Within the framework of the Integral Communication Workshop, I aim to work on elaborating a communication model, which takes into account – and applies – the 5 main aspects of Integral Theory (quadrants, levels, lines, states and types). During the course of our work, we use the integral map to aid us in examining and integrating the main theories on communication.
We have a fundamental need to share our thoughts and emotions with those that surround us, and to be understood. If this need is not met with success, we accumulate our unuttered, misunderstood thoughts in our consciousness, which leads to increased emotional and – eventually – physical tension in the body. Successful communication makes us feel that we are understood. As a result, we experience true encounter and unity in our relationships, which, in turn, eases the mind, causing it to quiet down for a moment.
Through our everyday communication, we determine the quality of our human relationships, as well as our mood, emotional well-being, behavior, and physical health. Our communication is influenced by the given language setting, the social situation that surrounds us, the cultural values and beliefs, and, of course, our state of mind, thoughts and emotions. All four quadrants mutually affect each other; if there is a change in one, it will have an impact on all the other aspects. Integral consciousness enables us to create effective communication. It also facilitates a deepening of awareness and a transformation of our relationships, so that win-win situations are created.
I examine communication from its vertical aspect, with the help of the Spiral Dynamics model. The various value systems, and the motivations that underlie them, determine how we communicate and how we should communicate in order to foster true understanding. Just as it would be pointless to give a academic-style, scientific lecture to a kindergartener – she will understand very little of what I am trying to say and I will be left alone with my ingenious arguments – we adults must also be addressed in a specific “language” in order for understanding and connection to happen.
Come and join the Integral Communication Workshop, if you are interested in rethinking this topic in an integral framework, and if you like the idea of thinking and creating as a team!
I encourage you to share your ideas or suggestions, and to comment on the topic!