Charles Starrett

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Culture consultant & social tech teacher/facilitator at SoulCo & Northeastern University. He/Him. Dad, Harvard and NEC alum, visual thinker, dabbler in ukulele, electronic music, 한국어, and TTRPGs.

Inner space

How can you tell when a space is held well with a group of people?

You can tell by the feeling of safety in being able to speak up when something wants to be said, and by the trust that you feel that your silent listening is also contributing.

You can tell by the way ownership of ideas gets lost and by the shift in focus away from saying clever things or trying to “add value,” and towards asking questions out of genuine curiosity and making observations without an agenda or even knowing why you’re saying it.

You can tell by the sense that each contribution is landing in the center like a piece of clay added to a growing ball, and by experiencing how the individual pieces meld into a whole which is being sculpted by the group.

And after the space has closed you know it was held well when the urge to talk about what happened is eclipsed by a drive to act on the insights that came out of the space.

The world has many challenges that feel overwhelming and too big to tackle. A good place to start is in creating more spaces that are held well to create insight and inspiration to action. One community at a time.

3 August 2022

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