A lot of people feel danger and fear in talking to the “other side.” Talking to those who are seemingly unlike us or are a part of an opposing group does feel scary.
I first began rock climbing three years ago. My climbing mentor is 20 years my senior and lives a life unlike mine, with few shared beliefs and values between us. Yet we found something that unites us–besides our belaying (climbing) rope! We have created a unique friendship. Through his passing-on of knowledge, our facing hardships together, and endless hours of training we have formed a lasting bond. When we are roped together, and I fall–and he catches me, I don’t think of our differences. I think about my trust in him regardless of those differences. What began as a need for each other in order to climb has evolved into curiosity about each other’s lives and genuine care for one another’s well-being.
Fear management and assessment have proven to be an integral part of climbing–and a powerful tool in my life. To feel fear is a natural reaction to a stressful or anxiety provoking situation. Your heart rate increases, your gut churns, there’s a little voice in your head directing you to the nearest exit. But how much of our fear is founded on real danger?
In my experience, fear seldom means I’m really in danger. Most of the times I have felt scared, I have been afraid of being in danger rather than really being in danger.
This is a lot like our fear of talking to people who are different from us. Living Room Conversations help us feel more secure in these encounters. Our Guides are a great tool to help you make the leap. Living Room Conversations is your mountain-climbing rope! We help you mitigate the risk you may have been afraid of and help you see your fear was simply fear of being in danger–not real danger.
When we can recognize that doom isn’t imminent and that we are in fact safe, we open up the doors to create relationships we never thought possible. This holiday season, I hope you will help us bring Living Room Conversations to hundreds more people in the coming year. Please consider “giving til it feels good!” by being as generous as you feel able to be.
I have made this leap with you and I am loving the climb! I trust and believe in myself and others so much more now. I hope you’ll make the leap with me. And remember: it’s not only a path for growth–it’s fun! Click here to make a gift and click below to learn about more ways you can join us.
Executive Administrative Partner
P.S. Please share this note with friends, family, and colleagues! We need your help to spread the word and go big in 2019.