“Time Around the Table” – At the kitchen table is the place to be in most homes. For many of us, it is the place full of sounds and smells of evoking memories and sensations of both comfort and safety. For some, around the “family dinner table” did not happen or was often an unwelcoming, cold experience. This therapeutic group experience is a “one-off”, happens once, creating a unique set of opportunities, experiences and positive memories with a unique set of people. Kinda like time together with friends over a cup of coffee or cup of tea but with time to explore, process, have “ah-ha” moments, time to consider what is said with no “dangling participles” at the end of the evening … if ya know what I mean … when parting we genuinely say “let’s do this again soon”.
This particular group is informed by my experience as a Chef for Hire and my catering business True Color Cooking, LLC. The recipe goes something like this: Mix in 4 cups of/29 years of professional experience as a psychotherapist and chaplain; 2 cups of Dialectic Behavioral Therapy skills; 2 cups of Nonviolent Communication skills; 2 sticks of Daring Way ™ and 2 T of Narrative Psychotherapy; simmer over low heat/meet n greet conversation; combine with our stories (the pasta). I facilitate team-building exercises using experience-based learning opportunities found in the kitchen. Cooking together creates an environment for sharing life and experiences. It also provides an opportunity to experiment beyond the bounds of recipes or habitual behavioral patterns within a safe space.
How it works: This therapeutic program is for individuals, families, groups. Once we decide the “who, what, when, where” menus are planned by clients. It could be a simple as baking cookies or creating a full meal together. Cooking occurs in the client’s home per “Chef for Hire” guidelines. Ingredients are purchased in advance by myself. Typically, organic, locally grown produce is used. The session includes our sharing what we have prepared together, debriefing our learning and clean-up. Session cost is $80 per participant plus the cost of food divided evenly among the number of participants. Payment is expected upon making “a reservation” for this group experience.
Consider a similar gathering: “The People’s Supper” project https://thepeoplessupper.org “Part of the appeal of dinner is how the stories that make up our lives naturally unfold as we share space — a form of nourishment toward understanding and empathy. Co-founder Lennon Flowers says a story can be a powerful entryway — “in a way argument isn’t” — into the depth of relationship we lack in our public and political spaces. The project takes this to its heart. According to co-founder Jennifer Bailey, the People’s Supper mantra is: “Relationships move at the speed of trust, but social change moves at the speed of relationships.” from “The Pause: The Speed of Relationships” by Kristin Lin Editor, The On Being Project.
For the whole conversation and additional printable resources visit: On Being conversation with Krista Tippett Jennifer Bailey and Lennon Flowers “An Invitation to Brave Space”.