervisee, yet me allowing myself to share my vulnerability for a supervisor to ‘see me’ has been a huge challenge to overcome.
It is worth it, as when you can see yourself through another’s kind eyes, with no agenda, you can grow and actually face those barriers, which you feel 20 times stronger because of being highly sensitive. It is a very therapeutic experience which also strengthens the professional relationship because of the investment by both parties.
I did this last night with my supervisor and reduced a couple of big, scary perceptions to doable tasks, because they had been normalised, my strengths had been teased out and these had been utilised to create the steps I needed to take.
Effective, quality supervision is a shared journey which challenges both participants, creating a safe, honest, holding space where the supervisee can work at a pace and emotional level that brings clarity to themselves and their work.