Asking for a volunteer to do the Connection Practice with me onstage at a workshop can sometimes be tricky. I never know what the issue or celebration will be. And sometimes the challenges seem unsurmountable.
Take, for example, an 87-year-old who came forward in a workshop last month.
"I have been friends with a man named Joe for 22 years. Neither of us wanted a romantic relationship. Now he is in Assisted Living and he depends on me for everything. I take him shopping, to the movies and whatever else he needs. Now he has dementia and I have to remind him several times of our plans. This is a lot to handle but I don’t mind doing it. What bothers me is that, in 22 years, he’s never said 'Thank you.'"
The participants, with Feelings and Needs Lists in hand, guessed what Mary was feeling while my assistant wrote the words on a flip chart. Then I asked Mary to identify the three feelings resonating the strongest for her. She pointed to “hurt,” “resentful” and “frustrated.”
Then the participants used their lists to guess her needs as they were written on the flip chart. The guesses that landed for Mary included “communication,” “connection,” “love” and “appreciation.”
Then Mary said, “You know, I realize it’s not really appreciation, it's love – just love exchanged between friends.”
Can you see it? This woman wants love from a man who hasn’t expressed it in 22 years and now has dementia.
I asked Mary to take a seat and we would all move into heart-brain coherence. I instructed everyone to reach coherence and then radiate it to Mary. Her job was to move into coherence and then ask herself, “What do I need to know?”
Mary put her hand on heart, closed her eyes and moved into coherence. Before long, she opened her eyes and said, “My daughter was telling me about something called eye-gazing, where you look into someone’s eyes for a long time. I think Joe would be willing to do that with me and, if we did, I think I could feel the love.”
The audience made a collective gasp of awe. And I got to witness how powerful it is when we get those charged up feelings and needs out of the way, then join together in coherence and intention for one person to find an answer.
The Connection Practice is powerful individually and is even more powerful when we come together to do it. With this power, we can be the change we want to see in the world. Now that we know how – let’s do it, dear ones, let’s do it.