My ruckus making is…

Inspiring our mental health providers to provide their sharpest game and supporting people in healing their trauma to live their best lives. I provide training programs for counseling graduate students and, a few months each year, I act as the lead therapist and interim director for a holistic rehab in Hawaii.  

My focus is…

Creation, Connection, and Contribution, especially around methods for healing. More than anything, I want to support others in accessing internal peace. I want to contribute workshops, community spaces, a wiki group therapy platform – that can continue to grow without becoming stagnant on the creator, articles, systems, apps, and especially new ideas. This shapes most of my life decisions. Saying no to a lot, so I can have the time for creation, connection, and contribution.

I also love learning lots of stuff, especially different approaches to healing, thinking and living. That’s why I absorb so much from a multitude of fields, explore the world, and want to keep absorbing and growing. I connect with those who stretch, strive, and grow, and love having meaningful conversations with others about their view of how things work. I’m optimizing my life for learning and connecting.

Forethought Thursday – 20190912

Happy Thursday!

Here’s a weekly dose of forethoughts; four ideas I’m believing may benefit our future. Thank you for being a close friend of mine and interested in this content! I’d love to hear your thoughts about what you like and what’s useful to you, and even more importantly, let’s stay connected. You all rock! Sending you each love. 

Gifting (one of the 10 Principles of Burning Man): The way gratitude is shared after receiving a gift at Burning Man made a massive impact on me. People shared such joy after biting into a peach that we had hand picked from an orchard. The gratitude the psychedelic peer support sitters shared with me after I had served as a team lead and I did my best to provide them balance, calm, and connection during their volunteer experience. I’m incorporating ways to continue gifting in my life and also increasing the gratitude I feel and share after receiving a gift. What are gifts you’ve received or given that have made a massive impact on you? How can we incorporate the felt experience of gifting into our daily lives?

John Hopkins Opens New Center for Psychedelic Research: Psychedelics, a medicine traditionally used for it’s healing properties for probably close to 5,000 years, has now gained enough science research for donors to contribute $17 million, including Tim Ferriss, to support “psychedelic medicine” gain a long-sought foothold in the scientific establishment. The article has some great stories in how it’s impacted people. 

Quote I’m pondering: “Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite powers of our light” by Brene Brown. Our society seems to be significantly more adept at supporting the healing of those that have been harmed, while having less know-how to support those that have harmed or are thinking about harming others. I’ve recently embarked on some journeys to heal the parts of me that have harmed others. It’s been intense work, and I connected to some dark places in me that felt completely powerless and in darkness. I also felt a connection to the void that people who’ve caused a lot of pain to others may be in. Exploring and healing our darkness may be some of the most important work we can do.  

3 Group Therapy Check-In Exercises– This is part of my 12 subject series I’m releasing on group therapy skills. If you’re a therapist looking for additional group therapy tools or an individual wanting to build emotional fitness, check out these three videos on exercises for when clients appear “challenging”: 3 Chair, Free Will, The Work by Byron Katie

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What I’m Doing Now (with thanks to Derek Sivers)  

After Burning Man, I was able to spend a few days near Crater Lake integrating what my partner and I wanted to take away from Burning Man. I’ve discovered that after peak learning opportunities, such as therapist trainings, personal development workshops, or events like Burning Man, when I’m able to take several hour to a day or two to reflect upon and write about the experience it seems to substantially benefitting my life years later. When I immediately jump back into a busy work and life schedule, I seem to not remember what I learned from these experiences. When possible, taking the time to reflect and integrate these experiences may deeply enhance growth. 

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Exercises for when a Client appears “Challenging” – Group Therapy Skills Video, Set 5 of 12

Do you have a client that’s challenging for you? Here are three exercises to try to support in gaining empathy and understanding for this client:

In anticipation of my next Circle’s Heart workshop, an experiential group therapy and training for healers and leaders, I’m releasing a 12-week video series. These videos will highlight some of the central themes in Circle’s Heart workshop. Each week has a unique theme, and is the following:

The short videos contain snippet of insight for you to spark greater momentum in all of the circles you lead, from group therapy and beyond. If you would like to subscribe to my newsletter, Forethought Thursdays, just message me your email, and you will get links to these videos and other topics on Emotional Fitness. Please subscribe if you would like to see all the videos as they are released.

Techniques for supporting client that may appear “stuck” clients – Group Therapy Skills Video

Do you have a client that’s appears “stuck” to you? Here are three exercises to do with a client to support the client gaining insight and momentum:

In anticipation of my next Circle’s Heart workshop, an experiential group therapy and training for healers and leaders, I’m releasing a 12-week video series. These videos will highlight some of the central themes in Circle’s Heart workshop. Each week has a unique theme, and is the following: 

The short videos contain snippet of insight for you to spark greater momentum in all of the circles you lead, from group therapy and beyond. If you would like to subscribe to my newsletter, Forethought Thursdays, just message me your email, and you will get links to these videos and other topics on Emotional Fitness. Please subscribe if you would like to see all the videos as they are released.

Warm Up Exercises for Group Therapy Videos

Ready to get your group warmed up and willing to dive into doing deep work? These warm up exercises will support clients in looking inward and deepening in compassion for each other and themselves. Here’s three warm-up exercises to try in your groups:

In anticipation of my next Circle’s Heart workshop, an experiential group therapy and training for healers and leaders, I’m releasing a 12-week video series. These videos will highlight some of the central themes in Circle’s Heart workshop. Each week has a unique theme, and is the following: 

The short videos contain snippet of insight for you to spark greater momentum in all of the circles you lead, from group therapy and beyond. If you would like to subscribe to my newsletter, Forethought Thursdays, just message me your email, and you will get links to these videos and other topics on Emotional Fitness. Please subscribe if you would like to see all the videos as they are released.

Check In Exercises for Group Therapy – Video Series

Ready to find out what’s on the minds on members in your group and find out who is ready to work on an issue with vulnerability and openness, which will support all your group members in being more open? These check in exercises will support clients in looking inward and discovering what’s most important for them to address. Here’s three check-in exercises to try in your groups:

In anticipation of my next Circle’s Heart workshop, an experiential group therapy and training for healers and leaders, I’m releasing a 12-week video series. These videos will highlight some of the central themes in Circle’s Heart workshop. Each week has a unique theme, and is the following: 

The short videos contain snippet of insight for you to spark greater momentum in all of the circles you lead, from group therapy and beyond. If you would like to subscribe to my newsletter, Forethought Thursdays, just message me your email, and you will get links to these videos and other topics on Emotional Fitness. Please subscribe if you would like to see all the videos as they are released.

Forethought Thursday 2019-08-16

Welcome to my weekly newsletter, which will be looking at four ideas that may benefit our future. These concepts will be around the topic of emotional well-being. Please let me know your questions and or ideas! I would love to cover them in a future issue.

The First Psychedelic Assisted Psychotherapy TED Talk – While you may have heard me speak a lot about the efficacy of psychedelic assisted psychotherapy, this talk is by Rich Dublin. For 30 years, he’s been heading the science into getting psychedelic assisted psychotherapy accepted by the western scientific model. It’s a great talk, check it out if you or loved ones are affected by trauma, anxiety, or depression.

3 Group Therapy Check-In Exercises – This is part of my 12 week video series I’m releasing on group therapy skills. If you’re a therapist looking for additional group therapy tools or an individual wanting to build emotional fitness, check out these three videos: KeysEnvironmentToys

Trauma and Leadership – A recent paper stated “Collective traumas and the development of leader values is a currently omitted, but increasingly urgent, research area”. Trauma, both small and large, separates us from ourselves and others, and has a substantial impact on teams. It’s vital that we support everyone, including our leaders, in healing trauma. 

Quote I’m Pondering: “What if we stopped celebrating being busy as a measurement of importance? What if instead we celebrated how much time we had spent listening, pondering, meditating, and enjoying time with the most important people in our lives?”

Slow is Fast

A Navy SEAL slogan is “Slow is smooth. Smooth is fast.”

I’ve been working on this lesson for awhile. I was sedentary the first 20+ years of my life; I avoided physical discomfort at all costs. Then in my 20’s, I started getting physically fit, yet the pendulum swung too far. I realized I could push myself through discomfort, yet also pushed myself through the warning pains from my body. I spent years in recovery going to different specialists to relieve the pain from damage.

I recently picked up running again on a trip to Hawaii. I felt so amazing after the first few runs, and I wanted that amazing feeling to stick around. Though pain from previous injuries started coming up on the following runs. This time I listened, even though a piece of me didn’t want to. On several runs, I switched to walking, took frequent stretch breaks, or turned around early. A couple weeks of listening to my body and I’m quicker than I was when I started. I’m allowing myself to deeply let in the message that slowing down and listening to my body allows me to go do the things I desire.

I believe slowing down can allow so many things to flourish, especially relationships, whether it’s your relationship with self or others.

In what way could you slow down to flourish?

Spreading Emotional Wellbeing

What are the ways you can spread emotional wellbeing? There are many ways to support the community, such as allowing a child to have their own emotional reaction, spreading knowledge, or offering empathy with healthy boundaries.

SXSW is opening up their speaker proposals soon. A couple years ago, I had such an inspiring time at SXSW. I also believe the startup and tech world could benefit from more emotional awareness and balance and less burnout. Some ideas I’m considering are around empathy of work teams, balance vs burnout, and psychology behind ecstatic dance. If you would like to collaborate on any speaking proposals or would just like to chat about the proposal process, let me know.

Empathy

In Essentialism, Greg speaks to the importance of seeing what matters by understanding the motives of all players involved in a situation and recommends role playing. Who are you having difficulty understanding today? What if you took the role play even deeper and paused after a piece that was harder to understand, and took a moment to guess at what could be an even deeper truth for that person. Then paused again and guessed what could be the deepest truth for that person. For example if someone says “That idea is ridiculous”, a deeper truth could be “I’m overwhelmed and can’t comprehend this idea right now”, and the deepest truth could be “I’m terrified of losing what I’ve spent the last 10 years of my life making, and when I’m terrified everything seems ridiculous”. How could taking the moment to pause and deepen in empathy effect your day today?

Why isn’t this working?

When a treatment, intervention, or strategy isn’t working, it’s time to pause, breathe, and evaluate. If the term “resistent client” or “stubborn family member” couldn’t exist in our minds, how would we act differently? If we absolutely believed there was a way we could support this person’s growth, how would you act and think differently in the room. Would you blame the other person less and take extreme ownership of the situation? While it might not be true that we can find the needed approach or intervention, if we don’t believe it’s out there, how could we find it?