Countdown to Year of Inquiry starting next week with Orientation, and the following week with live calls. We’re very close to full.
I love beginning the new year in September. It’s probably conditioning from schooling my entire childhood. It begins to feel like fall, with more orange sun, longer shadows, slightly shorter days. And my hands are clapping to think of sitting in self-inquiry with all the wonderful people showing up to share a year together.
There are 3 final spots open for the FULL program (receiving ITW credit for the equivalent of a School for The Work plus 80 more partnering credits plus a few more for a total of 166).
Two people asked about receiving credit inside ITW even if they’ve already completed two Schools for The Work. The answer is YES, you’d get credit in ITW for this Year of Inquiry program if you complete it in full, even if you’ve got two schools or more already on your certification resume.
So if you are interested in really diving in to full blown training and moving towards certification in The Work, being in your own investigation of what has stressed you in your life, and being a part of a group doing this together for a year….join us in this deep way to practice and sink into The Work as a way of living.
If you have questions about the full program, I’m happy to talk (press reply and we’ll set up a time). The fee for the FULL program earning all credits in the Institute for The Work is $3200 (or you can have the option of paying monthly). You’ll come to two retreats in Seattle (October and May) and partner with someone in the group once a month (you’ll receive a partner assignment, you don’t have to choose a partner yourself).
To join sign up here (you’ll see links at the bottom for your program choice): JOIN NOW.
How do we know something’s stressful?
We feel it. Anger, rage, horror, terror, anxiety, shock, worry, sadness.
When feelings are really big….they can’t be missed.
But what about less obvious emotions? What if you feel just a slight irritation, or annoyance, or boredom?
Sometimes, when a feeling isn’t so crushing (and sometimes even when it is)….we humans can tend to move with speed towards the first instinctual order of business: Stop the feeling!! I want to get off!!
Think about what it’s like when you take care of an upset baby.
We begin to try to figure out why the baby is crying, angry, fearful, distressed. If all basics are handled (hungry, thirsty, tired, diaper changed) then we often move to cheer the baby up. We shake shiny things, sing songs, make goofy noises, snap our fingers, bounce.
Not that there’s anything wrong with that….it’s often what works beautifully for babies.
As adults, however, there may be more than survival-level disturbances or needs. We are fed, clothed, watered and awake. Needs are met in the physical world.
Yet, instead of inquiring, writing, and studying more deeply what might be bothering us, we automatically want to shake shiny things. Eat, drink, smoke, nap, sneak, watch netflix, internet, clean, text, date, buy, spend, work.
Make the distress stop!
If the stress stems from a disturbance in the mind, however, based on believing what you think as the Truth….
….no shiny thing will ever really work to end the suffering.
(I tried it with food, and it wasn’t pretty).
It may be interesting for awhile, but then, if you’re like me, you might feel haunted by ghosts from the past, or images of what terrible thing might happen in the future.
It goes unresolved until you inquire into the nature of what you fear, or of what you find most heart-breaking.
The good news?
Sitting with the pain and difficulty, and the feelings–whether big or small–winds up being the easier way.
It’s weird, I know. Am I saying the harder way is the easier way?
Yeah, I basically AM saying the “harder” way (feeling strongly, looking at the suffering directly) is easier.
The best way I know how to do this….and it involves listening to the mind and including it as a companion, not an enemy….
….is The Work.
Even if you never join Year of Inquiry or any other group program, you can do The Work. You can do it for free.
First, sit down and think of ONE thing only that’s bothering you. Maybe in the back of your mind. One person who betrayed you, or hurt you, or who you haven’t forgiven.
Remembering that person, see the situation that disturbs you most, and write it down using a Judge Your Neighbor worksheet.
Be so very honest on this worksheet. Furious, desperate, vengeful, grief-stricken.
It might be really, really uncomfortable….but you’ve got four questions. The secret sauce to transformation. The end of having to keep talking about that problem endlessly.
You can do this!
“Here’s the bottom line: suffering is optional. If you prefer to suffer, go on believing your stressful thoughts. But if you’d rather be happy, question them.” ~ Byron Katie in A Mind At Home With Itself
P.S. Here’s the latest Peace Talk podcast on boredom stress. Enjoy and let me know what you think. Leave a review on itunes if you’re able to figure out how to leave reviews (LOL).