Decisions, decisions!

Choosing to attend Building Personal Mastery was a no-brainer for me, in part because I work in the area of diversity education and loved the fact that a number of people working with diversity would be attending.

Ian Curtin’s support believing I would get a lot out of coming to the program had something to do with my attendance too. The excellent bursary provided by the Inner Activist also made it possible for me to attend.

I continue to love being in groups of people who think outside the box, who attend to some of the more important aspects of being a responsible and kind human, and who are willing to be vulnerable and honest. I was hoping that Building Personal Mastery would be all of this. Also, who doesn't want to continue to build personal mastery? It's definitely an evocative title.

I have a tough time sitting for long periods of time. In my life outside of programs like these I grow food, walk dogs, hike mountains, do Jiu Jitsu, and create all kinds of art. In all of it I move my body. So, I was actually dreading sitting for the five days of Building Personal Mastery. Surprisingly, there was a great variety of movement and ways we engaged the idea of Personal Mastery, so I wasn't required to just sit!

This was very refreshing. And . . . In spite of the sitting and learning aspect being a difficulty for me, the tools this course used to dive into our selves were innovative, refreshing, and came from a perspective I would have never come to on my own. This allowed me to look at old things with fresh lenses and I found myself very full at the end, with thoughts and ideas and fuel for further forward momentum in my life.

I've done many other courses in my life. What stood out for me about Building Personal Mastery was its unique way of “confusing my ego” into thinking I was approaching an answer when really the process was focusing me to continually tease and spin and rethink myself. I was taken with this technique’s capacity to bring little treasures to all who attended, despite the various backgrounds of the individuals in the room.

Two things stood out as my overall takeaways from this course. One was the subtle idea of not needing to fix anything, instead observing myself and if inclined, trying out different ways of approaching familiar and ongoing problems.

The other was the “pinch/trigger model,” which I have been exposed to in a variety of forms before. What I really liked about the Inner Activist approach was how it assisted me to keep track of the things that pinched or triggered me, even using the booklet I was provided to do so.

This is a very useful tool, and in keeping with the idea of confusing my ego, at least for me, what I am finding is not exactly what I thought I would. This has allowed me to bring this new information about myself into my day-to-day life and further my work as a change maker with my continued focus on kindness and joy. I like that very much.