How might we build a mutually supportive Empathy Trainers Association?
Co-Designing the International Empathy Trainers Association
Meeting 3: Wednesday, June 22th, 10 to 12:00 am (PST Pacific Time)
Transcript Page: we
will take notes here. http://j.mp/1sxS2ka
Kathy trying to take notes: people wanting to do something task-oriented work today, not just keeping introducing themselves. We agree to do short introductions while waiting for Edwin.
1. Write a short Introduction about yourself and Intentions for the Meeting.
Introduction: I’m director of the Center for Building a Culture of Empathy and founder of IETA. Been working on the empathy center for over 9 years. Would like to network with more empathy trainers and develop an online training MOOC.
A place for
I am Dr. Kathy McGuire a.k.a. Kathleen McGuire-Bouwman.
I have been teaching empathic listening and experiential focusing skills since 1970. You can find many free self-help instructions and articles and low-cost manuals and other media at my website for Creative Edge Focusing, www.cefocusing.com .
I see Rogers' empathic listening and Eugene Gendlin's experiential focusing ( a profound self-help method for teaching self -compassion and self- empathy) as core human skills as central as reading and writing and arithmetic.
I would like Listening/Focusing to be taught in schools at all levels. I would like every friend and lover and parent and teacher and helping professional and business person to have these tools ready in their skill set.
Although I am aware of empathy as a more cognitive skill, an "imagining oneself in the shoes of the other" (which I do many times all day long), I am most interested in the more "bodily-felt" experience of empathy which arises when people exchange Listening/Focusing peer counseling turns with another and/or in a group.
Through empathic listening, each comes to see the amazing uniqueness of the other person while at the same time experiencing that we are all over essentially human together. Often there is an experience of 'touching,' of inhabiting a shared Sacred space, which is mutual.
Out of this deep sharing comes what I will call "empathic bonding." This bonding becomes a natural basis for a community of care and compassion. People become moved to act toward each other through shared empathic connection.
It is this kind of empathic connection, whether between friends or family or lovers or parents and children or teachers or business colleagues, but especially as a way of overcoming perceived difference and conflict and building caring community, which is my passion and keeps me doing this work.
I got my PhD in clinical psychology at the University of Chicago in 1975, studying directly under Eugene Gendlin, the creator of Focusing.
Gendlin worked directly with Carl Rogers on a massive research project at state hospitals in Wisconsin testing the principles of client-centered therapy.
There he discovered the client variable needed for success, " direct reference to felt experiencing." He went on to develop Focusing (Bantam, 1981; www.focusing.org ), a preeminent method for teaching self-empathy as a major component for intrapsychic problem solving.
With a group of us graduate students, Gendlin and others started the first Changes Listening/Focusing Community in Chicago in 1971. I have been the "Johnny Appleseed" of such communities, writing about them and starting them wherever I go. You can find my manual Focusing in Community, as a $% download at www.cefocusing.com, in English and Spanish.
I would like EmpathyFocusing Circles, as I now call them, to be as common as 12 step groups in every city as a resource extending empathic listening and self-empathy focusing wherever needed.
What does an ideal IETA look like to you?
A loose association for mutual support and making a larger presence for empathy and self-empathy training in the world through our gathering together.
Keeping empathy and self-empathy together as two sides of the same coin.
Not a licensing or certification agency. Members to be licensed/certified by the governing bodies of their own associations, and potential clients instructed to check out these qualifications.
Community building for those who want it through e-discussion list, possible online video empathic listening based support/sharing group.
Collaborative projects for those wishing, such as one on getting empathy and self-empathy training into schools at all levels.
Perhaps some lobbying of government at every level to create an Office of Human Relationships and Empathy Training.
I have been introduced to NVC about 5 years ago and been going to courses since and trying to put learnings into action in daily life. I would like to have a bigger impact and maybe train or facilitate meetings for empathy trainings or gatherings
Intention: Learn more about the possibility and the resources and how others do give their know how about empathy forward. May how I can contribute in the organisation too.
What does an ideal IETA look like to you?
-a platform for and from trainers/facilitators in order to provide resources, ideas, empathy
-find other trainers near yourself in order to collaborate
Stephan Interviews Michael
What would ideal IETA look like for you?
Main role to establish a baseline understanding of what empathy is and how we can teach it and learn it. Hesitant about certifications, but interested in question of creating some kind of a standard, to recognize people who have developed a certain level of skills
(biggest personal gain from it?)
Establish more credibility in the empathy realm. Empathy a vague concept, and competing entitities trying to define it for their own purposes. Who are we, how do we measure this “empathy” we are talking about...IETA establish some kind of definition/measure/standard to strengthen our presence. CREDIBILITY comes from clarification, needs to build up every day and academic and scientific credibility.
Empathy should be a major profession!!!! Need to train lots and lots of empathy trainers as a profession. Biosphere, distributive economies, global internet, other issues -- empathy essential to our survival and needs to grow in all of these areas. INTERDISCIPLINARY necessary for survival
A shared vision… work collectively and collaboratively for it.
Michael interviews Salvador
(why IETA important for you?)
Place to meet people interested in empathy, not just therapy, but business, life issues, world in general. Share the programs we use to train, how evaluate, how to share resources, ways of training...wants to do it in Spanish!!! Share what the Spanish people are doing/writing
(apply the model we develop to develop a Spanish version?)
Maybe, but also speaking Spanish within THIS organization.
What can I share in the association? What can I give, as a way of knowing the RESOURCES we have as a community to contribute.
(how collect this info?) ...share website where we could post the trainings/programs/references in academic settings/curriculums...share what we already have…(and Kathy reminds, he wants to be able to do that in Spanish here somehow…)
(you love learning and teaching this empathy stuff and sharing about it) Yes. I have had opportunities to learn methods and also want to share what I have learned.
What is the biggest gain
Salvadore Interviews Kathy
S: What are the next steps for the ass.?
K: I want a task-oriented structure for our meetings. I want to have meetings and taking notes as notes are important. A one-day HCD workshop would be great.
Using the HCD to produce testable prototypes. Notes are raw-materials we can draw together.
I would be interested in workshops to come up with common definition of emp. Not so in favor or that - more tolerance for various empa.
Leary of certification organization
Certifications can happen outside. Standards are important but arguing can go on for ever
Diversity of empathy def. Should be allowed
Have different people offer different certifications. We could argue forever.
K: Would love to see a website for sharing, love to see collaborative project. Like teaching in school. USing resources for the best impact.
K: Keep a listing for financing website.
Kathy Interviews Raj
R: Embracing diversity is better than narrow def. Embracing diversity how people understand emp. Sometimes people confuse emp and think that too much emp is bad.
The asc. Is not a place for certification. It is place for professionals to collectively have a voice. Speakers can be found in that asc. To speak publicly.
It is about best practices. Looking at behavior and language and establishing best practices. No rules but practi
A place for credible established professional to collectively have a voice.
K. gives a reflection.
Is there more?
R. it’s about credibility, consistency, visibility. Not a flash in the pan but a way of life.
It’s an association that has associates.
Raj Interviews Sascha
(what is exciting for you in the world of empathy?)
...Family reasons made empathy important. Had to have empathy to help ill family members. Then living as a monk, people bringing such difficult problems...all I could do is offer empathic listening, not solutions. And always happy to receive empathy...then became a professional, write PHD thesis...had done lots of communication training. Works best when both parties are empathic...so, do thesis on that. Empathy as core of communication and co-existence….
(maybe you thought you were not doing enough, just listening, but I bet they felt heard…) Yes, crux experience of listening to someone’s pain about political persecution of his family...so important to hear, to share this experience.
(what next step?)
Bring people together. INTERNATIONAL. This is a human problem, different cultures have different views. We must pool all this information and resources to heal this situation INTERNATIONALLY.
(important! Different cultures, international integration and problem solving)...
I can help type. He was a monk and people would come to him to be heard and he enjoyed being heard. He has done a lot of communications training. Doing his thesis on empathy.
People felt heard, they told me sad stories. I heard kurdish stories, I felt their pain. Felt their pain.
Having an international association is very important, we have to have trainers from all around the world and be able to pool those.
Sasha Interviews Stephen
What would be your personal gain?
How can we do this together?
What is the next steps in a task oriented way?
What are your striving for empathy?
Kathy interview Edwin
K: next steps for IETA
E: I really tasks. Did set up the website and the meeting.
Have got all kinds of project in the works.
This a list of task in the work.
K: reflects back
E: Systemic empathy
Planned Meeting Outline