How to avoid falling into the trap of co-dependency with clients

//  A Sacred Sermon from the Nurturer Healing Archetype //

How do we navigate the slippery slope of

needy clients + do it with love and awareness?

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When our hearts are so big and unconditional as we healers, coaches and health practitioners can to be, it can be a delicate process to distinguish between blurred, needy boundaries and loving, unconditional support.


We have such tender, generous hearts that it pains us to see another’s suffering.  We wish to do all that we can to ensure our clients are comfortable, safe and happy.


In an ideal situation, ultimately, we can co-create their empowerment – without any strings attached from our ego.  And, that’s where things can get a little tricky ..

What may seem like a loving and almost altruistic approach to healing, we can encourage our clients to lean on us completely.  What this can do however is limit their potential to help themselves and they can miss the joy of lightning bolt self-initiated inspiration and making changes based on their own inner revelations.


Of course, we don’t intend to deprive our clients of trusting their own wisdom and inner knowing, but sometimes we don’t even realise we are doing it.


Here’s some points to consider, and notice if any of them jolt something within you :


  • Are your clients growing, independent of you? Or, are they coming to you with often and regularly requests for guidance or advice or healing?  Do they seem to be in the same holding pattern from when you first started working with them?


  • Is their growth reliant on your input? Do they only seem to listen to you, and not others, or even themselves? Do they seem to think you have all the answers for them? Do they even say, “You’re the only one that understands me!”?


  • Do you feel flattered by their trust in you? Do you feel a sense of power knowing you are the only one that can help them?


  • How do you enable their dependence on you? How do you keep giving them what they want? How often do you ask them to take time to figure something out for themselves or to trust their own instincts?


  • What are you getting out of this dynamic? What part of you needs to be needed?  How does it make you feel to know you have given them what they needed every time without question?


  • How attached are you to their outcomes? Does their success fuel your own sense of success? If they ‘fail’, would you feel you had failed too?


There is a very fine line here between leaving someone to fend for themselves and holding their hand through every minor step.  And, there is a very significant space in-between that exists.  It’s a place of conscious independence, empowerment and personal sovereignty.


Knowing how to create this for your clients starts with creating it for yourself, first and foremost.  After all, how can you model or talk about how it feels to be sovereign when you don’t know it yourself?


So, start here :

Get cosy with your shadow

First, we need to be comfortable with our own lack of assuredness and clarity that we experience sometimes. We need to be familiar with our own shadows and doubts.


We must get comfortable with our own uncomfortable feelings before we can hold space for another to do so.


Otherwise, we will go into ‘saving mode’ in order to not be present with what they are experiencing because it triggers our own uncomfortableness.


Get intimate with your soul

Second, how often are you tuning in and trusting your soul?  How are you cultivating the relationship with your most supreme, divine Self?  What is she calling you to do?  And, are you actually listening and doing it?


We’re not just talking self-love here, we mean – true soul union with your full Self.  Validating and trusting your instincts by acting on them.  Following the call of your soul. Not excluding all your shadowy bits.  Remembering you have all the resources within to take a decent crack at life this time around.


It’s critical to be carving the precious time to just hang out with her and get to know her.


We can’t expect to develop a deep, loving, trusting relationship with someone we don’t spend much time with, can we? The same goes for your soul.


Get real

Third, the truth is you are not the only person that can help your client.  That’s not to say what you do is not special and unique and that your time together is perfect.  But, buying into the ego’s conviction that you are their One and Only [and for a unlimited amount of time] can be really damaging and disempowering – for both of you.


You cannot be everything to them, and nor should you.


Imagine how exhausting that would be! If you hold any ideals about you being the only one that can get them out of their funk, than you are excluding the fact that they also have it within them to do it for themselves.


And this assumption is a great under-estimation of their power.  They already feel disempowered, don’t encourage that by thinking or saying you are the only one that can help them. This perpetuates the loop of them becoming solely dependent on you.


A time is emerging now where healers, coaches and practitioners are being called to offer true healing – by using their gifts to empower and awaken themselves first and to stop jumping in to save clients from themselves.


Are you feeling the pull?  What new choices are you willing to make to become a part of the new wave of self-mastered and truly awakened healers?


Resonate deeply with this post? This is an invitation to call in the Nurturer Healing Archetype to support you, or if it’s your Lead or Veiled Healing Archetype, open this conversation up with your Nurturer and allow them to guide you further.  All 8 Healing Archetypes exist in us all, each to varying degrees, so this archetypal force is always available to you whether or not it is your Lead or Veiled Healing Archetype.

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Hi kindred one, I'm Sarah K Jones and I live on the Sunshine Coast, Australia, close to some of the most stunning beaches in the world.  I am the creatrix of the Healing Archetypes, devoted mentor to coaches, healers + wellness practitioners, and imperfect mama to a vibrant 3yo lass who constantly keeps me honest. Digitally you can also find me playing on Instagram and Facebook.

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Sarah K Jones

Creatrix + custodian of the Healing Archetypes, I mentor wellness practitioners to harness their healing brilliance so they can make the greatest impact with their gifts possible.