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Life Changing Conversations in the Human Services

Dear Colleagues,

I wanted to connect with you all to share some of the expansive conversations that have occurred through Bernadette Glass and Associates so far this year. Over the years it has become clear to me as a presenter in human service and education settings and as a community nurse, that relationships and the quality of our connections with each other are key to our wellbeing and productivity and to that of our teams and organisations. These have the potential to then flow out to the broader community.

Conversations about connection have taken off!

Some of these include:

  • What makes a great connection with our clients, students and colleagues?
  • What similarities do we have?
  • What works for us in relationships?
  • What happens and what is needed when we disconnect from ourselves and our clients, students or community?

It is impossible to deliver a quality service without quality connections. We all know what it feels like to be valued and to feel connected. A smile, a genuine enquiry, remembering details about our last encounter or a timely follow up, all add up to a feeling of being ‘met’ by another person, valued equally and confirmed for who we are. This is Strengths-based Practice in action – we feel confirmed in the truth that we are already enough and held in that knowing with every interaction!

Our conversations have dived deeply into the often unspoken aspects of human interactions that are intricately part of The Strengths Approach. Coming back to the truth that we are all already enough, already full, means the changes that are often needed come on top of this knowing. We are not empty vessels to be filled up to meet others’ expectations. We are made of strengths and values that are our own unique expression.

Another aspect that our work raises is the notion of hurts that we carry as part of our life and our work. Many of us forget or have been so deeply hurt by life and work that any awareness of our existing fullness seems a false notion, or beyond us.

Sometimes our hurts require specialised attention because their impact is harmful and disempowering for others and ourselves. Most of us carry our hurts around with us and when they are triggered, can be expressed with an ‘energy’ that is felt by others and can see us behave in ways we don’t like, don’t intend and or feel like we cannot control. These hurts are like ‘rocks’ carried in our backpack that – unless we are aware of them and take responsibility for them – we are likely to throw at others, and in the process do damage to not only the people that we have lashed out at, but also ourselves.

Conversations have flowed freely about how we all have hurts – a unified agreement about this fact has opened up some truly amazing conversations.

So where have we generated these conversations this year?

  • Rural, interstate and local Early Childhood Education – child care and kindergartens
  • Arnhem Land (ATSI community) and Darwin, Anglicare Family Services
  • Primary and Secondary Schools, including specialist schools
  • ECIS services including those working with the NDIS
  • Supervision with Maternal & Child Health Leadership Team
  • Community Hubs in Western suburbs of Melbourne
  • Presented BG&A’s Strengths Approach at Conferences
  • Rural and Interstate Family Services
  • Individual Supervision
  • University Disability services
  • Vision impairment services
  • Facilitating a rural community Family Services alliance, including Child Protection
  • Tauranga, New Zealand – Palliative Care, Nutritionists, Mental Health Services, Aged Care.

The interest in our unique Strengths-based conversations is growing. The feedback has been confirming.

Last week for instance –

“I thought I was coming to a PD and this has been life changing.”

“I have never thought about some of the conversations we have had here and they have opened up a new way of looking at my life and how I work.”

If you are interested in further professional development for yourself or your staff I’d love to discuss this with you.

Learn more about this topic with Bernadette’s practical and engaging workshop People-centred Conversations – Questioning to Ignite and Empower or explore all upcoming workshops here.

Get in touch with Bernadette Glass here.

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