Restorative Justice work as art and being. Three experiences one blog post.

An artist in the show, invited me to the reception.  Twice, so I knew it was important, and relationships are built by going out of our way.  Since I like art, it wasn’t THAT out of the way, so I attended.  Since I know the artist in a totally different context, I didn’t really connect “drawing from life” or the postcard, to what I was going to see.

Voila_Capture1018The gallery was set up with the center space showing the chair the model might sit in.  It became clear from the drawings, the models were nude.  Wow.  I took in the art, appreciated reading the artist statements.  I had just been to a deep meeting and discussion with someone preparing to meet with a surviving family member, in a multiple death traffic fatality incident.  The nakedness of the art, the beauty, reminded me of how we have to get emotionally bare when it comes to Restorative Justice dialogue.  As a facilitator when emotions are high, and grief over the death of a loved is present, you also become bare.  Your own heart is present and you (facilitator) are in it alongside those requesting and agreeing to dialogue.

Later I posted on Facebook, the echoes of this earlier conversation.  It really stayed with me, mostly the bravery of the young person, dealing with very adult issues.  The pre-session preparation was more intense, as we are getting closer to the actual face to face meeting.  The compliment shared was really great to hear as well.  The voiced confidence in SCVRJP and me, confirmed and supported the energy I was feeling about readiness for the dialogue to happen.

photo    This morning a comment on the Facebook post, struck a strong note with me.  Cameron Communicationz, “everything worth doing is an art”.  YES!  I always taught my daughter to know that art was never finished, if you “messed up” just keep coloring or drawing to work that in.  She might not remember that.  I was trying to counter my perfectionism rubbing off on her, but that’s another blog post.  In facilitating a severe crime case, such tender care is needed in exploring the needs of the victims.  Preparing parties to sit face to face after damage and harm, especially when a loved one has died, requires zero attention to your own perfectionism.  All ego of the facilitator needs to be removed, and working towards emotional safety and preparation is the art.

Restorative Justice as art.  That means co-creating with those around you.  That fits well, I teach that a Circle keepers job is to engage everyone as keepers in the Circle.  As I viewed the art in the gallery, there was no way the drawings could have emerged without the live figure (nude model).  Imagine the vulnerability to disrobe and be drawn . . . to me that feels incredibly powerful, a risk taken and completed.  As I looked at the art gallery drawings, I could see myself in some of the drawings.  We connect to art, and I believe we connect to each other in Restorative Justice.  Reflections of ourselves in others.

The link between art and Restorative Justice got me thinking about the similarities.  Using different methods, improving over time, finding yourself in the art you create.  Learning what others interpret or see in your creations.

I got emotionally overwhelmed at the art gallery.  I felt like crying.  I was moved by the courage I felt in the drawings and the honesty expressed.  I enjoyed visiting with the person that invited me.  It was a real lesson, on people being more that you might know.  The restorative justice meeting, the gallery reception, the Facebook comment. Three randomly disconnected things, all now connected in this blog post.  And isn’t that what life and Restorative Justice is all about . . . connections.

More on the meme, Restorative Justice and social media.

MemeMemes are contagious patterns of cultural information that are passed from mind to mind and that directly shape and generate key actions and mindsets of a social group. Memes include popular tunes, catch-phrases, clothing fashions, architectural styles, ways of doing things, and so on.

More on  meme, here.  I find social media fascinating, I loved the opportunity to start blogging as a way to distinguish myself in the field.  The opportunity and benefit of being involved in social media have help Restorative Justice in general, our non-profit and me professionally and personally.

As soon as I saw some of these different meme’s going around, I wanted to make one for Restorative Justice.  If a picture is worth a thousand words, than six photos is 6,000 words at once.  Like Restorative Justice, the UthinkIdo Meme, views things from different angles.

Another aspect I like of the “meme” and “restorative justice” is that I had to go figure out the word, MEME.  I saw it in a NPR link I my Facebook wall, thank goodness for Wiki and Google, I got a better grasp of what a MEME is.  I thought it really cool the word was is a book from 1976.  Like the term Restorative Justice, it has taken some time to become understood or relevant in culture.

I believe Restorative Justice is on the rise, see a blog post on megatrend thoughts. (I can’t believe I titled a post IDK, and I wonder why I’m not taken more seriously!)  It’s important to me to represent my self professionally, and I really want to be a leader in the field, by doing the best I can as a facilitator, advocate, practitioner, director, blogger.  To keep ahead of my work, I enrolled in a course.

I am taking a course through Eastern Mennonite University, with Howard Zehr.  At first I was resistant to the notion of tensions, and critical issues in Restorative Justice.  I have come to see that things can change over time, and the original intention is sometimes not what evolves.  I have come to admire this viewpoint, and this dedication to continue to keep a grasp on the key principles, values, process that make Restorative Justice.

I see how it get diluted.  It raises my blood pressure every time I see the term “Restorative Justice” near terms like Teen Court.  I’m on the fence about people who change their language to “restorative principles” when they are doing the same old same old, and add that in.  At least they have stopped calling the same old, same old, RJ.

The Restorative Justice Meme, was a chance to look at the different view points through the lens of humor.  By trying to over exaggerate – which is a form of humor.  To amplify what is true, and nobody really says you can be funny.  I hope by creating the RJ Meme, it actually creates a little more discussion and understanding of RJ.  It was difficult to pick the different angles, the different photos.  If you have further thoughts I’d like to hear them!

Thanks for reading!  I appreciate the opportunity to have a community right here on this blog!



Doing justice for Restorative Justice is not what to think, but how.

This article in Harvard Business Review, the author shares some success in sharing HOW to think, not WHAT to think.  Boom, in my brain, that is why I blog, to help people with Restorative Justice and Circles, and to provide insight in how we might advance ourselves, our services and our collective passion about Restorative Justice and Circles.  How to think about it,  here is an example:

The hot new social media trend is pinterest.  Pinterest is an online pinboard.   Whoever heard of that?  Basically, a pinboard is a place to post pictures that are links to sites, and you can look at what has been pinned, someone elses board of pinned items.  Make sure you have time when you go there, it is addicting.

My first visit to pinterest, I, of course, search the term Restorative Justice.  Results, about restorative yoga, restorative dentistry and lots of photos with comments on how the photo “doesn’t do it justice”.  After reading again and again, “doesn’t do it justice” or “does not do justice”, I put my meaning on the word justice, and began to think about criminal justice, restorative justice and why and how the word was being used in all these photo comments.

I came to this.  In the context of beauty, when a photo “does not do it justice”, it means something about it wasn’t captured, that in real life, there was something much more.  I think it has to do with capturing a spiritual essence, that a photo can not do and real life can.  I think, Restorative Jusitce brings different “justice”.  The kind of justice that includes a spiritual essence, that formal process can not do.  Recently hearing “there are as many definitions of justice as their are victims”.  I am in tune to the individuality of justice and the need to be individually aware of each persons experience and need for justice.

Crime is ugly, there is no way to say that it isn’t.  People are hurt, people are punished, resources and capacity are diminished in the presence of crime.  Humans are not acting on their own greater good when they commit crimes.  Generally here, it was a crime when Rosa Parks didn’t get out of her seat, but that’s another blog post.

Use of the phrase, “doesn’t do it justice” on pinterest, really had me thinking about harvesting the justice (beauty and spiritual essence) in Restorative Justice.  It was actually best said by a teen in Circle.  She looked at the speaker, who had shared the pain of surviving his daughters death, caused by an intoxicated driver, and she told him she was sorry for his loss.  She said it was terrible that it happened and she wished it hadn’t.  She said it was cool that he was telling the story like this.  I saw the expression on the storytellers face.  It appeared he was acknowledged and comforted.  I felt the beauty in that moment of connection between Circle members.  I saw an element of Restorative Justice, as the tragic and fatal car crash created a lesson and touched lives.  This storyteller was harvesting the justice (the beauty and spiritual essence) of what happened.  So much so, that a teen referred to as cool.  You do realize most teens don’t recognize people that are old enough to be their parents as cool?  And that word “cool”, in that moment, it really did do justice.


Restorative “thinking”, sticks and pairs, ideas from Kris Miner.

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately and this post is to offer some insight to how I think.  I try to think restoratively – to BE more than just do Restorative Justice.  Maybe insight into my brain will be insight into yours.  We are cool like that as humans, we get to think about, how we think.

When I am making decisions or offering decisions to be made by others (for example my board).  I use a “pair and a spare”.  I got this from some dating advice book.  Date 3 guys at once, yeah right, so I moved it a way to think about decisions.  The “pair and a spare” helps because it forces grey.  Two paths, can mean right or wrong, black or white.  Pair and spare, oh the options.  We are happier when we think we have options.  With three choices, you are empowered after eliminating one.  You’ve made progress.  You can also look over why you immediately crossed off one of the choices and find what your real priority or decision making motivation is.  Try it, let me know.

“Stick” thinking.  Always wonder, what is at the other end of that stick?  Here is a great example of stick thinking – or seeing things on a continuum.  The blog, Why Your Passion for Work Could Ruin Your Career, offers we can be dualistic between harmonious and obsessive.  I recognized my obsessive; when I used to get upset, even angry at others for not engaging or embracing RJ at my same level (or even half) ok, full disclosure I can sometimes still be obsessive.  Right now I am feeling pretty good about Kris Miner.

I’m is the “Oasis” season of love.  Brain expert Daniel Amen calls it the Oasis Effect (from his book The Brain In Love).  Amen describes that we come out of the desert of being alone and longing to be in a relationship (since we are wired to be intimately connected to others) and being love releases hormones that actually increase our sense of trust, where we should be more cautious.  Amen describes an anxious state of euphoria (for finding a relationships that helps us feel more complete) that we fail to see trouble.  He writes about getting water from an oasis with dead animals around and failing to see the animals.  This book really helped me understand the brain and bio-chemistry of love. I know in the past I have been victim to the Oasis Effect, so now I am calling it a “season”, a phase.  Enjoying, with caution or knowledge that this flood of good feelings will eventually level out.

New love, leads to new awareness.  Here’s a line from my life, “Don’t put THAT in the blog”.  I guess I talk about the blog enough, that those new in my life have to set boundaries with me.  I also ask alot, “can I blog on that?”.  I get permission around comments or conversation I might be able to draw a blog post from.  I bet one of every 3 asks, eventually makes it to a blog post.  Right now I have 49 blog drafts started.  I start one when I capture a good link or idea.  If the tone of my post seems negative, I leave it started, come back later, time changes perspective.  I got a great suggestion once, to blog with a voice that could be heard in Circle (with the person in the Circle).  This was a great addition to the way I think, about blogging.

Being a blogger has and continues to help me.  As I posted here, new blogs are on the Restorative Justice landscape.  Just a year ago, Restorative Justice blog readers didn’t have as many choices.  With more options for readers, I’m thinking about my particular niche in the RJ blogging world.   I’ve grown into being a blogger and finding my niche as a practitioner offering insight, I also share my lifes intersection of personal and professional. This allows me freedom to share the way I think, in thinking it might help you.  Thinking on that . . . harmony or obsession?

Round-up of Restorative Justice, Restorative Practices & Restorative Measures blogs. -updated!

It seems to be a season of new blogs, I keep an eye on the social media scene, and appreciate the variety or resources available for our consumption, and engagement.   You can’t always depend on a Google search, some sites don’t have enough traffic (yet) to make the rankings.  This post is going to offer a summary for readers.

Blogging is an opportunity for authors to instantly be “published” on the internet.  Blogs offer both authors and readers different benefits.  Blogs seems to range from the sale of goods to the expression of the authors.  Lots and lots of organizations are adding a “blog” to websites.  Blogs offer the chance to sign-up, follow or pick up an RSS feed.  This means that as soon as a post is published, you get an email, or get the “feed” (what is published).  I thought offering a summary of choices and resources would be helpful.

This post is my perspective on your blog resources for learning more about Restorative Justice and Restorative interventions.  If I missed anyone please let me know!

Let’s start where you are now, Circlespace.  This blog is just starting year 3, the site has over 500 posts, and is updated anywhere from a few times to 15 a month.  As author, I write about examples, advice, support and provide insights into being a practitioner and non-profit director.

A great blog, I have mentioned here before is RJOB, from Prison Fellowship International.  From the website, the blog is described as:

The purpose of RJOB is to provide timely information about restorative justice news and developments, together with commentary on the use and expansion of restorative justice.

The name of the blog is RJOB, the acronym for Restorative Justice Online Blog. It is pronounced “Our Job” to remind us that it is up to us to develop, expand, evaluate and strengthen restorative justice theory and practice.

I appreciate that you can sign up for a monthly summary.  This blog will pick up and post some blogs from other bloggers, so it’s a good site to watch if you have to pick just one to follow.  The RJOB, blog, recently announced the announcement about the International Institute for Restorative Practices blog.

Newest to the blogging scene, is the IIRP blog, the site offers this about their blog: Pull up a chair and we’ll make some room for you in the circle. Here you’ll find news, commentary and discussion related to IIRP and the field of restorative practices as it is being applied in schools, the workplace, criminal justice, social work, colleges and communities.  

Our “Grandfather”, Howard Zehr blogs at Restorative Justice Blog.  This blog has been on the internet since 2009, and Howard seems to be updating about once a month, he provides deep and thoughtful blog posts, often with a resource linked.  There is always good feedback and conversation following Howard’s posts.

I just found, ReSolutionaries, the most recent post, was a great perspective on practitioners in Circle.  Right now the site has 8 posts, and I appreciate the approach they are sharing, being supportive of practitioners and providing resources.

Melanie Snyder is blogging about a variety of topics and is including more Restorative Justice.  She has a full-site of resources.

Dr Tom Cavanaugh blogs about Schools and Restorative Justice, he doesn’t post often, and provides resources.

Since June 2011, the Colorado practitioners are providing lots of resources here.

Ken is blogging for mediators and peace-makers, at Fairness Works.

Since 2008, Lorenn Walker has been providing, Restorative Justice and other public health approaches for healing.

You can Google Search and find some blogs that are no longer kept up, they have good information, however if you are looking to keep a consistent diet of readings, the sites above are my collected resources.

If you are a blogger on Restorative topics, please remind me if I missed you!  I try to share and encourage that we share our sites for the greater good of the movement, “collaboration over competition”.  If you have helpful feedback about the above sites, I would be happy to share that as well.

blog update, posted here since comments must be clicked on to be viewed:

My new connection, and blogger since June 2011, Dr. Evelyn Zellerer  blogs here, she is in Canada and has a full site Peace of the Circle Transforming Conflict-Building Relationships.  Thanks for the contribution!

Restorative Justice blog advice, 6 tips for the practitioner or advocate.

I have been blogging for just over 2 years.  I started in September of 2008.  Right now the blog views are just over 81,000.  One of my blog role models, Penelope Trunk, has 60,000 subscribers to her blog (I have a handful, maybe two).   I also author two other blogs, and guest post whenever I can.

However, this project to be the first and most frequent Restorative Justice blogger, is working out really well.  My goal is to help others, and celebrate the rewards of being a blogger.  The post today offers some thoughts and advice on for those new to blogging.

1) write in your voice.  Try to write like you are telling someone the story.  I am often rehearsing what I am writing in my head, as if it is being said outloud.  The point of blogging is that relationship and using your own tone, builds that.  People what to relate to who you are.

2.)expand yourself.  Reach when you post, share your perspective, in a non-judgemental way.  Claim it as your opinion or experience.  I’ve posted things and had “bloggers remorse”.  Yet that nervousness has helped me understand my own boundaries and how I want my voice to be heard.

3.) have thick skin and an open mind.  Be ready for any type of feedback.  I shared a comment once and asked for some mentoring around it.  It was acknowledged as a “slap on the face”, yet I was complimented for reaping the learning from it.  It taught me if I could do that in a computer world, maybe I could work on it in real life.  I needed both thick skin and the open-ness to see and feel the lesson.  The same neutrality that helps Restorative Justice practitioners, helps when you blog.  Be aware of your bias, personal beliefs and perspectives.  Deliver your expressions openly, with that most important Restorative Justice value: respect.

4.)set your style.  Decide up front, what type of posts you want to be doing 500 words, 140 words.  Think about how much time you want people to spend on your blog.  Take time to set up the blog, pick out the widgets, backdrop, font with your style in mind.  You will be glad you have some parameters and goals.  Remember your theme or intention for blogging and relate your posts to that.  For Restorative Justice practitioners and advocates, you need to learn to tell the story without violating confidentiality and upholding the mission and vision of Restorative Justice.

5.)use your draft folder.  Ever get mad, send the email or letter before you should have?  Blogging for me is an emotional expression, when I feel passionate about something I can have a tendency to process that in my blog.  It has worked for me, in that I get positive feedback about some of the more personal posts.  I have also learned to put things in my draft folder, for later review.  Some posts never get published, yet I leave them as a reminder of what I was experiencing at a certain point in time.

6.)Relationship.  Restorative Justice is all about our relationships.  Think about the relationship to your blog, blog readers and self as a blogger.  This perspective will help you in your writing and development.  I think my skills at expressing myself have improved, as I wrote out my ideas and stories.  Be aware you are growing and developing relationships at every step of the way.  I have connected with many wonderful people as a result of this blog.

Good luck to you in blogging and restorative justice!

Another social networking connection provides insight, growth and a proud Mom moment.

We all just want to make our parents proud and not embarrass our kids.  I believe that is at the heart of all our relationships.  Restorative Justice is about relationships, and I’ve posted a few times here about the comparisons of social media, to restorative justice, and the impact on these relationships.  Today I have 16 posts under Social Media.   Another benefit today, in a full-circle experience way!

I got to be interviewed today, by a social media connection.  Melinda  Blau, author of Consequential Strangers contacted me after I did a post on her book.  I really embraced the new concept, and found powerful examples after asking about CS’s in a Circle.  When she let me know via Twitter, she mentioned me in her blog, the Twitter link took me there.   (I left to go grab a link) and Oh geez in my true ADD form, I just found out she blogs for Psychology Today!  Now I feel even better about our conversation.

So the insight, growth and proud Mom moment! 

Melinda and I connected right away!  We were chatting away so friendly, her voice reminded me of family back in Michigan, although she’s from Maine.  She complimented my writing, and confirmed she doesn’t offer that type of comment.  She was talking about my blog writing, which for me to be talking to someone about was really cool.  I’ve been adding ‘blogger’ onto my introductions but still feeling like it wasn’t quite “legit”.  Telling my blogging story and use of social media today, allowed me to hear out loud how this was all working for me.  I must say, “pretty cool”. 

I clarified how “putting myself out there” really puts who I am ahead of meeting me in person.  I also shared how high school friends on Facebook, have shared thoughts on my work now.  I network about Restorative Justice on Facebook, like mad.  Melinda really drew things out as we discussed this.  Who would have thought I would be talking about having a Mom who died of cancer or being adopted, today in an interview on social media!  Those two things are in my top few wounds.  I’ve said before, healing happens closest to the wound.  And making the link from who I was then, and who I am now, felt healthy.  To have what I put out there be reinforced, lends to me being more genuine, and Melinda and I talked about the importance to that.  I mentioned my value of congruence, which is when my personal and professional values stay aligned.  She agreed.

In talking about my blog, facebook, and twitter, I shared that my daughter was the only kid in her class who got to raise her hand when the teacher asked if parents were on Twitter.  A friend of Kylie’s said “your Mom would be”.  It turns out Kylie was in the office, doing some work for me for gas money.  I ended up putting her on the phone with Melinda.

The computer guy/friend was here, a friends daughter who helps me out in the office was here.  We were all impressed with my kid.  She shared that as odd as it is, her only privacy from me is her Facebook.  Long story, she won’t friend me, I “stalk” her.  She said out loud “my Mom and I are really close”.  I didn’t know or think she would say that.  I know I’m her Mom, but I must say it was pretty cool.

So the article is for the Psychotherapy Networker, and as I reflected on it later, I remembered something.  When I was a new in-home family therapist I used to LOVE that magazine!  Kylie was 3 when I had that job, and today at 18 she was interviewed for an article that is being written for it.  Wow, that’s full Circle!

Public speaking tips, reaching everyone in your audience when speaking about Restorative Justice.

From Seth Godin’s Blog:

The work you do when you spread the word or run an ad or invent a policy is likely aimed at one of these four groups.

  • Strangers are customers to be, but not yet
  • Critics are those that would speak ill of you, or need to be converted
  • Friends are those that might have given permission, or even buy now and then
  • Fans are members of your tribe, supporters and insiders

You already know the truth: can’t please all these groups at once.

As a restorative justice practitioner or advocate, you maybe asked to speak to a group, that includes all the groups mentioned above.  Godin’s categories, reminded me of a recent post, not everyone views restorative justice equally.  I appreciate Godin’s perspective as it relates to ‘marketing efforts’, good food for thought.  Yet when we need to speak to a group that might include strangers, critics, friends and fans  I go for:

1.) converting the critic

2.) befriending the stranger 

3.) reinforcing my friendships

4.) making my fans proud

I LOVE talking about restorative justice, almost as much as I love doing it.  Getting in front of people and reaching out to touch their hearts, makes me feel good.  I work hard at this aspect of my professional self.  I started with the book ‘Public Speaking for Dummies’, I’ve desperately wanted to join Toastmasters for years.  My favorite blogger, Penelope Trunk, just blogged that being and Expert, takes Time.  My time put in for public presentations has given me the perspective to offer how to try and please all the groups Godin mentions:

  • Tread lightly – consider the audience, remember they may have experienced a crime or have a family member in prison.  Critics might be able to take your information if its in smaller bites.  I lead with different perspectives, so know your audience and present the values, philosophies and structure of Restorative Justice.
  • Acknowledge your bias – I just shrug my shoulders and disclose how much I love this stuff.  A role model of mine, Janine Geske, (check this You Tube out) shares that she fullfills a purpose of her own, by facilitating restorative jusitce.  When you own who you are, you are introducing yourself to a stranger.  You are engaging the person by speaking to who you are. 
  • Honor other people – point out people in your audience that are supporters, helpers or groups related to those in your audience.  This point relates to speaking to your friends.  I quickly modified a presentation while sitting thru the first two speakers.  The audience was prosecutors and law enforcement.  The topics ahead of me, case law, legislative updates.  My armpits were soaking wet with fear.  I didn’t let ’em see me sweat.  I thanked them for responding to car crashes, shared a story about a Mom whose son died.  The Officer that notified, knelt in front of her as she sobbed.  I went for finding our common ground, our friendship first, by honoring this group.
  • Finish strong – close out your public speaking with an emotional punch.  Show the power of storytelling with telling a story.  I did this at a recent presentation.  I shared the outcome from ‘To Meet a Killer’, where a family gets details about the courage their loved one demonstrates at the end of her life.  I set up the story, by explaining how some people might say, they never want to see their offender.  Then ended with the example of information Linda White recieved.  The number of women that got teary suprised me.

After a presentation someone in the audience told me I was convincing and all that was needed to promote restorative justice was to have me speak.  What great feedback, making fans proud, by ending strong!

Give your next speech”your all”,  keep in mind Godin’s strangers, critics, friends and fans  and connect restoratively to all of them with my tips.

Restorative Justice is about relationships, Seth Godin explains great relationships with social media.

Thanks friends at Cool(intl)!  In 2008 you helped SCVRJP with our DVD project, again in 2009 you created another set of DVD’s for us.  We partnered with MN Public Televison and the Allstate Foundation, to produce On the Road Together: Safe Teen Driving.  Today your electronic newsletter arrived, caught my attention, I checked out your blog, and found this gem from Seth Godin.  Thanks for being an agency that helped our non-profit!  Great doing business with you!


I love the perspective of “real” relationships.  Restorative Jusitce is about relationships.  I like the proactive aspect, building positive relationships to prevent harm.  I spend more time in repairing harm in relationships, and usually the relationship is the victim-offender relationship.  Unfortunately the ‘trauma-bond’ of crime is the element of that relationship.  ( I want to go off on that, but I will stay with the social media – relationship perspective)

Seth talks about the way to real relationships, is going “out of your way” for someone.  I get that.  I do go out of my way, and I have lots of relationships where people have gone out of their way for me.

I go out of my way for vicitms willing to go out of their way for community.  See vicitms meeting with offenders, is an investment in the community.  It helps offenders understand and learn from the harmful behavior.  Victims are willing to share how they were hurt, they open the wound to show people how deep the cut was.  Healing takes courage, healing takes looking deep inside and offering yourself a better choice.  You have to go out of your way to get better.  Cause not going out of your way means you are staying the same.  I go out of my way for victims, any chance I get.

I go out of my way for offenders, because I feel like they might not have been listened to before.  The system responds to the legal aspect of their behavior.  Restorative Justice responds to the emotional aspects.  An offender shared that his girlfriend was impacted when he had to go to jail.  His niece was impacted, because she witnessed him being violent.  The young man was sent to restorative justice for assualting his nephew.  His nephew was beating up his brother, so he came to his brothers aid, and acknowledged that he was doing the same thing his nephew did.  Later in the Circle a community member, shared the pieces I just shared as examples of how the offender demonstrated ‘love’ one of the values of our circle.  He showed love for his girlfriend and niece by understanding how they were impacted.

I go out of my way for community members.  Community members go out of their way for restorative justice.  Instead of watching night two of American Idol, or studying for a final, or spending time at the cabin, restorative justice volunteers/community members come to help.  They sit in Circle with strangers, and open up during getting acquainted and building relationship stages of Circle.  They then bear witness and listen to the stories of harmful behavior.  They speak wise words to help support future behavior that is harm free.

Who goes out of their way for you?  Who are you willing to go out of your way for?  I’ve found when I extend myself for others it actually helps me and gives me a sense of belonging.  Doesn’t it feel great to belong?

Your social media and your restorative justice elevator speeches should vary.

Lets start with social medai:

You can connect Facebook and Twitter, so your tweets are your Facebook.  I did that for awhile, but felt I had two purposes for each.  Facebook, is me, it had to be I got deactivated last fall, for acting too much like a business.  I wish I did better with the St. Croix Valley Restorative Justice Program Fan Page.  I try to make that the volunteering hub.

By: Twitter Buttons

I do have my Tweets, on the face of the blog, check those when you are here.  Sometimes I link to articles on both facebook and twitter, sometimes not.  For example I haven’t had time to talk about the Illinois implementation guide, and a link to it is on Twitter.

I have to figure out how to get videos in my blog, each time I do one, I don’t do them much.  So I am more likely to just link it up on Facebook, much easier.  If I feel like I have a quick thought, I do a tweet, you only get 140 characaters there.  I do like knowing my tweets are seen on the face of my blog.

So many social media aspects for me (I forgot to mention, LinkedIn) and I’ve got profiles on Ning and I am connected there to community of Teen Talking Circles and Nonviolent Communication.  Be careful there, I was doing some reading, while considering to date someone younger, and I may accidently have joined another network there.

My point is that the various aspects of your social media, should be a little different.  Of course who you are and what you are promoting should remain genuine and consistent.  The core values remain.

That is how I feel about Restorative Justice Elevator speeches. (just had a cool moment, googled “restorative justice elevator speeches”, clicked the top link, it went to my own blog post!).  When you have adult ADD (self-diagnosed attention deficiet disorder) in the middle of typing your blog, you suddenly search the phrase.

Now I just took a quiz, and here is my result:

Serious ADHD Likely!
    The tip for other bloggers, if you run off to research something else, just ‘save the draft’ and when you need to post, you can pick up one of the started ones.  You have to make who you are work for you, and that is one way I let my ADD work for me, running off from another task, back to the blog!
Social Media – and Restorative Justice Speeches
I was asked about how I got so good at explaining Restorative Justice.  My answer was two things:  listening and relationships.
Its a pretty common question, “What is Restorative Justice?”, especially common to me.  I talk to Wal-Mart greeters and women with newborns.  I say a little, then I listen.  I try to gauge next what aspect to lead with.  My choices range from the support of victims, the accountabilty of offenders, the use of storytelling, the aspects of healing, the impact on me as a practitioner.  It also depends on what I might know about a person (school administrator, teacher, probation agent, victim-witness advocate).
The common ground values of Restorative Justice remain consistent.  So like the varieties of social media, the variety of your restorative justice explanations should vary.
I can’t believe I got an 18 on that ADHD quiz!