Listening to the 5PM class recording right now. I actually get to hear BRIDGETTE talking in strings of more than one sentence at a time! It just occurred to me that perhaps this is a demographic difference between people who are employed during the day, and people who are free at 10AM on a Monday. People who “work from home” or are “half paralyzed and home with a new puppy” or are stay-at-home moms usually fall into the latter category. Others who can only fit this in after 5PM Pacific Time are probably working, functioning people.

She has to actually ASK the group for feedback, and wait for silence on this call! Unbelievable!

It’s now 25 minutes and counting, without a single interruption. One person, when there was a silence, asked where to find Martha’s videos on the site, and Bridgette walked her through it. Once. In less than a minute. She found it, and said, “Thank you.” They moved on.

Bridgette’s voice sounds much more relaxed. She has a chance to breathe. She is going through her notes, at a pace that is natural for her.

Now listening to the introductions. Many corporate people who describe themselves as “miserable” in their jobs. They each shared a little story about their backgrounds, and Bridgette was able to interact with them, sharing some words of encouragement with each.

I should add – since I didn’t update you here – that I got three private emails plus three public posts on the forum in support of my courage to speak the truth. Two, technically, since one of them was from Kim H, who posts something on EVERY SINGLE PERSON’S POST saying “Great! I agree totally! I’m with you! I’m so excited!”. She recently announced that she has “sealed the deal” as Alice’s coaching buddy. Thanks for sharing. Anyways, the most important response was the first one – which made me smile in validation of the decision to put myself out there. And then there was Bridgette’s. Hard to tell whether she is being omni-validating like Kim H, or authentically supportive of speaking our truths, which would be the expectation for a bona fide Martha Beck disciple. But again, not my issue. And this experience for me is all about tuning into MY issues versus OTHER PEOPLE’s issues. Not differentiating between these two buckets has led to a lot of confusion and pain in my life.

I just posted to the forum again, with the intention of closing the loop – something that is rarely being done on our Forum. It’s interesting to watch everyone figure out how it’s going to work for them. It’s a little aggravating to see how long the list of entries is getting, and how hard it is to keep track of what you want to read, and what you’ve read already. It all seems to boil down to prioritizing how you’re going to spend your time. For the 5PM group, it sounded like a much more efficient interaction, and was definitely skewed towards more corporate “escapees” who described themselves as miserable in their current jobs. Perhaps they are lower energy, so they engaged less directly during the call. That’s the Alice-friendly way of saying it. My guess is that they are well-trained in behaving in social settings like classrooms and traditional hierarchical organizations, so they know that when the teacher is talking, you listen. And there will be time for all the questions in the world when the teacher is done talking. Chances are, most of your questions may be addressed before the end of the talk, if you can just sit on your hands and wait that long. I think this is called DISCIPLINE. But tell me where I’m wrong.

by Lisa Chu – Tuesday, September 15, 2009, 05:24 PM
Thanks, Bridgette. You are right about my social self worrying about the ramifications of “calling people out”, while my essential self really wanted the chance to know more about the others in our class.

This was confirmed just now, after I listened to the entire recording of your 5pm call. You sounded more relaxed, since you actually had time to breathe between sentences, and speak to a forum of listeners. I was stunned that you talked for an entire 25 minutes without interruption! I learned much more because I was able to relax and listen to your voice, reflect on the points, and formulate my own thoughts, rather than try to follow the constant, fact-paced back-and-forth that happened on our call. Also, it felt like you had a little more time and room to interact with each person as they told their brief blurbs at the end of class.

The information was all the same, but the flow and overall feeling was very different, and I thought it was an interesting exercise to be able to listen to the other class and compare how I felt during each one.

And, just to be clear, my intention in posting both the first time and this response is to maximize the learning opportunity for myself and hopefully others. I do not mean to debate how the call could have been handled differently, or to place blame or responsibility on anyone. We are each responsible for our own learning, and that much is clear even from this first introductory call.

Thanks for your insights, Bridgette!