Monday, June 29, 2009

Guideline for Working with a Group's Stories - Part 4/5 of 9

4. Be authentic

Whether we are conscious of doing it or not we are constantly evaluating the authenticity of others. Whenever we detect even a hint of falseness or any other form of selfishness or negative intentions in someone we shut them out. Any hope of building a bridge constructed with mutual active listening is completely destroyed and most of the time there is very little chance of rebuilding it once we lose the trust of others. You might share an experience or two as a means of engendering credibility with a group. However, avoid telling stories for self-aggrandizement. It never achieves the kind of long lasting impacts of reflective, experiential learning that stories are perfectly suited for.

5. Make sure there is congruence between your stories and your behavior

We lessen the potential of our personal stories when our actions and stories do not correspond with each other. No one is asking you to be perfect. When leading a group we often need to accentuate ideals. If there is a blatant contradiction between stories we tell and how we act, we will ruin the climate of trust, openness, and reflection we have created by working with stories.

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Thank You!
Adding your stories and thoughts to this conversation is enriching for everyone.