Leadership Camp & My Quest to Connect the Disconnected

So, I have a confession. Roughly two weeks before any facilitation experience, and leading right up to a report date/time, I have a moment (several sometimes), one where I get really close to backing out of the opportunity. I freak out. I let my nerves get the best of me, and have a period of weakness where I think I will either A. not connect with students and/or co-facilitators, or B. completely fail at inspiring students/young adults to do whatever it is that the curriculum is guiding.

My confidence may fool you, however this happens almost every single time I am set to facilitate or lead a group through some high-level leadership or processing experience. And like clockwork, it happened this past weekend as I prepared for LeaderShape, a six-day intensive leadership retreat for undergraduate students in higher education. Thankfully, I did not drop out of the experience (and never do), however last night, I had a moment that affirmed a feeling of being exactly where I was supposed to be. Upon meeting my small group “Family Cluster” of 11 students, my opening note was that I believe everything happens for a reason. Furthermore and in experiences like this, there is a reason we are all (our small group and other small groups) in this (any) specific environment together. Ideally that reason will reveal itself at some point, however the truth is we often do not realize the power of “that (or any, for that matter) moment” until weeks, months, and/or even years later. Needless to say, the reason is there and, in due time, it will reveal itself.

Several years ago I had the privilege of facilitating another leadership camp-like retreat, and during that experience, questioned the process so much so that I was unable to truly invest in the powerful moment that was happening all around me. I have since learned that I was in that particular moment for the mere reason that, in the future, I needed to trust the process.

Trust the process.

How often do we allow ourselves to do that, and in whatever facet of life it arises? One of the most inspirational people in my life once told me, “Connect the disconnected.” She said this to me in the context of the “general member” of an organization or company (or work environment), however today this is resonating with me in a way that reflects the disconnected parts of my self and my own leadership journey. Trusting the process and connecting the disconnected are valuable ideas that are aiding me on this goal of bettering my self-confidence through more thought-out ideals.

What parts of your life are disconnected? Are you trusting the process? Do you even know or see or feel the process? Is “checking our confidence issues” a reality? Another day of leadership camp is ahead, which means more reflection and processing for me both internally and externally. I am present and accounted for, ready and eager for more learning.



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