I spent a wonderful day with Linda Aspey, organised by the Association for Coaching, exploring Nancy Kline’s Thinking Environments. If you’ve been here before, you’ll know that I’m a fan of this most person-centred approach. I’m not about to unlearn everything else, but there are times and situations where simply giving your best attention and creating a space in which another person can think out loud will lead to the most profound realisations and development of awareness. It seems to me especially priceless as a way of pausing the relentless activity and requirement to act and react that is so many people’s workday reality. As Nancy says, “the quality of everything we do depends on the quality of the thinking we do first.” This is a very beautiful and elegant way of working, in which there is utter respect for the client, and that’s a quality that shone through in Linda’s training session. As a coach there’s both a letting go – I need to clear my mind and simply focus on the other person with the best attention I can offer – and a sense of holding a very precious space in which the other person is thinking, reflecting, connecting, conjuring, creating. It’s all about them, and it’s not about me formulating clever questions or analyses or making suggestions. If you manage people, how might this benefit your supervision meetings? How could you apply Thinking Environments to your staff and team meetings? I invite you to explore and discover. For myself, I’m looking forward to doing the rest of the Foundation course, and in the meantime, here’s Linda talking about Time to Think and Thinking Environments.