When dialogue works, new knowledge emerges…
Dialogue helps to guide a group into an aligned way of thinking together. It is a special form of group conversation that facilitates open and honest sharing of thinking, by the free exchange, without an agenda. In dialogue, everyone can experience everyone else’s point of view fully and equally. There is a set of easily learned skills that help to deepen insight and grow understanding and trust to generate new knowledge and possible solutions, both individually and collectively.
As a facilitator with over 10 years experience, my current focus is autism, neurodiversity and inclusion, cross-cultural development, creativity, healing and healthcare. I work with:
- healthcare professionals
- autistic adults and young people
- therapists, educators, researchers
- families and support networks
- school, FE & HE students & staff
- business & organisations
All you need is time, a quiet room with chairs and the people. I can also help you find a suitable venue in your area.
The word dialogue is made from the Greek words dia, meaning across or between and legein, meaning to speak. In this way we can see words and meaning flowing across and between our ever-changing perceptions of our selves.
‘Bohm Dialogue’ (the root-method we use) is named after quantum physicist David Bohm, who developed a primary technique of group dialogue, along with Peter Garrett and Donald Factor in the 1980’s. Bohm was inspired by the way Native-American Indian communities regularly come together simply to be with each other and ‘say what needs to be said’, in order to maintain community strengths. Peter Garrett went on to develop dialogue and along with Jane Ball, in the 1990’s, set up Dialogue Associates, Prison Dialogue and the International Academy of Professional Dialogue.
Dialogue techniques have evolved and emerged and are in use globally, in all aspects of society, it’s used extensively in all sectors at all levels. Experience has shown this radical method of non-judgemental group communication to be extremely beneficial for the consciousness, cohesion and development and change of organisations and communities and their members.
How to ‘do dialogue’.
Participants sit on chairs in a facilitated circle, there are no obligations except listening and no equipment is required. There is a set of easily learned and empirically-derived skills that help us think together.
A dialogue has no predefined purpose and no agenda, other than that of inquiring into the movement of thought, and exploring the process of ‘thinking together’ collectively, while suspending one’s assumptions and building on each other’s ideas, instead of challenging them. This activity can allow group participants to examine their preconceptions and prejudices, as well as to explore the more general movement of thought.
Dialogue is not debate, nor is it therapy, but it may have qualities of both, depending on who is there and what is spoken. A session can typically be set at between ninety minutes and four hours and a series of meetings is required.
If all you can do is crawl, start crawling.
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