Meeting Timer Talking Stick

Take control at your next meeting with Meeting Timer Talking Stick!

Are your meetings often “taken over” by the loudest voices?

Do some individuals tend to interrupt others or monopolise conversations?

The “Meeting Timer Talking Stick” will help ensure that one person at a time has the floor and that all voices are heard.

Try it at your meetings – Introduce the topic of discussion, and then look for a show of hands from people who would like to share their thoughts. Pass the stick to one of the willing participants. If you are working with a large group, you might have people line up when they want to speak. When the person holding the Talking Stick is finished, he or she hands the stick to the next person in line. You might set an additional ground rule such as “If you are ready to pass on the Talking Stick and several hands are raised, hand the stick first to someone who has not yet had an opportunity to speak.”

Do you have Pop-Up Meetings? They happen all the time, but often don’t lead to any solid outcomes. Take control of your time.

Take control with Talking Stick.

How to Use This App

In the Meeting

  • Let everyone know that the iPhone will represent a Talking Stick
  • “He who holds the Talking Stick may speak, all others listen”
  • There is a timer on the App. Set a time limit so that everyone is aware of how long they should speak for.
  • When you are done speaking, Pass the stick to one of the other willing participants.

Benefits

Increased efficiency in meetings. Less interruptions.
Take control of your meetings!
Take control of your time!

Tips

  • When you start speaking – press the [Start] button, this will start the timer.
  • Once done speaking, press the [Pass] button, and hand it over to another person.
  • He who holds the Talking Stick speaks, all others respectfully listen.
  • Recommended you switch On either; “Do not disturb” or “Airplane Mode” on your device.

What is a Talking Stick?

The Talking Stick was used in Native Indian council circles to designate who had the right to speak. The “Talking Stick” has its origins in Native American culture. When matters of great concern came before the council, the leading elder (The Chief) would hold the Talking Stick and begin the discussion. When he finished what he had to say he would hold out the Talking Stick, and whoever wished to speak after him would take it.

The traditional Talking Stick is an actual stick that has been dressed up or decorated with materials and objects of greater meaning. (for more information; see the “History” page)

Talking Stick History

The Talking Stick is a tool used in many Native American Traditions when a council is called. It allows all council members to present their ‘Point of View’ one at a time, without interruptions. The Talking Stick is passed from person to person as they speak and only the person holding the stick is allowed to speak. Every member of the meeting must listen closely to the words being spoken, so when their turn comes, they do not repeat unneeded information or ask impertinent questions, ensuring efficiency. Indian children are taught to listen from age three forward; they are also taught to respect another’s viewpoint. This is not to say that they may not disagree, but rather they are bound by their personal honor to allow everyone their ‘Point of View’.

Tradition

People responsible for holding any type council meeting were required to make their own Talking Stick. The Talking Stick would be used when they teach children, hold council, make decisions regarding disputes, hold Pow-Wow gatherings, have storytelling circles, or conduct a ceremony where more than one person speaks.

Since each piece of material used in the Talking Stick speaks of the personal Medicine of the stick owner, each Talking Stick will be different.

  • White Pine is the Peace Tree,
  • Birch symbolizes truth,
  • Evergreens represent the continued growth of all things.
  • Cedar symbolizes cleansing.
  • Aspen is the symbol for seeing clearly since there are many eye shapes on the truth.
  • Maple represents gentleness.
  • Elm is used for wisdom;
  • Mountain Ash for protection;
  • Oak for strength;
  • Cherry for expression, high emotion, or love.
  • Fruit woods are for abundance
  • Walnut or pecan for gathering of energy or beginning new projects.

Each person making a Talking Stick decides which type of timber will assist their needs.

The ornamentation of each stick all have meaning. In the Lakotah Tradition;

  • red is for life,
  • yellow is for knowledge,
  • blue is for prayer and wisdom,
  • white is for spirit,
  • purple is for healing,
  • orange is for feeling kinship with all living things,
  • black is for clarity and focus.

The type of feathers and hide used on a Talking Stick are very important as well.

  • The Answering Feather is usually an Eagle Feather, which represents high ideals, truth as viewed from the expansive eye of the eagle, and the freedom that comes from speaking total truth to the best of one’s ability.
  • The Answering Feather can also be the feather of a Turkey, the Peace Eagle of the south, which brings peaceful attitudes as well as the give and take necessary in successful completion of disputes.
  • In the Tribe that see Owl as good Medicine, the Owl feather may also be used to stop deception from entering the Sacred Space of the Council.

The skins, hair or hides used in making a Talking Stick brings the abilities, talents, gifts and medicine of those creatures-beings to council in a variety of ways.

  • Buffalo brings abundance;
  • Elk brings physical fitness and stamina;
  • Deer brings gentleness;
  • Rabbit brings the ability to listen with big ears;
  • The hair from a horse’s tail or mane brings perseverance and adds connection to the earth and to the spirits of the wind.
  • Snake skin may be wrapped around the Talking Stick so that healing and transmuting of those poisons can occur. (Helping with; an illness of heart, mind, spirit, or body has affected the group gathering)

The Talking Stick is the tool that teaches each of us to honor the Sacred Point of View of every living creature.