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This is confession time. For a while now, something in me has not wanted to prepare too heavily for workshops. I tend to prepare an outline and then tear up the plan. That is obviously a  risk and, yes, sometimes it feels uncomfortable; to me at least.

The thing is, it works. It works because when you have the right audience at the right time, people ask the questions they are struggling with. They pull at the answers and we have a discussion. More comes out; it is pulled out, rather than pushed. Rather than an answer, pushing out for an unasked question, we find a question coming forth, pulling at an answer. Maybe someone in the room has a different perspective. In response to the request, we share stories. We have a laugh. We learn. We learn because we have questions we want answers to. We collaborate to find them.

I know instinctively, that pushing at learning requires both muscles and a piston of steel. To push you need not only force but also the will for that force to come from the centre. This does not sit well with me. As the learner, pulling at what you need, when you want it, not only requires less force, it it also self-enabled, and it sticks.

Just like tug of war, we do need a bit of basic structure. Once that is in place all that is then required is a good, strong pull.

Hilary – 21 July 2014