Preparing for Your Chat Session
In advance of an individual or small group mentoring chat session,
reviewing AIA's introductory information about Insight Mentoring,
reviewing this page of "chat tips, hints and guidelines" and
becoming familiar with the features of our chat software options.
Scheduling Your Chat Session
Schedules for individual and small group mentoring sessions
are coordinated using AIA's World Time Zone Map and online
All scheduled chat times are based on Metta's USA location,
in San Antonio, Texas, GMT+6 (the Central green "S" zone).
Our current chat software options include:
` Microsoft Chat/Instant Messenger: firstname.lastname@example.org
` Yahoo! Instant Messenger: email@example.com
` ICQ Instant Messenger: ID# 127453688
` Jabber: firstname.lastname@example.org
` TalkCity: Download [Mac | PC]
Web Access [AOL | WebTV | Linux]
TalkCity Overview [Autoresponder]
All six chat software programs are free.
For individual sessions, you may choose whichever software
program you prefer.
If you download Jabber's or Trillian's instant messaging
software, you will have universal chat access across all
three IM services listed above (MSN, Yahoo, and ICQ).
Trillion also includes access to AOL's Instant messenger.
(Please note: Neither program has voice chat capability.)
For small group sessions and mentoring intensives, we will
use the Talk City chat software since it is compatible
with multiple browsers and operating systems.
Chat Tips and Hints
Be sure to download, test and become familiar with our
software before our mentoring session. Some of the
programs require a registration process that takes a little
time. You may also want to create a personal profile in the
chat system, ahead of time, for the interest and benefit of
the other chat participants.
Be sure to review the chat "save" feature before our
session, in case you would like to save a transcript
of the dialogue. I recommend saving throughout the
mentoring process since previous chat dialogue will
be lost if your Internet connection is interrupted.
To keep the dialogue process flowing smoothly, I
recommend typing short lines of text and then
pressing "Enter" as you go. This will allow us to
follow along with each other as we write, rather
than sitting and waiting "in the dark" for the
other person to complete a thought.
Using the forward slash key (/) after completing
a thought will conveniently indicate when you're
ready to listen again. This simple technique will
help minimize some of the waiting (and busy-ness)
that can occur when two or more of us attempt to
"talk" at the same time.
If your Internet connection is inadvertently broken
during the session, please re-enter the room quietly.
Also: to prevent delays in re-entering the room, keep
the chat room name available after initially logging on.
(If my net connection is broken, one of our co-hosts will
step in and hold the space until I am able to re-enter.)
If you forget to save-as-you-go, we will provide an
opportunity to save the transcript at the end of each
session, before closing the chat room. Full transcripts
will also be available for participants, on request,
after the session.
Typing Tutorial: This free online course can enhance
your typing skills and improve your typing speed:
At the start of each small group mentoring intensive, I
will routinely conduct practice sessions in order to
provide participants with an opportunity to experiment
with our chat software, and become familiar with our
online mentoring protocol.
If you cannot attend a practice chat session before
participating in the small group mentoring process, please
be sure that you are familiar with these guidelines, and
that you can comfortably access and use the software
prior to our scheduled start time.
Please note: Practice sessions will not include any
Chat Mentoring Protocol:
How the Small Group Mentoring Process Works
All small group mentoring chat sessions are conducted
using a format in which the majority of the time in
each session is dedicated to a one-on-one mentoring
dialogue with one individual, while other participants
quietly listen in and then share their questions,
reflections and insights at the end of the session.
Please enter our chat space silently, in case the mentoring
process began before you arrived. If you arrive before the
mentoring process has begun, I will acknowledge your arrival.
(Everyone else in the room will know you have arrived because
your name will immediately show up in the participant list
on the right hand side of our chat screen.)
At the start of each session, I will randomly assign numbers
to everyone in order to sequence our questions at the end of
the session. Please make a note of your number when it is
Each mentoring session will focus on the query of one
individual. Other participants in the session are asked
to listen quietly, with an open mind and heart -- without
entering into or interrupting the mentoring dialogue.
As the mentoring dialogue with one individual begins to
reach closure, I will open the space for sharing questions
and reflections from other mentoring session participants.
At that point, follow-up questions will be sequenced in
numerical order, based on the numbers informally
assigned at the beginning of the session.
If it is helpful for you, you may want to be prepared to
make written notes about your questions as they arise
during the mentoring session. Having your notes and
questions written down may make it easier to reference
back to them once the space is open for group sharing
at the end of the session.
Insight Mentoring Process Guidelines
Please be patient with the pace of the mentoring dialogue.
At times the process may feel slow. This is, in part, a
function (and a benefit) of using the chat technology to
work on the questions and reflections of one individual
at a time. It is also a deliberate and intentional aspect
of the Insight Mentoring process: the slower pace is
designed to encourage deeper levels of inquiry and
Please remember that the Insight Mentoring process is
designed to challenge our habituated ways of seeing,
thinking about and understanding the world. When you
feel this challenge arising, watch your reactions. Pay
attention to your questions, thoughts and feelings. Much
can be learned simply by paying attention to the beliefs
and ideas with which we currently identify.
Recommended Dialogue Guidelines:
Community Covenant From the 1996 Awakening
Technology Community of Inquiry and Practice (CIP)
Suggestions for Effective Online Communication
From the 1996 Awakening Technology Community
of Inquiry and Practice (CIP)
Code of Conduct in the Microsoft Chat Communities