The moment you stop doing what you are doing and start reviewing your life or career, is the time you begin a process of change.
– Jackee Holder
When I started out as a coach in 1996 the wheel of life model was one of the first coaching tools my then coach introduced me to. I found the non-rational approach to goal setting much more attractive and appealing than more linear approaches to goal setting particularly to someone like myself who happens to be more of a right brained learner. I used the wheel of life successfully after that first introduction both with myself and with clients.
In 2008 I created a new model this time replacing the wheel with the image of a tree, which I re-named, the wheel of life tree audit (wolta) and introduced in my book, Be Your Own Best Life Coach. I liked the idea of bringing nature into goal setting as well as the symbolic meaning trees give to our lives. The scorings on the new wheel of life tree audit are based on a scaling rating of 1-5 as opposed to a typical scaling range of 1-10 on the traditional coaching wheel of life models.
The illustrated guide I wrote and published in 2014 to accompany the new model suggests using wolta primarily to evaluate and review your life or career. However the audit is extremely flexible and can be adapted to reflect on different aspects of your supervision practice and selves as supervisors.
Supervisors could use the tool at the start and end of supervision assignments as a form of creative and reflective review. My list of current eight areas to review and evaluate in a supervision session would include: Well-being, continuing professional development, reflection, listening and presence, contracting, finances, supervision practice and supervision.
Colouring as an activity can easily transform into a moment of mindfulness where you relax and let go. In the new guidebook we’ve called the audit a playbook for that reason, as colouring is a reminder of the need for more play in our often busy, demanding lives. And secondly by introducing creative elements the guide will feel less like yet another chore on your never ending to do list.
Do try the audit out yourself. I complete the audit around three to four times a year. It really helps me to focus on where in my life, career or supervision practice there is colour often denoting where I am placing my energy and focus and the lack of colour pointing to where this may not be the case. You can then choose where you want your focus and energy to be.
In both my coaching and supervision practice, I’ve found that introducing the wheel of life tree playbook and life audit generates more honest and transparent conversations about what is going on in a client’s life or work. Using colour and imagery sometimes makes this an easier and more fluid conversation to have.
The Wheel Of Life Tree Playbook and Life Audit is a free downloadable resource kit you are welcome to use and adapt in your practice and share with clients and teams. Download an A4 copy of the audit here http://www.jackeeholder.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/JH-New-Wheel-of-Life-Template-FINAL.pdf or a copy of the illustrated guide here http://www.jackeeholder.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/JH-WoLT-Playbook-FIN-9May2014.pdf
I’d love to hear your thoughts and welcome feedback.
Jackee Holder CSA Accredited supervisor