Dolphyn Newsletter – May 2018

Dolphyn Newsletter – May 2018


Welcome to our third Newsletter for 2018, where we again welcome new subscribers, many of who join us after recently purchasing Social Sensemaking eBook edition. We love hearing feedback after people have read the book and we share in some of this feedback below.

Next week we head to Auckland in New Zealand, where we’ll be hosting a number of workshops and training programs. While the ‘Tackling Mental Health‘ sessions with The Executive Connection (TEC) are fully booked, there are just four places left for our introduction to Social Sensemaking on Monday 14th May. This workshop is being hosted by Pacific Steel and we have 16 people enrolled to date. If you are in NZ and would like to share in the ‘learning adventure’ that is Social Sensemaking, see below to book your place.
In this Newsletter we delve into the unconscious, an important part of sensemaking. In particular we provide an introduction to the work of Carl Jung. We hope you enjoy this short summary of Jung’s work and that it may further support your understanding of the human psyche and our ‘collective unconscious’.

We thank you for being part of our Newsletter and look forward to staying in touch. You can learn more about our work by visiting our website –
Robert Sams


Social Sensemaking – Auckland, New Zealand – 14th May 2018

Full Day Workshop

As noted above, we are bringing Social Sensemaking to Auckland, New Zealand. The session will be held on Monday 14th May. You can book your place HERE. You can learn more about what we will cover in the workshop, which includes an introduction to the work of Carl Jung, HERE.

Registrations close this Tuesday, 8th May.



Understanding Ourselves so we may Understand Others A Focus on Carl Jung

Introducing Carl Jung

The following is from the book Jung; a journey of transformation (1999):
“Carl Gustav Jung began his career conventionally enough. He trained first as a doctor and went on to train as a psychiatrist. His life changed radically when he met famous psychiatrist Sigmund Freud. Like Freud, Jung became a major pioneer in the treatment of mental illness through psychotherapy. Ultimately though, they had professional differences…. Jung wanted to help those with illness and problems: but he also wished to help people whose lives might seem superficial to become more meaningful and creative.
C. G. Jung is world famous as a doctor of the soul. His Collected Works fill eighteen volumes and span half a century of writing on psychiatry, psychology, religion, modern politics, ancient myth, and forgotten traditions such as alchemy.” (p.9)
You can read much more about Jung’s life and work on the Carl Jung Foundation website.
Jung is at the heart of much of our work at Dolphyn and learning about both the personal and collective unconscious have been standouts in the ‘learning adventure’ that many of our team commenced in 2012.
One of those was our dear mate Max Geyer who left us, well physically at least, in August 2017, however his spirit loves on. While doing some reading in preparation for this piece, I discovered a note that Max wrote for me when he gave me this book. I include this note below in memory of a treasured friend.


Better Understanding ‘Temperament and Type’ – You’ve Got Personality

For people wanting to make a start on a practical application of Jung’s work, understanding Temperament Types is useful. A great reference for this is Mary McGuiness’ book You’ve Got Personality. At Dolphyn, we use this book in in many of our programs, and all of the team at Dolphyn have studied with Mary. The book has sold more than 20,000 copies, and is an easy read. All participants in our NZ workshop will receive a copy.


The Undiscovered Self

Jung’s book, The Undiscovered Self provides further insight into the unconscious when he describes:
“Most people confuse “self knowledge” with knowledge about their conscious ego-personalities. Anyone who has any ego-consciousness at all takes it for granted that he knows himself. But the ego knows only its own contents, not the unconscious and its contents. People measure their self-knowledge by what the average person in their social environment knows about himself, but not by the real psychic facts which are for the most part hidden from them” (p. 5)
In the same book, he also writes about symbols and images and notes that:
A term or image is symbolic when it means more than it denotes or expresses. It has a wider “unconscious” aspect – an aspect that can never be precisely defined or fully explained. This peculiarity is due to the fact that, in exploring the symbol, the mind is finally led towards ideas of a transcendent nature, where our reason must capitulate.” (p.65-66)
When we seek to explore a better understanding of our true selves through our unconscious, and when we are more curious about the nature of symbols and the semiotic meaning behind much that we see and hear in our life, we open our minds, hearts and soul to great learning. As Jung says; “everything has significance…”


Book Suggestion – The Collective Unconscious

While Jung’s work on the personal unconscious is important in our own personal journey of understanding ourselves and also others, his work on the ‘collective unconscious’ is an important foundation for those interested in learning about culture and developing a deeper understanding of decision making. Jung describes the collective unconscious as:
…a part of the psyche which can be negatively distingushed from a personal unconscious by the fact that it does not, like the latter, owe its existence to personal experience and consequently is not a personal acquisition. While the personal unconscious is made up essentially of contents which have at once time been conscious but have disappeared from consciousness through having been forgotten or repressed, the contents of the collective unconscious have been in consciousness, and therefore have never been individually acquired, but owe their existence exclusively to heredity. Whereas the personal unconscious consists for the most part of complexes, the content of the collective unconscious is made up essentially of archetypes.” (p.42)


Hear Directly from Carl Jung in a Rare Interview

The following is from the Brain Pickings website:
On October 22 of 1959, BBC’s Face to Face — an unusual series of pointed, almost interrogative interviews seeking to “unmask public figures” — aired a segment on Jung, included in the 1977 anthology C.G. Jung Speaking: Interviews and Encounters(public library). Eighty-four at the time and still working, he talks to New Statesman editor John Freeman about education, religion, consciousness, human nature, and his temperamental differences with Freud, which sparked his study of personality types. You can listen to Jung for yourself HERE.


Further Studies in the Work of Carl Jung

The Collective Unconscious

The Centre of Applied Jungian Studies run programs that focus on a practical application of Jung’s work. A new 12 week course begins on 14th May that focuses on:

  • Engaging in a dialogue between the conscious ego and the soul.
  • Uncovering and engage your most deeply held desires.
  • Identifying your personal and archetypal symbols.
  • Learning the practical techniques of increasing consciousness
  • Understanding and practicing Jungian dream interpretation.
  • Applying the technique of active imagination.

To find out more or register, click HERE. Some of us at Dolphyn are doing the course.

There is much more to learn from Jung including his work on: Memories, Dreams and ReflectionsMandala Symbolism and ‘Man and His Symbols.
Reflecting on Jung’s work can help us all learn more about both ourselves and those who we share in are lives with. His work on the unconscious is critical if we seek to learn how we make sense in the world.



Understanding Safety as an Archetype
By Dr Robert Long

In this post, Dr Rob Long further explores the unconscious when he describes that; “Archetypes are best understood as core socio-psychological drivers of culture. This is why religious practice, deeply held values, customs, semiotics, myths, discourse and taboos are essential to any study of culture.”


The Mystery and Paradox of Being and Individual in a Social World
By Robert Sams

“Thankfully, my conversations, both in risk and safety as well as in life in general, have changed in recent years; they are now more regularly focused on the other person, especially when they are the ones who seek out the conversation. It has not always been like this though, as ‘telling’ is a hard habit to, firstly acknowledge, and then break. I regularly fall back into the trap of telling, but thankfully not during this conversation.”


Sensemaking and ‘Hapori’ – Essential for Tackling Risk in New Zealand
By Robert Sams

“This philosophy too is at the heart of ‘social sensemaking’, a phrase coined to highlight the social nature of the way we make sense of our world. Social Sensemaking is a way of being and comprehending our world. It is a worldview and an ontological understanding, rather than simply just another method.”

So, what is sensemaking?



Maitland (NSW) Library

Meet the Local Author

A reminder that on Thursday 24th May, Rob Sams has been invited to speak about Social Sensemaking at the library in the town where he grew up; Maitland (NSW). Rob will speak about the ‘learning adventure‘ that is explored in his book. Rob explains that being curious and willing to make mistakes along the way is important, as we can’t learn effectively without risk. Copies of the book will be available on the night with all proceeds being donated to the Maitland Regional Suicide Prevention Network.




What are People Saying About the Book?

We love receiving feedback from people as they read Social Sensemaking. Here is a selection of feedback that we have received in recent times:

I’m promoting you book at our HSR training and with my colleagues. I’ve really enjoyed it. I feel refreshed.”

I just wanted to say thank you very much for the signed copy of the book – it’s much appreciated!  I received the book last week and am really enjoying it.”

Love reading the book. Read about a third on the weekend and must admit I need to read each section a couple of times to really digest the meaning.”

Thanks for the book and the work taken to put it to print so we can all learn and develop.”
Thanks for the feedback and please keep it coming in.



A Community in Practice
Being in community with others is important for us here at Dolphyn, thanks for being part of it. We look forward to sharing and learning with you throughout 2018.



Rob Sams
Rob is an experienced safety and people professional, having worked in a broad range of industries and work environments, including manufacturing, professional services (building and facilities maintenance), healthcare, transport, automotive, sales and marketing. He is a passionate leader who enjoys supporting people and organizations through periods of change. Rob specializes in making the challenges of risk and safety more understandable in the workplace. He uses his substantial skills and formal training in leadership, social psychology of risk and coaching to help organizations understand how to better manage people, risk and performance. Rob builds relationships and "scaffolds" people development and change so that organizations can achieve the meaningful goals they set for themselves. While Rob has specialist knowledge in systems, his passion is in making systems useable for people and organizations. In many ways, Rob is a translator; he interprets the complex language of processes, regulations and legislation into meaningful and practical tasks. Rob uses his knowledge of social psychology to help people and organizations filter the many pressures they are made anxious about by regulators and various media. He is able to bring the many complexities of systems demands down to earth to a relevant and practical level.

Do you have any thoughts? Please share them below