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HEART – Hush, Empathise, Attend, Reflect and Trust

Tomorrow UVI-PULSE presents another Webinar in the monthly series.  This one is about listening … actively.  It is about the state of being we need to have as human beings to involve ourselves in listening to others.  It is not about just showing up and being within earshot.  Listening with HEART is much, much more. It is about deliberately setting yourself the task of truly understanding the other persons position.  It asks you to understand their physical, mental, emotional, relational and spiritual well being.

HEART stands for Hush, Empathise, Attend, Reflect and Trust.  It is a neural address for a set of skills that demonstrate and strengthen Compassion.  HEART is about caring about the other person, about honouring them as a following human being with their own unique perspective on the world.  There is no judgement in this kind of listening.  Its purpose is to get over to the other person’s side and have a look at the world from there,  It is about creating understanding but not necessarily agreement.

Hush. Stop doing what ever you are doing.  Stop the chatter in your brain. Stop moving.  Stop talking.  Stop judging.  Stop editing the story.  Just stop.  Listen to what is being said NOW.  Watch what is happening NOW.  Turn off your own stuff.  Suspend what ever is going on for you so that you can feel and experience the other person’s world. Hush.

Empathise.  Imagine how it is to be in that person’s world.  Step in.  It is pretty much impossible for you to really completely understand how it is for them but if you can begin to see how or why they are thinking, talking and behaving the way they are that is a good first step.  Feel what they are feeling if you can. Sense the state they are in and emulate it as much as you can. Empathise.

Attend.  Listen with both ears.  Sit up straight.  Watch with both eyes.  Attend to the facial expressions, the body language, the tone and pace, the changes in intensity, the pauses and the words.  Put all of your attention with that person. Learn how it is for them.  Attend.

Reflect.  Let the emotional state that you see and experience reflect in your own face and body without saying anything.  This allows the speaker to continue to speak.  It also encourages expression of the emotional reality they are experiencing.  If your reflection is not true for them, they will adjust their communication to explain more clearly what is true for them until they get the right reflection back. Reflect.

Trust.  Everyone is doing the best they can with what they know.  We are social beings searching for connection with each other.  We want to believe in something bigger than ourselves.  We believe what we believe because of our own experiences.  We act the way we do because of our beliefs, expectations, assumptions, concerns and hopes.  All of this is informed by what we know to be true.  AND we can change what we know.  Trust.

Listening with HEART looks like any other kind of listening.  It is the deliberateness and purposefulness of it that makes the difference.  Put your HEART into it and listening will improve, conversations will improve and relationships will improve.

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Tomorrow I Head Back Home- an update from UVI-PULSE

My stay at UVI this month has been enlightening for me.  I have had great opportunities to connect with people and to assess the role I will be playing here over the next few years.  I have had time to consider my own growth potential here and to examine how I can contribute in this environment.  

Although I have spent time here in the past, I realize now that I have been more of a tourist  … a guest invited to provide a service or some entertainment and then return from wence I had come.  Now I am looking to become part of the family. Now I have to find my own way around campus, do my own cooking and cleaning and fulfill the duties assigned to me.  I am expected to win support and influence people who are unfamiliar with the program.  It can be challenging.

That’s a good thing.  Although I was a little disappointed when some classes had to be canceled here, I am encouraged by the fact that we have regrouped and reorganized the learning experiences to better meet the needs of the local and international community served by UVI.  With great feedback from those who could not make it and our African Friends I believe we have come up with a plan that will bring us future success as we work to have Virgin Islanders “Check your PULSE.” (T-shirts to follow).

The month started out with challenges to overcome as power and internet connections wreaked havoc with our broadcast of the POWER webinar.  Ironic?  And later connections with UVI ST Croix created an echo on the radio program that went live and was recorded.  I had a chance to outline our UVI-PULSE plan of action and to give examples of the kinds of skills that could make a difference for people and their relationships here on the Islands.  It should be availabe on the ILOE.UVI.EDU website sometime soon.

With those issues behind us and an MOU with PULSE Africa and my friend Austin Gamey in place, we are well on our way to contributing in a meaningful way to  this “Historically American, Uniquely Caribbean, Globally Interactive” University.  Watch for news of exciting courses and an upcoming UVI-PULSE Conference planned for May 2016.  The plans include tours of St Thomas along with some Island Hospitality as well as guest speakers.  All PULSE Professionals and Practitioners will be invited to attend.

We are on our way….

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From UVI to Ghana and Back.

I am still in the Virgin Islands, on St Thomas. It is beautiful here. I have had lots of opportunity to meet new people and work with them on settin gup UVI-PULSE. I have also been graced with the presence of my dear friend and colleague Austin Gamey who is visitng with his wife Gladys from Ghana. I have known him for a long time and he continues to influence my life decisions.

I remember vividly a conversation with Austin where he advice me in a very strong way not to continue in politics. I remember how determined he was to desuade me from a life where people “eat you up and spit you out” as he so vivdly put it. I took his advice then and I continue to rely on him as he and I meet with UVI staff to fashion the future of PULSE.

Austin has done very well in Ghana and in other parts of Africa as he uses PULSE as the platform for his courses and his consultancy work. He is a fan of all things PULSE and he walks the PULSE talk in a way that makes me very proud. His latest advice to me is to work with the leadership research I have done using portraiture and of course he is among those who are anxious to see the new book.

I am very grateful to have him here. He tells me that VI is very much like Africa. I guess I will be able to tell you about it when I go there in the spring to work with Austin’s graduates from the Gamey and Gamey ADR Masters program. A new adventure for me and one I am honoured to take.

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The important work that women do with women …

I have spent the last two weeks with different groups of brave people doing important work on St Thomas and on St Croix. These people work everyday to help others have a better life and they are all anxious to have more skills to deal with the situations they find themselves in.  I continue to be impressed with them and the work they do.  They just want to help.  Sometimes the people they are dealing with don’t want to be helped or don’t know how to accept the help that is offered to them.  Other times deserving people get caught up in the bureaucracy and there is nothing that can be done to help.

These front line women KNOW what needs to happen to change things for everyone.  They know how to make everyone in society productive and contributing members.  They have seen where things go wrong and they understand how government money could actually be used to improve the lot of enough people to stop the cycles.  They don’t give up even though they have seen generations of families visit their agencies and yet they roll up their sleeves and help again. Experience has taught them what works to help people regain a footing and start again but no one asks them. And when they do have a chance to say a few words to politicians or other decision makers, it always seems that the budget has different priorities.  Funding gets cut but the number of people in need grows because money is being spent on the wrong things. And around we go.

I admire these tireless women who fight the unending battle and I am happy to do my very small part.  I know they are not alone.  There are goddess warriors like these in every community around the world.  They do what they can.  They understand the patterns, the ebb and flow of life in a way that it may be impossible for men to understand.  Deny it if you want to but for me I see that there is a women’s way of knowing.  As a species we would be wise to pay greater attention to  that wisdom and use it to inform our decisions about our future on this planet.

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I am back in the UVI…. ENCORE

It doesn’t have the same ring as Back in the USSR.  But then again I am not the Beatles.

I am sitting and looking out at clear blue waters and clear blue skies.  I can’t really do that at home.  Here in the USVI there seems to be a party gong on.  At lunch today, at a restaurant in a hotel I have stayed at many times, there were lots of people and live music at the beach bar.  I have honestly never seen as many people at that place as I did today.  It might have something to do with the big cruise ship that crossed in front of my window as I was doing the webinar this morning.

Speaking of the webinar, there were some power issues and some internet issues near the beginning even though my computer was hard wired into the network.  As a result, the flustered me forgot to reset the record button and the whole event went live with no recording.  Not everyone who signed up was there and we know that many people rely on the recording to get the information at a time that works for them. SOOOO we are going to redo the webinar on Friday at 10;00 am EST and press record for sure this time.

If you missed the webinar, no worries.  I am doing a do-over. And it is still free.

It is on POWER Listening.  POWER represents a set of magic tools that help you listen deliberately and with purpose.  Paraphrase, Open Question, WAIT, Empathize and Reframe. Using these five simple tools will help you win friends and influence people …guaranteed.

Hope you can join us ….

PS.  This blog is coming from the newer  www.drnancylove.com site.  If you follow me on Linked in and or Facebook  or Twitter could you just let me know that you got it.  Thanks

I will attempt to upload a picture from the office where I am working.  It may or may not work….

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UVI PULSE webinars, UVI-PULSE
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The POWER of PULSE: Deep Listening Continued (4 of 4)

Paraphrase, Open Questions, WAIT, Empathize and Reframe can be used in the order they are presented here to great effect.  When you are first learning to use them it might be the best way to begin.  They can also be used in different combinations and permutations for specific situations.  If for instance you want to know more about what you have heard, you could use POW.  Paraphrase what you know so far. Ask and Open question about it and then Wait.  If you have been surprised by what you have heard you might Wait, ask an Open question and then Wait again. WOW!.  If you want to establish your own credibility and appear professional in your approach you might use PRO.  First Paraphrase what you know so far and then Reframe to the positive and ask a follow up Open question.  If you want to cut through rough waters you might add Wait to you PRO to get PROW like the prow of a ship.

If you detect an emergency of some kind in the conversation, then using the tools for Empathizing and Reframing can revitalize the conversation and stabilize its condition, like a trip to the ER.  If you are back in the fast waters and need to travel up stream you might ROW.  Reframe to generate energy, ask and Open question to get the participants on side and Wait, using silence to power the journey.  If you feel that a do over is what is called for then you could use a Reframe followed by Empathizing to Restart.  I you want to delve deeper into the past then use WERE. Wait, Empathize, Reframe and then Empathize again.  If you want to find out more about the present situation then use PRE.  Paraphrase what you have heard, Reframe to the positive AND Empathize the changing emotional state.  When things don’t smell very good you can use PEW.  Paraphrase, Empathize and then Wait for the air to clear.

I could go on but by now you can probably see what I mean.  The POWER set of tools has interchangeable parts.  They can be rearranged to meet the situation at hand.  You can even use it in reverse when necessary.  Reframing, Empathizing, Waiting, Open Questions, and Paraphrasing for clarity or as a summary at or near the end of a conversation.

The POWER of PULSE is in the listening.  The HEART of PULSE is also in listening.  It is an integral part of the skill and the process that makes PULSE conversations work.  HEART is the neural address for another set of tools: Hush, Empathise, Attend, Reflect and Trust.  More on those in another ebook.

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POWER of PULSE: Deep Listening Continued ( 3 of 4 )

Next door to Open Questions you will find a store called WAIT.

The store name is in capitals.  It is also a reminder. “Why am I talking?” is a question you can ask yourself to remember that when you are using the POWER set of tools the conversation is not about you. WAIT is a gift of silence.  People process information at different speeds.  Give them time to think through what they want to say next.  Let THEM fill the silence.  They may be working up the courage to really say what they are thinking.  There may be a really valuable piece of information on the tip of their tongue and if you speak you may chase that thought away and change the course of the conversation.  Give them the opportunity to gather and consider, to search, sort and select what to say next.  Especially in difficult circumstance it is important not to fill the gap created by the silence but to leave it open for them.  They will surprise you.

In our culture WAIT seems counter intuitive.  Sometimes it is the most difficult tool to learn to use. It is so simple and so effective that I am confident you will come to love it and the results it produces.  Alone it has the power to transform relationships.  Just listening and learn.  Listen deeply for what is missing for the others person, for what motivates them.  Listen beyond the words to the unspoken thoughts and a perception of the situation that you may not have yet considered.  Sit in silence and hold the space for them so that they feel safe and confident enough to share the “good stuff”, the ideas or thoughts that have yet to hit the open air, that have yet to be said out loud, that may change everything. WAITing gives you the gift of deeper understanding that will power they rest of the journey.

The next store is the Empathize store.  Here you will find phrases like “You feel strongly about this.” And “This has been difficult for you.”  The tools here serve a specific purpose.  They are meant to help you get a handle on the level of emotion that is being generated and to harness it.  Naming the level of emotion transfers the power of that emotion from them to you for storage and or disposal.  It seems like magic when it happens.  You sense the wind coming out of their sails.  You feel the air going out of their emotional balloon.  There is such a sense of relief and release you can almost watch them relax before your eyes. And all you have to do is turn this gentle tool a notch to allow for all of that energy to dissipate.  Just notice that there is energy in their language. It is that simple.

In the Empathize store you will not find a shelf called “Stories like yours that happened to me and how I felt about it.”  It is not about you.  The tools that are sold here are focused on the speaker.  Listening for how they feel and being able to express what you’re noticing in a non-judgmental way is key. “I noticed that you use the word ‘extreme’ more than once. This experience had some emotion in it for you.”  Just notice.  Don’t judge.  Providing a space for them to be noticed will allow them to say more.  You are now panning for gold, mining for further sources of energy to take with you on the journey.

Next to Empathize, at the other end of the mall is a store called Reframe.  It holds some very important tools that will allow you to shift a person’s perspective on the world.  The framing tools are fun to work with but they do take practice to master.  It would seem like putting a new frame on an old picture would be an easy DIY project but with mitered corners and the use of reflective materials like glass it can become complicated quickly.  It is not any easy tool to use effectively. The store offers courses so that you can learn how to take a negative and turn it into a positive in five easy steps.  When you watch the experts use the tool you are often amazed at their dexterity.  They do make it look easy. That comes with practice and with knowing more about the Nine BEACHs that people come from and how to name those effectively.  (More on the BEACHS to come.)

Although Reframe is a power tool that takes energy to learn and to use effectively, it also generates power to sustain itself. The energy released in the chemical switch from negative to positive can be harnessed and it is often substantial.  You are giving the gift of seeing things in a new way.  A phrase like “You are always coming in late.” Or “You never take my feelings into consideration” can stop a conversation cold. If the reply is a reframe such as “Punctuality is important to you” or “Inclusion and consideration are what you are looking for” can ease the tension and change things from a negative charge to a positive opportunity to learn more about each other in a deeper more meaningful way. There is subtle use of tone and colour here, an artistic side to reframing that cannot always be detected. It requires listening with purpose, a kind of finesse and appreciation for what is being said and what it reveals so that you honour the artist with the frame you choose. That positive frame fuels the journey.

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The POWER of PULSE: Deep Listening Continued (2 of 4)

No matter how well you know a person you simply cannot read their mind.  When you attempt to do that you are actually making assumptions about that person which may or may not be true.  Clarifying assumptions is what the POWER tool box was created to do.  It is made up of five elements, each a power tool in its own right.  Individually they can help you deal with any circumstance AND as a set they provide sustainable energy for conversations, relationships and organizations.

POWER stands for Paraphrase, Open Questions, Wait, Empathize, Reframe.  Think of it as an address in your brain where you keep the concept of deep listening.  It is just a way to remember how these ideas all fit together to provide a fuel source for our journey through life. I imagine a strip mall in a neighbourhood with five stores and a big solar panel on the roof.

The Paraphrase store offers ways to prove that you were actually listening to the person.  In there you can learn to give evidence of your listening by repeating back what you have heard.  Sometimes you use their words.  Sometimes you can use other words or provide a summary of what was said.  The idea is to let them hear what you thought you heard so that they can correct any misinterpretations or provide missing pieces of information for clarity.

What you won’t find in the Paraphrase store is any editing or opinions or self-referencing stories.  You know the kind of stories that begin with “That happened to me and I said ……”  There is no judgement or sarcasm to be found.  It is pure evidence of what was said in a non-judgmental, objective way.  There is no advice. “I would do this.” Or no “SHOULDING” that might sound like “You should just leave.”  There is only honouring the speaker with the gift of their own words back to them in a way that demonstrates an understanding of what was said, evidence that the person was actually hearing what was being conveyed.

On its own Paraphrase is a powerful tool to have with you when you are in any conversation.  It can help you avoid all the ‘mises’ eg. Misunderstanding, misinterpretation, miscommunication, misconstruing and all the rest. A Paraphrase gives the person a chance to hear what they said.  It is like a verbal reflection, a look in a sound mirror that allows them to check if what they said was really what they intended to convey.  It is a gift of opportunity to clarify and relieve that someone has finally heard and understood them.  We all have a voice.  We all want to be heard so when someone actually hears you and proves it you will definitely feel better.

Next door to Paraphrase is a shop called Open Questions.  Here you will find many gadgets to aid you in your deep listening project. Who, What, Where, Why, When, How are the most popular.  Using these question words at the beginning of any inquiry allows the speaker to frame their answer from what THEY know and not from what YOU think you know.  Closed questions relate to YOUR thinking on the subject.  Open Questions give you a glimpse into THEIR thinking on the subject. “Did you walk to the gas station to get gas after you rain out on the highway?” is closed. “What happened next?” is open.  Your version of the story is evident in your question.  You have made assumptions when you ask a closed question.  If you want to test an assumption you have made why not use an open question and here the real story from them?

Using Open Questions takes practice.  It seems we are programmed to ask questions from our own perspective and they can be used effectively but an open question produces more power to fuel the conversation.  You get deeper and broader information that allows you to change your own perspective and version of things.  It is fascinating what you can learn with a simple “What happened next?” or “How did that make you feel?” or “What thoughts were running through your mind at that time?”  You can strategically place the focus on the speaker and let them tell you THEIR story to deepen your understanding of their situation and their way of being in the world.  You can identify where they are coming from, what set of beliefs, expectations, assumptions, concerns and hopes they hold.  Knowing more about the person makes the rest of the journey easier to map and understand.

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The POWER of PULSE: Deep Listening (1of 4)

What follows are thoughts I have gathered to inform the UVI webinar scheduled for next week.  September 8th at 10:00 EST.  It has been divided into four sections and will be made available as an ebook to those who attend the webinar.  You can register for the webinar at http://www.uvi.edu/administration/president/initiatives/ILOE/pulse/events.aspx

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.

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SHIFT – Nancy’s Big Adventure

In less than 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.

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