2019, January 30th at 10 AM PT/ 7 PM CET

The Art of Creating Connection


She writes:

I’d like to talk about connection and how to create more of it in your life.

Our world is build on relationship; everything we do involves people and how we interact with them. And how you relate to one thing, is how you relate to everything. So practising your relational skills, see your patterning, your way of behaving in connection, is essential if you want to build a larger capacity to be with yourself and others. Be it at work, at home or with yourself.

I believe better relationships create a better life, and ultimately a better world.

Yet often the relational field can seem somehow intangible, where ‘things just happen’, or where you do not seem to have much influence. But relationship is something you can actively build capacity in.

In this talk I will share about my journey in this field and I will be giving you some tips and tools to apply in your relationships straight away, based on your questions.

So ask me anything you want and I’ll see if I can support you in a relational challenge you are currently facing.

Anke Verhees
Save this event in your calendar

STREAMED LIVE HERE on January 30 2019

Creating connections

Anke Verhees 30.1.2019

0:00 Heidi’s intro

1:05 Anke starts with owning her own experience. Introduces the topic: CONNECTION

2:45 Heidi asks the first question: how do we lose connection after being born and how to regain it?

3:05 We are built in our operating system between birth and 7 years old. What happens according to our experience. When people struggle with connections in their lives they struggle with similar things. Intergenerational trauma, brain change research: you can change the way you are and develop yourself.

5:00 Heidi: introverts and extroverts, is that significant for connection? Introversion and tendency to hold back and wait and see.

6:00 Anke about introverts being happy solo, while withdrawl we all have sometimes. All people who come to her want to be MORE connected, shared reality, be understood etc.

7:13 Heidi mentions couple dynamics: You don’t listen to me…

7:30 Anke: take ownership of your own experience! Not “You are…..”, but “I am, because….” Find out what is going on inside yourself

8:50 Choosing the wrong partner,  Heidi asks Martin

9:18 Martin goes back to introvert/extrovert. Introvert doesn’t mean wanting to be alone. Anke responds: An introvert needs alone-time to recharge. Different needs.

10:15 names public figures as introverts, to our surprise, who were good connectors. Introverts understand extraverts, but not vice-versa. Extraverts think that there is something wrong with the introverts.

11:48 Anke: aversion against putting people in a box, generalising them instead of seeing them. Martin: it is helpful to have maps, to know on which level of consciousness a person is

13:20 Anke asks Martin about the compatibility in love relationships.

13:40 “The neurobiology of Me”: Daniel Siegel: we need to train our brain to develop the capacity to realise our own ways of being (making “you”-statements). Not everybody can do things without training/practice.

16:02 Anke sets context about her work: practice of circling. If you not catch the triggers yourself, you get feedback by others, mirroring. Step by step learn more about yourself.

18:35 Why is this practice called “circling” . Be with each other in the moment without fixing. Relational meditation.

20:40 Heidi asks for more clarification on the practice

21:00 “Birthday Circling”. People share their impact by that person, and ask questions.

22:30 What happens in your day to day life will show up in the circle.

24:00 Heidi asks for an example. People can experience questioning as an attack, Explore if you just feel it or if it is really happening. Increasing self-awareness and increase relational capacities.

26;30 Martin asks about spiral dynamics: if the green level is the first for this way of communication? Anke: yes, but also Orange: “cracking a code” .

27:50 Each level of consciousness has its own way of creating connection. Martin goes through the levels. Communication styles on different levels is very different, also ways of connection. Easy if people are on the same level.

31:15 Anke: find the way to talk to the people in a different level. Creating connection might not be a conscious process. Questioning and listening to the other opens them up and creates connection.

33:35 Asking genuine questions with genuine interest, a way to open up and be opened up.

34:35 Anke: the curiosity game. Being interested and reflect on the experience. Appreciation. Confirmation, recognition.

37:20 Many unmet needs live in us which can be met by circling

37:45 Martin: curiosity. What happens if people share things which go against your worldview? Anke asks more questions to understand better. Owning your judgement. “I struggle with hearing that” Martin plays the devil’s advocate. Anke beliefs that also politics would benefit from trying to understand the others better.

41: Martin: from an integral perspective: create connection on a level where the other person is able to connect. Not necessarily bringing in our own authentic level of development. What is better?

43:25 Anke: sense of safety is needed before sharing the inner world. If it cannot be perceived, hold it. Assuming the positive intent in the other person, no intentionally trying to harm. People are ALWAYS authentic. Anke’s experience with biking and the anger. Then switch in her mind to “positive intent”

46:35 martin: “non-violent communication”. Maybe NEEDS is better than INTENT?

46:50 Heidi on “positive intent”. Going back to the levels: You act according to the level of the other

48:00 Intuition, Anke is struggling a little with the LEVELS. Heidi: you grasp where the other is, the levels are not fixed and you can go up and down intuitively, at the beginning consciously. Anke: Stir into more intentional space is possible. Example with her boyfriend

50:25 Martin: everybody is always authentic? Anke: What is authenticity? Withdrawl can be an authentic response to my system. Reactivity is as valuable as the open hearted share.

52:15 Heidi: overloading others by sharing too much. Like “speaking your truth”, it depends on sensing into the moment what is the appropriate thing to do.

53:20 Anke: sharing your triggers – with whom?

54:10 Heidi asks about Anke’s website and upcoming courses.

Courses in April 2019, introduction weekends in March. Training to lead circling. Life coaching. Executive coaching for leaders, from orange up. Blog: subscribe for her newsletter

57:15 Marin: even if I am inauthentic, I am authentically inauthentic = not being judgemental on having a judgment, The performative contradiction. Martin shows his book: Women perceive the levels as relatively fluid, while men perceive them like banks of a river, operate mainly on their highest level. > Men have more problems with connecting with others on a different level of development than women.

59:40 Aren’t men and women the same? Haha.

1:00:25  Anke offers to Martin the games manual for his upcoming workshops.

1:00:45 How do you feel now? Anke: happy, seen, excited.


Anke is part of the European Integral Community and I and Mark met her online a few years ago. During the last conference she gave an introduction to “Circling”, a special practice to connect with others in the moment during a workshop setting.

Circling is a combination of meditative presence, body awareness and non-violent communication, combined with true curiosity and a readiness to show up in vulnerability. The process allows your relational blindspots to become visible, and gives you insight into your impact, your stories, how you are perceived and how you are perceiving. It is a beautiful and extremely efficient way to highlight where you are not present, by becoming more present. And the beauty is; it is not rocket science. All you need is a willingness to show up and be vulnerable, and a brave heart.

Circling originated late 90’s in the US and has spread all over the world ever since. Anke is one of the pioneering leaders in Europe, spreading and developing Circling since 2011 from her home base in Amsterdam.

I was fortunate enough to attend a workshop held by Dutch colleagues in a previous conference. It was astonishing to me and I personally would love to deepen into it.

Join Anke for a circling weekend next March!


Anke says about herself

I am a Connection Coach, trainer and lover of all things human and relational. What makes people tick, makes me tick. I am passionate about supporting people in finding a deeper connection to themselves and the people around them, be it at work or at home. 

When I stumbled into the first Circling workshop ever given in Europe, in 2011, it turned out to be the beginning of a hell of a ride that has radically transformed my life and connections, and still teaches me so much, every day.

I coach innovative leaders, teams and individuals on finding their unique flavour in leadership, train groups in upgrading their relational skills, and generally apply my connection-wizardry wherever it is relevant. I also coach people on intimacy and attachment.