Welcome to the first annual Placebo of the Year award. Placebo of the Year goes to the event, book, class, or workshop that has brought me some lasting happiness or skills that have helped me with my life. To be eligible for Placebo of the Year the event or book has to be something that I did, read, or learned something from during the past year.. For example, even though I discovered Richard Bandler in 2008, he is eligible in 2009, because I read two of his books this year.
Read my blog Find Your Placebo to get a better explanation of what I mean by placebo.
The candidates for the 2009 Placebo of the Year award are:
Adyashanti: I discovered him early in the year and he has been a great teacher in my life so far. This year I purchased his book Emptiness Dancing which gave a wonderful take on enlightenment. This book illustrated the idea that the Ego is something I let go rather than fight against. If you have read Eckhart Tolle’s work and
you are looking for more on enlightenment, I highly suggest this book. It has a way that isn’t softer, it just won’t make letting go of the Ego such a battle.
In addition, I checked out Spontaneous Awakening and End of Your World from the library and downloaded many of his free satsangs and purchased Accessing the Ground of Being from the Portland satsang, I also purchased his CD set Dawn of Awakening and went to one of his satsangs.
Adyashanti is an amazing teacher if you are interested in enlightenment. He is very good at explaining something that is unexplainable. He also seems very genuine.
Main Learning: In the Dawn of Awakening, a member of the crowd asked something along the line of, “When does the resistance end?” Adyashanti gave a perfect answer, “It never ends.”
From his simple answer, I went into my life and looked at where I was waiting for resistance to end. How was I waiting for resistance to end instead of doing or feeling what I wanted to feel? For example, I was waiting to be in the flow for a fun spiritual life that was easy instead of just being in the flow. If I am waiting to be in the flow, I would be always waiting rather than beingin the flow.
Now I am practicing his main teaching, “Stop” from the live satsang that I attended.
Sedona Method: The Sedona Method is a simple technique where one feels something and then lets it go. It is as simple as it sounds. They go into much more detail in their CD series. This method has been around since the 70s.
Main Learning: The holistic approach in the Sedona Method is allowing myself to feel something as much as I can and then allowing myself to feel better at it or the opposite of that as much as I can. For example, if I was jealous because my wife cheated on me, I would allow myself to feel as mad as I can at my wife and then let it go. Then I would allow myself to be as fine with my wife cheating on me as I can and then let it go.
This is one of the first steps I do when I start to feel an emotion that feels bad. I allow the feeling and let it go, and then I allow the opposite and let it go. This allows me to feel what I feel and honor my feelings, while allowing me to let it go and think about how things are going to be OK. Plus it allows me to work and learn from the feelings that are not known to be positive such as jealousy and disappointment. I am able to feel it and learn from it instead of throwing a pity party.
Invite Change: Invite Change is the coaching school that I attend. This year I have taken three classes through them, Essentials, where I learned the basic of being a coach, Power, where I learned that I am a very good coach, and Dynamics, where I learned that I am a Awakener. I am very excited about my future as coach.
They are very supportive and amazing people. I am honored attend this school. A special thanks to my teachers, Susan McKay, Amaorah Ross, Jan Berg, Janet Harvey, BJ Levy, and Beverly Marsh.
Main Learning: The main thing I can take away from Invite Change is both an excitement and a huge desire to coach. I do not believe I would be where I am with my personal beliefs without going to Invite Change. The growth I have gone through due to this school has also been amazing. I look forward to building my business in 2010, mostly due to the work I have done in Invite Change.
Byron Katie The Work Live: I learned of Byron Katie in 2008 when I listened to the audio book A Thousand Names for Joy That was the first time I listened to someone and I thought to myself, “Yea, that is where I want to end up when I am done with this journey.”
In early 2009, I was able to go to her six-hour workshop at the Center for Spiritual Living in Seattle. Seeing her do the work live was absolutely amazing. The greatest part about it was witnessing the strength of those who did the work and what they were able to go through. Seeing the love that she showed each person she talked to was
amazing. It was a magical experience for me.
Main Learning: I can get through anything. I have a tool
called the work that is able to accept anything in my life and work from there. Having it reinforced that it is my thoughts that cause suffering and not the events. It is my relationship with them that causes me pain. I can change my relationship. Hearing the story of someone who went through a what most people would call a horrible ideal and how the work helped them not be defined by it and trapped in the past was amazing. It was like seeing a real life Victor Frankl in the audience.
Richard Bandler: Richard Bandler is one of the creators of NLP or Neuro Linquistic Programming. This year I listened to an audio recording of his, Your Own Personal Genius. I also bought two of his books, Conversations with Richard Bandler and Richard Bandler’s Guide to Trance-formation. His take on personal empowerment is very similar to Katie’s however it is more grounded in the mind. His is more on the line of, “None of your thoughts are true, so you might as well believe the good ones.” He believes that absolute power is being able to listen to something and not allow it to affect you. Allowing anything anyone says to hurt you is you giving your power to them. During a demonstration NLP workshop to feminists during the middle of the Equal Rights Movement Bandler calls them sweetheart, doll and all sort of words that would rile them up. He illustrates that creating a situation where these words cause you to lose your power is not very empowering. Empowerment is being able to listen to anything without giving your power away.
Main Learning: The biggest thing I learned from Bandler is “spinning my feelings.” In his book he shows an exercise where I look in my body where a feeling has started. I start with a negative feeling and find where it starts and how it spins in my body. From there, I take the feeling out, flip it upside down and spin it backwards and put it back in the body. What I noticed is that the feeling feels so much better in that situation. Then I repeat what I’ve just done to anchor the feeling into one super glorious mega feeling. This for me is thumping my chest twice and pumping once in the air while singing We Will Rock You by Queen. This is something I do before I coach to get me into the right mindset and feeling.
I also use the Sedona Method holistic in this approach. This helped me a lot with the feeling of disappointment. I was able to take the feeling of disappointment, spin it opposite direction and then use the Sedona Method of allowing me to spin the feeling of disappointment as much as I can and then spin the opposite direction as much as I can. For me this gives me choice when the disappointment trigger arises. Then I make the intention to feel the new feeling when the trigger arises for the rest of my life.
Jed McKenna: Jed McKenna wrote a series of books about enlightenment Spirituality it is the Darnedest Thing, Spiritual Warfare and Spiritually Incorrect Enlightenment. His books are defiantly not for everyone. If you read the books with an open mind you will get something out of them. This is especially true if you enjoy enlightenment, spiritually and self development.
It is nice to read someone who has a completely different take on everything than what I learned. Instead of spirituality and enlightenment being about rainbows and sunshine, he thinks that spirituality is the opposite of enlightenment and enlightenment is a drag out war to the literal death of the ego. He also has many nuggets that are interesting and will help people stay on track and look at what they are doing. If you want to take responsibility for your own development it is nice to read someone who is very, very different. That is someone who isn’t a blinded by spiritually or just a skeptic. I definitely plan on re-reading the trilogy in the future.
Main Learning: Two points stick out in my mind. From the first book I think of the quote, “If you are not amazed by how naive you were yesterday, you are standing still.” This has me always striving to move forward in my development.
The other is from his second book when he writes about a group of people trying to figure out the Bhagavad Gita. He mentions to them that, “It’s not about the people IN the story, it’s about the person READING the story.” This is beautiful. I have had many discussions with people about a book and people struggle with them because they are trying to figure out exactly what the author is talking about. The truth of the matter is the fact that it is not only nearly impossible to know exactly what the author meant, it is not nearly as valuable as what he said means to you. This has changed the way I read books as now I am looking for inspirations that help deepen my development and take me further than trying to figure out what the author meant. Plus it also opens up my own intelligence and gives me 100% responsibility for what I get out of it.
The winner of the 2009 Placebo of the year award goes to:
It is almost not fair to the other participants because I have been to three of their classes this year and they have been very supportive of my growth as a coach. I have received so much out of working with them that they have been worth every dollar that I have spent with them. They are a group of amazing women and the classmates I have met have been outstanding. The entire experience I have had with them has been completely special. Congratulations to the 2009 Placebo of the Year award winner.