Creative Edge Focusing E-Newsletter

Instant "Ahah!"s #5:  Collaborative Decision Making 

Sharing Leadership and Impasse Resolution

 Dr. Kathy McGuire, Director                                Week Two 

Creative Edge Focusing E-Newsletter Weekly Support: Week Two
For four weeks, we practice one Instant "Ahah!" and various steps of the Intuitive Focusing process, such as Relaxation, Getting a Felt Sense, Clearing A Space, and a complete Focusing Session.

Our purpose:Helping you incorporate Listening and Focusing into your everyday life.

This month:

From Instant "Ahah!" Mini-Manual, p. 16, #5.Collaborative Decision Making
Later in the week, you will receive e-reminders to practice two other Focusing exercises.
E-Newsletter Archives Now Available!
Newcomers, you can start with any issue and, in a year, you will have practiced all the exercises. So, just join in here-and-now and follow along. However, if you want to experience previous e-newsletters, you can find them in Creative Edge Focusing E-Newsletter Archive.
To catch up with this four week cycle, you can read Instant "Ahah!" #5 Having Great Meetings! Collaborative Decision Making.
Anyone can also access the e-newsletter archives from the Free Resources submenu at Creative Edge Focusing.
From Dr. McGuire's article, "Collaborative Edge Decision Making":

"5. Shared Leadership Component at Decision Making Meetings

      Rather than depending upon the skill of a naturally talented chairperson, being held captive by the caprice of a bad one, or suffering from the chaos and anarchy of "the leaderless group," in the Collaborative Edge Decision Making method , the skill of leadership is broken down into a number of tasks which are then assigned to various group members. No one person carries the onus of staying on top of all aspects of the task, and all group members come to feel responsible for contributing to good group process.

     The five task roles can be rotated among group members from meeting to meeting, or, with group agreement, certain members can specialize in a particular task. In a more hierarchical setting, the supervisor or coordinator may take the role of agenda keeper each meeting. In a different group, a person too shy to be process monitor may be a very assertive time-keeper, and so on. However, in general, it is a good idea to keep rotating the roles in order to insure equality of ownership and responsibility.  As everyone shares the tasks involved in group leadership,  everyone will also take ownership of the group process and more actively participate in decision making.

6. Creative Edge Impasse Resolution Component

     According to the Creating At The Edge principles, the solutions to problems are implicit in the intuitive "feel of the whole thing," the Creative Edge. Similarly, conflicts and arguments hold within them important information for decision making, accessed through the Creative Edge "intuitions" of the participants.

      Intuitive Focusing and Focused Listening are the Core Skills for articulating innovative solutions from the Creative Edge.  So, when decision making breaks down at meetings, the way out of the impasse can be found through turning to a variety of approaches which use the Listening and Focusing skills and the Interpersonal Focusing method to facilitate the creation of new solutions, and Paradigm Shifts, out of the Creative Edge intuitions of participants."

For a complete explanation of the theory behind access to The Creative Edge and innovative decision making, you can download Dr. McGuire's comprehensive article, "Collaborative Edge Decision Making Method, " . As a bonus, the Appendix of this article includes Handouts you can use at actual meetings, one for each role in Shared Leadership.

Reread the simple "How To's For Groups" (Instant "Ahah!" #5 in Mini-Manual). They define the five roles in Shared Leadership and various Listening/Focusing methods for Impasse resolution. The "How To's" arose from my dissertation research, Listening and Interruptions in Task-Oriented Groups, University of Chicago, 1977, with Eugene Gendlin, creator of Focusing (Focusing, Bantam, 1981, 1984) as advisor.
Over these four weeks, we are looking at incorporating the procedures into groups that you belong to:

Please email Dr. McGuire with your questions or answers to the questions below about the groups you belong to, the meetings you attend.

  •  What are the plusses and minuses of these meetings?
  •  What is the "whole body feel" of being at these meetings?
  •  Do people interrupt each other?
  •  Are conflicts polarized and never changing?
  •  Do people feel free to share their negative feelings about a decision?
  •  Does a minority do all the talking?
  •  Is there a chance to pause to formulate a new but vague idea?
  •  Can you imagine asking the group to try out the Shared Leadership model in Instant "Ahah!" #5?
  •  Can you imagine incorporating Listening and Focusing skills into these meetings? What would the difference be?
Two E-Groups, Creative Edge Practice and Creative Edge Collaboration, for Ongoing Support and Learning
There are now two separate Yahoo e-groups.
Creative Edge Practice is a closed group, where people can feel safe for the vulnerability of sharing Focusing experiences and responding to others with Focused Listening responses. The only requirement: a willingness to introduce yourself upon entry into the group, so everyone knows who is in the group. Further active participation is welcomed but not required. This is a very warm, sharing place, as well as a great opportunity for learning the actual skills.
Creative Edge Collaboration is an open group for discussion and networking around projects related to the spread of listening/focusing to various audiences and throughout the world.This is a great place to brain-storm ideas for bringing Listening/Focusing into parenting, education, support groups, psychotherapy and other helping professions, business, non-profit organizations like Peace Corps or Heifer International, spiritual communities, or whatever project moves you!
You can visit the homepage of each by clicking on the link and join from there as well. You can choose "emails only" and do not have to start a yahoo account, although accounts are free.However, access to message archives and other web-based features requires the free Yahoo ID. In creating an account, make sure to choose your regular email address to receive messages directly to your usual inbox.
If you order the Self-Help Package, now with the rock-bottom reduced price of $49, including US shipping, you can use the Intuitive Focusing CD to follow Dr. McGuire as she speaks these exercises and view actual demonstrations of Listening/Focusing turns on the DVD.
Click here to access Dr. McGuire's blog, Ultimate Self_Help: Sex, Food, and Focusing, or find it in the right upper corner at Creative Edge Focusing
About Creative Edge Focusing (TM) 
Mission: bring Core Skills of Intuitive Focusing and Focused Listening, and The Creative Edge Pyramid of applications from individual to interpersonal to organizational, to all audiences throughout the world.
Dr. Kathy McGuire, Director
Location: Beaver Lake in Rogers, AR
These materials are offered purely as self-help skills. In providing them, Dr. McGuire is not engaged in rendering psychological, financial, legal, or other professional services. If expert assistance or counseling is needed, the services of a competent professional should be sought.
Creative Edge Focusing (TM)
Dr. Kathy McGuire