One of the essential elements of creating and teaching any program, is the delicate art of rhythm, timing, and sequence. It forms the beating pulse of deep learning.
Back when I trained teachers, this trifecta of rhythm, timing and sequencing was one that my students either understood intuitively, or struggled with in their practice teaching sessions.
Sequencing is an art rather than a science. It emerges naturally from an inner sense of order, alignment and attunement.
I experience it as a felt sense, in my body, of rightness — of dropping down into the natural pattern that is woven by the relationship between the material I’m teaching, the energetic container of the class, and the women and men participating, who are engaged in a collaborative process of exploration, discovery and transformation.
Each of these elements in the ecology of the classroom has its own frequency, its own energetic pattern. A masterful teacher blends them together the way a great conductor blends the music from individual players in an orchestra.
The difference between teachers who use rhythm, timing and sequencing effectively, and those who don’t, is largely a function of Presence, though practice, skill, and experience also factor into it. Teachers whose teaching is grounded primarily in their intellect, rather than in their wholeness, miss the deeper rhythms that pulse through the ecology of the classroom.
A simple example: When you introduce a transformative process – a guided meditation, a teaching, an experiential exercise – without first taking the time to help people get grounded, centered, and present, you introduce a destabilizing element in an already unstable field. Energetically, this creates static and chaos, both in the classroom ecology and in your students.
Transformation, which is a fluid force, requires a container of structure, safety and stability.
Rhythm, timing and sequence are the bones of that structure. They allow change to happen with the least amount of friction, and they serve the graceful integration of the new patterns that emerge.
Even if you’re teaching a primarily practical program on various aspects of building and maintaining a business, for example, there is a natural shape to the sequence and flow of information. When your program materials follow that sequence, each element that you present builds upon the one before it.
You build in pauses and breathing room, in the structure of your program. Depending on what you want your program participants to walk away with, you include a structure for connection, engagement and community — a forum, perhaps, or live Q&A and coaching calls. You include a structure for practicing the skills they are learning, in between class sessions. And you offer a structure for integrating the new skills and learning into their lives and businesses.
Sequencing is at the heart of organic learning and growth. It creates the shape that holds your emerging self. It creates the shape that holds the becoming of your business.
How about you? Where, in your life or your business, are you using rhythm, timing and sequencing effectively? Where do they need some fine-tuning?
This week, I’m celebrating the birth of my online shop with a trio of new ebooks which, I trust, will inspire and delight you, and serve your creative soul as well as your beautiful business.
The World of Your Business Playbook: How to create a world of welcome and belonging for you and your customers.
93 pages. $20. Digital download.
In fourteen chapters filled with exploratory questions, writing prompts, and practical Playsheets, this gorgeous Playbook invites you to creatively shape the world of your business — its language & lineage, laws & customs, economy and ecology. Clarify whom your business serves, how it serves, and why it exists. Create a world that rings with a clear message for your customers: You are safe; you are home; you belong here.
Soul Business: Your business as an expression of your soul and values.
149 pages. $15. Digital download.
We need wholeness — in our own lives, in our businesses, and in our world. We need to create businesses that support our joy, and the people, places and causes we love. Soul Business is an invitation to respond to that call for wholeness — to discover the everyday miracles that occur when you honor wholeness as the central organizing principle of your business.
Rumors of Home: Poems.
113 pages. $15. Digital download.
These poems are explorations and discoveries of Love in all its forms. Love between you and your soul. The love that brings us together, the love that dances us apart. The Love that wraps us in the arms of the world.
Come and meet the new triplets here!
Jen Louden is the best-selling author of 6 books, including the pioneering best-sellers The Woman’s Comfort Book and The Woman’s Retreat Book. Her retreats are richly creative experiences, and often booked months in advance. She’s the proud mom of a college freshman, and the creator of the beloved course Teach Now.
Jen is a teacher’s teacher, and my dear friend. I’m delighted and honored to share her wisdom with you. In this conversation, we talk about teaching as a sacred path, as service, as a calling that taps us on the shoulder in unexpected ways and won’t be denied.
We also talk about the practical aspects of teaching — what makes it effective, soul-filled, rewarding, and profitable? How do you know when you’re ready to teach? How do you begin?
Listen in on our conversation here:
or right-click here and save the audio to your computer to listen to later.
If you teach, or want to, sign up for Jen’s program. It’s a remarkably rich and rewarding 6-week journey that will take you to the heart of why and how you teach, and offer you the skills and tools to share what you know, most beautifully. You’ll also learn from the wisdom of more than 44 master teachers whom Jen interviewed for this series — including Natalie Goldberg, Sharon Salzberg, Christina Baldwin, Elizabeth Lesser, Mark Nepo, Parker Palmer, among others.
Freedom aligns your desires and intentions with your soul’s purposes and your true nature.
Freedom is a quality of your soul, so it’s who you are, not something you acquire.
The mark of freedom — and of alignment — is effortless creation.
Where in your life and your business do you experience unfettered creativity, true freedom?
Where are you bogged down in struggle, difficulty, grim sweat?
What — in your life, in your business — is calling to be re-aligned with who you are and what you are here to experience, express and contribute to your world?
Explore the path of freedom this week.
In the spirit of curiosity and adventure, play with effort and effortlessness.
Align yourself with your deep desires.
Do what comes naturally — which is not at all the same thing as digging deeper into the grooves of old habits.
Breathe a clearer air, and discover who you become when you are yourself — without hesitation, hiding, or apology.
- You are a sovereign being,
a fractal of the Sacred,
a fractal of Wholeness.
- The flow of your life.
The soul of your business.
- Grow your business.
- Expand your life. Evolve your business.
- The art of alignment. The miracle of action.
- Trust in the power of your perfect unfolding.
- Permission to grow, to flow, to know.
- You learn about freedom by experiencing what it feels like to be bound.
- Beyond your beliefs, beyond your drama — the truth of your life.
- Success is becoming the person who can ask for hugs and holding when your own strength has deserted you.
- Embrace the mystery at the heart of creation.
- Your soul sends out tendrils of light and fragrance into the world.
- You are the gift — and the giver.
You are the Love, and the lover.
- At the heart of all things — even limiting beliefs and painful programming — is wholeness.
- Surrender is an act of will. It is aligning your will with the will of the Sacred.
- You learn about sovereignty through the experience of being dethroned.
- Love transforms.
- Your soul's purpose is to participate in wholeness, to express wholeness.
- True Desire is a messenger of your soul.
It leads directly to your soul’s purposes.
- Unfold the miracle of your life and business.
- Business = Love in action.
- Everything you need is already within you, waiting to unfold and express itself.
- Your inner world shapes your outer world.
Success is an inside job.
- You are the story, and the story-maker.
Your life is yours to shape.