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PERSONALITY, CHARACTER, MOTIVATION AND ASPIRATIONS
Feeling fulfilled and having people feel the same way is just one ambition of Jackie Meldrum. She is the founder of Making Your Own Bed as a Somatica Method-trained Intimacy and Relationship Coach. In that role, Jackie uses her own self-awareness to support others’ efforts to achieve the same.
Coaching Emotional Intelligence
Our personalities are generally formed at around the age of 30 (Terracciano et al., 2006). Science can and has measured as much. We are, after all, human beings.
Emotional intelligence, in contrast, is a measure of ability. And abilities differ from person to person not because of nature, but because of attention paid, practice, necessity, etc.
What Is Emotional Intelligence?
Here is one definition of emotional intelligence as offered by researchers, Jordan and Ashkanasy, in 2013. These are the challenges Jackie expertly addresses:
…Mayer and Salovey (1997) postulated four abilities (or “branches”) that contribute to emotional intelligence: perception, assimilation and understanding, and management of emotion. According to Mayer and Salovey, the four branches involve the following skills: (a) accurate and nonverbal expression and appraisal of emotion; (b) generation of emotions to assist in problem solving; (c) acquisition of emotional knowledge designed to promote intellectual and emotional growth; and (d) regulation of emotion in self and in others….each contributes to emotional intelligence, but…each ability assists in the development of the other abilities.JORDAN and ASHKANASY, 2013
Think about the challenge of coaching someone to improve. Think about living with one who is deficient. Self-reflect to figure how improvement could be a regimen in which you may take part, like an exercise routine.
It Takes One [Who Is Self-Aware] To Know One
Look across major sports leagues such as the National Basketball Association. You’ll find that the vast majority of coaches have had playing experience, much of which took place in the league in which they coach (Berri, 2018).
Jackie’s journey to self-awareness has been a strong experiential component to her support of others. As a coach, she uses her own, past difficulties to hone the emotional and relational ambitions of others.
Jackie initially spoke about “waking up to herself.”
She used to be a people pleaser, and reactive. After so many years of giving, giving, giving of herself, she realized she wasn’t getting anything in return.
Connecting with herself was paramount to connecting with others – to feel fulfilled, whole and loved. That awareness led to “having a voice” and standing up for what made her happy – and guilt-free for her own well-being.
She “learned a language for emotion and connection with herself.” It’s an everyday push to her ambition, but she just keeps on pushing.
I read a paper in grad school about complexity, learning and comprehending situations, among other matters. Karl E. Weick’s explanation of ‘richness’ befits the background Jackie brings to her trade, and the backgrounds she must coax from her clients – their vulnerabilities.
“To go ‘to the scene of the accident’ in search of meaning, and to locate the scene of that accident deep inside one’s own head, is to catch the significance of the accident scene, and to use that significance to reanimate analysis.”WEICK, 2007
Jackie has come to accept her own vulnerabilities, and thereby has mapped out how to have better relationships in her own life.
Accordingly, she “helps her clients trust, feel safe, and sense no judgment so they can experience friends, family and love. The goal is not to revert back.”
It should come as no surprise how difficult this activity is. Weick also spoke to requisite variety, or that a complex wherewithal is required to engage complexity itself.
…and that is why people need Jackie.
Example of Vulnerability
“Owning our story and loving ourselves through that process is the bravest thing that we will ever do.”BROWN, 2019
To prove as much, she gave a humorous account in her talk about her actual visit to a therapist after her postdoctoral research on the topic of how vulnerability exposes self-awareness problems in her own life.
(Narrating) So I found a therapist. ‘My first meeting with her…I sat down.
“How are you?”
“I’m great. I’m OK.”
“What’s going on?”
(Narrating) …And this is a therapist who sees therapists, because we have to go to those, because their B.S. meters are good.
“Here’s the thing, I’m struggling.”
“What’s the struggle?”
“Well, I have a vulnerability issue. And I know that vulnerability is the core of shame and fear and our struggle for worthiness, but it appears that it’s also the birthplace of joy, of creativity, of belonging, of love. And I think I have a problem, and I need some help. But here’s the thing: no family stuff, no childhood shit…”
(Crowd laughs incredulously)
(Making a chopping motion with her forearm while speaking over the laughter) “I just need some strategies.”
(Crowd continues to laugh)
(Brown waves hair from her face with a knowing smile)
(Laughing at herself; narrating) So she goes like this (nodding her head up and down, slowly, constructively to imitate the Therapist)
(Narrating) And then I said, “It’s bad, right?”
“It’s neither good nor bad.”
(Crowd laughs; Brown does, too)
“It just is what it is.”
(Narrating; exasperatedly) And I said, “Oh my God, this is going to suck….” (Crowd laughs) “And it did and it didn’t. And it took about a year.”
Kind of Like Kaizen and ‘Lean’
Masaaki Imai, inventor of the Kaizen concept and Founder of the Kaizen Institute, described continuous improvement back in 2015 in a similar fashion to Jackie’s work. He said:
Lean is the result of going on a journey of continuous improvement. At the Kaizen Institute, we like to say that lean is the result of applying Kaizen consistently…When we go to the production level – gemba, that’s where the real work and value creation takes place and observe the flow there, we immediately see that there is a problem that needs to be solved wherever there is a disturbance in the flow of production.MASAAKI IMAI, 2015
It could be said that Jackie’s line of continuous improvement requires her not only to invoke perpetuity–as she does self-awareness for herself–but to go to the source. Her clients need that of her. And her ambition feeds the souls of others who would remain troubled without.
Making Your Own Bed
Jackie “teaches her clients how to express themselves, how to intimately connect with one another, and how to finally be heard by one another” (Making Your Own Bed, 2018).
Terracciano, Antonio, Paul T. Costa Jr, and Robert R. McCrae. “Personality plasticity after age 30.” Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin 32.8 (2006): 999-1009. Accessed 6 Jan 2019 via scholar.google.com.
Jordan, Peter J., and Neal M. Ashkanasy. “Emotional Intelligence, Emotional Self-Awareness, and Team Effectiveness.” Linking Emotional Intelligence and Performance at Work: Current Research Evidence With Individuals and Groups (2013): 145. Accessed 6 Jan 2019 via books.google.com.
Berri, David. “Don’t Fault Becky Hammon’s Experience: Most NBA Coaches Never Played In The NBA, Either”. Forbes.com, 2018, https://www.forbes.com/sites/davidberri/2018/05/07/becky-hammon-never-played-in-the-nba-just-like-most-nba-coaches/#4b81d0e26777. Accessed 6 Jan 2019.
Weick, Karl E. “The generative properties of richness.” Academy of Management Journal 50.1 (2007): 14-19.
Brown, Brené. “My Story | Brené Brown”. Brené Brown, 2019, https://brenebrown.com/my-story/. Accessed 6 Jan 2019.
Brown, Brené. Tedxhouston | The Power Of Vulnerability. 2010, https://www.ted.com/talks/brene_brown_on_vulnerability?referrer=playlist-the_most_popular_talks_of_all#t-825473. Accessed 5 Jan 2019.
Lechner, Herbert. “Interview With Masaaki Imai”. moving thoughts, 2015, pp. 12-13, https://www.kaizen.com/images/materials/2015_CH_Interoll_en.pdf. Accessed 6 Jan 2019.
Meldrum, Jackie. Meet Making Your Own Bed. 2018, https://youtu.be/Ezo2i6K5Yj8. Accessed 6 Jan 2019.
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Published by Rehr Consulting
Danny Rehr is a graduate of University of Portland’s Pamplin School of Business where he earned an MBA with a concentration in strategy. He now operates Rehr Consulting, a strategy and continuous improvement consultancy focused on small businesses in the service industry of Southwest Washington State. He loves coffee and fountain pens.