The Joy of being a Celebrant

Some time ago I was thinking about my future, as you tend to do from time to time as a “middle aged” person might. “What is it that I enjoy most about my work”? Be it through music, education or human resources. The answer, People!
I enjoy taking and being with people.

Sharing stories, telling jokes. Having critical conversations, professional conversations or just “shooting the breeze”. What are other jobs that I could do that will allow me to continue this whilst providing comfort and a service to people? Celebrancy!

Having now completed Weddings and funerals I have found a real sense of fulfillment in providing meaning for people through ceremony. It is wonderful to speak with people as they share their stories of love. Love for a person they wish to spend the rest of their life with or stories of a loved one who has left this earth. It is a privilege and honour to sit with people who openly share with you. They want to relate stories and want them told. The next aspect of sharing those stories with others once again brings immense satisfaction.

Creating the right atmosphere in marrying a couple or providing the perfect farewell is tremendously enriching. Finding the perfect reading, involving the right people in the ceremony. Presenting professionally and setting the correct tone is something I enjoy. Seeing the joy on the faces of those who have employed you is amazing.

I leave with you with two readings, one for a funeral and one for a wedding.

I found comfort in this reading after the loss of my Father. With so many unanswered questions. In time you do find answers. Why did this person live a life What was there purpose? It does become obvious in time.

Have patience with everything that remains unsolved in your heart (s).Try to love the questions themselves, liked locked rooms and like books written in a foreign language.

Do not look for the answers now. They cannot be given to you now because you could not live them now.

It is a question of experiencing everything. At present you need to live the question.

Perhaps you will gradually, without even noticing it, find yourself experiencing the answer, some distant day.

And for a wedding, a sonate used by Gustav Mahler in a composition for soprano and orchestra. Speaking of true love.

Oh do not love me! Love the sun, She has golden hair!

If you love for youth, Oh, do not love me! Love the spring; It is young every year!

If you love for treasure, Oh, do not love me! Love the mermaid; She has many clear pearls!

If you love for love, Oh yes, do love me! Love me ever, I’ll love you evermore!

Thank you for reading.

I wish you happiness.

https://www.facebook.com/geoffhayhowcelebrant/



A HEALTHY WORKPLACE

What is Well Being?

Well Being is a state of equilibrium or balances that can be affected by life events or challenges

Well Being – Being faced with challenges and meeting them.

Resilience – Having the capacity to meet the challenge (Personal and organisational)

Mindfulness – Deal with the issue now, not just part, or of a pre-conceived idea.

Well Being through clarity of purpose.

PURPOSE  MASTERY AUTONOMY
Do I matter?
Am I valuable?
Am I competent?
Am I able to learn?
Can I influence?
Do I have a say?

Are your colleagues or employees experiencing well being?  Do they matter? Do you make them feel like they matter and valuable?

Are they competent?  Have you got the right people of the right seat in the bus?  If so, are you providing the opportunity for growth?

Do they have or are they able to have a say?  Is there open discussion, an environment that enables constructive criticism and opportunity for change?

So, are people ENGAGED?

WELL BEING + ENGAGEMENT = PRODUCTIVITY

Increased Well Being, a Healthy Workplace = Increased productivity

Can we identify the stressors?

Change; Technology; 24/7 workplace; Conflict

Can we anticipate situations or events that may cause psychological injury or potential hazards to Mental Health?

  • Returning after maternity leave
  • Family issues – illness; financial;
  • Extended illness
  • Return from injury
  • Excessive workload – covering absence
  • Major change – In a team, in a branch; new programs or procedures

Can you find ways to minimise the stressors?

Professional conversations: Ask and listen

How often do we give the gift of our time for others? Having a positive conversation can be very easy and if you practice the art of listening, incredibly fulfilling for your colleague.

“Tell me a time when you were at your best”?
or
“Tell me about something you have done really well this week/month/term/year”?

Just listen. Don’t interject or ask questions.

Listen and identify the skill – e.g. preparation, persistence, empathetic, energy, researching, thinking outside the square, controlled etc

Confirm the skill you have identified.

“How do you or could you apply this to other situations?”

Listen!

A positive conversation that won’t take too much of your time.

Try it. I expect you will be thanked for your time.

Professional Conversations: Investigation

An Investigation as “a journey of learning beyond individuals”, concerning itself with the organisation.

The key points for an investigation.

Separate roles. The investigator and the decision maker. You can’t be both.

The Investigator

Be Non Judgmental. This is a negative or positive sense.

Be fair and respectful of all concerned, aware of the well being of all concerned.

Get ALL of the facts. Address each and every point.

Do not rely on memory. Poor memory becomes reconstruction +

Confidentiality needs to be explained and maintained by all parties. It is a word that is often misunderstood.

Be calm and patient. Do not submit to the time line of others

+ Reconstructive memory is a theory of elaborate memory recall proposed within the field of cognitive psychology, in which the act of remembering is influenced by various other cognitive processes including perception, imagination, semantic memory and beliefs, amongst others.

Confabulation is a disturbance of memory, defined as the production of fabricated, distorted, or misinterpreted memories about oneself or the world, without the conscious intention to deceive.

Professional Conversations: Talk to the person not about the person!

“OPINION is really the lowest form of human knowledge. It requires no accountability, no understanding. The highest form of knowledge is empathy, for it requires us to suspend our egos and live in another’s world. It requires profound purpose larger than the self kind of understanding”.
Bill Bullard

Have you ever thought of doing an audit on your own conversations? How many in a day or a week are what you consider professional conversations? Conversations that move you forward, that find a solution, that result in immediate action.
Whilst there is always time for some social chat, there should never be time for gossip, perhaps disguised as expressing concern, or conversations that have no result. Conversations that talk about someone without really trying to fix a problem. Talk to the person not about them. If you are in a conversation like this, shut it down or look for a genuine solution.

Some points remember

Rumination is the focused attention on the symptoms of one’s distress, and on its possible causes and consequences, as opposed to its solutions.

Reconstructive memory is a theory of elaborate memory recall proposed within the field of cognitive psychology, in which the act of remembering is influenced by various other cognitive processes including perception, imagination, semantic memory and beliefs, amongst others.

Confabulation is a disturbance of memory, defined as the production of fabricated, distorted, or misinterpreted memories about oneself or the world, without the conscious intention to deceive.