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Learn how to “See” the Elusive Venn Diagram


A Venn Diagram is described by Will Kenton in Investopedia as “an illustration that makes use of circles to indicate the relationships amongst issues or finite teams of issues. Circles that overlap have a commonality whereas circles that don’t overlap don’t share these traits.”

It may appear odd to give attention to the idea of Venn Diagrams in an article about teaching. However, consider it or not, it’s a great illustration for a foundational facet of the teaching course of. After we work with a consumer, we encourage their curiosity about what they’re experiencing and work to “keep within the second” to assist them absolutely discover their scenario, challenges, and alternatives whereas we additionally invite them to see the patterns they discover as they discover their ideas and emotions.

These patterns differ. Some is perhaps phrases which are usually repeated. Or they could be a smile each time they discuss a sure concept or individual. They can be once they uncover that the various viewpoints of others may very well have shared commonalities not beforehand thought of. With the ability to discover and respect patterns is foundational to studying and improvement.

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In a latest session, a consumer was describing a significant occasion occurring for his or her firm. In some instances, the various viewpoints on decision of the problem had been diametrically opposed to one another. A group that was beforehand cohesive and aligned was struggling to share views with out exploding into argument. My consumer was involved, largely as a consequence of their excessive regard and respect for each member of their group.

I requested the consumer in the event that they noticed a sample in what they had been describing.

“What’s it that every member of your group identifies as the problem?”

Each group member has a unique perspective,” the consumer answered.  “One sees the problem as monetary. One other thinks it’s associated to human sources.  And one more sees exterior influences at play.”  

I paused and took one other tack. I invited the consumer to shut their eyes – to think about every member of the group as a circle. Then I invited this angle:

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“Take a step again in your thoughts and envision the place these circles overlap. Please inform me what you see.”

There was a protracted pause and I waited. Then the consumer opened their eyes and spoke:

“Effectively, the primary overlap is that this:  Each member of the group feels answerable for the success of the corporate. 

 “The rest?” I requested.

 The second overlap is: “Every particular person desires the present disaster to be addressed. 

 And Third:  Everyone seems to be feeling stress.”

The consumer paused once more and seemed considerate. The idea of the overlaps – the “Venn Diagram” had registered. They went on:

“Sure, there are commonalities and if I step again I can see the overlap.  I simply had to take a look at it a bit in a different way.”

From there the consumer was capable of uncover that the group had factors in frequent and that their “system” had areas that had been nicely developed. From there, the group might make decisions so as to add vary and to attempt totally different approaches primarily based on the patterns they noticed.

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In Gestalt Teaching, we search for such patterns and invite the consumer or the system to see them. After they do, they’ll develop into inquisitive about what the group can add to their capabilities and the way every individual, together with the chief, might help them transfer in direction of it.

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Dave Bushy
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