Cheryl Melody Baskin, Author of "Shift of Heart."
The Art of Human Connection
I recently taught a "Peace Begins with You and Me" workshop for adults in the Chicago area, and it was a deeply gratifying experience. The participants were open, honest and had a fervent desire to raise their own consciousness, and we fed each other's souls.
I was curious about why the directors and teachers chose this particular type of workshop. Many adults mentioned that as they help the children with their difficult lives...they themselves need to refuel, recharge and reflect on how to bring more peace into their own being, into their families and beyond. They were searching for more inner growth tools for themselves and for their curriculum.
Through this group sharing, everyone inspired everyone, we all felt less alone and isolated...and each of us grew more deeply motivated to fill our own "peace begins with me" cup. Over the three hours, the workshop was filled with smiles, laughter, hugs, tears, sharing, singing, rapping, storytelling, learning, deep connection, and lots of respect, hope and love...and strangers became friends and one heartbeat.
We brainstormed specific words, actions and thoughts that could elevate or wound a human being. Our own consciousness was heightened. Children don't understand when we say "just use your words." We need to role model and teach children to hear the sounds of specific words that uplift, embrace respect, patient listening, caring, cooperation and love. Bullying, false rumors, gossiping, teasing and back stabbing will be less prevalent the more we can role model and teach the power of positive non-verbal and verbal communication.
On a parallel reflective note, I see a world of people that are looking down at their i-phones when they are with someone, taking part in fleeting conversation and eye contact. I also observe children playing games on their computer as they sit there with their families...no one talking, no one interacting.
People are forgetting HOW to connect. There is so much looking down at our i-phones and i-pads, and not enough looking up and into the beautiful beings that walk our planet. I love technology, but it feels as if we are losing our way.
I want to encourage all of us to remember the need each of us has for heart-centered connection, warm eye contact, personalization, kind words and actions, tolerance, non-judgment, smiles and hugs with friends and strangers. Together we can continue to create a world filled with love, respect and kindness.
After the last newsletter on effective communication, I myself received a beautiful note of connection, reflection, kind action and honesty...and Barbara's outreach to me helped me want to continue to grow, learn and share my heart and perceptions. Let's keep "paying it forward."
When I receive your messages a colorful image runs through my mind of someone sending a carefully crafted, colorfully organized, and beautifully relevant message out into the universe and waiting until its pieces drift back through the atmosphere to earth where pieces fall upon the shoulders, hearts and minds of those of us who must need the message at a given point in time. I just caught one! Thank you for your reminder on communication...this has been a year of change and trial for so many folks, that after months of coping skills, their reserves are dry and good communication between folks enters the worn areas of impatience and fatigue. Your message brings the lesson of listening beyond the words spoken to an understanding of the speaker. When we rush to listen, we often lose both the words and the speaker. Thank you again.--Barbara