Living Your Possibilities - From Healing to Action
Creative Leadership 202206/02/2023
Creative Leadership aims to be an inclusive space where diverse participants from around the globe can come together and reconceptualize leadership. The 2022 conference took people on a journey of personal and collective growth, using arts, story-sharing, workshops and dialogue groups. These tools helped participants unlock their own leadership potential.
Creative Leadership 2022 guided its participants on a six-day journey from healing to action. The conference took place online from 23 to 29 July – with a break day in between – and brought together around 194 participants in 54 countries to engage in meaningful dialogue, listen to inspirational stories from like-minded changemakers, and gain tools from experienced speakers. At the heart of it all, the Creative Leadership conference offered space for inner reflection and network building.
The theme of Living your Possibilities: From Healing to Action was a response to global events, in times of uncertainty and rapid change. To take action and create change, we must begin by reconnecting with our inner voice and finding our own healing process. The conference was based on the idea that healing is a continuous process that requires conscious effort and deliberate action in our day-to-day lives.
Now more than ever, conscious leadership and collective action are required. This was an opportunity to empower global voices to come together to find hope and healing for themselves and their communities.
The inspiration for the Creative Leadership conference came from more than 250 young changemakers of 98 nationalities who have taken part in the Caux Peace and Leadership Programme (CPLP).
The conference was organized by an international team of 10, supported by 16 facilitators and six others, as well as the Caux Peace and Leadership Programme team, the Caux Forum team and the IofC Switzerland team.
We began each day with time for individual reflection and growth. Activities then focused on fostering a culture of solidarity and collective healing through compassion, awareness and overcoming individualism. Finally, we explored creative methods to reignite participants’ energy for taking personal and collective action.
Creative Leadership uses a wide range of activities to take people on the journey through healing to action. The centrepiece is dialogue groups, which bring participants together to discuss and share their different perspectives. This places participants at the centre, rather than requiring them to be passive listeners. These encounters are deepened through the time-honoured IofC practice of quiet time, offering space and time to reflect and process. Webinars and workshops focus on issues concerning the participants, with speakers sharing their own experiences. Workshops are more interactive. with more time for questions and answers. In the human library people share highly moving personal stories, as a bridge to understanding. Finally, tea time offers a chance to chat informally and get to know other conference participants.
The dialogue groups focused on exploring a four-part journey, taking people from healing the wounds of the past, personal or collective, and moving towards taking action in the future to prevent further suffering. This involved engaging with the inner journey and then taking outward into daily life. On the first day participants were divided into small facilitated discussion groups, which they stayed with for all four sessions.
Journey of conscious healing – The first dialogue group focused on creating the space for the journey of conscious healing.
Culture of solidarity – The second dialogue group allowed participants to engage with the connection between solidarity and healing, and discuss how to create a sense of healing.
Igniting action – The third dialogue group focused on story-telling and on using imagination and experiences to ignite action through healing and solidarity.
Reflection – The final dialogue group offered the chance to reflect on previous discussions and set future intentions.
The facilitators of each group had the freedom to shape their group according to their own facilitation style. This meant that every group tailored its own unique space and built its own special connection of trust.
Solidarity is the bridge between the possibility of healing and the step towards action and justice. Most healing processes can't be addressed alone, a culture of solidarity is therefore needed.
During this session we began to see solidarity as essential to our individual and collective healing processes and as an indispensable element in enabling us to move towards global action in the search for justice.
Going to the Root - 28 July 2022
This webinar focused on the human journey of going to the root. Regardless of the social, political, environmental or economic issue, going to the root means discovering the deeper layers of beingness where real, meaningful and sustainable change can manifest.
We explored three interrelated topics: Indigenous prophecies and spiritual leadership, children and intergenerational collaboration and, lastly, art as a vector for social healing.
The aim was to support changemakers in returning to their spiritual homes and seeing action through the lenses of social healing and personal healing.
After celebrating our webinar, a seven-month period of community building was launched, as a partnership between the Creative Leadership & School of Conscious Politics team. The main reference was to the seven steps of the Spiritual Politics model:
- Listen to the social pains of your context
- Reconnect with your soul mission
- Acknowledge your gifts and talents
- Bond with the right networks and coalitions
- Take time to strategize to overcome obstacles
- Manifest your sacred activism
- Celebrate the learnings
The Human Library sessions were a space for story-sharing. Participants and speakers connected and grew through listening to different experiences.
Sunday 25 July - Journey of Conscious Healing
Wednesday 27 July - Cultivating a Culture of Solidarity
Quiet time is a core practice of Initiatives of Change, and one of the best ways to introspect, connect with one’s inner self and others. For this reason, this year’s Creative Leadership conference offered a collective quiet time at the beginning of every day, in order to use inner listening and reflection as a core tool in moving from healing to action.
During this 30 minutes, participants had the chance to explore different ways of practising inner reflection, ranging from open reflections (through songs or texts) to guided questions related to each day’s theme. The sessions included room for general sharing.
Each quiet time facilitator brought their own definition and experience along with their practice. Participants were encouraged to take what they adopted into their day to day lives.
At the end of each day, participants were offered an informal optional space where they could meet webinar and human library speakers in smaller groups. Other breakout rooms included a culture sharing space, international music jam sessions, art sessions and an unfacilitated space where participants could meet each other.
Tea times were ranked the second most successful sessions in the conference, with dialogue groups taking the lead. These spaces, where people could participate actively and listen to one another, helped forge lasting and meaningful connections.
The closing ceremony began with music provided by the Trio Rigudon, a father-son band composed of Bennet on the violin, Raphael on the cello and Clement on the double bass, playing everything from oriental to jazz.
Participants were given the chance to share what had affected them most deeply from the dialogue groups, before finishing with a celebration of our backgrounds, with participants speaking about their countries and culture.
What participants said this year
We blossomed from silence to relevant deep sharing. We felt a safe space where we trusted each other with deep things, and laughter and love.
We all came in as individuals acknowledging that we needed to acknowledge pain and accept and embrace healing. From there we were all walking on this journey and held each others’ hands. The culture of solidarity came to the forefront when we walked together through haze not knowing what is beyond.
We started as a group and ended as a family of diversity.
Conscious healing plus unconscious healing equals optimal healing.
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