Essence as Light

Chat Tips, Hints and
Guidelines


Preparing for Your Chat Session
In advance of an individual or small group mentoring chat session,
I recommend:
  • 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 calendar.
  • All scheduled chat times are based on Metta's USA location, in San Antonio, Texas, GMT+6 (the Central green "S" zone). Chat Software
  • Our current chat software options include: ` Microsoft Chat/Instant Messenger: metta_z@msn.com ` Yahoo! Instant Messenger: metta_z@yahoo.com ` ICQ Instant Messenger: ID# 127453688 ` Jabber: metta@jabber.com ` Trillian ` 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: EasyType.com Practice Sessions 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 explicit mentoring. 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 assigned.
  • 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 reflection.
  • 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


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