Self-organised support groups for compulsive world changers
Self-organised sensemaking — regular meeting process
Finding your way in life is tough. Feeling like you’re alone is really tough. Working out how to respond to a planetary crisis is super tough, so don’t try this alone.
From a young age I was drawn to the plight of endangered species and rapidly disappearing wilderness. I was disturbed and confused by what people were doing to creatures and nature and I felt lost and confused about what to do about it. Add the feeling that the whole humanity project could be ended by nuclear bombs and you’re probably starting to feel overwhelmed too.
I disengaged, and it wasn’t until I was 21 that a seed of a response started to emerge for me.
I had just completed a 21 day Outward Bound course. An immersive taster of personal development and group process in the stunning natural setting of the Marlborough Sounds in New Zealand. If I had been challenged and I had thrived, just maybe, I thought, I could help other people to have transformative experiences in nature, and more people might also value nature and help protect it.
This experience set me off on the first of many inquiry-driven adventures. With a big question comes a compulsion — a thirst for knowledge and skills, fellow navigators and impact. Having a goal or reference point is important, but I think any given objective matters less than having a good process. Because it’s through the process or journey that I acquire the skills and knowledge to succeed, including the ability to shift focus as I learn and grow.
Solidarity pods are a response to working on stuff that matters but feeling isolated. Trying to work on stuff that matters but feeling alone is a common experience for many compulsive world changers. It’s not just nature that’s been destroyed by modern society. Our sense of ourselves as interconnected — with each other, and with the natural world, suffers too.
If you’re feeling stuck you can bet there’s a few other people somewhere in a similar situation. Looking back, the time I have invested thinking and reflecting with small groups of peers has been incredibly worthwhile.
Find some solidarity, make new friends, build community, tap into your interconnected intelligence and follow the path that emerges.
- Keep it flexible, you may not be able to commit as much as you had hoped, that’s life, be where you feel you need to be and be generous to yourself
- Get to know each other outside the regular meeting, have lunch together, hang out, build friendships
- Share roles and responsibilities, keep it fresh, support each other
- Stop and reflect, the purpose of the solidarity pod is to tap into the shared wisdom of the group and catalyse change — the context will change. Run for a defined period then reflect and rethink. When the world changes so must our solidarity pod.
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