Overview of Approaches
My mentorship relies on one or a combination of three complementary approaches, depending on my client’s goal and points of strength. These approaches are Ontological Analysis, Internal Family Systems (IFS) Self-Leadership developed by Dr. Richard C. Schwartz, and Psychoshamanism. I have practiced ontological analysis for nearly two decades to be mindful in my own life. I have also been trained to practice IFS Self-Leadership, sponsored by IFS Institute. Further, I have received my certification as a Psychoshamanic Practitioner from Crows Nest Center for Shamanic Studies, where I had the honor to have C. Michael Smith, PhD, Jungian Psychologist, Author, and International Teacher and Consultant in the Field of Shamanism, as my mentor.
My services are offered as a mentor as opposed to a life coach. There is a subtle difference between the two. Coaching as the name implies usually involves a process to develop a specific skill to help reaching a set of clearly-defined goals or improve performance in a specific area of one’s personal and professional life. My life mentorship has some coaching elements but in its core it is about building a nourishing and supportive relationship to help my clients find and actualize their life purpose and aspirations. The process usually involves intellectual and/or spiritual inner journeys to find and resolve any emotional or mental blockage in my clients’ path to inner power and pursuit of ideals.
Think about a gardener caring for a plant. The gardener does not coach the plant how to sprout from its seed or extract nourishment from the soil, the air, and the sun. All the gardener does is to create and protect a caring and supportive environment for the seed to actualize its potentiality to become a strong and beautiful plant. The gardener also helps the plant to maintain its life-promoting energy by identifying and removing any parasitic weeds feeding off its resources.
I believe all of us, you and I included, already have our own coaching wisdom. The coaching wisdom that has the intelligence and the energy to guide us, and when initiated can transform us in ways we could never imagine possible. What I offer as a mentor is to help you find clarity and discover your coaching wisdom, your own “inner coach”, to partner with you in the process. In fact, you may well be here because of the very call from your inner coaching wisdom wanting you to recognize and invite her/his into your life.
As the mentor, I don’t view myself as someone with authority or power to push my clients for results, like a parent figure does. I am rather someone like an “old friend” who walked many paths before and can be a sounding board for your deepest inner thoughts and feelings, who can be present for you in exciting and challenging times, and offer his energy and insight to you to find your courage and wisdom to pursue a more meaningful life, or overcome life challenges whatever those may be.
Like the palms of our hands or the prints of our fingers, we are all unique in our own way, have unique ways of seeing life and our purpose in it. For example, some of us may see things very rationally and desire to understand the elements of our life by intellectualizing everything. In contrast, some of us may be more connected to our emotions and how we “feel” things and people around us. Some may be somewhere in the middle, switching between the two in a wide range of spectrum. Some are naturally tuned to have access to other resources such as intuition, imagination, etc. This diversity of views and uniqueness of each individual is the reason why I use a combination of approaches in mentoring that is client-centric and catered to her/his unique background, personality and perspective in life.
Ontological Analysis and Imagination refers to a contemplative rational approach to find the truth and causality behind our feelings, thoughts, or beliefs. Practice of Ontological Imagination leads to clarity of mind and higher self-awareness.
Internal Family Systems (IFS) is developed by Dr. Richard C. Schwartz. It is an evidence-based model that describes how our mind operates. The ultimate goal of IFS is Self-Leadership, or simply our ability to live life with a sense of clarity, courage, creativity, etc.
Psychoshamanism is a synthesis of useful psychological concepts and practice of shamanism. It involves psychospiritual ritual processes similar to Joseph Campbell’s Hero’s Journey. The goal of Psychoshamanism is to access our spiritual insights and wisdom.