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Training and Practice.....self-checking.

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29 Aug 2014 22:57 - 29 Aug 2014 22:58 #1 by judith
Recently, I’ve thought about times in my professional role when I find it tricky to keep my communication entirely within the parameters of the Language of Safety as I’d like to. Reflecting, I noticed that as a person working with children/young people who has lead responsibility for safeguarding and child protection in my role, and often working with other people who are professionals at other agencies, I find it tricky at times to keep my interactions free of ‘command mode’. Feeling intrigued, I revisited the historical journey that the Protective Behaviours process has taken. Reading further, I was reminded that The Language of Safety was developed later on by Di Margetts, by which time the PB process was well-established. I think the evolution of The Language of Safety also coincided with a growing awareness that PBs can be a wonderful universal process reaching far beyond the needs of young children/people who are experiencing abuse.

After thinking about all of this, I recalled the words I’ve heard so often on PB foundation training when considering The Language of Safety – that “there is a time and a place for command language”. I feel grateful that occasionally I can choose to use commands sparingly, when I think a child/young person’s safety may be at risk, while ever mindful of striving to keep my communication consistent with the PB process, respecting the other person’s right to feel safe. The rest of the time, I can observe the L of S, void of commands, to communicate safely and effectively with people in all other areas of my life, too.

Wonder if when reflecting on their PB training, anyone else has challenged their own words/actions in a similar way?.....
Last edit: 29 Aug 2014 22:58 by judith. Reason: punctuation

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31 Aug 2014 12:08 #2 by dimar
Replied by dimar on topic Training and Practice.....self-checking.
Hi Judith
Interesting reflections. Yes there are certainly times when we, as adults, may need to use command mode to protectively interrupt for either our own or others safety. In addition when there is shared meaning we can also sue this mode without compromising our PB philosophy. I believe it is really important to remind ourselves we do not have to rigidly stick to the 'rules'. This does not mean its OK to behave in bullying ways or talk in command mode all the time. The important thing is, like yourself, to be questioning our words and behaviour at regular intervals. I must admit my early warning signs often let me know when I am out of order. That's when the back pedal comes on quite quickly. B)
There is one little addition. When I was studying psychiatric nursing, one of the most liberating things I learned was to give myself permission to have violent, angry and most un PBs thoughts!! It is what we do with those thoughts that matters. Hence I wrote questioning our words and behaviours and did not add with those thoughts is the vital part. Am raving on a bit here but hope this adds to the discussion.
All the best from Di :)

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03 Sep 2014 08:58 #3 by Maureen M
Replied by Maureen M on topic Training and Practice.....self-checking.
Following on from what Di has put so well - there is nothing wrong with using a commanding was of speaking to protectively interrupt a situation i.e. If a child is about to walk out into a road I believe most of us would instinctively call out "stop".

It is a question of how we use language generally. If we are always commanding we risk becoming
less effective in getting across what we need to say, - losing respect, gaining a reputation for always being bossy, etc.

I feel we need to be mindful of our own language and by modelling the language of safety encompassed within P Bs others will see a different approach.

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