Re: Sharing Meetings
From: Mac Thomson (macheartwoodcohousing.com)
Date: Thu, 5 Feb 2009 05:33:24 -0800 (PST)
Our Meetings of the Hearts are held every 4th Monday evening. Our Process & Communication team is responsible for them, which means they provide a host and possibly a topic, although most of the time it's an open topic meeting. The host simply welcomes everyone to the circle, introduces the topic if there is one, and reminds folks of the ground rules. The ground rules are that we use a talking piece (you pick it up off the table and hold it when you want a turn to talk) and that anyone can request that they do or don't want feedback on what they have to share and whether they want their sharing to be confidential (not talked about with anyone that wasn't in the circle).

Our stated purpose of our Hearts Meetings is: To provide an opportunity for open sharing of values and feelings and for the community to work on interpersonal relations and group process thereby creating a greater level of tolerance, respect, empathy, and understanding amongst members, all of which will help reduce potential conflicts.

It's basically an opportunity for us to share on an emotional level so we can know others and be known by them and connect at a deeper level -- to build stronger relationships. And then when the the inevitable challenges and conflicts arise, we'll hopefully be in a much better place to resolve them because of the closeness we share.

That's the theory. In reality, it happens to some degree, but our Hearts Meetings usually only attract between 5 and 15 people, whereas our Community (Business) Meetings usually attract between 10 and 35 people. Sometimes the Hearts Meetings are a time of deep emotional sharing and sometimes they are just sort of chatty.

We also have Sharing Circles, which are meetings that are NOT regularly scheduled. Anyone can call a Sharing Circle for any reason to share feelings around a topic. Those maybe happen once or twice a year.

Cheers,
Mac

--
Mac Thomson

Heartwood Cohousing
Southwest Colorado
http://www.heartwoodcohousing.com


"Laughter is the Sun that drives Winter from the human face."
                      - Victor Hugo
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On Feb 5, 2009, Sharon Villines wrote:

We call ours the Meeting of the Hearts.

I would be interested in knowing more about this.


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