My Journey through the Authentic Life Course - Part One

by Jeff Jones

To begin, let me set some context for who I was when I decided to do the Authentic Life Leadership training — two things were very loud in my awareness.  One, I felt very stressed out and pressed for time.  I had a pretty booked calendar for the next few weeks, I took on a project that I didn’t feel completely prepared for, and on top of all that, I was in the throws of playing catch-up for Burning Man.  Two, I was in a huge conflict with my partner, which had me feeling sad, lonely, frustrated, and insignificant.  Because of all of this, I was unsure if I had the time or space to fully commit to the training.  Was this the right time?  Is this a good investment of my time?  Can I even open up enough to benefit from it with everything else going on?  This was my reality when I decided to commit to the training.

As I began the training, I fought the urge to move through it as quickly as possible, and tried to soften into the idea that I’m doing this because I want to and not just checking another task off the list.  The first module had me take time writing and working with myself to identify drains, desired relational shifts, and core values.  Because of the nature of the amazing (albeit challenging, at the time) relationship I have with my partner, these are all regular discussion topics, and because of the state I was in, I began to think that this exercise wasn’t going to be worth the time I needed to dedicate.  Luckily I was able to recognize how my state was impacting my thoughts and continue with the exercises as planned, because man, was I wrong.

As I went through the assignments and spent time writing, I learned far more about myself than I expected.  Sara’s direction in the course videos and written material helped me dive far deeper than I have in thought or conversation by offering steps or “bite-size morsels” that helped me dive in one manageable step at a time.  On top of that, the Changemaster 3000 worksheet offered the perfect amount of structure to keep me and my thoughts on the right path.  All incredibly valuable when trying to comprehend something as dense and complex as my core values!

A few days after completing the aforementioned exercises I had my first call with my practice triad — another eye-opening experience.  Sharing and speaking about what I had written just a few days prior gave me a different perspective of myself and uncovered more about my desire to feel more comfortable asking for help.  I walked away from the call feeling supported and even more clear about my desires.

As I reflect on how my perspective has shifted around this training, I can say with certainty that it has already proven powerful and efficient.  It feels like I have learned and grown far more in just a few hours than I ever thought was possible. 

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