Friday, March 7, 2014

Getting to Know You

Parts of your life you want to share,  in the bag.

For a few months I've been part of a growing, changing group of women brought together by Lynn who seems a natural born facilitator. She has invited people she's met over the last six or eight months, all of whom are involved in some creative activity -- but of widely different types -- to meet once a month with some of their creations.  Because we began meeting at a restaurant called The Chat House (which encourages groups like ours to meet there) we became The Creative Chatterers. 

However mostly we were strangers to one another with Lynn as our  Mother Hen. One of our group suggested "Getting to Know You" exercise she used in her career as a teacher.  Each of us were given a brown paper lunch bag and told to put in five items that tell something about who we are.   The bags were bunched on the conference table and opened one by one, each time by someonw other than the bag's owner.  As a group we looked at the items, passed them around, made conjectures such as "this looks like a grandchild", "this person likes sailing", etc.  Then at a count of 3 we pointed at the person we thought it might be from those clues.  Often we guessed wrong because we hadn't yet shared many of our interests nor talked much about our families.

Then the person whose items we'd looked at told about them, what they suggested about her and added whatever other information she wished.  Thus we learned a great deal about one another but the exercise was not intrusive.  Each person revealed what she chose.  It was a fascinating gathering; we all have insights into one another we would never have had before. One person revealed that, as an adult, she had seen her first grade evaluation which said, "pathologically shy".  Yes, she had been very, very shy and still has moments of shyness (although the rest of us did not know that) but she felt that note then led other teachers to treat her a certain way in school (perhaps not call on her often).  Other revelations were surprises.  A friendly woman announced that she's an introvert and suggested others of us might also be as many creative people are -- and we agreed.   So it went.  We were only sorry some of our group were unable to come to the meeting.

7 comments:

Kass said...

What a good idea. I would love to be in a group like this.

FOLKWAYS NOTEBOOK said...

What a creative way to open up to folks in a group setting. Better than going around the group and saying your name and why you are participating in this particular group. -- barbara

June Calender said...

Thanks Kass, and Barbara. It's very interesting to be in a group where what we share is "creativity" in a broad sense. Usually everyone is jewelry maker or a quilter. Here we are all different and would not have met otherwise.

Ladydy5 aka: Diane Yates said...

Great idea! I bet you had a quilt block and a book in your bag!

June Calender said...

Actually, Di, I didn't not have a quilt block but took one as an extra. And the "book" was, in fact, my little book I've kept since January 1960 listing every book I've read since then.

Carol- Beads and Birds said...

Interesting. A book listing every book you have read. But then I wonder why, when surely you would remember that you have read a book.

This was a neat way to get to know each other better.

I'm that friendly people person (to the business world) that thought something was wrong with me because I avoid social situations. Then I found out I am an introvert. I find comfort in that knowledge.

What other 4 things did you have in your bag?

June Calender said...

Carol, I often do remember that I read a book 20 years ago. But mainly it's for keeping count. I had also a photo of my two daughters, a CD of Schubert's Wanderer Fantasy (which I was learning to play when I had to stop taking lessons), a filled passport (talk about being a wanderer)and a pherpa which is a Tibetan ritual symbol of lightening -- the story with it is too long to write here.