This post in aimed at Firewalk Instructors and those who want to become a Firewalk Instructor. Equally, this post is very useful if you are organising a Charity Firewalk or a Corporate Firewalk. It will give you a great insight on what you could expect from your Firewalk Instructor. Or at least, it will give you an insight on what you can expect from Firewalk Instructors trained at Firewalking International.
As a Firewalk Instructor you will be communicating with your clients and participants at various stages. In the lead up to the Firewalk it might be online, on the phone or in person with the organisers. And on the day, you will be speaking with everyone in real life. Here are a few things that all Firewalk participants expect from Firewalk Instructors.
Build Trust and Lead the Way
Meeting and leading people you haven’t met before can take some getting used to. And if this is something you find difficult, rest assured it gets easier. Great Firewalk Instructors make their participants feel welcome long before the Firewalk, also during and after.
The best Firewalk Instructors are an example to others. They lead the way. If it is an open event they will greet everyone as they arrive for the Firewalk. They will make time to introduce people to each other. And by being welcoming, it sets an example that others will follow.
On the other hand, it could be a private Firewalk and the participants all know each other. As their Firewalk Instructor you will have to work a little bit harder to make sure you connect with each person there. It might not be possible to say hello to each person individually. But with some skill, and practice, you can do this in your opening to the group.
Communicate with your participants in the lead up, and on the day of their Firewalk. Respond to their questions and comments in a timely manner and you will build trust. And trust is a crucial element for every Firewalking Event.
Be Yourself and Be Real
Clarify your role, your expectations, and your goals with all potential Firewalk participants. And do this as soon as you can after you meet them.
Hold each participant in your care, and at the same time, encourage open and honest communication. Be warm and approachable yet remain focused on providing the Firewalkers with all the information they need to make empowered decisions.
Your confidence will encourage your Firewalkers to trust you. A calm, organised and approachable demeanour will go a long way to help your participants feel more relaxed. That’s why you need a dedicated, passionate, and capable team of Fire Tenders to help and support you. Then you can focus on your group and their needs.
When your group is more relaxed, they will be more receptive to the information and teachings that you can guide them through. In return, you will be more relaxed, more real, more you and more in flow with what you are doing. It’s a virtuous circle.
People often say, “fake it ‘til you make it” and while this might work for some things, faking who you are is a seriously bad idea. How can you be congruent with your group if you can’t be congruent with yourself?
Embrace your uniqueness and give your Firewalkers a fantastic event by being true to who you are and what you stand for. You will get far more respect and trust this way, and it will be a much easier process for you.
Respect and Empathy
Do you remember your first Firewalk? Most people do. How were you feeling? Were you excited or scared? A mixture of both? Keep that in mind always when you are leading a Firewalk. And if you can’t really remember how you were feeling think of a time you were scared and a time you were excited.
Your group of Firewalkers will consist of people who are excited to Firewalk and those who are petrified at the idea. Some participants might even say that there is no chance they are going to do it. Everyone else will be in between these extremes. Some very keen to Firewalk and some not so keen. It is your job to embrace and respect all these different outlooks and expectations.
By having empathy, compassion and respect you will build trust with your Firewalkers. Even with trust, some may choose not to do the Firewalk. But you will have created a safe space for them to make that decision, and without fear of judgement or persuasion.
One more thing about about what people expect from Firewalk Instructors …
Of course, what people expect from Firewalk Instructors will vary from person and the nature of the event. Someone organising a high energy motivational seminar will have very different expectations to someone organising a small Firewalk as part of a well being and yoga retreat.