Recently, I facilitated a StrengthsFinder workshop with less than 24 hours notice, stepping in for a sick colleague. Because there was no time to jump on a plane, the 16 participants gathered in a room in San Diego and I was teleconferenced into the room from Santa Fe.
I worked with a wonderful support facilitator, Rachel, who was in the room in San Diego. She was also an amazing conferencing engineer.
Our strengths couldn’t have been more complimentary. All of her top 5 strengths are tasks strengths – executing and strategic thinking strengths. My top 5 are all people strengths – relationship building and influencing.
We had several huge tech problems in our run-through and Rachel got us through every one with ease and humor. So many things were out of my control – very little time to prepare, rescheduling work that I had planned for that day, all the various ways technology misbehaves and the list goes on . . .
I could feel myself trying to control my feelings, “Don’t get upset. Don’t worry. Be positive.” Internally, I could hear myself trying to control my behavior, “Smile more. Keep pushing through. Rearrange your schedule this particular way. Trust.”
In a moment of grace and insight, I let it all go. I recognized that I had this wonderful opportunity to introduce 16 people to their own strengths. This is one of my greatest joys. I became present to the purpose of what we were doing and let the details work themselves out.
I saw how often my need to control actually keeps me from being present and enjoying life. Somehow this awareness helped me relax.
Ahhh, to boldly put your little face to the sun, not
2 inches off the ground in the middle of a hiking trail!
That’s being willing to relax without needing to control . . .
From my new relaxed energy, all my work easily rescheduled. Rachel worked out all the bugs in the run-through and the technical aspects of the actual workshop went smoothly.
I have facilitated both teleconferences and in-person workshops. This was my first experience of the hybrid of teleconference and in-person. I never did figure out how to “get into the room” more. I definitely felt a barrier between me up there on the big monitor and all of them in the room.
I wanted less of a barrier so that they could get more from the workshop. There I was trying to control again . . . So once again, I let it go. I held a clear intention that they would receive huge value, I did all I could do toward that end and I let the rest go.
When I drop needing to control, it creates a wonderful spaciousness. I could then be present with them (even if I was 850 miles away) and work my magic.
I would love your thoughts and experiences.
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