By Melissa Ford
Which do you prefer - face to face or Facebook? We might fool ourselves, but social media connects us only superficially to others. What provides real, meaningful connection is our live, in-person interactions. Are you missing deep connection with others in your life? Is life moving so darn fast that you don’t have time to think? If so, you might just need a little CIRCLE time in your life!
What is Circle?
For the past two years, River Forester, Susan Lucci has been facilitating a unique form of dialogue she calls Centering Circles. Sue’s goal is to engage people in a safe space where they have time to slow down, reflect on what matters, and dig into the big questions of life. It’s not like a support group (but it is a supportive atmosphere). It’s not a book group (but she does share inspiring readings). It’s not therapy (but many say it is therapeutic). According to Sue, of the 100 or so folks who have circled with her, many report how much they enjoy developing deeper bonds with others, becoming more aware, feeling empowered to act, and the benefits of taking time to pause, as a result of making time for Circle.
Here are some current Circles that might appeal to you:
Circles for Adults:
- Developing a Meditation/Mindfulness Practice
- Iron Butterflies: Women Transforming Themselves & Their World
- Awakening Activism
Circles for Middleschoolers:
- Making Transitions
- Friendship Tips & Tricks
- Activating their Voices
- Practicing Kindness
- Dealing with Worries
- Coping with their Changing Bodies
- Finding Comfort Zones
Many girls state that there is nowhere else in their lives that they can share at this level. As Lucci points out, “Their commitment says it all: rarely does one of my sixth graders miss a Circle (and these are busy, talented girls who have been circling together for two years now). Here are a few comments from them, when I asked them to comment on the best thing about Circle”:
* I love it because I forget about almost everything that happened that day.
* Getting to say what you wanted to say all week.
* It is a place where I meditate and come to relax!
* Not being afraid to talk, feeling safe.
* Here I know that I can share anything I want!
* It helped a lot when we wrote about ourselves because sometimes I forget who I am.
* I know this is a safe place to tell people who I really am. I hope this circle will help me learn to be a great person.
Finally, here’s input from parent, Karen West, who has two daughters in Circle: “My oldest daughter has been participating since Susan began this, and it has been WONDERFUL for her. I'm THRILLED because I think this is great for our girls. I just really love that my girls have a nice, safe place to talk.”
So, if you're craving more face time, let your next click be on www.2big4words.org, where you can explore Circle possibilities for yourself or your child. Recent studies show that those of us who spend more time in meaningful conversations are actually happier!
Come to Circle and put a smile on your face!
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