Importance of creativity and positive thinking

Jana Hejkrlíkova
2024. 04. 25.

I’m usually a bit of a cynical and pessimistic person. Therefore, I would like to share with you the experience from the field work where I can highlight the power of problem solving, creativity, teamwork and positive thinking. And how even despite some problematic circumstances, this can help a lot.  

I had my field work with a monitory visit during weekend-long training which is focused on leadership skills. And because this training isn't usually with a lot of participants, we decided to make it on the same venue and with some common program with training of Cycle of Global Volunteering which is pre-departure training for volunteers who are going for projects to the countries of Global South.

It was common monitoring for me and my colleague. They monitored us for one session but both of them stayed for almost the whole training which was really helpful as you can read here.

Originally, we were supposed to be there as two coordinators - me (for leadership training and part of overall preparations) and my colleague who is coordinator for Cycle of Global Volunteering training and coordination at the venue as he is not a trainer. My second coordinator wrote to me the day before that he is not coming as he is sick. So it was the first unexpected situation.

Me and my other colleague who was monitored as well came to the venue the day ahead. It was the new venue where we haven't had any training before and never been there. Usually, we are going to visit the venue before but this time there was no time. So it was a bit of a surprise for us. Firstly, the administrator of the venue was really really rude. We didn't meet anyone like him for a really long time. He was rude, impolite and still trying to make us feel very bad. Also, there was nothing, not even the soap or toilet paper and as we came late and the venue was in a remote area, we had to improvise with paper tissues, anti-covid disinfection and so on.

As there we had two trainings, we needed for Saturday two training rooms. In the description of the venue there are two training rooms. I also confirmed it by the email with the owners But on the spot, there was just one. Big but only one. Fortunately, the training of CGV had only few participants, so we decided to use the biggest sleeping room (but it wasn't very large either) and sometimes to switch rooms among groups.

On Friday afternoon and evening, other trainers and participants came and it was really nice. We had some get-to-know-each-other games, rules, expectations and fears and so on together after the dinner. Also, our mentors from ProfED were involved in the program and were able to step in with games instead of the coordinator who didn’t come.  And the next day they also helped our chef in the kitchen or went shopping (as it was supposed to be done by this second coordinator).

Monitoring was on the session focused on inclusion on Saturday afternoon. They decided for it as it was only one session which me and my colleague led together. For me it wasn't the best choice as the session wasn't created by me but it was done by a colleague and some trainers from Germany and Finland. It is a very nice session but just not in my style -  it is more about discussions and there is no big activity focused on experience - only guided focus (which I'm not very good at). But yes, that’s a challenge and on the other hand it is a very suitable style for my colleague. So there I was very grateful for our amazing teamwork and dividing tasks/parts according to our strength.  It was also a bit challenging as this session we had in that "biggest sleeping room" so there was not much space - participants were sitting between beds and our two “monitors” had to sit on the lower bed in the bunk bed. So they were kind of peeping out from there all the time. But overall it went well, I would say. We were able to keep a good mood even though the space was a bit cramped but we tried to use it as an advantage for the session as it was focused on inclusion and working with people with limited opportunities. And maybe it also helped us to create quite intime atmosphere where participants were sharing their more difficult stories.

Regarding the monitoring itself,  I like the idea that there is one person who doesn't understand and just observes your body language, voice and so on and is not distracted by content -  so I was really looking forward to this feedback.

Overall, the training itself was really nice and I really felt energetic after that. Important role in it, of course, plays a program of the training itself. Nevertheless, I also see the hugh importance of the competencies of Problem solving, creativity, positive thinking and teamwork. We explained the unexpected circumstances and other trainers and participants were very well doing and cooperating to use the time and space we have and created one great group. 

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