I remember as a child reading the classic “What Katy Did Next” story.  But when it comes to any kind of therapy or coaching with clients, we are often left in the position of absolutely not knowing what happened next.

When we have worked so closely with a client over a period of time and we come to the end of the process with them, it can be very difficult to “let go” and disengage from the process from our side and settle with the “not knowing” of what happened next.

How we deal with this “not knowing” might sometimes depend on the manner of the ending.

If the client stayed with a process right through, and it feels an appropriate point to end, somehow it can feel easier to send them on their way and know that they will be OK  whatever happens.

If the client suddenly decides they don’t want to continue with therapy beyond a certain point, we may feel anxious or that we have failed them.

And, of course, the client may simply not return after a few sessions, unable to make any ending or state clearly that they don’t want to engage further, or that they feel it’s “not working” for them.

So, how do you manage an ending with a client?

We are, after all, aiming for “Good Therapy – Good Ending”.  “Good Therapy – Bad Ending” is difficult for both client and therapist.

So as well as the specific scenario with that client, we may be influenced by our own experience of endings as well.

If our own experience of endings has always been painful or traumatic, then undoubtedly we will need to work on our own issues never mind the “what happened next” scenario.

So, that’s potentially a lot of deep stuff around a seemingly simple process isn’t it?

But think about your own experiences here.

And think what are the important elements for you in a good ending.

And then consider how you might enable both yourself and the client to achieve that.  And about what happened next for you – as much as the client.