Thursday, 11 October 2012
These items build upon the 12 tools for “Running Well and Resting Well” that we included as a chapter in Doing Member Care Well (2002). More tools and guidelines specifically for team building are included in our “Tools for Team Viability” article, in the member care book we edited in 1992.
We got the original version of OH cards in the early 1990s (two decks of 88 cards, one deck with words and one deck with images of paintings). We use them periodically with training groups and teams professionally and sometimes with friends and colleagues in informal settings. We do not recommend them for everyone and we actually recommend that people-facilitators using them have training in interpersonal/team dynamics as well as counseling (http://www.oh-cards.com/). Here is an overview about them from wiki:
“OH Cards are a genre of special playing cards used as story–telling prompters, counseling and psychotherapeutic tools, communication enhancers, educational aids, and social interactive games. OH cards have no official or traditional interpretations of images, and instructions included with the decks encourage imaginative and personal interpretations of the images. Usually these images are small paintings created by various artists specifically for this kind of use. As a genre, OH cards are unconventional "information containers", unbound books with no set sequence of pages.
Their most common uses are as a focus for self–examination and as prompters in social interactions. They are often used as aides in psychotherapeutic settings, and in a variety of educational situations. Less commonly, OH cards are used as catalysts in artistic fields: in writing, painting, theatre, even dance.
Categorically OH Cards operate in the interface of literature, art appreciation, games, and psychology. Most commonly they are used as a focus for self-examination.” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OH_Cards).
One of our favourite uses of these cards is with a group in which we all imagine the group as being a caravan going on a challenging journey, with the various cards being used for people to describe what the journey is like, their aspirations, fears, strengths, destination, etc. Overall we see OH Cards, when used by skilled facilitators, as being a creative and powerful tool, tapping into the unconscious and conscious for personal and group growth..
For a bit of an example of what this is like, have a look at the Shadow Cards site to see how similar cards can be used. But note that Shadow Cards can be seen as too “fringe” and that referring to them as being like “Jungian Tarot cards” is a total no-go for us.