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Conversations are at the heart of an organization. Conversation creates connection. Connection creates results.
- Peter Block
Based on 40+ years of facilitating meetings I can confidently make three assertions:
  1. Face-to-face meetings are expensive investments of time, human resources and political capital.
  2. The most important determinant of a productive work session is the quality of the thinking that goes into the planning and preparation.
  3. The next most critical element is the way you open a meeting, the way you create the container to create safety, connection and spaciousness.

Here are three strategies to create these conditions along with some practical tools and hard-won wisdom:


1. Create hospitable space.

When you invite others to invest their time and attention, you are, in effect, hosting a set of deliberations. The role of the host is to invite the right people, provide the essential materials, prepare the space, and make “guests” feel welcome.


2. Provide context.

The convener should open the meeting by orienting participants to the work at hand:

  • Who is in the room and why?
  • What are the results we are committed to achieving and why do they matter?
  • What are the behaviors and mindsets that will serve our purpose?

(My colleague, Danny Ceballos, has put together a great set of ground rules.)


3. Bring everyone’s voice into the room early on.

Build in 5-10 minutes for some form of check-in, right sizing it for the length of the session. Here are a few prompts to inspire your own choices:

  • How are you doing and what do you need in order to be fully present?
  • What’s been the high point of your week so far?
  • Share one word that describes your state of mind/feeling.
  • What is the (valuable) perspective you bring to this work?
One caveat: make sure that the questions surface information relevant and useful to the collective work.

  • As I begin a home practice, I clear a space, physical and mental. I put out flowers, clear away the clutter, remember why I practice, summon kindness and patience. I put out the props I will need. I turn off my phone.
  • When I attend a class, I try to arrive a few minutes early to gather my props, to set out my mat, and do a little stretching and internal check-in. When class begins, I am ready.
  • When I teach, I prepare the space. I welcome each student. I encourage them to let go of competition, comparison, striving. I try to make my instructions simple and clear and to include the benefits of the pose and its relationship to other poses. I remind them that we are here to cultivate physical intelligence, to find joy and ease in movement.
P.S. I appreciate connecting with you and your responses and feedback are always welcome. If you would like to receive these emails at a different address, you can update your email preferences down below.

Yoga is an avenue to connect with your body, emotions, and spirit. But where do you start? Whether you're brand new to the practice or re-connecting after a break, this three-session series is perfect for building the fundamentals that will form your yogic foundation. Join me on Tuesday evenings, November 6, 13, and 20, 6:00-7:30p. Space is limited.
Sign up here.


WINTER - Feb 2, 2019, 1-4p in Albany
Join us for a deeply renewing and energizing workshop that explores the introspective, contracting energy of winter. Anchoring guided discussion and individual reflection with embodied practice, we will listen in to what is calling us in the new year. What needs to be released or confronted? Strengthed or reimagined? Sign up here.
SPRING - April 2019
Spring is a time of birth and new beginnings. The seeds we have planted with our intention and attention have developed roots and are moving upward. What is needed to break through to the surface? With meditation, dialogue, and yoga movement, we will cultivate the openness, flexibility, and steadiness required to realize new possibilities.


I am currently offering private classes in three-session blocks.

If you are interested in individual or small group instruction, please click here for more information and contact me here.

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