Experiences with Counseling and Coaching
I have known Neil and Melissa for eight years. I view them as part of my family. Melissa and Neil have offered me a safe place to be exactly who I am in each season of my life that I have sought counseling from them. They offer love and acceptance. I can tell you that I know who I am in Christ and I know the love that I am worthy of partly because they have shown that love to me. If I had to use one word to describe them it would be "safe". They are a safe place to be open and to walk through trials and triumphs in life. I am so thankful that I met them!
Melissa's guidance as a wellness coach was instrumental in helping me get through a difficult period in my life where I struggled to find time for myself, what I wanted and needed, while still providing for those I cared about. Working with her enabled me to pinpoint certain areas of my life that I could make changes without feeling like I'd failed in some way, and through working with her, I'm healthier, happier, and less stressed than I've ever been. I highly recommend Melissa if you would like to make a step towards living a well-balanced lifestyle, but don't know where to begin.
I walked in to Neil McLamb's office several years ago. I had not only a tall thick wall built around me but also felt like I was in a deep hole. Together the explosion that was about to happen was going to reach far and wide. I was to the point of not seeing a way out. Neil was able to guide me through dealing with one issue at a time. He convinced me, that although my relationship with God was strained on my end, God's love had always been there and always would. He offered an unbiased viewpoint and was able to point out events in the Bible that correlated. There was never pressure to change, but he challenged me to start seeing where my problems stemmed. I can now use many of his strategies to get through most problems that arise. I have been able to start rebuilding my Christian heart. I am able to be a true to self, mom, wife, and friend. Most importantly I now know that I am maturing into the person God has created me to be.
Neil was wonderful. I knew that I had one hour in my day that I did not have to wear a “mask”; in other words, I could be myself. I could be angry, and it was okay; I could cry, and it was okay; I could even doubt what the counselor shared with me, and it would be okay. I am so grateful to have had a Christian counselor for two years. I became a much stronger person. I learned to feel good about myself, to forgive myself, and to forgive others. What a relief that was. I learned to live again even after my husband of 30 years passed away…that was the most difficult to do. I shall never forget the positive result of counseling….but I was blessed to have had the BEST. Thank you, Neil, for your patience, wisdom, and genuine concern for me.
One of the most difficult times for a man is when he has to ask for help. I realized during my divorce that I needed help. Neil was able to show me how to move forward and always backing up his advice with God’s Word.
God brought Neil into my life at a time that I had I not turned my life around at that moment, I seriously do not think that I would be here today. I was at my bottom, suffering from alcoholism and major depression from two abortions that I had years before my counseling with him. From nervously walking into the first appointment, I felt as though I was safe. Safe in being there, and safe from being judged. Of course I didn’t go in and immediately tell him that I had, had two abortions, I told him I had done something that was too bad to tell anyone. What spoke volumes to me was that he never made me feel like I had to tell him. In fact he never brought it up again. He waited on me to share my secret. Neil pointed me to the cross and counseled me in a way that brought me back to God, by showing me what I was worth in the eyes of God. I was forgiven, and washed clean of my sin. I am now in Seminary school for Biblical Counseling. God has also called me to the ministry full time, with a ministry helping post-abortive women overcome the bondage of their past sin. I praise God for the restoration and dramatic change in my life, and I will forever be grateful to Neil for allowing God to use him in a mighty way in my life.
Neil continues to guide me in the process of healing from many childhood and adult issues. He holds me accountable for my actions, but shows me that many things were and continue to be beyond my control and that I should not feel guilty. He is never judgmental and there is nothing I cannot discuss with him in complete confidence. I appreciate his honesty but he always tempers it with kindness and compassion. His ability to put issues in perspective makes them less overwhelming for me and more manageable. Neil has a wonderful sense of humor which is very important to me because it makes me feels more comfortable. Sometimes I leave laughing and sometimes I leave crying but I always know that God is using Neil to shape me into the woman that I am meant to become.
Experiences with Temperament Counseling and Coaching
Parenting is hands down the biggest joy one could have It is also the toughest job with which one is tasked. What seems to work with one child usually backfires with another. Trying to get your teenage children on the same page with you as a parent can be difficult. Temperament testing was a truly eye and heart opening experience and we are so thankful that we chose to do this. With our son, we found ourselves constantly arguing, feeling like he was purposely defiant. Every day seemed to be the same thing. We felt like he was not listening to us and he felt like we did not understand him at all. After reviewing his temperament, we learned more about how he is made and how he is wired. Learning this has helped us better communicate with him and better support his growth into young adulthood. Our daughter is nothing like her brother. He loves attention and public praise and she is much more private and reserved. However, I found it challenging to truly understand how she thought about things and became frustrated that she did not think and operate like I did. Temperament testing allowed me to learn more about her as a young lady. It helped me better understand her choices and how to better connect and work with her. Temperament testing has truly helped our family. We have a better understanding of who our children are and how we can work with them rather than against them.
Understanding one’s temperament is tremendously valuable in all relationships. Once you understand temperament and how it impacts our decision making and behavior it’s very easy to implement into everything you do in a relationship dynamic. Not long ago, I was introduced to, not only what temperament is, but to my very own temperament, and I was pleasantly surprised by the eye-opening experience. It was interesting to have conversations with my wife that dealt with the roots of behaviors. The whys of decisions became more and more a part of daily dialog. These root discussions helped strengthen the conversation between myself and my wife. That strong, honest, conversation is foundation of the relationship. We were able to get past the usual “but you” and moved into the “I understand”. What was most fascinating about this new temperament-based conversation was as much as I was learning about my temperament, my wife was learning about hers. At the same time, we were learning about each other’s temperament. This in turn helped us learn about each other as not only a wife or husband but as individuals—two unique individuals. And with this new understanding of temperament, two individuals working together. Being able to both identify the temperament traits that I display and communicate with those whom I love about those behaviors was an absolute game changer. A game changer that was magnified when temperament became a part of parenting. Having the temperament of my oldest two children “measured” was an opportunity to consider the wiring of teenaged brains and behaviors. Again, it was as much about the reasons behind the decision as it was about the behaviors being displayed. This new understanding of my children has helped me better get my head around why they habitually behave in the manner they do. With that understanding, my wife and I are better equipped to talk to one another about our children and in the end talk to our children about themselves. An individual’s Temperament, as I understand it, will likely never change. But understanding my temperament can help me change my behavior and how I interact with those I love.
I had some reluctance before I took the temperament test. But, when I got my results, I was blown away. I feel like I know myself so much better than I did before. It helped me truly understand who I am, how I respond to other people, and how I express and accept love. The detail and specificity with which the results described me were spot on. My wife took the test too, which was, and still is helpful as we relate to one another. The bottom line is that my original reluctance was simply my pessimism. This is, simply put, one of the most helpful things I’ve ever done. I’d do this again, 10 out of 10 times.