Creating shared reality: an invaluable connection skill

Creating shared reality or really getting somebody else’s world, is what Circling is all about. It is so crucial to building deeper connection, that I wanted to write a bit about it this week.

Creating shared reality is the perseverance, curiosity and willingness to explore what is truly going on in and for somebody else. It is about taking the time to get to know how they see the world and realising how that perspective will always be different from yours. You go all the way until the point where you both have shared reality about what it is like to be that person and you inevitably end up feeling closer and more connected.

Or… you end up agreeing to disagree, which sometimes can be playful and sometimes a bit jarring; depending on how much weight the difference holds for you.

But what creating shared reality always brings is truth. Not universal truth, but truth about what is real and important for you as the people involved.

It is an art.

How many times do we not assume we know what is happening in the other person? We assume they share a similar worldview and are ‘like us’, or we assume that they think differently and maybe even want to attack our way of being as not okay (this second one usually when we are triggered). How often do we create behaviour in response to what we think we saw in the other person, without ever checking?

The times I have been in situations where I thought I knew what was happening, and upon checking the reality was totally different, are countless.

So creating shared reality is an essential practice in creating real connection.

And it is a practice indeed. In my own experience, when I am busy and less tuned in to the person in front of me, this starts to slip. And I start assuming. Nothing wrong with that, but when I don’t check my assumptions, that is when disconnection often happens.

We think we know. But we don’t. We’d like the comfort of thinking we know, because we are afraid to check. Yet the times I checked and the experience of the person in front of me was actually more positive than I assumed are also countless. Other people are not as evil and grumpy as we can believe them to be, especially when we are triggered in survival patterns.

So taking time to drop in, asking genuine questions and getting to see the beauty and truth in another person can be really healing. You are rewiring some of those systems and patterns. It is also where you go from reactivity and assumption to leadership and connection.

Do you want to learn more about how to create shared reality? Join one of our Art of Connection weekends in Amsterdam to start practising the basics.

Love,

Anke

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Coach, trainer & lover of all things human and relational. Supporting you in finding a deeper connection to yourself & others, so you can truly lead, wherever you are.

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