In advance of next week’s webinar on POWER listening I have been thinking. For the next couple of days I will share with you pieces of the ebook that is the result of that thinking.  Listening is essential.  Getting better at it takes skill and practice.  Let me share some ideas about the attitudes, skills and knowledge that could help you improve your listening ….

The POWER of PULSE: Deep Listening

Dr. Nancy Love

Listening is something we do every day.  It is what helps us find our way in the world.  It works with our other senses to help us interpret our world.  Even though listening is so essential to our well-being, we do not always do it well.  We are often told to pay attention, to listen.  We are reminded that it is possible to do two things at once as long as one of them isn’t listening.  Often we are hearing noises, background sounds that help us situate ourselves but we are not necessarily listening.  People may be telling us a story or asking us a question but we may be distracted, focused on something else and not near because we are not listening.  We may get bored and allow our mind to wander to our grocery list or our happy place.

Hearing and listening are different.  Listening is hearing with attention, even concentration.  When you listening with a purpose the act of listening becomes a deliberate attempt to understand the other person. Listening without distraction allows you to listen for the answer to a question or listen to the emotion of, in the case of someone offering an intervention, to listen on behalf of someone else to what is being said.

It becomes important to check your own listening skills.  Watch yourself listening and just notice the kinds of things that take you away from the listening.  Also notice how good it feels when you know that someone else has heard your concerns or your joy.  The purposes of deep listening using tools like the POWER set of tools include such things as listening for something new, to make a new friend, to find an answer, to get direction, to improve the quality of communication, conversations, and relationships.

People often ask me what makes PULSE work.  For me it is the whole Idea of honouring the other person by listening to them.  I like to move over into their world and see what’s going on there.  I know how important I feel when someone gives me a gift of time and attention and I am happy when I can pass that gift along.  As humans we have a deep desire to feel heard, to have evidence that someone else cares enough to hear our opinion, our perspective, our emotion.  It is really not necessary to have them agree.  It is only important that they hear and understand.  That feeling of being heard diffuses conflict and shifts people from fight, flight or freeze to release, relax and relate.  Sometimes it is all that is needed to resolve differences.

If you give someone the gift of appreciative and deliberate listening you will always be surprised by what comes back to you.  You will not only earn yourself a hearing with them but you will learn valuable information that may even change your perception of the situation and will definitely help you map a course through the conversation you are in.  Listening with your ears, with your eyes and with your body you will be gathering information that will increase the likelihood of reaching common ground with the other person.  Listen to understand. Listen for patterns, insights and deeper questions.  Listen for silence and what is it saying.  Listen for the space between the words.  Listen deeply and with HEART and with POWER.

In just one week I start my new adventure on the Island of St Thomas in the US Virgin Islands.  I am equal measures of excited and anxious.  I look forward to being there, being part of something larger than myself and I am anxious about leaving my very comfortable home and the way of life I have developed over the past few years.  I will be staying on campus at UVI and I anticipate a very steep learning curve over this first month of offering classes and moving the intellectual property of PULSE to its new owners.

Am I ready? My suitcases are packed.  I have my airline bookings and my accommodations are booked.  I have made arrangements to have my apartment looked after.  I have paid my bills and notified everyone who needs to know including my cell phone company.  I have sent the proofs for the manuals for the courses I will teach. I have American money in my wallet.  And I still have a week to say my goodbyes to family and friends and put the finishing touches on the packing and planning for a month in the beautiful Caribbean.

Am I really ready? On the SHIFT scales of well being that I ask others to use I would say that I am still getting ready for this adventure.  SHIFT deals with five scales of well being for a well rounded look at how a person is experiencing the world.  This seemed like a good time for me to take inventory. How Sharp, Happy, Independent, Fit and Trusting am I right now?

The S in SHIFT stands for a Sharp Mind. It measures intellectual well being.  Intellectually I still have work to do to get the clear purposes, protocols and processes in place for me to serve the participants I will face in the next few weeks.  I want to be totally prepared to further their understanding of PULSE and the Attitudes, Skills and Knowledge that PULSE, the Frame, represents.  I have acquired so much information and experience over the years that my mind literally races as I search, sort and select, wondering about what to share during each of the programs and when.  Timing is important for understanding and I know that there will be nine perspectives on the world watching me deliver the programs.  Doing a good job of meeting all of those needs is important to me and my intellectual prowess will be tested as I juggle what I know with what they need to know and when. Even though I know that most of that I will learn in the moment by listening and adjusting as needed, I still feel some panic in this regard.  I think I will need this week to think it all through again a couple of times.

The H in SHIFT is for a Happy Heart. It measures emotional well being.  Emotionally I am not quite ready to go.  I am leaving behind my father who is pretty mobile right now for an 85 year old but who I worry about all of the time. I am leaving my children and grandchildren who will all be very busy with September’s glorious beginnings of school and after school programs, new adventures of their own.  I am leaving behind my friends from curling ( and occasional golf) who may need to replace me more often this year as the adventure unfolds. I am leaving my dear friends that I spend time with in St Albert and at the Lake.  I have created a wonderful network of support here and I know they will be here when I get back but I have never been away for a month before … except when I was in Calgary for 15 years.  I’m sure I will miss them all.  I am also sure I can keep in touch and catch up with things upon my return.

I am also sure that I will meet new friends and be reacquainted with old ones on St Thomas.  The sun and the sea always improve my mood.  There will be lots of reasons to smile and to feel happy as I meet new students and work with them so that they become conflict competent.  I hope to visit my favourite place on earth … the Baths on Virgin Gorda … while I am away and that will feed my smile bank for a long time afterwards.  I will not be less happy while I am away.  I will be happy in a different way and for different reasons.  Nonetheless my happiness scale will fluctuate as it always does.

The I in SHIFT is for Independent Spirit. It measures relational well being and today for me is very closely related to the H – Happiness measure.  I am independent.  I am Oprah in my Talk Show life.  I take charge and make decisions with careful consideration and deliberate thought.  I can also be completely clueless, not willing to ask for or accept the help I need to move to the next step.  I have more alone time than I need right now.  Spending time with “coworkers” and workshop participants is something I have been craving for awhile.  I am really looking forward to working with others and spending time with people again, especially like-minded people with similar goals and aspirations.  At the same time I am cautious because I will be in a new environment where there is a different social contract already established.  I will need to have my wits about me.  I hope to create lasting friendships and collegial (double entendue intended) working relationships in the most mutually agreeable way while maintaining my sense of Independence and self control.

The F in SHIFT stands for Fit Body.  It is a measure of physical well being.  I am never really satisfied with my levels of physical fitness.  Maybe that is because it is something that requires daily attention and takes time away from my intellectual pursuits which I much prefer.  Am I ready physically for this adventure?  I think so.  I have packed the necessities … tooth brush and other  tools for physical hygiene.  Although I will miss my first few tap dancing classes, I did put in a pair of runners just in case a university campus has a fitness facility.  I say that facetiously hoping they don’t and knowing they do.  Any excuse for missing a work out that isn’t tap dancing or curling is worth hoping for in my world.  I am armed with Yoga videos to maintain my flexibility and will TRY to walk everyday and because I will have kitchen facilities I am PLANNING on eating well … not out every night.

The T in SHIFT is for Trusting Soul.  It is a measure of spiritual well being.  Am I ready for this adventure spiritually?  Yes.  Firmly yes.  All roads have lead to this adventure.  At times it does feel beyond my control, that the universe is unfolding and that this will be my legacy.  I am ready for that and willing to work as hard as I can to see that through.  This opportunity is a gift to me that I will not squander.  I am grateful for it.  I intend to work hard to revive the PULSE dream of a world full of people who know how to be gentle and honest with each other, people who can use the tools of mediation to create wonderful relationships, people who recognize each other as whole and complete, where people take the time to honour each other with deep listening and careful consideration of other peoples thoughts, words and deeds in context, where people care about what they say, how they say it and the impact of their words on others. That is my personal vision and mission and this is another vehicle for me to accomplish these things on a larger scale.

 

The adventure begins next week.  Stay tuned for updates.

 

UVI PULSE LOGO

 

Continue on your path to UVI-PULSE mediation certification and build valuable skills with these courses coming to the University of the Virgin Islands:

Understanding and Experience PULSE Techniques (Free online events)
Sep. 8 / Webinar: The POWER of Deep Listening
Oct. 14 / Webinar: Listening with HEART
Nov. 12 / Webinar: The PULSE Grid
Dec. 9 / Webinar: PULSE Ways of Knowing

Introduction to Conflict Mediation
Sep. 9-10 I St. Thomas Campus (St. Thomas)
Sep. 15-16 I Albert A. Sheen Campus (St. Croix)

SHIFT
Sep. 11 I St. Thomas Campus (St. Thomas)
Sep. 17 I Albert A. Sheen Campus (St. Croix)

PULSE Conversations for Change
Sep. 21-25 I St. Thomas Campus (St. Thomas)
Nov. 16-20 I Albert A. Sheen Campus (St. Croix)

Advanced Mediation
Nov. 4-10 I St. Thomas Campus (St. Thomas)

UVI-PULSE Professional Train-the-Trainer
Sep. 28-30 I St. Thomas Campus (St. Thomas)

I know that I have written about the relationship between time and space before but tonight, as I sit back in my apartment after a week away in Edinburgh and  an extended (30 hour) journey home, I am once again struck by the feeling of never having left.  Traveling is weird… and wonderful.  There is so much I enjoy about it and so much I tend to endure rather than savour.

It seems like yesterday that I was at the Royal Edinburgh Tattoo, at the spectacular Edinburgh Castle enjoying the precision of pipes and rums and dancers from around the world with thousands of other souls braving the wind and rain and the bitter chill of a Scottish evening.  When EVERYONE stood up, joined hands and sang Auld Lang Syne it was a sight to see and to etch into the memory banks.

It seems like yesterday that our tour van turned a corner and my eyes welled with tears at my first glimpse of the Old Course at St Andrews.  The medieval town with its impressive university seems a fitting backdrop to the birth place of golf.  St Andrews has always been there and I can only imagine how many duffers like me have been moved by the site of the place.

AND Doune Castle where Monty Python filmed The Holy Grail. So interesting and LOL funny. The visit took us back to the medieval times but also to 1975 when the silly, preposterous film was produced there.  The visit was just days ago, close in time yet so far away in kilometres from where I am right now.  And don’t even get me started on time zones and jet lag after 30 hours of travel through seven time zones. 

Now I am sitting at my dining room table remembering.  There are new images and sensations in my brain forever to be associated with Scotland. And I have a new appreciation for where I come from and why I am the way I am.  Scotland, like Nova Scotia, gives me the sensation of home, of fitting in, of feeling welcomed and appreciated for my sarcastic humour and my firm believe in democracy, the rights and responsibility of each individual in a well ordered and unique society of wonderful, fun loving human beings.

We didn’t get to Skye where Clan MacKinnon last held land but I always feel as if I have already been there.  The etheral beauty and the warm welcome in a cold climate are part of who I am as a Love, a Highlander, always willing to fight for a cause, never satisfied until the enemy is defeated.  The enemy for me has always been ignorance and the Scots were the first to wage that battle and fight that fight with introduction of mandatory schooling for young children and free university for its citizens and lending libraries before it was done anywhere else.  Education at an early age produced many unlikely scholars in Scotland.

Tomorrow I am back in the education saddle here in western Canada as I prepare for Wednesday’s free webinar sponsered by UVI PULSE at the University of the Virgin Islands’ Institute for Leadership and Organizational Effectiveness.  Here’s the link to register. 8 am Mountain and 10 am Eastern time on Wednesday the 12th.

http://www.uvi.edu/administration/president/initiatives/ILOE/pulse/events.aspx

Many of you will have already recieved an invitation to attend.  I am excited to be sharing the GHOST protocol “wi’ ye” and look forward to the opportunity. Now to bed … to dream of the banks of Loch Lomond.

I would like to thank those of you who attended yesterday’s webinar.  It was my first with UVI as a partner.  It was well attended and I think it went well.  I provided a review of PULSE the Frame and the Tetrahedron.  Here’s the link to the recording if you are interested ..PULSE 101 UVI PULSE.

There are so many people that have been following PULSE for a long time and many of those loyal PULSErs were present at the session yesterday.  A special thanks to all of you.

There were also new people attending.  For them the webinar was an introduction to a process that allows you to move with confidence into a difficult conversation.  I hope they got something out of it and that they want to learn more.  We are planning courses in the Virgin Islands for September and I am very excited to be back in that saddle … teaching and training trainers.

The Webinar is the first in a series.  The next on is on August 12th and you can register for it on the UVI Website.  The topic for the next one is GHOST, Gentle, Honest, Open, Specific Talk.  I will be talking about how this protocol sets the appreciative tone that make PULSE work.  There will be one webinar each month for the next year.

On Wednesday morning at 8:00 am Mountain I will be doing my first UVI-PULSE webinar.  I am really hoping you can join me.  The webinar is free and is the first in the series of monthly webinar I will be providing through the University.  If you can’t make it yourself please feel free to share the link with others.  Although I am confident there will be room for everyone, spaces are limited, so let me know if you intend to be there and I will make sure you have a spot.
For this webinar you just have to enter as a guest using the link below.  Future webinars will require you to register through UVI.
LINK:
UVI website for registration: 
For many of you this webinar will be a review of the PULSE Frame and its elements. For some it will be an introduction to the three dimensional nature of conversations.  I am hoping it will serve as an introduction to the thinking that is guiding my book on “Mapping the Space Between Us”.  I am hoping to give everyone a peek into the structure of the PULSE tetrahedron, not just the triangle, to show what makes it strong as well as simple.
It is my first opportunity to work with the UVI in this way, as a partner.  I am very excited by the possibilities ahead of us with this venture. I am also grateful for the support I have had from all of you until now and look forward to what else we can accomplish together.

 

http://pulseinstitute.adobeconnect.com/uvipulse1/

http://www.uvi.edu/administration/president/initiatives/ILOE/pulse/events.aspx

The University of the Virgin Islands’ Institute for Leadership and Organizational Effectiveness (UVI-ILOE) is pleased to announce its new program, UVI-PULSE. UVI-PULSE will offer proprietary, customized solutions while providing a variety of expert opportunities for individuals and organizations to (1) gain the courage to make change and the confidence to make a difference in their world, (2) identify goals and attain them, (3) improve the quality of every social encounter whether it be in a personal or professional setting, (4) create products to improve social exchanges and (5) provide learning exchanges, through face-to-face workshops and online training.

Join us for our free webinar on July 22, 2015