Students don’t remember
what you try to teach them.
They remember what you are.
― Jim Henson
When working with interns and trainees in individual supervision, my first objective is to help them manage their anxiety, so that intuition and inspiration can emerge. I trust the part of the client that knows the path towards healing and the part of the supervisee that can step out of the way and allow healing to occur.
Sharing one’s therapy work with a supervisor or with a supervision group can be very vulnerable. Thus I like to create a supervision environment that is like a greenhouse: full of light, water and nutrients, yet protected from the elements.
I like to promote self-awareness and mindfulness. That includes working through personal difficulties and shedding light on blind spots. I am suspicious of pathology and theory, yet willing to discuss these when they serve the work. I look for meaning on various levels, including the spiritual and the transpersonal, and like to share these explorations in supervision.
At times I can be probing and challenging, yet my ultimate concern is to encourage growth, confidence and the emergence of the supervisee’s unique gifts as a clinician.
Often I ask the following of myself and of the supervisees:
Is this therapy in the spirit of the Tao?
Is this therapy inspired by love?
What to expect from individual supervision
During individual supervision sessions we discuss cases which are usually presented informally. Sometime we listen to audio recordings or watch a video recording of work with a client. Sometime we discuss more general topics that are relevant to the intern’s work. That can include reviews or demonstration of certain modalities or techniques, dream exploration, counter-transference aspects of cases, sex and relationships, to name a few examples. We also explore professional topics that are related to building a practice.