Q&A with Jennifer:
Why do you like to be called an Expression Coach?
To express something is to reveal, to manifest, to communicate. It also involves taking the essence of what is inside (us, a container, an olive, fruit) and squeeze or bring it out. Expressing isn’t always easy, so support can be vital. But it doesn’t have to be painful – it can even be playful (I promise not to squeeze)! Helping people express their needs, wants and values is my passion, and that is why I call myself an “Expression Coach”.
Why do you talk so much about sparks?
I am using the word “sparks” as a concept to represent unique parts of us. The dictionary tells us it’s a vital, animating or activating factor. You may have heard of a spark of creativity, or sparking a conversation, or something sparking an action or idea.
Sometimes behind our sparks there is a gap or a need or value that is not being met. The dictionary also says that a spark is a trace, seed or germ of intense feeling. A spark actually starts from friction. A creative idea is sparked to fix a problem. A conversation is sparked because you want to get to know someone better. We are sparked or moved into action because something needs to be done and we want to do it.
An unmet need can create a slow burn inside or it can be encouraged and guided into a flame that actually enlightens the world around it. A stick in a campfire is just a stick until it catches a spark, which if given the right support catches fire and can transform into a light that shines in the darkness.
What is your working style?
It’s an active exchange process with each of us bringing our own unique sparks – our gifts, needs, values and desires. I bring many original and proven tools and processes, like Appreciative Inquiry and System Dynamics to engage and support you. I love metaphors and stories, and have created visual and experiential models or ways of explaining and playing with ideas and processes like communication, change and thinking – that have resonated with many people in different ages, stages and settings.
I love learning and sharing with people, so I will be Playing With Sparks right along with you.
What is Constellations/System Dynamics?
My practice uses System Dynamics to help us get a deeper perspective on situations in your life. I have found it is a simple and effective technique. Every group (family, team etc.) or organization develops patterns or hidden ways of dealing with things (dynamics) that can affect everyone in the system in some way or another. It can decrease performance, muddle communication and deplete energy and resources. System Dynamics reveals these by offering a perspective of the system as a whole as well as all the elements or people within the system, so you can see the forest as well as see your role as a tree.
Some of the areas of my career, business or life are quite important and serious to me. Why will playing with these help?
I know that all these areas are important to all of us, and I certainly don’t take the honour of getting to know you or your experiences lightly. However, I also know that taking things seriously does not automatically mean that we will be bringing our best or highest quality thinking, communication or action to situations, especially if they are somewhat challenging or concerning.
It is more the ideas, concepts, exercises and skills we will be playing with. Trying things out, adjusting as needed, applying what works in a way that is more about exploring and learning.
Here are some of the most common benefits of play:
- enjoyment, fun, relaxation, meaning or love of life
- creativity, imagination, problem-solving
- empathy, self-confidence, self-esteem
- increased communication skills and conflict resolution
Now who doesn’t want more of that ?
What makes you different then other coaches?
From my perspective, what makes me different is:
- the focus is on your needs, wants and values at a deep level – and supporting you in clearly seeing them and expressing them in whichever area of life you desire.
- models, tools, processes and skill application that I have developed or adapted, based on 20 years of listening and watching people struggle to make sense of daily, vital activities like communication, thinking and change.
- an approach that takes the spark in you, without judging it or trying to change it, but instead uses it and plays it into life so that it can be revealed, strengthened and fulfilled.