Hereford Men's Circle
Date & Time
We meet fortnightly on a Monday
from 7pm for a prompt start at 7.15.
7.15pm - 10.15pm
The Barn, Kentchurch Estate, Herefordshire
Ali Kirk - 07792 405 660
Sylvan Barreau - 07510 419745
Rob McCarthy - 07598 415027
This circle is a place for men interested in self-development to support one another and to practice authentic relating, deepening self-awareness and emotional literacy. It is a circle for men to commit to accountability, integrity and authenticity.
The purpose and culture: a space for men to deepen into their own process, to be supported, to share and to be heard, to support other men in an inquiry around 'who am I as a man?' Each man brings a willingness to use the space to do his own work and to support others in their work, with the belief that 'your work is my work'.
We are a men’s circle affiliated with the local Journeyman Mentor Circle for teenage boys and this circle is a space where existing and potential local Journeyman mentors can receive training and continue to become more clear and present for the boys they mentor.
A Credo: taken from Bill Kauth’s A Circle Of Men:
In this group we take responsibility for ourselves. To the greatest of our ability we respond to our own needs and wants at every moment and trust that in doing so we will serve each other’s greatest good. As I take increasing responsibility for myself I become more real, authentic, and credible man for you to interact with. If I give you feedback I will take responsibility to tell you graciously about anything I experience that is in conflict with my needs or wants, trusting that we will enter into dialog with open minds.
What I say here is confidential. Outside this group, I will not share another man’s words, actions, or identity. I will only speak of my own experience and personal insights. This Confidentiality is intended to create a sense of safety for each man.
The group will begin on time and end on time. If I arrive late, I will not interrupt the flow of the group.
Non-Violence - Violence can be physical, verbal, emotional or spiritual ... I acknowledge that my words and actions have an impact on those around me. I will take responsibility for my words and actions.
No Drugs or Alcohol
I will not attend the group while under the influence of alcohol or recreational drugs. If I break this agreement I will tell the group and accept the choice of the group in handling this to create a safe space for the men present.
I will speak openly and truthfully in “I” statements (not “we” or “you” statements). I use ‘I statements’, knowing I am owning my thoughts feelings and behaviour and connecting with them by talking in this way. This in itself is a powerful habit of communication.
o I think this ….
o I believe this ….
o When I behave or do this ….
Any man may pass his involvement in any part of the evening at any time. Any man may STOP a process (especially in the service of maintaining his physical, mental or emotional safety).
I am not here to give advice. If I want advice, I will ask for it specifically. I will ask permission before offering feedback. I will not interrupt another man with my opinion or advice. But I do not need to ask permission to speak my truth.
I am responsible for taking care of myself. If I need something, I will ask for it. If I have questions, I will ask them.
I commit to showing up authentically and engaging. I show up for myself and for the other men. I choose to regularly attend to support myself and to support the other men (and by extension my community and the world)
I listen actively to other men when they speak, not passively. I listen to their words, their tone of voice and their body language knowing that when I attend in this way the sharing will deepen. This benefits all men present.
The culture of the circle
We utilise a facilitated Way of Council style of sharing circle, using a talking piece.
We take full responsibility for ourselves, our feelings and our needs whilst sitting in circle at every moment and trust that in doing so we will serve each other’s greatest good.
We commit to keeping agreements in our lives and will be encouraged to regularly check in with ourselves around this. We will welcome the invitation to hold ourselves accountable for agreements we may have broken.
We embrace disagreement and conflict as a way of deepening connection, compassion, understanding, building strong community. Conflict is a natural and important part of any relationship. It is through the successful resolution of conflict that we build intimacy. The community, the circle is a safe space supporting telling our truth at a deeper level. We use various processes to navigate conflict as a circle of men. We understand that by working together in this way with issues that surface, we are ultimately serving each other and growing as men as we employ and experience clear processes for resolving issues.
We bring a willingness for self-examination knowing that this will ultimately serve ourselves, each other and the boys we may choose to mentor through Journeyman. Through sharing, mutual support, emotional process weekends, theoretical understanding and discussion, we walk a path of clearing ourselves sufficiently, using the space to touch our wounds and emotional baggage, limiting beliefs and projections: shed light on these and begin to own these and integrate them.
We agree to emotionally support each other, and along with welcoming a framework for working through conflict, create a safety for us all to drop in wholly, share deeply, connect and create a stable community for the boys. To this aim, signposting to external organisations and support will be suggested if a man needs greater support than can be offered by the local group.
Listen to the book King, Warrior, Magician, Lover... on you tube via this link. The time points of each chapter can be found in the show notes.
A little book on the shadow - a PDF of the book by Robert Bly