Category Archives: Presenters

Making Sense of Our Lives through the Power and Practice of Story

by Christina Baldwin via

Be a Storycatcher Today!

1. Invite story telling and listening into little pockets of public time.
When you’re in the coffee line—ask someone about his or her first memories of coffee. When you’re in the grocery line—ask someone how to cook an item in their basket (Turnips? Artichokes? Chicken livers!?) When you notice something unusual—don’t judge it, ask for the story about it… so why does your niece have 27 holes in her ears?

Because it creates social connection. When people are connected they care about each other. And people who
care about each other start taking care of their communities, and sharing resources, and telling each other the
really good ideas about how they are doing. You get the idea!

2. Ask your colleagues how they are—then stop and really listen.
So, did your daughter make the soccer team?
How’s your spouse/partner doing after last week?
I heard about X—I’m so sorry, anything I can do?
Hey, way to go with that report, what was their reaction to the Powerpoint?

See above.
And think about it: you are working together. When you know something about each other you make a better
team. You are more efficient at accomplishing tasks, understanding how to use each other’s talents, or supporting someone who is temporarily overwhelmed. You get the idea!

3. Create time in your family and/or friendship group devoted to story.
When children are playing—help them make story out of their games.
Read to each other—read to the kids, read to your partner, read to your parents, read to the dog.
Unplug the machinery, circle the chairs, linger at the table or on the porch, ask a story-invoking question.
Laugh. Cry. Tell one of your own stories.

See above.
Knowing how to tell a story is a necessary life skill! Can you imagine not being able to say who you are? What
you know? Love? Want? Story is the basis of everything. Story is how we relate. Story is how we belong.
You get the idea!

4. Repeat every good story you hear—
Say something nice about a neighbor, colleague, family member who bugs you—maybe even say it to
When someone is complaining about someone else, ask, “But what good things have they done?”
When someone is complaining about all the changes we face, ask them, “But what are we learning?
What do we want to leave for the future?”
When someone is gossiping, ask, “Tell me a story about a time you kept another’s trust?”

See above.
Social space feels good or bad depending on the stories people share about each other. Stories are how we
build each other up and encourage the best out of each other, or we can tear each other down. You choose—
every time you open your mouth. Be intentional: you have huge power as a storyteller. You get the idea.

Based on the book Storycatcher: Making Sense of Our Lives Through the Power and Practice of Story by Christina Baldwin.

Christina Baldwin and Ann Linnea present The Circle Way in Vancouver April 6 & 7, 2013.

Money Matters

by Laurie Anderson via

Laurie Anderson presents Intro to Balanced Leadership with Kim Hudson in Vancouver on March 8.

 In addition to protection against scarcity we need to have a symbol (money) that measures how much of what we love we have in our lives (Teague does an excellent job of giving us an idea of what that would look like).  That’s where balanced leadership comes in.

We recently watched a rough cut of an impressive new documentary by Katie Teague (, which explores society’s relationship with money. As the world grapples with yet another financial crisis, Teague’s film eloquently illuminates the unconscious assumptions and flaws in the current economic system as well as offering a fresh narrative on our relationship with money. It’s a powerful film but its central premise – the system is broken and needs to be replaced – is, we suggest respectfully, also flawed.  We don’t need to replace the current economic model, we need to be conscious of the meaning and direction it offers and choose when it best suits us.  Perhaps more importantly, we also need to understand the other half of the coin, pardon the pun.  In addition to protection against scarcity we need to have a symbol (money) that measures how much of what we love we have in our lives (Teague does an excellent job of giving us an idea of what that would look like).  That’s where balanced leadership comes in.

The dire fiscal straits we’re in – mounting personal debt; banks collapsing; entire countries in default; lack of trust in financial institutions – serve as a test case of one world thinking. In the absence of the balancing values of the love-based world – e.g. meaning, creativity, consensus and emotion – the shadow elements of the fear-based world can run amok. Order, goals, extrinsic rewards and control, competition and other essential elements of the fear-based world have their place, but too much of one world is detrimental.  The fear based qualities lose their inherent value when they are left unchecked.

The same dysfunction occurs if the shadow features of the love-based world take over due to excessive use – lack of discernment, chaos, inertia, envy, susceptibility to danger, and loss of connection with self. We need a balanced system that keeps the shadow side of either world in check.  Too much of either world becomes detrimental.

money and happiness

Teague’s film documents the excesses of our dysfunctional economic system in a compelling way.  She paints a powerful picture of what happens when a system goes off-kilter, in this sad case, millions unemployed, wracked with debt, and losing hope and faith in the economy that once served them well.

The solution to this crisis though is not to throw the baby out with the bathwater, but to be consciously aware of our relationship with money so the positive aspects of both the love and fear-based world have a place. A balanced, integrated economic model would hold space for people and profit, would value relationships and results, and would recognize that “wealth” is as much about our hearts as it is our heads.

Harmony and Kinobe Launch New Project


Collaboration for Children of the Earth

Kinobe and Harmony have come together to launch an exciting new project consisting of a CD, an international tour and an education campaign, with the purpose to increase awareness about issues of environment, poverty and social development, and raise funds for children’s education and sustainable community projects in developing countries. Harmony is proud to announce that Kinobe has been appointed aHarmony Foundation World Ambassador.

For many people today, life is a struggle with grinding poverty, hunger and unhealthy environments. And yet, we have the means to ensure that every man, woman and child lives free of hunger and discrimination, in healthy and prosperous communities where they have the opportunity to reach their full potential. With compassion, creativity and foresight we can make it happen.

 Harmony is widely recognized for leadership and innovation on environment and development issues, helping governments, schools, business, youth and local residents to work together to create healthier, more prosperous communities. Programs have been implemented in 36 countries, most notably Canada, Mexico, Brazil, the Middle East and China. Major awards include the prestigious UN Global 500 Award and Ethics in Action. (

Kinobe is a gifted young Ugandan multi-instrumentalist, vocalist and composer known around the world for his inspired synthesis of African roots and global fusion. The opportunity to perform with renowned African musicians and his exposure to the bright palette of musical cultures has shaped him as a lifelong lover and purveyor of African musical traditions and a unique contributor to world music. Kinobe’s work with Harmony is an expression of his commitment to bringing love and joy to people through his music and contributing to building a better future for children and their families everywhere. (

The Bateman Foundation is a Canadian charity dedicated to education and public service based on the philosophies and legacy of renowned artist and naturalist Robert Bateman. The Foundation’s purpose is to support education programs to promote lifelong engagement with nature, with special emphasis on programs for leaders and policy-makers, youth, families and First Nations. Robert Bateman has earned great respect and admiration around the world for his art, his philanthropy and his contributions to nature conservation. We are honoured to have The Bateman Foundation involved in this project. (

The goal of the Kinobe-Harmony collaboration is to inspire people from all walks of life to take part in creating a healthier world, now and in the future, for everyone.

Read more about the Kinobe-Harmony Collaboration here.