Supporting and Cherishing Each Other

Diane Shisk's goal for our recent teachers' and leaders' workshop was to show us how she leads and thinks about things. She did just that and more. This workshop was different in some ways from other workshops. We had mandatory "topic/discharge" groups at 7:00 am both Saturday and Sunday mornings. Saturday's was on "Eliminating Racism," and Sunday's was on "Classism." Despite the early hour, most everyone agreed that it was a good idea. The topic groups on Saturday afternoon were designed to teach how to do or teach specific parts of theory. There were four of us at the workshop from Shreveport, and we each chose a different topic group to attend. Beginning with this newsletter we will each share what we learned at those topic groups.

One key piece of theory that Diane talked about and wove into almost every class was the need for leaders to be committed to each other and the project of RC. We need other people around us for many reasons -- to keep us from getting lost in our isolation, to keep us from getting too confused or off track, to come after us when we hit hard places, and, very importantly, because the big, significant changes that we want to see take place can't be done by people working alone. She stressed the importance of getting close to people and being really connected. It's not enough just to inspire or teach, we'll need to learn to contradict people's isolation and help each other show and feel our caring for each other. Our caring is the most powerful tool we have against much of the junk we've heard. Mistrust is the biggest thing that gets in our way of the close connections we want and need. We need to discharge on the areas where we don't trust each other (especially leaders). People don't have to be perfect or free of errors before we trust them. Just think of all the people we trust with our lives every day -- other drivers, pilots, complete strangers. Mistrust is a distress recording and can be discharged.

Sunday morning's class was a real treat. Diane talked about how she built her Region from just a handful of Co-Counselors when she only had two years of experience herself. She offered Austin as a model of a strong Co-Counseling Community and a resource for growing Communities. The RCers there model a correct attitude about Co-Counseling and leadership. Leaders are treated well in Austin, supported and cherished. She encouraged us to use the leaders there as resource, but to remember that the work has to happen with the people at home around us.

I particularly enjoyed hearing about and watching her work on leaders supporting and cherishing each other. It's so clear that we'll accomplish much more and be much stronger as Communities and as leaders when we can move whatever holds us back there.

Linda Grayson
Shreveport, Louisiana, USA
reprinted from RC Exchange, the Shreveport RC newsletter

Last modified: 2015-07-21 09:42:27-07