The Pleasure Principle
Relational Presence Basic Tools
By Lee Glickstein
Relational Presence (RP)
Relational Presence or RP is the state of listening with another beyond agenda, words, personality, effort. It is not itself engagement or making a connection, but rather a state of neutral availability for connection with no demand for it. Connection tends to arise naturally when two people meet in the RP field. Rather than using social signals like smiles and nods, RP carries with it a deeper sense of positive regard for another human being underneath the level of personality.
To reach hearts, minds and souls from a place of power and ease requires the capacity to facilitate an RP field where content and agenda flow freely. One can establish this field instantly in any situation when one has isolated, flexed and toned the RP "muscle" through the basic exercises described below.
If you haven't yet, take a look at the two videos on the home page of this website in which (1) I model and talk about it, and (2) You can view scenes from an actual Speaking Circle.
A primary exercise to develop the RP muscle is two people each taking a 5-minute turn to alternately speak (if words arise) and listen. Having one or more regular partners for 5-and-5 in one's life works wonders to develop one's capacity for RP as long as you are both committed to following the basic principles of truly being present with each other in the absence of any social agenda, and without discussing each other's process. (See Public Speaking Mastery through Relational Presence.)
When any two people discover and tap into the RP field between them, every 5-and-5 is a revelation of clarity and ease.
Aside from its own benefits, 5-and-5 practice accesses and anchors the orientation which allows you to speak to exactly one person at a time in front of groups of any size. This is why 5-and-5 exercises are a foundation for Speaking Circles and more advanced programs.
The Clarity Process
We feel stuck or discouraged only when we lose sight of our purpose, possibilities, and contribution. Remembering why we are here and where we are going with crystal clarity instantly raises our energy and allows in new ideas and information. In this way, the Clarity Process gets us on track with laser focus.
Once the 5-and-5 practice flows for you with no agenda, you may add an intention to bring clarity to any challenge or opportunity in your life or work.
The Clarity Process features a series of 5-and-5's to which one brings an intention for clarity in a specific area, along with some turns addressing the group. Along the way, every "aha!" is journaled as threads are followed to specific results. Many participants in the Clarity Process emerge with a focused action plan or step.
Clairty is just one of the benefits of RP Practice, which is the foundation for all of our programs.
These ongoing 2-1/2 hour sessions are "the gym" where the RP muscle is strengthened in community.
Speaking Circles are a great adjunct to the Clarity Process as they allow the opportunity to bring a specific intention for clarity into one or both turns (3 and 7 minutes).
See Programs page for monthly Saturday introductory Trainings in Relational Presence, teleclasses and weekend programs involving talk content, Leadership Presence, and Speaking Circle Facilitator Training.