Thursday, October 27, 2005

Don Beck: I Don't Know How to "Grow" People

I must sheepishly admit that I came to the SDi Personal Emergence confab with the thought that I might learn some tools or techniques for helping people progress along the Spiral. After completing the Level I certification, I have been completely disabused of that notion.

I know that "global" change is rare and difficult to attain, but I had hoped that I could learn to promote growth within specific developmental lines (such as self-worth, emotional intelligence, or kinesthetic intelligence).

Don Beck is adamant in his belief that it is not his role to "grow" people. At best, he tries to create a "habitat" in which the life conditions are such that growth becomes possible. This is a hugely valuable lesson for me.

As a trainer, I spend most of my time working with people in the upper right quadrant of their lives (exterior-individual), focusing on nutrition, exercise, and behavior. While I also pay attention to the upper left quadrant (interior-individual), focusing on emotional blocks or self-talk that defeats efforts in the upper right, neither of these areas really creates a habitat that can promote change -- of any kind.

There are some ways that I do promote that habitat -- structure, accountability, safety, encouragement -- but I think I can do more to help create the life conditions that can promote change. I'm not looking for global change anymore, or even movement up the Spiral -- I simply want to create the conditions in which my clients can achieve first-order change (adjustments in lifestyle, habits, or beliefs).

I will be exploring this idea in more depth when I am back in the world -- look for an SDi-based update to The Integral Fitness Solution, coming soon.


Mahipal Lunia said...

I love this notion of creating a habitat for change. In many ways, the unfolding of the human requires the right kind of habitat.
This habitat is in so many ways the story the universe/world/we tell ourselves, a part larger than us, to which we apire to belong to.
What I have noticed so far is that SD seems to provide interetsing insights into the worldviews we hold as poeple, and IMO "sustanability" of the habitat is the key. Change will need to be absorded and embodided for it to be real.
I like you blog, I will drop by more often..

WH said...

Hi Mahipal,

Thanks for reading and commenting -- I look forward to hearing more of your thoughts.

SD is very focused on habitats. Each vMeme/worldview is the product of the existing life conditions (habitat, both physical and cultural) and the developmental strengths of the individual or culture. If the habitat didn't require integral thinking, no one would make the jump to second tier consciousness.

I hope to see more comments from you in the future.