© 2020 by Amanda Lyons

drawings + photos by Amanda Lyons

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DRAWN to CONNECT


How might drawing - literally - help us connect with each other, our content and collaborations? How do we connect authentically?

Authority figures give prizes for speed and efficiency. Our bosses always want us to move faster, and marketing scientists (we haven't even met) have literally rewired our brains by using intense physical, mental and spiritual biases via television shows and social media. We are starved for connection - for meaning - for love.


I have the great joy of collaborating with two amazing women, Denise Easton and Barb Siegel. Together we are building a program based in complexity, art, communication, and neuroscience called DRAWN to CONNECT (currently in beta).

We're designing a program consisting of three online workshops and one in-person retreat. Our first online workshop, DRAWN to CONNECT: Meet the Technique, ran in June 2018 and was a valuable experience from many angles. It's multifaceted, allowing participants to benefit in ways that best suit them.


As facilitators, we're always re-learning what it takes to build and sustain a community. We asked many questions and had great fun experimenting in our first workshop by attending to what emerged from the group - and WOW!

We've learned to share information live only when it needs to be live in order to make the most of our time together; to allow for different levels of interaction thereby honoring the intention (and personality) each person brings individually. Individually experimenting with how we pay attention, how we present information, ask for input and respond to suggestions can lead to different insights.


There is a subtle art to hosting interactions that fit the group’s collective personality while inviting each individual to show up in their own way.


Shifting the content and modes of engagement to the needs and preferences of those who are present can make for a dynamic experience rooted in complexity. Operating in this way creates a mirror for us as we begin to see how our human experience is mirrored in nature AND how we are part of that nature. This means having a plan and being willing to deviate from it!

As we progress through our daily lives with technology at our sides we begin to find that the clear cut edges of efficiency (of how our apps work in a linear way - and how we interact with these apps) is how we try to live our lives - fitting them into linear processes and clear dichotomies. Hello, frustration!


See, we’re wired for change, for adaptability. Our bodies and minds hold so much information (energetically embodied and knowledge based), simultaneously taking information in and giving it out. What does it mean to feel free? We explored this question as a cohort. Everyone’s drawn answers were different. Below is my drawn response to what freedom means to me.

In the image, there’s a wave of a sort, dots of potential engagement and a few figures (or various perspectives of one figure) emanating energy. One could interpret this drawing in many ways. There is no ‘RIGHT’ way. As we chatted about what freedom meant for each of us we found smiles and laughter and were struck by emerging patterns.


We found through conversation that being open and honest in our conversation brought a sense of freedom, inviting us to be in touch with our most authentic selves. We were able to continuously keep the collective in mind and heart - allowing differences to exist in harmony (rather than always seeking agreement).


As for our DRAWN to CONNECT program, we'll be formulating our next steps soon! Want to be one of the first to know when it's up? Stay tuned via PlexusInstitute.org or email Denise at admin@plexusinstitute.org or reach out to me!


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