Visiting Men’s Teams – Two Lessons on a Walkabout

Fred Boyles
Guest Writer

I went on a walkabout and visited five teams in Big Stick in the Southwest Region.

Two things I’ve learned.

  • Making list clearing a part of our check-ins.

On my team we clear lists (personal grudges) only when it becomes conscious and overwhelming. When I visited one team they asked, “Does any man have a list on another man?” I got this was part off their initial check-in. At first no one said anything, and then there was talk of not returning phone calls and not keeping their word. These were the lists that were made up in the vacuum of not taking. Having a “list clearing” every week allows me to clear my opinion before it’s a solid list.

  • Here is a tool that will help eliminate a list before it becomes solid in our minds.

The man who is getting advice or criticism can respond with the statement, “The way that landed here was…” This allows the man to share his judgment and gut feeling about what another man has said. We are a gathering of non-professionals doing group therapy on each other. We can say things in a hurtful way that can plug a man into his ego and not allow the lesson in. By a man giving feedback on the advice, it opens a dialogue and helps build relationship with open communication. Many times I’ve heard men say, “Just take it in.” This can be used to bully men to shut up especially when they become defensive. I noticed the cost is that statement can kill the potential of a relationship.


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