The Being There Exercise
Being There is a simple and fun activity, ideal as an illustration to demonstrate how people can run in established routines, without paying attention to the things and people around us.
Sufficient space is needed for all participants, working in groups of any size. This can be done in any room layout: boardroom, lecture, or conference room.
In advance, you need a prepared list of questions. Ideas for questions : What colour are the floor tiles in reception?, What was the name of the lady who served you coffee on arrival (it was on her name badge)?, What was the colour of the receptionist’s jacket?, What is printed on your room key fob aside from the number?, How many plastic cards are in your wallet?, etc.
The emphasis of the exercise will be slightly different if the situation is a one-off conference venue, compared with the group’s normal working environment.
Try to make the questions fair for all, especially if participants have quite different familiarity with the location.
The exercise is an enjoyable and different way to illustrate the opportunities that we all have for improving our awareness, and therefore responsiveness.
Moment of Reflection
- What stops us from being present?
- When are we most aware of the world around us?
- How would “Being There”, wherever we are, affect our relationships?