Creative Connections & Client Communications
Lifting Your Client UP!
The consultation is an emotional experience, not a recitation of axioms, bromides, and conundrums. So much intelligence, memory, understanding, feeling, regret, and hope are compressed into an hour or so. This is SST, single session therapy, at its most intense [see The
Creative Astrologer]. -This doesn't mean everyone participating within an astrological consultation has "a problem;" what it does mean is that we are massaging one's life development into greater understanding, appreciation, and strategy.
Often, the astrologer will touch very hot hotspots in the client's life development. We have to know how to handle these emotional crossroads, to map a collision-free drive-through to safer space. En route however, we often face denial or acute discomfort; tears of recognition or tears of
revisited pain. We can easily be placed -as are psychotherapists, ministers, even doctors-into the position of scapegoat, with the painful feelings placed upon us; after all, they have no other place to go during that confrontation moment! We can appear cruel for having brought up the feelings. We must work for grace in managing such difficult exchanges during the consultation … especially when we, as human beings too, are having 'a bad day.'
These intense energy disclosures by clients show the measure of how much pain is stored up inside them; how much energy it locked away, consciously or unconsciously detoured into protective routines that sustain uncomfortable but reliable development.
What busy, skilled astrologer has not received an angry letter from a client … only to be followed up six months or four years later with a letter saying, "I finally understand. I am free of this pain"?
Our thought for this essay is directed to the confirmation of our client no matter what traffic patterns the consultation has had to go through to establish understanding of life development.
Take some time to think through the things you observe, say, delineate in past time and project into future time, during the consultation, that give positive value to your client, build you client, lift your client up!
There are the points of personal appearance, including the smile, its frequency, grooming, fashion sense, etc. Remember, your client may never, ever hear compliments in his/her family situation, living alone, being taken for granted etc.
Remember to reach back into the client's school achievements: aren't you still proud of certain things you did, say, 30, 40, 50 years ago? Well, touch on these in the course of the conversation: all
such observances have a cumulative effect on the client. [Perhaps you the astrologer are privately a person who can't easily give a compliment. Clearly, that must change when you put on your astrologer's hat!]
Remember key phrases like, "How very much they must have appreciated you in that situation!" Or "I hope you got the recognition and appreciation you deserved!" or "Share with me, please: what have you brought forward with you over the years from that time?" [---Oh my, oh my: that last one is
Remember thought stimuli like these: "Why does your husband (wife) love you?; "Why do your children think you're a fabulous Dad (Mom)? What is your real contribution to this job you do; why do you like (dislike) it so?"
Of course, these statements are not shallow, empty platitudes to push conversation along; they are graceful probes into the realm of self-evaluation … The responses can lead consultation conversation into different directions. -Remember, above all, you are listening 500% to the replies you are getting, watching where your client's eyes go at certain key words, being aware of position shifts in the chair, wiggling feet,
clenched hands, etc.
By the time the conversation brings life development into projections into the near and reasonable future, the projections should be fortified with realism; the timing will then fit with reason. And, I promise you, your
client's realization of this will help them enormously, lift them up.
Three days ago, I received a call from a female client in an excellent job in a threatened industry; a client with a painful on-again-off-again bad, bad back condition; and a very recent move (unknown to me) to begin a parallel business on her own -all in all, a big energy
drain on a weakened constitution.
My client was crying inconsolably on the phone: her back had "gone out again" and the pain was extreme; she had just paid into the new job situation, but did not see how she could go away for the essential training scheduled in a week (therefore everything (the investment) seemed
lost); her backpain had taken her away from her fine job too often, and she felt she could very well be dismissed by the company. She was lost. What to do? All the problems were swirling together.
While my client was living in the dead center of tr Neptune conjunct Saturn, ruler of her Midheaven(!) [the job insecurity]] and SA MC=Node [the new business affiliation], with tr Saturn square Pluto, ruler of her 8th [her investment] … with her chronic back concerns registering the deepest stresses in her life, astrology is not going to solve the problem here. But a hierarchical ordering of the concerns facing my client would! The leadership and support of the astrologer would.
So, with the authority of her astrologer, I said just that, "We must put these swirling concerns in order, rank them, and deal with them in order, in order to be efficient. First, the pain, getting it stopped;
second, seeing how your investment might be withdrawn (the fine print of the agreement; the state-law prescribed waiting period, etc.) which could relieve pressure on you; and third, preserving your job situation. Work with me; first, do you have your surgeon's telephone number handy?…."
The crying stopped; logic began; attack on the problems felt good; a schedule of activity gave meaning to time. -And then I added the corker: "You've solved situations like this before …remember when you…; well,
this one may be more complicated, but you are going to solve it step by step … and I'm going to telephone you tomorrow morning at 10:00 AM to
see how you've proceeded. OK?"
I left my client with a plan and with feelings of competence and rejuvenating pridealone in the situation. She knew I would call in the morning; she knew she better have something to report, etc.
Of course, all this is adrenalizing. This is Mars; this is plan, strength and attack in the face of difficulty.
At one level or another, our clients must leave us lifted up -no matter how slightly in some cases. Send them out the door; leave them on the phone with a light in their eyes and fresh air in their system.
Then, we astrologers feel better too!
Next Update: January 30, 2002