FACILITATE: PARTICIPATORY DIALOGUE
Convening spaces for meaningful exchange that inspire constructive interaction and human flourishing
Dialogue is the primary means through which we collaborate and make sense of our world. By exchanging thoughts and sharing experiences, we come to know others better and we also come to know ourselves better.
Dialogue gives us the opportunity to give voice to what's most meaningful to us, have it be heard and truly understood by others, and effectively coordinate our actions. But as much as we contribute to a dialogue, it also unfolds before us in mysterious ways with twists, turns, and possibilities that we could never have anticipated before we began. In this way dialogue can take on a life of its own, skillfully holding multiple perspectives, feelings, interpretations, even the most paradoxical ones. In my experience it is through the ensuing contrasts that fresh solutions to complex problems are born.
Consider, too, that dialogue can reflect more than just words. Virtually any exchange might become a dialogue with the right attention and intention - walking alone through nature, performing a raucous piece of music, gazing upon a museum painting, sketching the view out a window, playing a game of racquetball, or taking a few quick side-steps to avoid colliding with strangers at a busy airport terminal.
I facilitate participatory dialogue processes that draw upon past, present and future perspectives to help people understand the issues they are facing, make sense of what they are learning, frame inquiries around what they still need to discover, and construct meaning around their shared experiences. I utilize intermodal approaches that help participants access and engage multiple intelligences and ways of knowing while harvesting outcomes. One of these approaches is expressive arts inquiry, an excellent way to reawaken creativity.
Participatory dialogue processes can be used to facilitate meaningful conversations and generate new perspectives within organizations, communities, and professional conferences.
"Every dialogue is a journey. Conversing, we begin, a few words at a time. Where will this thought lead? How will that observation deepen? in thought, we do not - we cannot - stand still. When we are thinking freely and frankly, we move. Especially when we are thinking together. Then that miracle of miracles occurs. We change our minds. We learn to see differently. Actively sharing thought with another person, we reach a place we could not