What Happens Before Touch Happens?Communicating Boundaries, Needs and Desires About Touch
A Wheel of Consent Workshop on Zoom
A Wheel of Consent Workshop by Rose C Jiggens and Rupert J Alison: an opportunity to slow down – notice, trust, value (and maybe communicate) – what happens in the moments before touch happens. This workshop will support participants to communicate their boundaries, needs and desires in relation to touch.
The Wheel of Consent has two core aspects:
1. A map for making clearer consent agreements
2. An invitation to slow right down and tune into our feelings, sensations and thoughts which arise in the context of sharing touch with another.
This second aspect is clarified and summarised as a four-stage process in which we learn to Notice, Trust, Value and Communicate what is arising for us. These four steps are relevant whether we are the one making the request (to touch or be touched), or the one hearing the request. The good news is that even over Zoom we can still practice our ability to notice, trust, value and communicate – bringing more self-awareness to all our interactions.
In this workshop we will explore making and responding to simple touch requests, using the Wheel of Consent to guide us. Because actual physical can’t happen in this format, there will be even more space than usual to notice, trust, value and communicate the thoughts, feelings and sensations which arise in response to making or receiving touch requests. This increased awareness could prove invaluable, as many of us encounter increased physical touch possibilities as lockdown loosens. All ‘touch requests’ in the workshop will be limited, to the hands, arms, shoulders and face/head.
This workshop is facilitated by Rupert James Alison and Rose C Jiggens. You do not need any previous experience of the Wheel of Consent to take part, and we’ll begin with a brief introduction to its principles. Then we’ll move into experiential exercises, some solo and some paired, to explore:
- Touching the way you want – solo practice
- Making the “May I?” agreement – paired practice
- Being touched the way you want – solo practice
- Making the “Will you?” agreement – paired practice
Paired exercises will take place in breakout rooms, and like everything else in the workshop, are optional. There will also be space for people to share about their experiences with the group.
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