In these charged times, every conversation can feel like a high-stakes game of roulette. How will my message land?
Differences of opinion can easily escalate into an emotionally-charged conversation that spirals downward, and out of control.
Am I getting my point across? Is the other person listening to me? Why don’t they just understand my point of view?
Tensions rise, battle lines feel drawn and emotions heighten. The innate, automatic responses are a perceived threat. And we experience fight, flight or freeze - the human body’s protective reactions to avoid further confrontation.
If not interrupted, these responses erode trust, communication and the possibility of human connection. And the spiral continues downward. We retreat into our echo chambers, and avoid confrontation with our work colleagues.
If you want to disrupt the pattern, and make challenging conversations easeful, here’s how SpiralMethod works.
When it comes to today's emotionally charged conversations we are in danger of becoming more and more divided, misunderstood and disconnected.
We live in a world where everyone wants their voices and opinions heard, and with all of the online mediums available, it's easier than ever to share your thoughts with the world.
But who is really listening? What power do these words have if they aren't actually heard?
In truth, the most powerful communication tool is not speaking, but listening, really listening. In today's world of nonstop noise, it's a skill that's becoming a rarity.
What happens when we don't listen to each other? We become disconnected. We misunderstand each other, become suspicious, and mistrustful.
When we fail to listen, we stop engaging with ideas outside of our personal beliefs. We lack empathy, and simply dismiss ideas that are not our own.
If we are to have effective and important emotionally charged conversations, we must engage in...
In the discussion and exploration of societal concerns, it may feel at times that it’s impossible to communicate with others, especially when it comes to hot button issues where the recipient has a different view from your own.
Words, expressions or underlying emotions that come out during these highly charged conversations can cause a subconscious trigger, that more often than not, causes a knee-jerk reaction to defend, to prove that your side is right, and to “educate” the other on why that is.
That trigger reaction can show up as bantering, bullying, and dismissiveness. All of these can shut down the conversation and leave people feeling silenced and/or unsafe about further engagement.
We all possess these unconscious obstacles to engagement and trust in a group environment. There is a natural fear of speaking up because of the reaction that may follow.
How do we move past this?
In today’s post, we will explore some basic components...
It has been a heavy past couple of weeks here in the United States with all of the emotions that came with witnessing the death of George Floyd, an African American whose life was taken by a white man in a position of power.
As the video of his death went viral across the Internet, it triggered a strong response that brought to light the racial tension and systemic power issues that are still very much built into the fabric of America.
People responded with peaceful and not so peaceful protests and a stirring of racial conversations that came with some heated exchanges on social media.
If there’s one thing to come from these conversations, it’s that we can’t keep saying we agree to disagree on the subject of racism in America.
The truth is, the United States was built because of Black people and the ownership of slaves. It’s part of our history. It’s literally built into who we are as a...
I have been an ally and advocate for marginalized groups since my teens, but I’ve hit walls as I’ve attempted to increase awareness in others. I let myself get stopped, learning to tread lightly on the topic.
I’ve allowed my voice to be stifled and all together shut down by the resistance from other white folks to take an honest look at our society on this topic in particular.
I have so much to say on the topic, but don’t want to add more noise.
My simple message to white people, all of us, is to GET EDUCATED. Lift your eyes and increase your awareness. And don’t ask People of Color to do the heavy lifting for you. There are tons of resources for you.
We are responsible for changing our thinking, shifting the norms, transforming our institutions and valuing all human life (not the marginalized groups).
One of the best resources I’ve come across is Dr. Robin DiAngelo's work. Here is a short and potent video clip to get started.
Last Spring I...
What do a Sex Coach and a Preschool Administrator have in common?
You might be surprised to find out that in times like these...quite a bit!
We chatted with Victor Warring, a Somatic Sex & Relationship Coach and Liz Napp, a Program Administrator at Sunflower Farm, last week and we wanted to share our powerful discussion with you.
We hope you find this roundtable around social norms, consent, and boundaries as enlightening and inspiring as we did.
And if you've watched our conversation and feel inspired to take ACTION, here are a few next steps SpiralMethod can offer:
And you can also...
In the midst of social distancing, are you feeling disconnected?
Are you leading a group (from your family, to your business) that you know could flow more smoothly...but aren't sure how?
As the SpiralMethod team grows, and during such extreme circumstances in the world, we are leaning in to these questions and our desire for genuine connection more than ever.
We decided to record a mini SpiralMethod event of our team together on Zoom, because we thought it would be helpful for you to see what a session looks like and how simple it is to connect more deeply, even in a short period of time.
I’m wondering if you are feeling like you or your groups are floating out there a bit? And would you like to get your groups connected AND serve others?
I am talking with people all day every day, and those people are connected to a lot of other people and people. From what I’m hearing there are two groups right now. Some that are pretty calm, and a larger group, about 60%, are not doing so well. Ranging from not wanting to get out of bed, working way too much, overwhelmed between work and kids, not having a schedule, fear or even terror….and a longing to be able to hug and congregate with each other again.
All, or at least most, of our normal structures for social interaction and communing have disappeared.
Most of us are starting to come to terms with the fact that a whole new way of socializing is upon us, and it’s probably going to last a lot longer than we’d thought or would like....
The past week was rough
I have felt grief larger than my own
A physiological response of fear for the virus (like holding my breath at the store)
A fear of what if we don’t actually change from this disruption
A relief that the “normal” way of life has stopped
A deep trust of the perfection of it all
An excitement that this is the disruption many of us have been waiting for
An intense pressure to move quickly to share the tools I have with the world
A prompt for curiosity
Is this pressure simply my own trauma response?
the one where leading helps one deal with the disruption
Or the one where we want to save people as part of our own reaction to trauma
Or keeping busy to avoid the discomfort of the collapse, the ambiguity, the stillness
(I know all of these intimately from numerous past traumas where these were my primary responses)
Or even wondering if I’m trying to leverage this opportunity to make money
Clarity this weekend