5 ways to get the most out of the Communities Conference

by Paxus

1. Reconsider your living situation.  If you let it, the Communities Conference can really shake you up.  Daring people who are trying new or untested lifestyles are presenting or in attendance.  Step outside your comfort zone a bit and start from the assumption that you could live somewhere else, or with other people and see what this event has to offer and demonstrate.  Let go of the assumption that your next year has to look like your last year and go back to your own personal values.  What do you really care about?  How could this be better experienced in your daily living situation?

2. Chat with a rock star.  There are a bunch of inspiring personalities at the Communities Conference and they are more accessible in this relaxed 3 day event than they are at most times in their busy lives.  Seek out the people who say something that excited you and ask to have lunch or a more private chat with them.  If this is your first time attending, read the entire set of workshop descriptions upon arrival and find out which presenters sound like they are doing stuff you are excited about and then get any of the event organizers to point that person out to you.  This conversation might just change your life.

3. Fall in love with someone new.  I’m not just talking about romantic love. Most participants of the Communities Conference come with the intention of stepping out of their regular lives at least a little bit.  We arrive open to new experiences and people who we might not consider dancing with in our more mundane day to day life.  The conference also throws people together in various small groups in workshops, or child care shifts, or mealtime chats.  Dare to be open to someone new, introduce yourself, dont be afraid to share your thoughts, show up.

4. Engage deeply in the workshops.  There are too many good choices at this event, but dont let that stop you.  Figure out which workshops are going to make the most sense to you and figure it out early.  If you are unsure, go check in with the people who are presenting and figure out if they have things to offer you.

5.  Give a workshop in open space.  So you have never given a workshop before?  Time to give up the idea that you can’t.  Start by thinking about the thing you care most about in the world, then think about what it is that might make other people interested in it.  One of the easiest ways to give a workshop is to recognize that it is not a lecture.  The wisdom is in the room, not just in your head.  So think of discussion questions, let other people offer their truth, often they will hit the most important points, then you can just bat clean up and add the details which make it a bit richer.  Keep the conversation moving, watch for the attention of your participants.  Ask questions of people who seem engaged and curious. It is time to share what you are passionate about