Trotting out the principles of ‘Person Centredness’ is easy; undemanding. Being Person Centred is challenging.
Person Centredness is more than a range of principles and techniques; it is a way of being. The techniques are simply the manner in which we indicate our value and respect for each living being and the world we are gifted to share.
In training terms we need to consider how we translate the principles into our everyday practice. How do we behave towards learners? Do we deliver genuine high regard to each individual? Do we behave with congruence, acceptance, empathy and respect? Do we do this with the organisation that commissions training and indeed, do we do it with each other?
Whenever we produce a handout, deliver a session, send an e mail, make a phone call, draw up a course profile we are giving a clear message. When we carry out our tasks to the highest standard we are demonstrating how we value ourselves and the recipient. When we knock out work that ‘will do’ we are saying that we do not value ourselves or the other party very much. Exposing ourselves in this way is congruent but that’s about all.
Being Person Centred requires us to constantly examine ourselves and our behaviour. It is not something that we can turn on like a tap between the start and the end of a training day. This is very tough; the rewards however are quite magnificent.