A while ago I ran a workshop that I wasn’t very happy with. I got some outcomes for my client but it didn’t run smoothly or go as I’d planned.
Not going to plan wasn’t the problem, part of facilitating a group workshop is that it rarely goes entirely to plan and you have to be able to flex to what the group needs to get the outcomes the client wants.
However, at this workshop there were some people that I found difficult, and I was unhappy with how I managed the situation. I know I could have handled it better.
I carried this heavy feeling of failure around with me for a while. It was niggling away at me. I kept thinking about what I might have done differently. I reflected on what I had learned so I could handle a similar situation better next time. I would prep differently, and I’ve got a sleeve full of different ways to respond in the moment.
I did all the things I’d advise other people to do. The heavy feeling of failure was still niggling away.
Then I took it to my Mastermind Group (one that I am a participant in rather than one that I facilitate).
I told them about how I felt I’d handled the workshop. A failure. I blurted it out. I told them how it had been playing on my mind and I couldn’t quite put it to rest. I knew rationally that I did my best in the moment but emotionally I was feeling bad. They listened and asked questions. They didn’t rush in with platitudes like ‘oh but I’m sure it was great!’ or try and offer up any solutions. They gave me time to say everything I needed to say. It felt like therapy.
Then when I’d said everything I needed to say, one person asked me, ‘What do you wish you had said to them – the difficult people?’
What a great question.
The anger came out. I pretended my mastermind colleagues were the difficult people and I went for it. I won’t write what I said here – too many expletives.
Did it help? YES.
Did it feel cathartic? YES.
Did it help me move on? YES.
The ‘What do you wish you had said to them?’ question really helped me get my frustration, anger and emotion out. Once it was out, I could genuinely take on board the learning (that until then had felt just like going through the motions) and move on.
I love being in a mastermind group. It’s a place to share in safely, a place to get a different perspective and it’s time to think. It’s also a place where you get to help other people, get some inspiration and laugh in the face of adversity.