By Amanda Clegg, Relationship Coach
Getting started with coaching or therapy can be a nerve-wracking experience. Whether it’s your first time or you’ve been seeing a provider for years, meeting with someone new can bring up a lot of emotions and fears! Personally, I’m someone who likes to know how things work. So, I thought it could be fun and helpful to share with you what the intake process with me looks like! Keep in mind this is my specific method, each provider will be different so if you’re someone who also has a curious mind, don’t hesitate to ask them what to expect. We’re all here to make you feel safe, seen, and supported. Never, ever, hold back questions if you got ‘em!
SO, because I specialize in the Enneagram and it is my favorite (most impactful) model to use, the first appointment is always a typing interview which serves two main purposes.
The ins and outs of the Enneagram typing:
I was trained in the Narrative Enneagram, and part of what I love so much about their method is that it is predicated on the lived experience of each person. Online tests can be a great resource but mistyping is highly common. With my immersive approach, I get to ask curated questions that allow for high accuracy. I get to go deeper than online tests can and explore how the themes and patterns have played out throughout your life. This way also allows me to pay attention to physical cues (our type literally comes out in everything we do). What I always make clear to new clients is that there are ABSOLUTELY no wrong answers – how you interpret each question is indicative of type. There is nothing to prepare for and you need no prior knowledge of the Enneagram. By the end of our 50-minute session, I will have a solid understanding of type and will explain how the system works, what types I am hearing, and send you off with some resources to explore more before our next session. Because the Enneagram is about self-discovery, my teachers instructed me to offer up (at least) two types. I’ll share a compare/contrast of them and then let you get to learnin’. There is no rush in landing in your core type, since the Enneagram is such a complex system it can take some time but typically what we will do is “try on” a type together in the following sessions and see how it relates to you, your goals, and your growth path.
Gettin’ down to the nitty gritty:
The time together today will consist of; speaking on how I go about creating a space free of judgment and full of compassion so you know you can share vulnerably and be your full self, Enneagram check-in to understand what resonated with you + why, exploring your goals for our time together, learning more about your familial and relational history, discussing what’s worked for you and what hasn’t, a review of a few important paperwork details, and finally, we end with a clear Action Step (It’s really important to me that the work you do in session translates into your everyday life so you experience the shifts you’re looking for. As one of my mentors said, “Awareness alone doesn’t create change.” Throughout each session pathways for healing are illuminated and I will always provide you with a tangible practice or resource so you can get to the experiential learning that propels transformation).
I’m all about doing the deep work with a light heart. While I hold a grounded, empathetic space – I’m also not afraid to *lovingly* call you out (with a lil’ bit of humor, when appropriate). As I said, each provider’s process will be different, and their style will be too. I always encourage potential clients in consultations to pay attention to how you feel in their presence and tune into what kind of demeanor works best for them. Never be afraid to try out different approaches or apologize if someone isn’t a good fit. What’s important to all of us is that you find a match that best suits YOU and your needs. In fact, research shows that a good provider/client match greatly impacts the client’s success.
If you have any questions about my intake process or want to get started with Enneagram-Focused Coaching, schedule a free 15-minute consultation here. I would love to meet with you!
Amanda helps teens, individuals, and couples create secure relationships within themselves and with each other. Her favorite (and most impactful!) tool to use is the Enneagram, which deepens awareness, understanding, and compassion so that we all can continue to foster meaningful connections in our day to day lives, moment by moment.
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