Starting anything new can be daunting. This was certainly the case as I graduated from the College of Complementary Medicine, Diploma in hand, back in 2007.  I was 37 years old with a toddler and the realisation that my hectic career in TV production was not longer sustainable. 

I absolutely 100% had to make my new career work. Given my age, failure wasn’t an option. I felt incredibly excited and terrified in equal parts. I knew it was up to me.  But how?

I’d always been employed, so this was my first ever business and I knew very little about business. I just knew I loved everything about art therapy.  I knew it was powerful and helpful and that I had to make this thing work.  But how?

Well, I had a few fortunate breaks to begin with. The first, was accepting a spot at the Health Sanctuary, a multi-practitioner clinic in Bondi.  I began seeing clients referred by my colleagues there and from the health shop attached to the clinic. Soon I started getting clients – just a handful at first but steadily growing.

Things were good. I could apply what I learnt from my course and clients loved the art processes. Then, as my work deepened, underlying issues came to the surface that I sometimes felt ill-equipped to deal with. It was like I could only get so far with some clients before meeting a barrier.

I’d been intentionally avoiding additional expenses at this time cause income was tight. I’d already invested a lot in my diploma and wanted to focus on money in, not out. But, in truth, I was beginning to feel stuck, in need of guidance. Specific guidance, rather than more generalised  training.

Enter Marg Garvan, my second fortunate break.  This amazing woman – my new supervisor – was a power-house of wisdom. She made me feel like anything was possible and was generous in sharing her two decades of knowledge and experience with me. For a fee. This is where I learnt the value of investment.

Whenever a client brought an issue I was unfamiliar with such as sexual abuse, or an eating disorder, or addiction, I’d ring up Marg and book a supervision session. Whilst the session cost me money, her advice, insights and training were invaluable. It meant I could grow in confidence and continue for much longer with my clients. As they recommended me highly to their friends and families, my business also grew, along with my knowledge and experience.

This is why supervision was (and continues to be) my superpower. Without it, I truly feel I might not be where I am now.  Knowledge takes time and supervision fast-tracks this. Supervision means I wasn’t alone and I could flourish under the eyes of a kind and trusted elder. Many don’t make it in business and this for me has been my secret to success.

The word mentor means ‘a wise or trusted counsellor or teacher’ and truly it feels like a treasured thing to be mentored, to be taken under a wing and to receive the richness of another’s experience. To have it flow like precious gold from one generation to the next. Marg has sadly passed away, yet her gifts of insight, training and wisdom remain.

14 years on, my business continues to thrive and thousands of clinic hours later, I feel privileged to now supervise others.

I love this Celtic saying;

“It is in the shelter of each other that people live.”

So the secret is out!  Wisdom shared is truly magical, it is super and powerful.

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