Today marks 20 years since I became a Certified TetraMap Facilitator.
And, being someone that loves a metaphor, I wondered if my relationship with TetraMap was like a marriage, and what symbolic meaning I could find? A quick search came up with this:
The symbol for 20 years of marriage is the emerald. This anniversary holds a significant meaning as it represents two decades of life spent together [as a married couple]. This precious gemstone symbolizes the strength and durability of a relationship that has withstood the test of time. The vibrant green colour of emeralds represents harmony, renewal, and growth – qualities that are essential for a successful and lasting marriage.
Simple and symbolic. So, I’d like to share some of the lessons from two decades of a life spent together. I hope your life with TetraMap also gives you love, laughter and lessons.
1. People and places.
It would be impossible to pick a stand out moment. There have been so many. But in the number one slot I must acknowledge and thank TetraMap Founders Jon and Yoshimi Brett for the wisdom, lessons, love and trust they placed in me.
2. Trust the process.
A Why Are You Like That? Learning experience is always the same and always different.
3. Facilitation not training.
Facilitation means to make it easy. Hone your skills in this craft. Make it easy for your participants to learn, relax, contribute, and reflect.
4. Your participants will teach you more…
Than you will ever teach them. Don’t try to teach them, give them a tool to apply in their own context and take away with them to use.
5. None of us is as wise as all of us.
I’m not sure of the source of this simple sentence but it’s a mindset I’ve carried with me.
6. Our wisest teacher, Nature is.
Yodimi: Nom de plum of Yoshimi and Jon Brett, and reminds me of the Einstein quote; Look Deep into Nature and you will Understand Everything.
7. Have fun.
No more explanation needed, especially for us high Fire Elements.
8. Sticky Learning
At the start of my journey, I asked the question, why are people still talking about TetraMap months after a workshop? Answer: Because it has relevance, meaning and it’s easy to talk about and use. Simple, right? Yes, but don’t mistake simple for simplistic.
Defined in our values: We demonstrate respect for diversity by finding ways to work collaboratively and synergistically with others. Meaning: My Success Depends on Your Success.
Ask this at any workshop or meeting as a question to catalyse powerful reframes; Who does your success depend on?
10. The Tetrahedron and Buckminster Fuller
I concluded that the tetrahedron is the simplest structural system in (the) Universe. Buckminster Fuller (1895-1983) This 4-sided pyramid is a powerful learning experience when we begin to understand the 4 Elements and see physically how we are all interconnected and inter-dependent. There are NO opposites. I encourage you to spend more time on this in your workshops for more meaning with your learners. It’s a paradigm shifting model.
Facilitation need not be a lonely business. I have learned so much from working with and sharing opportunities with others all over the world in person and virtually. If you want to improve, develop, extend, and reflect more – DO MORE OF THIS. Participants love it too. It’s diversity in action.
What I mean by this is deepening your ability to analyse and respond. When things are going well it’s easy to be self-aware. But when things go wrong and you are uncertain, angry, thrown, floored, anxious – it’s horrendous. I have been there, and it was not pretty. I always turn to TetraMap, my greatest teacher for Self – Courage, Wisdom, Compassion and Inspiration.
13. We are all, all Four Elements.
Sure. Sure. Sure – 100% agree. And, in my view it’s your lowest Element that is your greatest challenge and opportunity. I cannot tell you enough how good it is to say to someone who’s highest Element is your lowest Element – in my case ‘Air’ – What am I missing, What can you see I can’t? What’s clear to you that isn’t clear to me?
14. Feedback is a gift.
Over the years my defensiveness barrier has lowered through adopting this stance. I really believe feedback helps everyone grow. But the hardest thing is to remove the barrier. How to do it? Say it and adopt it. All the time. Course evaluations, phone calls, complaints, product launches, website upgrades, you name it, we’ve done it. To see feedback as a gift, you must believe it is, and hey presto your learning accelerates and everyone’s self-esteem remains intact.
15. Seth Godin and altMBA.
This was the most powerful course / programme I’ve ever attended. I was an early adopter and jumped in to an online programme with 99 others around the world after following Seth’s work for several years. This was a leap of faith, and reasonable investment in money and time. I’ve been paid back 100-fold. If you want to try something new and radical go for it. My learning – don’t wait, you are good enough and the right time is now. Give it your whole self and leap in!
16. If you don’t know what to do – do something.
As the Covid crisis unfolded, this was a gem of wisdom that came my way, also from Seth Godin. We rallied as a team and jumped into creating the teach and learn series of online workshops. It gave us a focus and gave new ideas and skills for our facilitator network.
17. Generosity and Abundance.
As we jumped into the teach and learn series there were so many people who gave freely of their time and expertise. We made it fun, and created hope where none existed. Contribute freely to something you believe in, I am certain you’ll gain way more than you give.
18. Te Ao Māori.
Living in Aotearoa |New Zealand I have been blessed learning about Te Ao Māori – a Māori worldview which emphasises the importance of relationships between nature and people. It is a holistic worldview that focuses on interconnections and is grounded in customary values, cultural practices and ancestral knowledge. The language of te reo Māori is woven with many rich whakatauki/ proverbs; Poipoia te kākano, kia puāwai | Nurture the seed and it will blossom.
19. There is no I in team.
An oldie but goodie. We are a small team with a global reach. We’re here to serve and work inter-dependently with our facilitators [family] , support each other, and add depth, meaning and richness to one another’s lives. I guess that’s like a marriage, and like many great marriages we have a lot of fun along the way.
20. Hope and Optimism.
Are my two focus words for 2024. I have chosen these words against a global backdrop of war. There is always hope. I invite you to ask yourself what am I hopeful about and why is that important? What can I be optimistic about and where is my scale of optimism? Whilst I cannot change war, violence, greed and terror – I can change myself and those I may influence. I want to feel good in myself so I can do better for others. I want to create a sense of positivity and possibilities. I hope you may want to do the same. Let’s go – together!