In telling my story of caregiving for my dad in the first of this three-part series, you may have recognized some key components that I provided for him:
- Dignity (#1)
- Transformation (#7)
- Choice and Empowerment (#2)
- Unconditional Love (#3)
To truly be supportive of an individual in pain during their growth in life (whether it be aging, personal struggles, identity development, or major life transitions) is an incredible responsibility and honor. Holding space is not only for coaches, therapists, and caregivers, though. It is for all—partners, co-workers, friends, and sometimes even strangers. Learning skills in holding space improves relationships.
Hello, my name is Tracey Lynn Cox, vibrational change coach+, offering integrated narrative coaching with solution-based healing hypnosis.
Here are 7 Tips and Tactics for Holding Space for Others
Provide Empowerment for the Individual’s Inner Advisor.
Allow the unspoken Inner Advisor to telepathically get that message across, and trust that this wisdom is all knowing. Trust in life and trust in Self. Open your heart to the Divine counsel that empowers us with the light that is available to give us the Truth. In the most painful moments, rely on wisdom, the Trust, the Light, and the Truth.
Their Power is Centering.
Remember how it feels when your power is taken away from you. It’s hurtful and painful. Provide a secure space by allowing the person to make his/her own choices and decisions in times of pain when you are holding space. That autonomy will boost feelings of competence, usefulness, and being in control.
Provide your Presence from Higher Self Rather than Ego-Self.
This is an all-important message because it’s easy to get into the trap of a desire to rescue. You may go so far as to think the outcome is dependent on your intervention. Keep your ego away. Give the gift of presence and growth for the individual. The soul’s desire to learn is immense. Truly be supportive.
Allow for Failure with a Net.
This means that you create a presence so that an individual feels safe to fail. My mother was an expert at this environmental creation with her children and students. She empowered us to learn, grow, make transitions in life, make mistakes, and realize that it was all OK without any shame or judgment. From those lessons, courage, tenacity, and resilience were gained for a lifetime.
Thoughtfulness Begins with Every Ounce of Guidance.
Stillness may be the best. Give guidance when requested, offering gently and with humility and thoughtfulness. A good rule of thumb is to reserve any guidance if the situation may cause a person to feel shamed, foolish, or “less than.” Along with this, be aware of how much information to give when providing guidance. Too much information may be overwhelming.
Hold Space for Different Experiences to Appear.
Respect and consideration are to be given when people are different, and this leads to choices far from what you may make for yourself. Different is not negative. Honor the difference. Choices may be based on values or beliefs.
Create a Safe Container for Sharing Emotion.
This requires listening at a deeper level: quiet, reflective listening in a gentle and nonjudgmental way. Allow the person to emote. It’s healthy.
I sincerely hope these seven tips and tactics help you to hold space wherever and whenever it is needed. It may be for a long time, such as in caregiving, or it may be only spurts of time. There’s little doubt in my heart that you will hold space for others and you will hold space for you during your lifetime. I hope you have enjoyed this entire series regarding holding space. I appreciate you! Have a blessed day.
Tracey Lynn Cox
For some extra TLC between podcasts/blog posts, join me on the TLC Cloud—our private Facebook group. Every day, I share tips and insights to help you live a more energetic and intentional life. Please join us! Everyone deserves a little extra TLC.