Over the last 22 years I have been known as a counsellor, an integrative psychotherapist, a psychologist, and a childhood recovery coach.
I sum these up in the title of MIND HEALER & MENTOR – I help women to heal their past emotional wounds and I mentor them towards a much happier future.
I've recently been asked to clarify what a therapeutic mentor is, and how it differs from those other more well-known titles.
A mentor is best described and defined as 'a counsellor, coach, guide, teacher, advisor, motivator and role model who advises and helps another who knows less than him/her.'
A therapeutic mentor is someone who has 'been there' themselves, and has found their own effective, reliable and safe way through the emotional darkness. They now hold the light that guides and supports others to walk in their steps.
Mentoring includes a sharing of knowledge, experience and wisdom to help and guide another to change and develop, and to achieve their personal and professional growth goals.
Therapeutic mentoring offers more focus than therapy and more emotional depth than coaching.
Therapeutic mentors help their clients to sensitively release the grip of the past, as well as to give guidance and suggested solutions for the structure of their future.
In my opinion it takes senior therapist to become an effective therapeutic mentor. Someone who has evolved into the role from their own extensive professional and personal knowledge, skills and experiences.
As the title of therapeutic mentoring gains wider awareness and acceptance, there will probably be a new bandwagon of training programmes appearing – as there has been in the past with each of the many new therapeutic terms and approaches!
Therapeutic mentoring can't be taught – especially in the usual 'cookie cutter' way of skills teaching.
We all have our own unique character personality and these are the most essential ingredient of an effective therapeutic mentor.
In working with clients over the years I have felt most comfortable when explaining things to them – usually with a diagram or a handout.
This was always a well-considered and well-timed addition to the emotionally focused aspects of our work together. It enabled my clients to 'make sense of' their experiences and the underlying causes. This in turn allowed them to be able to file them away in the Limbic area of their brain - the filing cabinet holding their narrative memory and life story.
In one of my projects – a series of 10 online self-help workshops – I use the terms 'Psycho-Emotional-Education' and 'Whole Brain and Holistic' to emphasise the approach that I favour. To educate and inform, explore and share, heal and recover. (See www.the-ripple-effect.co.uk)
Therapeutic Mentoring allows for these different levels of working with a client's difficulties - which might also include their lifestyle choices and nutritional deficiencies alongside their emotional and psychological problems.
When we work in a more holistic way we show respect for the multi-faceted client who wants results... after all, they are exchanging their time and money for results that will enhance their experience of life.
Why choose Therapeutic Mentoring?
There is no doubt that the past has shaped who we are today, and there is great benefit in being aware of the current consequences of the early childhood causes of our difficulties.
We also need to heal any childhood traumas and other emotional wounds in order to have a much less cluttered path ahead.
However there is also a need to learn a new way of being - that of a healed adult who can write a new future story for themselves.
A therapeutic mentor assists them along the way for as long as needed, before they travel alone with their new insights, skills, self-responsibility, self-control, courage, confidence and optimism.
Therapeutic Mentoring has a clear and broad overview of the client's struggles - physically, emotionally, psychologically and spiritually.
It is an approach to holistic well-being and growth that has comprehensive integration and alchemy. The highest emotional valency determines the composition of each session... with the mentor keeping an over-view of the desired aims and outcomes.
I work with women who want to understand and manage their emotions, boundaries and behaviours... I help them to FEEL better, so they can BE, DO and HAVE better in their lives.
My own style and structure of therapeutic mentoring has four components. Clients might want only one or two, or three, or all four!
Level one helps with working through current crisis, confusion and chaos
Level two steps into personal awareness – Who am I and why?
Level three gives practical skills and self-development – Who can I become?
Level four focuses upon the 'bigger picture' – regrets forgiveness self-actualisation, relational needs, existential awareness and spiritual growth
So you see, there's a lot more to therapeutic mentoring than just counselling or coaching, or teaching or advising … it offers a comprehensive and integrated approach to transforming your life one guided step at a time.
How to work with me
I help my female clients by using my own process which underpins the different aspects of my work. It's called S.E.L.E.C.T. Your Life (c) – which is about creating your life in your own way and not passively accepting the one handed down to you or shaped for you by other people.
You can now select your life from the wide range of options available to you, and create the structure, tones and textures of your future life – after having made peace with the past and found calmness and clarity.
The acronym stands for...
Self-awareness – of how you perceive what comes in through your senses, the meaning you give to that, and how you might be filtering it. A new awareness of your thought processes and emotions, your language and behaviours, your boundaries as well as the impact all of these have upon other people.
Education – of how your life has been shaped and restricted, which brings greater understanding and a normalising of any prior emotional reactivity and dysfunctional behaviours.
Learning new skills – to bring about desired change.
Emotional intelligence and balance – to enable emotional self-regulation, a greater awareness of the emotions of others, and how to have more effective conversations.
Control, choice and clarity
If this compound approach to a happier, calmer, more rewarding and insightful life appeals to you then please see my website www.maxineharleymentoring.com for more information, and arrange a free 'clarity call' with me about how we might work together to get you to where you want to be.
Maxine Harley (MSc Integrative Psychotherapy) MIND HEALER & MENTOR