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I'm writing the acknowledgments-section of my thesis and want to thank my academic advisor for his patience and support, and for allowing me to "grow at my own speed". I'm looking for a concise way to word the last part.

What I'm trying to say is that he did not push me or try to mold me into something that he wanted me to be, but rather gave me time and space to find and understand my own strengths, and become a good researcher

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    I think the phrase "he gave me [the] time and space to find and understand my own strengths" is very good. Jul 27 '15 at 21:05
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    progress at my own pace?
    – Avon
    Jul 27 '15 at 21:08
  • Or if you want something more concise, "patient" or "patience." Jul 28 '15 at 5:06
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nurturing may be the word you're looking for.

to support and encourage, as during the period of training or development; foster:

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  • Hey there Brandon & welcome to EL&U, nurturing is a good answer, please include a citation for the source of all direct quotations, thanks.
    – user98990
    Jul 27 '15 at 21:48
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You could thank him for allowing autonomy or self-direction

autonomy / self-direction -

personal independence

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Consider hit one's stride.

hit one's stride (AmEng) or get into one's stride (BrEng): to begin to do something in a confident and effective way after starting slowly (Merriam-Webster Learner's Dictionary)

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