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Grounding Yourself in Your Strengths and Values

March 1, 2023 @ 1:30 pm CST

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About This Episode

(Season 4, Episode 3)

In this episode, co-hosts Jessica Beckendorf and Bob Bertsch talk grounding yourself in your strengths and values – one of the eight ways of cultivating community resilience that we identified in our “Connecting Communities in Asset-based Community Recovery” project.

“Connecting Communities in Asset-based Community Recovery” is a collection of resources developed during the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic presented some really difficult challenges, but it also revealed some opportunities for building better systems and communities.



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Kalin Goble: Welcome to Practicing Connection, a podcast exploring the personal stories and collective practices that empower us to work together to improve our resilience and readiness in a rapidly changing world. Here to start the conversation are Jessica Beckendorf and Bob Birch.

Jessica Beckendorf: Hello everyone. This is Jessica Beckendorf. Welcome to the Practicing Connection podcast. Today we’ll be talking about grounding yourself in your strengths and values, one of the eight ways of cultivating community resilience that we identified in our Connecting Communities, an asset-based community recovery project.

Bob Bertsch: Back in 2021, we worked with our colleagues Brigitte Scott and Sherrill Knezel to host interactive workshops with the purpose of providing a space to share our stories of community recovery after the COVID-19 pandemic. Participants in the workshops included military family service providers and extension educators, community developers, and others. We used the asset-based community recovery framework, which was developed by Jonathan Massimi and Heather Keam for the Tamarack Institute, to work together and identify the interdependencies and capacities and assets that had emerged from the pandemic response.

The workshops were so awesome. There were so many wonderful stories shared in those workshops. Some of them were funny and some were really hopeful for the future, and a few that were really, really heartbreaking. They all helped point us toward what communities did really well in their recovery from the pandemic, and what they could do better, both in terms of future recovery and resilience.

Jessica: As we reflected on the incredible stories that we heard in these workshops, there were eight themes that emerged for us. The eight themes speak not just to community recovery after a disaster like the pandemic, but they also offer a path for building individual and community resilience just overall. We’re going to discuss each of the themes in upcoming podcast episodes, and starting with this episode, where we’ll be discussing the theme of Grounding Yourself in your Strengths and Values.

The challenges that we faced during the pandemic really brought out our strengths and values, I think. Several participants in the workshops told stories about showing compassion, about helping neighbors, about being patient and accepting, and practicing tolerance. People were more willing to be understanding of the situations of others. I think that was one of the things that came through loud and clear, whether that was a colleague struggling to meet a deadline, or teachers trying to balance the needs of their students and the needs of their families, or whether it was clients dealing with loss of income, homeschooling, and health concerns while navigating a transition.

Showing people some grace was something that participants observed a lot during the crisis, and it was something that they wanted to take with them into the future.

Bob: They also talked about wanting to bring their organizations, or I should say, bring those values into their organizations into the future. They shared how their employers had shown more compassion to workers during the pandemic, at least some of them had. They said their employers were more understanding of the demands of their personal life and more willing to be flexible on work location and work hours and even work demands.

While participants were grateful for that, they started to question why employers hadn’t been as understanding and flexible before the pandemic. That’s all part of questioning systems and frameworks. That was something that our participants in the workshops really viewed as valuable, that when things change during the pandemic, it led them to start to question, why were they that way in the first place? I think questioning those systems is one way to test your own values, and see if they really are your values, or if you’ve adopted those values from those dominant systems in our lives without really thinking about it.

Thinking about the systems really helps inform like, what really are my values and what are the values that I’ve just adopted as the norm from the systems in our society.

Jessica: Let’s get into some of the other practices that support building this individual and community or team resilience, whatever group of people you need to think of there. Bob, you and we have both been talking about being aware of your values. Let’s start there.

Bob: That’s one of the practices, is just taking stock of and exploring your values and strengths. Sometimes what we noticed in the workshops is that like in the crisis, we mentioned a lot of this got revealed, people who were because of lockdown or just because of the pandemic and remote work in a different context, and started to figure out, ”Hey, wait a second, this is what I really care about, or how I really want to be as a person or how I think I can best contribute to the world.” That’s great that that emerges in that way, but we shouldn’t have to wait for the next crisis, right?

Let’s explore this whenever we can so that we can discover our values and our strengths and explore what assets we can bring to building our communities to be more resilient. For me, this is really an ongoing process. What I’m trying to do is just notice, right? When someone notices my strengths and shares that with me, I just try and note that, it’s not a super easy thing for me. I’m relatively embarrassed by compliments and prone to self-deprecation. In fact, Jessica gave me a compliment earlier today.

Tried to give me a compliment. I immediately brought up was like, ”Yes, but I should have done that sooner,” or, “It’s like I was late with that,” “You did good work.” I said, ”Yes, but it wasn’t on time.” That kind of thing. It’s a struggle, but I do try and notice that and note that so I’m more aware of what my strengths are. The other thing about strengths, and we’re talking a little bit more about strengths and values here, but the other thing that I like to notice is when I feel in flow, that is a term that’s been used.

There’s a book out there called Flow that talks about what that means when you’re working in flow and it draws on artists and athletes and how they describe this idea of flow. I’m trying to notice when I’m feeling that. I’m really connected to what it is that I’m doing. There’s a feeling of ease in it. It’s not easy necessarily because I think to be in flow, you have to feel that you’re actually accomplishing something. It’s not super easy. You can feel the effort going into there, but it’s not so much of a struggle.

There’s fewer stops and starts. There’s fewer feelings of inadequacy or what do I– I don’t know what I’m talking about. Why am I doing this? That imposter syndrome is less there. In general, I’m less in my head and more in the moment. If I can notice those times when I’m feeling in flow, I think that helps lead me to my strengths.

Jessica: One of the ways I note these things is similar to yours. I definitely love to take practices from different books that I read and then mix them up and make them my own at some point. But for me, the gauges from Designing Your Life it was a book by Bill Burnett and Dave Evans, and they have a workbook as well. They have these gauges where one of the gauges is energy and the other gauge is engagement.

Then they have a little checkbox for if you felt like you were in flow, because I believe and I’ve noticed when I use these gauges, that just because I was highly energized and highly engaged by the activity does not mean that I was in flow. I actually have used those gauges, or I draw my own pretty often when I’m starting to feel a little stuck, I’ll go back to that and I’ll, for a couple of weeks, I’ll just think about the stuff that I’ve done, because I don’t do it in the moment.

I don’t fill out these gauges in the moment. It’s like at the end of the week, I’ll think about the different activities. I’ll look at my calendar, I’ll look at the different activities I did, and I’ll just remember like, ”Was I feeling energized? Was I feeling engaged? Did I feel like I was in flow?” That has been a really useful practice to me because it helped me to understand how to communicate about certain things I love, for instance, at the time I had been performing improv, and I’m also a facilitator, and I realized, “Oh wait, one of the things I love about facilitation is performing.”

For me, anytime I have a microphone in my hand is a fun time for me. I feel, in general, I feel both energized, engaged, and in flow. Although of course we have our bad days, and there have been times when I’ve had a microphone in my hand and I have been horrible [laughs] or I’ve been feeling horrible about everything.

That’s one of the practices that I use, it’s really if you want to do it at home, you can get their book to see how they do it, or you could just have couple of gauges that go from one through 10 or 1 to 5, whatever you want to you have. Then you can just choose what your energy level and what your engagement level is based on the activity you were doing or the task you were doing. You can bring it right down to a very specific task. It also helped me to articulate what I really hate doing. It helped me to find ways to communicate about that with others or find ways to dump those activities.

We don’t always have that ability. Sometimes I just had to do it. There were other times when I was able to think creatively about those activities and I was able to find another way to get them done without me having to do them myself.

The other thing I do that has been hugely helpful for me is, when I make my to-do list, especially when I’m feeling stuck and I need to reengage this practice because I don’t do, I’ll admit, I don’t do this every single day, but when I do do this practice, I’ll do it every day for like a few weeks at least. When I make my to-do list, I will sometimes write down the different strengths that will help me or that will motivate me to be active in that to-do.

For example, I love it when people spot my strength of creativity or curiosity. When I’m having some trouble getting going on a project, not only will I think about my energy and engagement levels, what kinds of tasks are involved that will really harness my energy and engagement, and why my energy and engagement might be lower or higher on some of the activities, but I’ll also make a list of strengths that I’m going to be using.

It’s really motivating for me to see things like creativity and curiosity show up, because I love, those are some things that I both value and I feel strong in, generally. It also helps me to see when they’re not, when those things or when the things that I’m really excited about don’t show up. Things like perseverance or prudence are constantly showing up. Those are things I don’t enjoy as much, but knowing that I need to engage them helps motivate me.

One other thing, I got really excited as you were talking, Bob, because a couple of other things came to mind for me, putting yourself in a different context. That’s something I love to do so much. I have had this happen. I have to drive to Madison once a month, maybe once every couple of months. I like taking a different way and I know that this is an example everyone uses all the time, but I sometimes like to take a different way home or a different way there, depending on how late I’m running. That actually, that’s my thinking time in the car. If I’m taking a different route, it just helps me. We talk a little bit about putting yourself in a different context in our episodes. We have two episodes on call, Why Knowing Yourself Matters.

We did talk a little bit about that, but the other way I do this is inspired by Julia Cameron’s, The Artist’s Way. I sometimes do, she calls them our artist date nights where you’re taking yourself on like an artist date. I just use that time to do something that I know I enjoy and love doing that I don’t get to do that often. That helps take me outside of the context that I’m normally in. The main point there is putting yourself in to a different context and maybe doing it for yourself by yourself might even be helpful.

Bob: I’m glad you brought up context because it’s so easy. I think we were just both falling into it too. It’s like that this is when we’re talking about our strengths, that it’s always in a work context. Bringing up The Artist’s Way or just being, noting in your relationships, family and friendships, trying to note where those strengths are. That’s the great thing about relationships, especially ones that are deep enough and comfortable enough that you could ask too, what do I bring to this?

Or, what do you think my strengths are? That can just help you think about that. One of the things since it was brought up having a conversation, one of the other things, one of the other practices I think is not just noticing your strengths and values, but being able to talk about them with others and explore them collectively. Because sharing your strengths and values with others can help you connect with others. It can help them think about their own strengths and values.

Inviting others into conversations about shared values and complementary strengths can really be helpful when we’re talking about both individual and community resilience in any kind of doing work together. Several years ago now, I had a conversation with Steve Rosenbaum from Magnify Media. I contacted him because he had organized a gathering around a particular issue. It was at a conference, a pretty widely attended conference, South by Southwest down in Austin, Texas. He had this issue that he wanted. He’s looking around, he’s like, “There’s all these very talented people. What if we all put our strengths to work on this particular issue that I care about?”

He invited people to come, and as the participants entered the room, he asked them to write the part of the issue, or the angle that they wanted to attack the issue from, that they would like to work on. He had them write that and also their primary strengths on their name tag. Then that helped organize the room into groups. There were people with diverse strengths working on each part of the issue. It’s funny because Jessica knows I have mixed feelings about these labels, but I thought I was really interested in it, fascinated, because you’re putting your strengths right out there. It’s like, “Hey, I’m really good in this context that Steve’s talking about. I’m really good at communication or marketing or technology or, certain kinds of development,” or whatever.

Jessica: Brainstorming.

Bob: Brainstorming.

Jessica: I think that’s a strength. [crosstalk]

Bob: Yes. Whatever those are, and you’re putting that right out there for people. Then that gives you a point for connection. Also gets you into a group where we’ve got some mix of strengths. For all application developers from the technical side and we’re all sitting, trying to work on a particular issue, we’re probably not going to be as successful because we don’t have other diverse strengths at the table.

I was really fascinated with that. It also put me in mind of this, the attitude that a lot of times when we come to things that we care about, community work, political issues that we care about, whatever it is that usually outside of our regular jobs that we are coming to, we come with an attitude, which is a great attitude, I think, of like, “I’ll help however I can just put me to work.” Put a mop in my hand or put a soup label in my hand or what do you need help with? I’ll do anything. That can be great.

Jessica: I am–

Bob: Oh, go ahead.

Jessica: I just want to quick say, I am infamous or famous, I don’t know for saying, “You guys all choose what you want to do and I’ll fill in the gaps.” Not always the best.

Bob: Well, that’s it. I think it’s a great attitude that you’re willing to do whatever to help the cause, but it just might not be sustainable. If that work doesn’t align with your particular strengths that you’re never going to get feel inflow as we talked about doing this work, or energized necessarily. I worked as a treasurer for a nonprofit organization, professional organization, not for very long, really for about a couple of years.

I burned out really quickly because that’s not a strength of mind, financials, I was stepping up because we needed to fill a vacancy. I stepped up and did this, and I had a great time doing it. I learned a ton, but it was just so much work for me to do something that maybe with someone who had strengths in that area just could have done so much more easily. I just burned out faster because that work didn’t really tap into enough of my strengths.

I think that’s really important to identify and also share those strengths to avoid those kinds of situations. Something else, I think that comes up when we’re talking about sharing your strengths and your values and helping others do the same, is we haven’t talked very much about values in that context and that can be really important too. In the example that I gave from Steve Rosenbaum, everybody came to that meeting caring about this issue. That’s why they came.

Sometimes we can take this a little bit too far and expect, not only should everybody care about this issue, but everybody should agree on the cause and everybody should agree on the possible solutions and everybody–

Jessica: The lens we’re all looking at this through.

Bob: Yes, right. All our values should align and we should know who to blame and who to praise, and we should all align. Tim Merry, and Tuesday Ryan-Hart, they really helped open my eyes about that because I was that person. It was like, “Well, let’s get a mission statement first thing.” Let’s list all of our shared values and everything that we agree on. Sometimes that’s just too far to go.

When we’re talking about our values and sharing them, we can also acknowledge that, “Hey, we might have different values in other areas or in other contexts or aspects of this particular issue, but we’re here because we care about this issue.” We’re doing some food systems work right now. “Hey, we’re all at the table because we care about food security. We want everybody to be food secure. We might have all different values and thoughts about how we solve that problem or what the cause of that problem is, but we don’t have to necessarily agree on all of those things if we have that, because we’re all here because we care about food security.

Then we can just start working that, and then explore those relationships as we go by sharing our values. Sometimes, it’s always weird to me, people are like, “Write down your values,” and I’m like, “I don’t know what my values are.” [00:20:41]

Jessica: Give me a list, and I’ll cross a bunch of them off.

Bob: I know, not this one, not this one. It can be super awkward to be out there and be like, “Hey, hi, I’m Bob. My values are–”

Jessica: Also, because I’ve been in some of those spaces too. I think there’s also sometimes a little shame that can be brought up when there’s something that you don’t value that it seems like everyone else values, like family. Family is not one of my top values. I love my family so much, but the first time I realized that family wasn’t one of my top values, I worried that there was something wrong with me. I felt like a jerk. I had a lot of shame around that. Anyway, we don’t need to talk about that. I’m just saying it can be an awkward thing to admit to yourself, even.

Bob: I think we’ve talked over the years and used in different facilitation some questions that could be helpful that don’t necessarily speak directly to your values. Talking about what you care about is one way to talk about your values without saying my values are, and a question that I love for so long and used so much in different facilitation, just what lights you up? We use it in different contexts, we used it to help people identify goals. I think as I think about that, I think that really is a question that gets that strengths and values, like what energizes you? What engages you? What lights you up? Those things can help you identify those values.

It’s a question that you can answer or something that you can share without making that direct statement about, “Hey, my values are this.”

Jessica: If someone asked me what lights you up, one of the things I might say, is a solo road trip. I think that that’s my surface level answer. I think when we talk about what lights you up, when I really think about if someone were to say to me, “What do you like about solo road trips? What’s important to you about solo road trips, or solo travel in particular,” asking that question, what’s important to you about that? Would bring up answers like, “I love the freedom of just doing what I want when I want. Freedom does happen to be one of my top five, big five values.” If someone said, what lights you up? I might give my surface answer, but what’s behind it is a value.

It’s a practice that I’ve put into place in some of the workshops that I run, where I actually have people get into conversations with each other. I have one person sharing a story while another person is just listening for strengths and values. Then at the end of that conversation– I’m sure this practice is done all over the place, but at the end, the person who was listening just for strengths and values. Their job was not to respond and was not to ask them questions or to turn the conversation and have an interplay. I share what lights me up as solo road trips. Bob says, “I love those, too, but I prefer to do it this way.”

It’s not a conversation, but it’s one person sharing a story about themselves and the other person reflecting back to them afterwards all of the strengths and the values that they heard come up. People end up feeling very validated in ways that they maybe haven’t felt validated in a long time when you do that. I think that’s a practice that we can put into place when we’re talking with other people about what lights them up or about what lights us up. We don’t need to be worried about the reciprocation of, we share what lights us up, and the other person didn’t reflect back any of the values or strengths that I shared.

We don’t have to worry about that. In turn, we could still do that for people because it is something that deepens relationship and connection, but it also at its surface level, keeps you really into and present, engaged and present with the conversation that’s happening right in front of your face. [laughs]

Bob: Yes, it’s a great listening practice too. Yes, I absolutely love that practice. I’m so glad that you brought it up and, yes, ask a close colleague. You don’t have to wait for a trained facilitator to run a meeting where you [laughs] do this. Ask a close colleague or ask a friend to do that for you or do that for them. I think that can really help. You’re talking about your solo road trips, I’m like, “Ah, I got a strength and probably a value for you. That’s Jessica’s curiosity. She wants to be going wherever she wants to go and finding out about people and meeting new people.” I can definitely see that.

Jessica: Oh, sure. It’s how I found the world’s largest cast iron griddle. [chuckles] It was somewhere in the country in North Carolina while I was driving from Raleigh to the beach. I was like, what? This sounds interesting. It’s in this tiny little town. It’s the world’s largest– Anyway. [laughs]

Bob: We were talking about doing this personally, but I think if you are someone who leads meetings or does any facilitative meeting too, it can be a struggle, but taking time to explore strengths and values in your meetings or giving people the time to do that can really be helpful for them, and I think we’ve mentioned, we think it’s really important to share work to deepen our connections with each other and ground our shared work in our strengths and values. Again, this is another awkward one, but I do want to bring up our friend Bjorn Peterson, who joined us for a couple of episodes last fall.

Jessica: To be clear. Bjorn’s not awkward. [laughs]

Bob: Bjorn is not awkward. That’s not why I was reminded of him. I was reminded of him because we talked a little about this in a little bit of a different context. We were talking about reflection and getting to know yourself. Bjorn likes to use art to come to conversations on Slant, to get people to connect with each other. I think that’s a great way to do it too, instead of getting everyone around the table. It’s like, all right everybody, list your values and share them with the room, or something like that.

Bjorn has used poetry or music, asking people like hey, what was your favorite song when you’re in high school and why? That gets to your practice that you were sharing, Jessica, because when you do that, you’re sharing a story and everyone else can be listening for, “Oh, what does that say about this person?” Or, “Where are the values and strengths that emerge in that story?” [crosstalk] It might scary to address this directly in a group, but there are some tools that we could use to come on Slant.

Jessica: We’re in a training right now where every session is started. I believe this comes from the Circle Way, a practice for facilitated meetings. Every session that we’re in starts with a poem. The poem is read twice, which at first if you told me that we were going to start with a poem and that it was going to be read twice before we began the meeting, before I ever experienced it, I would’ve been like, that’s just so much of a waste of time. Actually, [laughs] the fact that it’s read twice in two different voices actually helps me listen to the poem more.

Sometimes when the poem is being read at first, I’m a little distracted still, still getting into the meeting, and then by the time it’s being read the second time I can really focus. Then we react to it often afterwards, and it’s such a freeing and connecting experience. I know that that has other certain contexts they might be really uncomfortable bringing something like poetry or songs or art and asking people to react to it. Yet I think it’s a really powerful practice that really could work in any context. I just think that there are some contexts or some spaces where that would feel too weird to people.

Bringing that in may not work, but you could do other things like breaking people off into pairs for just five minutes even, where they each get a chance to share a little story and reflect back some of those strengths and values could work as well. Yes, I think that it is worth trying, worth learning about how to bring in a piece of art or poetry into your meetings and reacting to it. I think it’s totally worth it. I also understand that that may not happen in a lot of places.

Bob: Well, not to label anybody who’s listening right now, but if you’re listening, you’re probably like us, one of the weird ones anyway, so go ahead and try it. That’s why you’re here, I assume is because you’re the person like we are who maybe is just crazy enough to give it a shot. Give it a try, see how it goes. One of the other practices that we want to talk about regarding this, if you’re really going to ground yourself in your strength and strengths and values, is assessing how your actions might align with your values and strengths.

Sometimes our lives and work don’t reflect our values and strengths, so taking time to think about how you’re practicing your values when you’re not experiencing a crisis and you have time to do that, and thinking about how you can share your strength in your community can be really helpful in that grounding. I think that there’s often a gap between what you think you ought to be doing and what you are actually doing, and thinking about that can really be helpful.

For me, that can also be difficult like I brought up earlier, feelings of inadequacy, imposter syndrome, admitting that to yourself. That can be tough but if we can get past those feelings or work through those feelings, acknowledge those feelings and accept them without letting it derail us, research really shows that looking at this gap can help us change our behavior.

This was some research that was done around environmental practice, so you survey people and you’re like, “How many people believe that we should be protecting the environment?” It’s a very high number. Then you ask them like, how many people are actually doing the stuff that would protect the environment, and that’s a lower number. What the research found is like when you point that gap out to people, you can change their behavior.

What is called, is induced hypocrisy, not to throw psychological technical terms at you, but you’re inducing hypocrisy. You’re like pointing up to someone’s like, “Hey, you say you believe this, but this is what I’m seeing you doing,” or asking, “Are you doing this?” Those studies have shown that that can really help people change their behavior, and I think getting more action and less feelings of inadequacy out of induced hypocrisy, which is what we are really doing if we’re going to be thinking about this gap, that relies on knowing that everyone out there is a hypocrite at some level, and I’m not saying that to forgive.

Jessica: Thanks a lot.

Bob: That’s you. You’re a hypocrite Jessica, listener, you are a hypocrite. I’m sorry but you are, and I don’t want to say that to forgive people who are doing really harmful moral hypocrisy. I don’t want to forgive that, but the fact is like, we all aspire to better things. We all want to grow and improve. There’s always going to be a gap between who we are now and who we want to be, so there’s always going to be a gap between what we’re projecting in our head and what we are actually doing, because that’s how growth works.

Jessica: That reminds me of one of my favorite quotes, and to be honest, I’m not sure where this quote comes from. I don’t know if this quote comes from the person I heard it from, who is a scholar of like Vygotskian methods or if it comes from Vygotsky himself also, but what I heard her say was, we are who we are and we are who we are becoming.

That is always true, basically. That we are always who we are and we are always who we are becoming, and so I think it makes sense in a way that we are all, I guess hypocrites or frankly, even I’ve heard people talk about in imposter syndrome that no, we are all imposters because of this thing where we are who we are now and we are who we are becoming, and because we’re always in that gap, I guess that’s where things like liminal thinking and being okay with this constant developing that we’re doing, and being okay with being in spaces or being in times of our life where we’re not really sure.

We’re shedding a little bit of who we were, and we’re gaining other things, but we’re still trying to figure out what those things are. I think that’s very normal. This makes a lot of sense to me.

Bob: I think it’s just acknowledging that our actions are going to stray from our values, and when that happens, knowing it, but also forgiving ourselves in order to do better, because if I just say, “I’m a hypocrite. I believe in environmentalism, but I don’t always recycle. I threw an aluminum can in the garbage and that means I should just stop trying and caring about the environment,” that’s not productive either. So recognizing this gap, I think, like I said, this idea of induced hypocrisy, the research shows it can spur behavior change, but I think part of it actually being effective is not just going, “Well, I’m a hypocrite. I give up. I must not value that.”

Let go of your values because you’re not following through an action and just acknowledging, “Hey, there’s going to be a gap. I’m going to make mistakes, but how can I close that gap and where are the opportunities to do that.” So very simple things of scheduling time to find opportunities to contribute your strengths and pursue your values in your community. If you care about an issue, go out and find a way to be involved in it. Don’t be afraid to reach out and offer your particular skills to an organization or your community.

Jessica: I just want to remind everyone, don’t guilt yourself into it. Really, really think about where you are offering your skills, what skills you’re offering, are you offering those skills that you are excited to offer, and why you want to offer those skills to that group. Also, I think one of the problems that I have is I’ll go full bore into something because I’m like, “Oh, finally, I found the thing that I’m going to be excited about and I’m going to contribute in my community.”

I don’t set any boundaries to protect myself from burning out either. I just volunteer for everything, which we talked about a little earlier. I just would caution you to, don’t guilt yourself into volunteering for organizations in your community. Just first really think about it, which is what this whole episode really is about, about your values and your strength. It’s more than okay to say no. It is more than okay to say no.

Bob: This has been a really great conversation, Jess. Thanks so much. There’s eight themes that come from this work that we’ve been talking about. This has been our conversation about Grounding Yourself in Strengths and Values. You can learn more about those other themes and how you can help connect communities to build their resilience from our free booklet. It’s called Eight Ways to Cultivate Community in Times of Change, which is full of practical ways that you can boost your community building and deepen your relationships.

You can receive a digital version of the booklet just by signing up for the Practicing Connection community monthly email. You can sign up at That’s You can keep up with Practicing Connection by subscribing to the podcast in your favorite podcast app. We would love it if you would do that. I’ve mentioned the Practicing Connection community monthly email. Signup at or you can follow us on Twitter and/or you can do all of it. Follow us on Twitter. Our Twitter handle is @PracticingCxn, so at Practicing Connection, but connection is Cxn, @PracticingCxn.

Jessica: Thanks so much for joining us again for this conversation. We’d also like to thank our announcer, Kalin Goble, Hannah Hyde and Terry Meisenbach for their help with marketing and Nathan Grimm who composed and performed all the music you hear on the podcast. We hope you’ll join us again soon. In the meantime, keep practicing.

Kalin: The Practicing Connection podcast is a production of OneOp and is supported by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, US Department of Agriculture, and the Office of Military Family Readiness Policy, US Department of Defense under award number 2019-48770-30366.

[00:39:41] [END OF AUDIO]


March 1, 2023
1:30 pm CST
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Practicing Connection Podcast