Five Good Things

December 26, 2008
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For the next 11 days, I’ll be continuing a series, “Twelve Days of Net Work,” over on the AppGap. Each day will pick up a theme from my book, Net Work, that is attached to some enumeration.

The number five is taken (five types of network, clearly established in my book and presos), but I came across another good five related to net work practices today, so I’m sharing these here. These are from Jean Baker-Miller, who was an inspiration to me in


For the next 11 days, I’ll be continuing a series, “Twelve Days of Net Work,” over on the AppGap. Each day will pick up a theme from my book, Net Work, that is attached to some enumeration.

The number five is taken (five types of network, clearly established in my book and presos), but I came across another good five related to net work practices today, so I’m sharing these here. These are from Jean Baker-Miller, who was an inspiration to me in the late 1980s (no, not twenty years? really) when I participated in a Stone Center project. Jean’s ground-breaking work in understanding the psychology of women opened the way for many changes in the workplace as well as in the discipline of psychological counseling. As more research shows how men and women are different in many physiological ways, it becomes clearer and clearer how revolutionary her ideas were.

Fundamental to Jean’s theory is that women grow in relationship; we become transformed and empowered by through shared experiences and authentic conversation. Such transformation is not unique to women, but most often experienced by women. Growth-fostering relationships empower all people in them.

They are characterized by:

  1. A sense of zest or well-being that comes from connecting with another person or other persons.
  2. The ability and motivation to take action in the relationships as well as in other situations.
  3. Increased knowledge of oneself and the other person(s).
  4. An increased sense of worth.
  5. A desire for more connections beyond the particular one.

This work has always been founded on face-to-face personal, intimate, relationships, which we tend to think are more in the province of the feminine side. I wonder if our social media-based networking fervor is a masculine, technology, response to the need for all of us to connect, only connect.