Beyond the Basics in Europe

Hosting ourselves, each other, our work in the world

I was invited by some amazing European colleagues and had the privilege of co-hosting a 3 day intensive training with 95 leaders and change-makers from more than 17 European countries this July. As always, it is as much an opportunity for me to learn and meet amazing people as share some of my offerings.

Alongside great conversation, explorations of complexity, power, approaches to working on challenging, complex problems over the long term, we took a morning to dive into the crucial area of hosting ourselves in the form of working with our own stuck places, fears and patterns.

In order to be able to fully step into the challenges we are facing - both the large scale, deeply complex issues like transforming our financial system, or poverty, or racism...and the seemingly smaller but sometimes also challenging areas of how we collaborate and work through our differences in our teams, families and communities - we need rigorous and compassionate personal practice to allow us not just to move through the places we get triggered or stuck, but to actually fully engage the learning that is available at that threshold.

It is always a powerful experience to sit in a circle of our colleagues and make visible the often hidden territory of our own shadowed thinking, and to hear the patterns and shared places we get stuck. It is a first, valuable step in bringing these patterns to light where we can work with them - individually and collectively. Noticing the patterns of belief about our own value or our own capacity to show up and do the work (“I don’t have enough experience”); our judgements and assumptions about other people or groups of people (“They don’t get it” “They can’t be trusted”); our fears of what will happen (“it will fail” “I will lose my job” “people will get hurt”), and also the big fears that can immobilize us (“it is too late” “the problems are too big”.)

And it is not enough just to see and hear the beliefs and patterns that are holding us back. We need to engage deeply and skillfully with them so that we can learn what we need to learn for our own evolution, and to allow for the evolution of our work in the world to come from new ways of thinking.

Ongoing good work to be doing together. And a powerful, wonderful and engaging 3 days with our European colleagues and friends at Art of Hosting, Beyond the Basics Europe.