Cohering Community - Creating Capacity to Thrive Together | elevatework.ca
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Cohering Community

Creating Capacity to Thrive Together

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Are You Also Longing for Connection & Community?

Connection and community are at the heart of being fully human. At our core, we are relational, caring creatures. Deep down, we all have:

  • A longing for belonging.
  • A longing to love and be loved.
  • A longing to feel truly seen and heard.
  • A longing to feel safe and supported in a world we can trust.
  • A longing for our lives to have meaning, purpose and impact.

In these times of increasing fragmentation and distrust, many are feeling lost, unsafe, isolated, lonely, betrayed, and without meaning and hope. At times, the fulfillment of our deepest longings can feel far beyond our reach.

Could we be and do better together?

  • Together, could we regenerate the heart of being human?
  • Together, could we better fulfill the longings of our hearts and soul?
  • Together, could we make a greater difference than we each can do alone?

Are you hearing a call to come together for the good of all?

Community - The power of belonging

Coming Together For The Good Of All

Together, we can co-create a new human story energized by possibilities rather than problems. In conscious, connected community, we can expand our capacities to fulfill the longings of our individual and collective soul. We can expand our capacity to trust.

You are invited to join us in a circle-based learning lab to personally experience and practice core conversations that are foundational to building and sustaining coherent, vibrant, trust-based community. This journey will expand your relational and communication capacities, give you a felt sense of belonging, support and hope, and inspire you to participate in reweaving our social fabric through grassroots communities that act for the good of all. In togetherness, we thrive!

Possibilities of Community

Join us in a live 'Taster'

to experience the possibilities!

You are invited to register for an upcoming free online Cohering Community 'Taster' session that will provide a meaningful, participatory experience of connection, conversation and community building.

At the end of the session, you will be invited to join us in co-creating a grassroots movement for change aimed at fulfilling our deeper longings and building the capacity to thrive together. We'll also answer any questions you have about the Cohering Community program to help you decide if it is right for you, your colleagues/friends or team/group. 

NOTE: More 'Taster' Dates Coming Soon!

Cohering Community
*Taste the Possibilities*

July 30th, 12 to 2pm (EDT)

Cohering Community

Cohering Community
*Taste the Possibilities*

August 22nd, 12 to 2pm (EDT)

Cohering Community

Cohering Community Program

Alternative Streams of Experience

The Cohering Community program is a deep, multi-week experiential journey we take together. In this program, you will learn about and experience the power of 'circle practice', inquiry, and open dialogue as foundational building blocks for healthy community. You will strengthen your individual and group capacity to thrive with change!

In this program we are offering three 'streams' of experience and commitment. While all participants learn and experience this program at the core individual level, you can upgrade your experience and depth of learning by simultaneously taking the leadership development part of the program. Ideally, if you are part of an existing group or team, we recommend bringing your whole team into the program!

Compare & Choose a Stream

Individual Stream

The Core Experience

Learn about & practice core conversations

Experience the power of circle and inquiry

Experience deep connection & belonging

Individual Stream Details
 
Purpose of this stream
 
Who is this for?
 
What you'll experience
 
What you'll receive
 
What you are committing to
 
What happens afterwards?
 
What is your investment?

Leadership Stream

The Deepest Learning

The Individual Stream PLUS:

Build capacity to LEAD CIRCLES

Participate in the Leaders Circle

Leadership Stream Details
 
Purpose of this stream?
 
Who is this for?
 
What you'll experience
 
What you'll receive
 
What you are committing to
 
What happens afterwards?
 
What is your investment?

Group Stream

The Greatest Value

Bring YOUR GROUP into the experience!

Includes: 8-14 team members

Includes: 2 seats in the Leader's Stream

Group Stream Details
 
Purpose of this stream
 
Who is this for?
 
What you'll experience
 
What you'll receive
 
What you are committing to
 
What happens afterwards?
 
What is your investment?

More About

Cohering Community

Coherence Through Conversation

Peter Block is a master in community building. In his book, Community, he outlines six core community-building conversations that invite people into deeper, more authentic connection, laying the groundwork for healthier, transformative community.

Using these Block and other core conversations, combined with other community building practices, we will set out on our own journey of forming a community of trust while we explore the possibilities of including these practices into our lives and our work for the world.

 
What are the conversations?
 
Benefits of 'circle practices'
 
Our Shared Agreements

Testimonials about Cohering Community

  • "It's difficult to put into words the richness of the experience I gained from participating in Cohering Community. The sessions were well prepared, gracious, generous, and above all with a loving presence throughout.

    The group could not have been more perfect. Each individual was deep, thoughtful, authentic, willing and open to trust the process. This created an environment of incredible possibility, enriching each one of us in a very personal way.

    We laughed, we cried, we had profound insights...we were uplifted and inspired to be our best selves. We were heard, we were seen...we learned to trust our inner knowing. We celebrated and marveled at the respect and love we could feel for virtual strangers brought together by one man's desire to reach out and make the world a more humane and embracing place.

    I'm grateful I followed the nudge in my heart that led me to Richard and I'm grateful for the bounty of beautiful souls I've met as a result."

    With love and gratitude, Marguerite

  • The programme helped me connect quite deeply with what is important for me and what carries significant meaning for me. It was also a great opportunity for me to meet and network with empathetic, compassionate, and very capable and accomplished people who are deeply interested in personal and social healing and change.

    Richard is an extremely thoughtful and sensitive host and a remarkable bridge builder, who makes the space safe for all concerned, and at the same time is not afraid of engaging in difficult conversations.


    Salman Ahmad

    Associated Faculty member at Copenhagen Business School

    and the University of Copenhagen.

  • From the bottom of my heart, thank you!
    Attending Cohering Community sessions has been a transformative experience for me. It's hard to put into words just how wonderful it feels to be part of such an incredible community. The facilitators led us through a series of sessions that took us on a journey unlike any other. Together, we delved deep into our minds and hearts, forging connections and resonances that felt profound and meaningful.
    What struck me the most was the genuine sense of trust and camaraderie that permeated every interaction. In this space, we weren't just attendees; we were fellow travelers, supporting each other on our individual paths towards growth and self-discovery and finding genuine connection towards shared intention, purpose, and longing. It's rare to find a community where you can truly let your guard down and be vulnerable, but Cohering Community provided exactly that.
    I am immensely grateful for the opportunity to have been a part of this experience, and I wholeheartedly recommend it to anyone seeking a deeper connection with themselves and others. Thank you, Richard and Lisa, for creating such a special place for us to learn, grow, and thrive together.
    Christine Samuel

Meet Your Hosts

Lisa Persson - Sweden

Lisa Persson - Sweden

My passion in this life is life; in all its shapes and forms. From a young age I felt curious and fascinated by connections and relations, whether it be within myself, with others or nature. I was very drawn to the possibilities that reside within each and every one of us, in particular when coming together, when we allow and invite the possibilities. Through this interest and by combining two of my favourite things, sports and behavioral science, I started training within Sport Psychology. This was a ´great venture and a wonderful learning journey. Later, these studies were transferred into the field of Organizational Psychology.

Now, this passion has brought me in the direction of deep transformation and sustained change, where I practice as a deep transformational coach. Still, my calling is pulling me towards the endless possibilities emerging when being and experiencing our togetherness – here is where I love to spend my time!

‘Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field. I’ll meet you there’ (Rumi).

Richard has been doing sgadow integration for over 15 years

Richard Schultz - Canada

I am passionate about working with organizations and community to expand their capacities for authentic connection, leadership, collaboration and innovation. I especially love facilitating Open Space Technology meetings. I’ve had the pleasure of facilitating several peace conferences for Rotarians, co-founded the PeaceLeaders Collaborative and facilitated Greater Moncton, Canada becoming an International City of Peace. On a regular basis, I host open, online Leadership Dialogues and Peace Cafés using the Bohm Dialogue method.

I resonate with Gandhi’s statement, “Be the change that you wish to see in the world.” For the last 20+ years, I have studied, taught and worked with hundreds of individuals to elevate their lives from the inside -> out by changing limiting beliefs, forgiveness, releasing trauma, and integrating shadow. I especially love doing “Shadow integration work.” 'Shadow,' often birthed in trauma, is at the core of most limiting behaviours and largely responsible for the polarization we are experiencing in our world today.

Cohering Community

Partners & Collaborators

David Currie - For The Good of All Now

David Currie is the author of For the Good of All, NOW! a guide for embracing connection, oneness, and community. He draws on skills and experience, acquired over 40 years in both for-profit and non-profit sectors.  All the while pursuing his core beliefs in the power of community to restore its position as the primary source for the co-generation of the values that sustain a compassionate humanity and promote the good of all.

David is a member of the Prosocial Commons and a steward of the For the Good of All, NOW! group.  A commons organized purposefully as a gathering place for all who seek a coherent replicable path to successfully navigate through the coming major evolutionary transition. David resides in Binghamton, USA.

Cohering Community

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For the Good of All Now

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A truly safe group environment provides the basis for powerful transformation, empowering exploration, inspired collaboration and vibrant living. We co-create this space by the way we participate. Here are some ways you can help in co-creating a shared, held, safe space for connection and contemplation.

The primary underlying principle of these agreements is acceptance. Accept that everyone is doing their best to learn and grow, by respecting and following these standards. Self-acceptance is particularly beneficial to experience a safe, empowering environment to learn, create, communicate and celebrate.

In signing up for a Cohering Community experience, I agree to practice these standards to the best of my ability:

1. It is my intention to maintain confidentiality. 

  • What I see and hear that is personal or specific to another within the group will stay here.
  • When sharing the essence of someone else's story, without the names and specific details, I agree to share in an honoring manner that celebrates the original person’s magnificence.

2. It is my intention to have an open and innocent mind and heart.

  • I release evaluating or comparing what I am learning.
  • I allow myself to “try on” and wear the information for a while, as it stands.

3. It is my intention to practice a positive focus.

  • I focus on what is working and what is magnificent.
  • I fill my tank with the power of positivity.
  • What I perceive in others I strengthen in myself.
  • What I focus on expands.

4. It is my intention to connect at a heart level.

  • I practice opening my heart to the essence of what is being conveyed.
  • I release the need to evaluate and judge, at least for now, in the moment.

5. It is my intention to claim my experience as my own.

  • I speak in “I” statements so I can claim my own experience.
  • I release telling others what they should do, feel, believe, or act.

6. It is my intention to listen deeply and with honor.

  • I am 100% engaged and my positive attention is on the person sharing.
  • I release anticipating what the person is going to share.
  • I re-spect, and look again with new eyes.
  • I look for the gifts being shared – their courage, authenticity, brilliance, etc.
  • I allow the person sharing to indicate that he or she is complete.

7. It is my intention to give authentic acknowledgment and support.

  • I am authentic while giving feedback.
  • I keep it simple and speak to the essence of what I experienced.
  • I maintain heart contact with the person to whom I am giving support.
  • I allow a session to stand on its own, and I release the need to compare.
  • I notice when I want to give unsolicited advice, criticism, counseling or consulting, and then release it without sharing it!

8. It is my intention to fully receive acknowledgment and support.

  • I am open to receiving acknowledgment – as the gift it is – and let it sink in.
  • I maintain heart contact with the person acknowledging me.

9. It is my intention to practice self-care and self-responsibility, and allow others to do the same.

  • I maintain a safe space for myself. I take care of and honor the wisdom of my body, heart, mind, and source of inspiration, allowing them to guide me.
  • When something feels like a judgment or advice, I can simply ask within, that it be reframed.
  • When I have a judgment, I say “Thank you for sharing,” to that voice within me, and I choose a more resourceful thought and focus.

10. It is my intention to be fully present.

  • I maintain these agreements in and out of the learning space.
  • I am here on time to start live group sessions.
  • I come to sessions rested and in a resourceful state.

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In this program, you will experience many conversations designed to deepen our coherence and connection with ourselves and others. These core conversations include 6 tried and proven conversations from Peter Block's book, "Community - The Structure of Belonging".

People become powerful when they choose to shift the context within which they act in the world. Communities are human systems given form by conversations that build relatedness. The conversations that build relatedness most often occur through associational life, where people show up by choice.

Each of these conversations will be experienced through inquiry with powerful questions. The power is in the inquiry, not the answers. The Peter Block conversations that are included in the program are:

  • The Invitation Conversation
    "Invitation is the means through which hospitality is created. Invitation counters the conventional belief that change requires a mandate or persuasion. Invitation honors the importance of choice, the necessary condition for accountability." - Peter Block
  • The Possibility Conversation
    The distinction is between possibility and problem-solving. Possibility is a future beyond our reach. The possibility conversation works on us and evolves from a discussion of personal crossroads. It takes the form of a declaration, best made publicly.
  • The Ownership Conversation
    It asks people to act as if they are creating what exists in the world. The distinction is between ownership and blame.
  • The Dissent Conversation
    The dissent conversation creates an opening for commitment. When dissent is expressed, just listen. Don't solve it, defend against it, or explain anything. The primary distinction is between dissent and lip service. A second distinction is between dissent and denial, rebellion, or resignation.
  • The Commitment Conversation
    The commitment conversation is a promise with no expectation of return. Commitment is distinguished from barter. The enemy of commitment is lip service, not dissent or opposition.
    The commitments that count the most are ones made to peers and other citizens/members. We have to explicitly provide support for members/citizens to declare that there is no promise they are willing to make at this time. Refusal to promise does not cost us our membership or seat at the table. We only lose our seat when we do not honor our word.
  • The Gifts Conversation
    The leadership and citizen/member task is to bring the gifts of those on the margin into the center. The distinction is between gifts and deficiencies or needs. We are not defined by deficiencies or what is missing. We are defined by our gifts and what is present. We choose our destiny when we have the courage to acknowledge our own gifts and choose to bring them into the world. A gift is not a gift until it is offered.
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In the Cohering Community circle-based practices, participants can develop a range of powerful skills and capacities, including:

  • Active Listening: Participants learn to listen attentively to others without interrupting, judging, or formulating responses prematurely. Active listening promotes understanding, empathy, and respectful communication within the group.
  • Empathy and Compassion: Engaging in group circle practices encourages individuals to understand and empathize with the perspectives, experiences, and emotions of others. Developing empathy and compassion fosters deeper connections and promotes a sense of belonging within the group.
  • Effective Communication: Participants practice expressing their thoughts, feelings, and needs in a clear, honest, and respectful manner. Effective communication skills such as speaking assertively, asking open-ended questions, and giving constructive feedback are essential for productive dialogue within groups.
  • Conflict Resolution: Group circle practices provide a safe and supportive space for addressing conflicts and disagreements constructively. Participants learn to navigate conflicts through active listening, empathy, and collaborative problem-solving, leading to mutually satisfactory resolutions.
  • Building Trust and Connection: By sharing personal experiences, thoughts, and feelings within the group, participants develop trust and deepen connections with one another. Building trust is essential for creating a supportive and cohesive group environment.
  • Reflective Practice: Group circle practices often incorporate opportunities for reflection and self-awareness. Participants are encouraged to explore their own thoughts, feelings, and behaviors, leading to greater self-understanding and personal growth.
  • Facilitation Skills: Individuals who facilitate group circle practices develop skills in guiding discussions, managing group dynamics, and creating a safe and inclusive space for all participants. Effective facilitation promotes meaningful engagement and ensures that everyone's voice is heard.
  • Cultural Competence and Diversity Awareness: Engaging in group circle practices allows participants to explore diverse perspectives, experiences, and cultural backgrounds. Developing cultural competence and diversity awareness fosters inclusivity, respect, and appreciation for differences within the group.
  • Collaboration and Teamwork: Group circle practices emphasize the importance of collaboration and teamwork in achieving common goals and objectives. Participants learn to work together, support one another, and leverage collective strengths to address challenges and create positive change.
  • Mindfulness and Presence: Engaging in group circle practices involves cultivating mindfulness and present-moment awareness. Participants learn to be fully present, attentive, and nonjudgmental, enhancing their ability to connect with others and engage authentically in the group process.

Overall, our group circle practices offer a valuable opportunity for you to develop interpersonal skills, emotional intelligence, and relational capacities that are essential for building healthy, resilient communities and organizations.