Thoughts on contact

Johnnie Moore

Johnnie Moore

I’m Johnnie Moore, and I help people work better together

I love the wiki for the Reboot conference. Lots of simple features to engage and connect flesh out ideas and get involved with the content in advance of the event itself.

My talk will be about Contact and our ambivalence about it. Here’s the latest version of my summary on the wiki.

I first came across the notion of “fuck off, come closer” when doing psychotherapy training. It captured the confusing but human pattern of acting like we want to be alone when deep down we’re desperate for contact.

We’re caught between our need for spontaneity and our desire for control.

Ask people what they think of meetings and they’ll offer variations on a theme of “waste of time”. Those same people actually thrive on relationships – it’s just a question of what sort of meeting we’re talking about.

Likewise, most of us dread giving and/or listening to presentations. Presentations seem to have become about show rather than about being present to each other.

Research demonstrates the extraordinary influence that the quality of human contact – or the lack of it – has on the brain, on our personalities and on our behaviour. It confirms how easily we can be deceived about how we make choices and how much we influence each other. Most of this goes on unconsciously.

The individualist mindset sometimes neglects the power of what is created between people, where it’s not clear who initiated or created the idea. What sort of contact is energising – and what sort dampens the possibility of co-creativity? Does technology help set up the “weak signals” that might connect us better, or does it get in the way?

I’m aiming for this to be an experiential session and not death-by-powerpoint.

Feedback welcome, here or on the Reboot page.

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