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Desert Highway
Thoughtful writing authored and shared by members of of the Thinking Collaborative community to support others on the journey.

Sustaining the Journey

Identity as a Mediator

Authored By:

Thinking Collaborative


June 01, 2015

A recent coaching experience with an instructional coach revealed how deeply our identity impacts our ability to invite growth. In one recent reflecting conversation, a coach noticed increased engagement and new learning that had previously not been present in her conversations with a teacher. In fact, she had felt genuine resistance in working with the teacher. During a reflecting conversation, she was asked to compare the conversations. She gained consciousness that she had been working as a consultant and even sometimes and evaluator in the first conversations. In the more recent conversations she worked with the teacher as a collaborator and a coach, offering no judgments.

Surprisingly, she had not been aware of the choices she was making. When asked to compare the conversations, cognitive shift occurred and she had new insights into how her choices to work as a mediator had completely changed a failed relationship to one that became productive and important to inviting true reflection. The coach left the conversation vowing to apply her new insights in every interaction, realizing the goal was to support the teacher’s capacity to think about her practice.

What are some times when you have been conscious of your identity as a mediator? How did that impact your work? What are some things you have noticed when you don’t operate from this identity?

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