Exploring the Phenomenon of #Transference & #CounterTransference, and #ParallelProcess in #ExecutiveCoaching #ConsultingPsychology.
What past experiences are your clients projecting onto present situations? Exploring transference and counter-transference in the context of consulting can add value to the client. Working through (unconscious) past experiences could enhance individual success and creativity.
Working as an executive coach and psychological consultant requires an understanding and awareness of the discovery process in working with a client, particularly unconscious aspects of a client. This includes understanding the client’s defenses as they arise, resistance to the work, transference that is projected onto you, and counter-transference, all within the context of coaching or consulting.
Equally important is establishing a working-alliance and understanding that a parallel process will ensue. As a coach and consultant, it is our work to examine and understand the unconscious layers of this process, to identify and discuss the experiences as they present themselves and to provide an interpretation that can be shared in a collaborative way with the client.
Going through this process with awareness allows effective interventions to be implemented. Working with a relational approach, intersubjectively, creates a collaborative atmosphere. In this context it’s relevant and important for the coach and client to reach attunement and to discuss both interpretations and interventions. A strong working alliance will allow this to happen.
In his research article Hann (2011) cites Freud’s (1912, 1913, & 1917) work on the subject of transference, “In it he defines transference as that part or those parts of the person’s highly individual, highly personal and largely unconscious loving impulses which is not being satisfied in her relationships”. He’s referring the unconscious process that each individual projects onto a situation in some way. The coach must pay attention to the unconscious process in the session and illuminate and bring into awareness what dynamic is happening. In an ideal situation, this collaborative effort will facilitate greater self-awareness and self-discovery for the client. In situations where the resistance is strong and defenses are held, it will require time and understanding.
Hann (2011) discusses in great detail Freud’s (1912, 1913, & 1917) work on transference and counter-transference. The enlightening aspect of this research is that Hann (2011) brings to light an important psychodynamic aspect of executive coaching and consulting, and states that adherence to this process affects the outcome efficacy.
Hann, E. (2011). Back to basics: How the discovery of transference is relevant for coaches and consultants today. International Coaching Psychology Review.Volume 6(2). The British Psychological Society – ISSN: 1750-2764
Haan, E. & Sills, C. (2010). The relational turn in executive coaching. Journal of Management Development. Volume 29(1). Retrieved online October 20, 2013: http://www.emeraldinsight.com/journals.htm?articleid=1891119&show=abstract
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