We had the good fortune of connecting with Jim Karwisch and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jim, what is the most important factor behind your success?
The core of my career as a creative, as well as in facilitation and coaching, is my study of narratives and how we create them, live them, maintain them, and retell them. A clear and unhindered narrative can give great confidence and allow for great success. A tangled and flawed narrative can throw up unnecessary road blocks, and erode our confidence.
I started in theatre as a child which allowed me a lot of clarity in how stories shape our beliefs and reveal our values. After years as an adult running a theatre in the evening and working in the business world during the day, I was able to see the parallels between fictional stories, and the stories we tell ourselves that shape our interactions with the world.
The most important factor behind my success at Untangled Narrative Coaching is the ability to ask questions that reveal assumptions and falsities that are hidden in our stories. Because narratives are built in pieces over time, we are not always aware when something exists that is blocking us from taking action. By mastering the asking of powerful questions, we are able to reveal blocks that are holding us back and see more clearly to path toward what we want.
What should our readers know about your business?
Getting my business to the level that it could sustain my entire family took years of trial and error and constant networking. I am proud of what I have built and what has been given to me, but none of that would have been possible if I had not had the support of my family. At the very beginning, I may have just sought out another day job if I hadn’t been shown that those around me were willing to get through the tough beginnings in order to gain a later reward.
My work is very special to me, because it is a path created from each skill set I have mastered throughout my career moves. Improvisation and the Theatre combined with business and mentoring have all come together in Untangled Narrative Coaching. I can’t think of anything that I have learned so far that did not become vital to the type of coaching that I have become. I consider it to be a great privilege to be able to tailor my work to my skill sets when those skill sets are so wild and varying.
My improv work at improvinaction.com and dumoreimprov.com and my coaching work at untanglednarrative.com all tie together into a job I am excited to wake up for every morning.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Because I am an improviser there are some pretty specific spots I would take an out of town guest. I would definitely bring them to Dad’s Garage Theatre for a show or two. We would definitely go by Manuel’s Tavern off of North Highland, as well as the Vortex in Little 5 Points. The rest would probably be visits to a variety of Mexican, sushi, and barbecue joints around the city.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
When I first left the world of finance in 2014 I gained a mentor in the world of facilitation, Allison Dukes Gilmore. She saw what I was capable of and provided me opportunities in the world of coaching and facilitation that allowed me to take the steps needed to build my own practice.
Shannon Jenkins at Flaming City Photography