As Job Coaches, we spend time with our clients getting to know them, talking with them about their challenges and their experiences and helping them to see things in different ways.
There are times we when might have to support a client through a really difficult personal situation or through a time when external forces have an impact on how we go about our normal activities, elevating stress and anxiety and reducing their engagement level.
So, what can you do to give your clients support and guidance when times get tough?
Job Coaches are great listeners. Allow your clients to talk openly about their concerns and their worries. Acknowledge, without judgement, that their emotions are real and reassure them that their feelings are valid and reasonable given the situation they are faced with.
Empathy gives us the ability to understand and appreciate other peoples’ experiences. It also helps bring a deeper connection and helps forge stronger relationships. While empathy helps to build trust in relationships, you need to be mindful of how much you give to your clients. If you feel wiped out after an appointment or feel like you’ve been on a journey with the person that has shared a story with you, be mindful that you may experience empathetic distress. Be conscious and realistic of the amount of empathy you give and adjust your support levels accordingly.
Give a gentle nudge
Nudges are a great way to get clients to see things differently, especially when they harness the power of positive emotions. Encourage your clients to see a way out of their current undesirable state by giving them options to explore their positive emotions.
Try using “How would you feel if…” as a nudge with your clients to get them excited about their future and motivating them towards a positive outcome and away from a negative outcome.
Take care of yourself too
It’s easy to give, give, give and then have nothing left in your tank for yourself. This then impacts on our families, our friends and our work. It’s essential that you look after yourself too, and the best way to do this is to download our free Self-Care Guide for Employment Services. It has everything you need to know about filling up your cup so you can give the overflow to those around you!
We’ve also created a handy Mental Health REDUCE YOUR RISK First Aid Poster which is a great resource to keep at your desk as a quick reference tool when you’re talking with clients or your colleagues. It’s great for friends and family too.