Personal Work

“Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself."

~ Rumi

What’s Involved?

I help people navigate personal, relational, organizational, and societal challenges in ways that align with their most deeply held beliefs and values.

I bring my knowledge and expertise in social justice organizing, personal liberation work, Nonviolent Communication, Processwork, and a great deal of care and attention to the material you bring.

All sessions are offered virtually, and most sessions are available on Monday and Tuesday afternoons.

"I am grateful for how James approaches our sessions with such kindness, curiosity, and sincerity. He is present and creates a safe space for exploring complex topics. James has been invaluable for me in beginning to understand my self and how I relate to my work in particular."

Teresa L.

“James has been instrumental in helping me look at myself and my growth in different perspectives. I truly feel like the work we’ve done has allowed me to become the person I’ve always tried to be. I’ve had to do homework from time to time but it’s always paid off.”

Jarrett

“James brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to our one-on-one sessions. But more importantly, he demonstrates an extraordinary amount of curiosity and support that have really helped me grow my understanding of how I confront systems while being kind to individuals."

Anonymous

Who?

Here are some profiles of folks who are well-positioned to benefit from personal work with me:

  • Something is going on in your inner life, your relationships, or your work that is not sitting well with you. You’d like support for navigating these challenges in ways that feel authentic and have a positive impact.

  • You’re a social change leader who’s looking for personal support as you navigate challenging social change efforts.

  • You’re part of a workplace, group, or organization that is struggling with challenging power dynamics, and you’d like to have a positive impact on the way things move forward.

  • You want to live in greater alignment with your values. You’d like to work on making that happen.

  • You feel as though you’re at a crossroads or new chapter in life, and you’d like support in making the transition into something new.

  • You’ve been accused of using your power or privilege unconsciously in a way that’s hurting other people and damaging your relationships.

  • You’re an education leader who is navigating the difficult dynamics of leading a school and responding to demands from above. You may feel constrained in actualizing the values you brought to your position, and you’re looking for support in navigating that challenge.

  • You’re part of an advocacy campaign or organizing effort where infighting is beginning to limit the chances of your effort’s success. You’d like to develop your personal ability to navigate difficult conversations.

  • You’re looking for a process-oriented facilitator with a strong lens on social identity and oppression awareness.

Why?

Working with me may be a good fit for you if you:

  • are are looking for personal support to live in greater alignment with your values

  • are interested in working on personal triggers that get in the way of your work

  • have the time and energy for ongoing tailored support from a skilled facilitator

  • are able to do some work outside our time together

Why Not?

This may not be for you if:

  • You are coming primarily to learn content (my workshops would be a much better starting place)

  • You’re looking for a coach with industry-specific knowledge to support your skills in a particular field

  • You’re looking for a depth of psychological care or a mental health treatment plan that would be better provided by therapy (see the section at the bottom of this page called “Is This Therapy?”)

Pricing

How much do I charge for per session for those paying out of their own pocket? (My session rates for organizational work are different.)

$170 per fifty-minute session for individuals

$200 per fifty-minute session for relationships or small groups

A sliding scale is available for those who are extremely interested and struggle to pay the full fee.

Why do I charge that much?

In determining my price per session, I consider two factors:

  1. What it means to you

  2. My level of experience and expertise

What $170 or $200 per session might mean to you

For a lot of people, $170 or $200 per session is a lot of money. Nevertheless, this level of service might be worth it to you if we’re a good fit. I offer free 50-minute consultations to help us make that determination.

To ensure it’s worth your money, I…

  • offer discounted packages when it makes sense for your situation

  • consult with a supervisor regularly to improve my work

  • check in with you regularly about our progress

  • offer you the opportunity to request a full refund on your most recent session if you felt it wasn’t supportive (provided you’re either willing to have an open conversation with me about it or end our work together)

  • abide by ethical standards set by the Processwork Institute

  • keep up with regular trainings and professional development to support my growth

My level of experience and expertise

I believe my level of experience and expertise in teaching, organizing, and facilitating is commensurate with my fee. I can confidently say that there are very few people out there offering what I’m offering in private sessions. That’s not to say you can’t find loads of amazing folks out there, just that I believe my approach is both unique and powerful.

Isn’t $170 and $200 per session too much? If I really provide work that supports people, why would I limit it to people who can afford those prices?

This is an extremely important question. And I’ve thought long and hard about how to do pricing in an ethical way. I don’t think I have the perfect answer, but I do have an approach I’ve put a lot of time into developing.

If you’ve ever attempted to work for yourself, you may know that not all of what I am paid per session goes to my salary. I have to pay overhead for my business, cover my insurance out of pocket, and I have to pay taxes. After all that is said and done, I personally take home around $100-$110 per session. This comes down to maybe $35ish per hour when factoring in the behind the scenes work I do to support my clients.

Still, I recognize that this rate is inaccessible for a lot of people who might really benefit from working with me. Is it possible to still do this ethically? The way I manage that challenging question is by working toward offering most of my content for free (on the My Perspective page), doing lots of pro bono work with groups, and offering my workshops on a pay-what-you-can basis. This allows the majority of my work to be extremely accessible to everyone who’s interested. I do offer a sliding scale to individuals who are extremely interested in this work but struggle to pay a full rate, and I offer a range of package deals (which you can see below) that include large discounts off my single session rate.

If you can afford my rate and you benefit from my work, please do pay the full price. You can feel good knowing that the price you’re paying supports a lower rate for my work in other areas.

The realities of pricing and making a living in our society are extremely complicated, and they bring up a lot of thorny ethical considerations. I believe in working toward a different economic system. I also believe that, along with many others around the world, I’m taking small steps in my business model to create that system (albeit in an imperfect and messy way). If you have any questions about my business approach or ideas to offer me on making my work even more aligned with an economy that supports all of our needs, please feel free to shoot me an email at james.boutin@mailfence.com.

Packages

I offer a few tailored and discounted packages for folks looking for a defined outcome and scope of work.

Jump Starter Package (4 sessions over 4-6 weeks)

The jump starter package is limited-time offer for people looking for a quick boost of insight around a specific challenge or set of challenges their facing in their lives or work.

This package is ideal for you if you have room in your schedule to meet about once a week or every other week, there’s an issue you’d really love a different perspective on, or you’re curious about my work and want a low-risk way to try it out.

Cost: $400 ($280 discount off my normal session rate)

Developing Your Inner Talisman (8 sessions over 1-2 months)

A talisman is a mythological object individuals carry so they can enter trying circumstances and emerge unscathed. This package of work helps you contact a deeper sense of self and purpose in your work, which you can use like an inner talisman to help you grow through difficult situations that arise in your life and work. We’ll do this by exploring your earliest childhood memory or dream, the issues that give you the most trouble in life, and the moments when you feel most aligned with your purpose and being.

The eight sessions in this package are completed in 1-2 months, which means meeting once or twice per week. There will be one piece of homework between each session.

Because of the level of commitment involved, this package is ideal for folks who have a break in their lives from the grind of modern life and have time to invest in inward reflection.

Cost: $1100 ($260 discount off my normal session rate)

Navigating a Complex Conflict (6 sessions over 2 weeks)

This package is for two people who are struggling with a conflict in their relationship they’d like support with. It includes two individual sessions for each person and two relationship sessions where both people meet with me together (six sessions in total). If you have mutual friends or community who care for you both, it is ideal to involve them in our work. If possible, it is also ideal to find a location to do the relationship work in person. Homework may be required.

I like to do the first set of sessions in the first week and the second set of sessions the week after. Depending on how things go, we can consider continuing the work in the same way or adjust the package to support what’s needed.

Cost $780 ($300 discount off my normal session rate)

Dreamwork Intensive (6 sessions over 6 weeks)

Nighttime dreams can offer tremendous value to us in our waking life if we know how to work with them. This package is for folks who are interested in exploring the potential meaning of their nighttime dreams and integrating them into their waking life.

This package includes designing and making use of a dream journal, learning ways of thinking about and working with dreams, and facilitated work we’ll do with your dreams in session. One piece of homework will be required between each session.

A variation on this package can be developed for a group of people who’d like to work together in a group on their dreams. This is ideal for people just beginning to learn about dreamwork.

Cost: $720 ($300 discount off my normal session rate.)

Oppression Awareness Consultancy Group (4 sessions over 1-4 months)

This package is designed for a group of people who would like to pool their funds to receive feedback on real life situations they’re encountering in their oppression awareness practice. We’ll treat each session as case study work, so you’ll need to bring challenges you’re facing in order for this to work.

Groups limited to eight participants. There may be homework between sessions.

Cost: $600 ($200 discount off my normal session rate)

You Want to Learn More

If you’ve taken time to consider working with me carefully, and you’d like to learn more, I’d like to invite you to schedule a free 50-minute consultation. I’ll ask you why you’ve come and what you think I can help you with. Please prepare your thoughts before coming. It will help us both get the most out of our time together.

There will be no sales pitch. The goals are to a) help you as much as I can within the fifty minutes, and b) help us both decide if we’d like to work together. I’ll send you a follow-up email when the session is over, and we can determine if we’d like to move forward from there.

Click here to schedule your free consultation.

Is This Therapy?

In the realm of human healing, growth, and transformation, there are many different kinds of professionals. The field includes therapists, counselors, coaches, energy workers, awareness facilitators, shamans, meditation teachers, etc…

I am not a licensed therapist, and I do not offer therapy. That means I don’t diagnose illness or pathology; I don’t prescribe medication or treatment plans; I don’t accept insurance; and my work is not legally governed by a professional standards board. In other words, I am not the person to come to if you’re looking for a certain level of psychological care or a treatment plan for a long-term mental health challenge.

My work is an alternative to therapy.

I can help you gain awareness of and transform the dynamics that limit your ability to actualize your values. This sometimes involves working with unconscious material, and that is always done with care and informed consent.

I have (and continue to undergo) years of intensive training in facilitating human dynamics. I have experience as a counselor at a community clinic. I abide by the ethical guidelines established by the Processwork Institute. I know the limits of my scope of competence, and I maintain a robust network of connections to licensed therapists to whom I refer clients when their needs are beyond my ability. Lastly, I receive ongoing supervision around my work from more senior licensed and non-licensed professionals.

Contact Me

Subscribe to my mailing list or email me directly at james.boutin@mailfence.com

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