Wisdom comes with connection

By Tina Dam, PLAN

I have wisdom. Yes I know a very bold statement perhaps even cocky…but for the moment I am believing it. And I think you have wisdom too.
A family from Australia came in to the PLAN office and at the last minute I was asked to speak to them as a Mentor of Networks. I am thinking to myself; how can I help them, I have only been a Mentor for a few months?

Well we sit down at the board room table, I put on brave face as the first questions are tentatively asked. Questions like: Is 2-6 hours really enough to build a network? I had heard this question from new community connectors and my/our answer had been about being intentional about connecting and the fact that families are paying for the time of the Community Connector. Well that was not the answer here, so I took a breath and thought just for a moment and realized 2- 6 hours a month was the right amount of time. The family and I began to discuss how much time we spend with really good friends growing a relationship. Yes as children we were spending all day at school with friends and many hours after school but as adults our lives just do not work that way. Even with a good friend you may have coffee once per month, go for dinner and chat on the phone a few times; does that not sound like 6 hours?

This wisdom was just sitting right inside me, it was sitting inside the family from Australia too. There was many more questions and the wisdom kept coming, not as a knee jerk reaction but slowly emerging from a place inside. The family had it too, as I told stories, they were realizing the answers to their questions themselves.

So use your wisdom, just take the time to trust yourself. You know how to build a network. Your wisdom may get stuck, that is where the many minds in the room (the network) come it. Go to your network for help bring out your wisdom, or assisting bringing out theirs. Give yourself the time and the credit to allow wisdom to emerge and do not forget to give others the same time.