Week 2: Course Outline
Ground Rules / Logistics / Confidentiality – Checking In. :: WHY we’re here.
- (3 min) Welcome … Who we are … Bless you for coming back!
Check-in: Name, City, What brought you back this week?
And what is one thing you would like to change in your life. (2 min)
Leaders model check-in
- Confidentiality – What I say here is confidential. Outside this circle, I will not share another man’s words, actions, or identity. I will only speak of my own experience and personal insights. Assume that there are mandated reporters in attendance who have a legal responsibility to report cases of abuse or potential abuse.
- Punctuality – The group will begin on time and end on time. If I arrive late, I will not interrupt the flow of the group.
- Ethical Relationships – This is not a business group. No solicitations.
- Non-Violence – Violence can be physical, verbal, emotional, or spiritual. I acknowledge that my words and actions have an impact on those around me. I take responsibility for my words and actions.
- No Drugs or Alcohol – I will not attend the group while under the influence of alcohol or recreational drugs. If I break this agreement I will tell the group and accept the choice of the group in handling this to create a safe space for the men present.
- Participation – I will speak openly and truthfully in “I” statements (not “you” or “he” statements). Any man may pass at any time. Any man may STOP a process (especially in the service of maintaining safety). I am not here to give advice. If I want advice, I will ask for it specifically. I will ask permission before offering feedback. I am responsible for taking care of myself. If I need something, I will ask for it. If I have questions, I will ask
Review the Playlist from Week 1
- Shame / Vulnerability
- Hero’s Journey
Power of Conscious Communication
- Intention: There is no growth without effective communication. How we communicate ‘outside’ is often the same as how we communicate ‘inside,’ learning to communicate more effectively and fully lifts us, and lifts everyone around us.
Leaders set the context for a night on conscious communication. Learning to listen and hold space.
- Leaders share and model I-Statements
- Listening Levels
- LEVEL 0 – Elsewhere – Barely listening, merely waiting to speak oneself.
- LEVEL 1 – Self-centered – Listening, but through a filter of one’s own feelings, judgments and charges.
- LEVEL 2 – Curious – Unattached and empathetic; “over there” in a place of curiosity.
- LEVEL 3 – Engaged – Attentive to non-verbal communication (tone, body language, etc.) and tuned into intuition.
- LEVEL 4 – Impactful – Hearing what’s behind and underneath the communication in a way that creates new possibilities for the speaker.
- Empathic Communication:
- Focus on gaining a deeper understanding – ‘tell me more’
- Focus on 1C – Curiosity, while avoiding the 3Cs – Convincing, Convicting, Converting.
- Avoid … Soapboxing, Interrupting, Giving Advice, Planning how to make them Wrong and you Right.
- Reflecting – Verifying what you heard and bottom lining your understanding
- Self-Management: The ability of the listener to become invisible in the service of holding space for the brother. This means putting aside all opinions, preferences, judgments and beliefs in order to reflect and support the man’s need to be heard.
- Powerful Questions: What and How instead of WHY. Ask questions that are open ended in focused on learning more and uncovering deeper meaning.
Basics of Emotion/Feelings
Intention: Expanding our emotional literacy.
Emotions play out in the theater of the body.
Feelings play out in the theater of the mind. ~Dr. Sarah McKay
- Guilt / Shame
Leaders share about feelings and how they serve us.
What are you feeling?
- 1 min body scan to identify feelings.
- Leaders model checking in with feelings.
- Avoiding minimizing words – self-diminishing
- Practice communication skills by doing a round.
the Mask Exercise
Intention: Make the internal external.
- What is it that you put on the outside?
- What do you have on the inside / hidden?
- What is the mask that you’ve worn to cover losses, beliefs, self-judgements … and are you willing to set it down …
- If you’d like to have your mask shared in the room … go to the chat list and choose 1 man to share your inside and outside words with – then that man will share your words into the room.
Q & A (10 minutes)
Go to someone you care about and ask them what they have been trying to tell you that you’ve been unwilling to hear?
Suggested Readings & Resources
- Readings on Shadow / Resistance
- A Little Book on the Human Shadow – Robert Bly
- Selection: Chapter 1: The Long Bag
- Owning Your Own Shadow, Robert Johnson
- War of Art – Steven Pressfield
- Selection: Introduction and Book 1
- A Little Book on the Human Shadow – Robert Bly
- Podcasts / Audio – Supplemental Resources
- Steven Pressfield – Art of Manliness Podcast – Overcoming Resistance
- Steven Pressfield – James Altucher Podcast – Go from Amateur to Pro
- For Conscious Communication – Supplemental Resources
- The 4 Agreements – Don Miguel Ruiz
- “Not Crazy Yet? Then … Start Talking to Yourself … Differently. Green Language” Drama Free Communication – John Tompkins, MFT
- Effective Allyship: A Transgender Take on Intersectionality: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3EcuDfDjUd8
What insight or learning are you taking away?
Practice getting into gratitude and blessing.
Week 2 Resources:
Facebook Private Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/themenswork/
Week 2 Practices:
Act your way into a new way of being for men. We expect that this is going to be a struggle … notice it without reacting to it.
TAKE ON ONE. Make a commitment.
- 5 minute sit … every day
- 5 minute journal … every day
- What am I noticing? What is present?
- 1 min cold shower … every day