Circles of Trust


We have been co-creating a circle of trust. I have been moved by your courage to speak vulnerable truths. It feels like this is the only way to get where we want to go. There is powerful medicine in self-revelation. We heal when we are witnessed and held. We grow as we look into what is true about ourselves.

I am a fan of the Circle of Trust work that Parker Palmer has held at the Center for Courage and Renewal. The work is held together by a set of touchstones that I have now posted on the website. It will be good for you to read these before our calls.

Here are three of the touchstones that I find most helpful. They help to shape a different type of space:

No fixing, saving, advising or correcting each other. This is one of the hardest guidelines for those of us who like to “help.” But it is vital to welcoming the soul, to making space for the inner teacher.

Learn to respond to others with honest, open questions. Do not respond with counsel or corrections. Using honest, open questions helps us “hear each other into deeper speech.”

When the going gets rough, turn to wonder. Turn from reaction and judgment to wonder and compassionate inquiry. Ask yourself, “I wonder why they feel/think this way?” or “I wonder what my reaction teaches me about myself?” Set aside judgment to listen to others—and to yourself—more deeply.

What I like about these touchstones is that they take us out of a space of “knowing.” They are anchored by the belief that there is a deeper wisdom.

Our hope is to cultivate a space that opens up a collective intelligence among us. A mutual care that yields a deeper wisdom. The best way to be better together is to come together in better ways.

Thank you for your willingness. It is good to be in community with you. I am looking forward to our call next week.