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New Four-Week Web Class, Who Am I?

Slide - WHo Am I Part OneI’m happy to announce my new format Live Web Class, Who Am I?: Part One. In this live four-week web class, I will guide students through the first module of my newly released book, Writing to Awaken: A Journey of Truth, Transformation, and Self-Discovery. The opening section, Who Am I? is an exploration of personal identity using the Writing to Awaken process.

For people who don’t know how to begin, or who would like guidance in developing their own writing practice, this web class is a great place to start. I will guide you through the Writing To Awaken process, answer your questions, and illustrate how this work is done in a coaching session at the end of each class. You’ll learn the fundamentals of self-inquiry and radical truth-telling on which Writing To Awaken is based.

For the past 35 years, in my work as a memoirist, journalist, and teacher, I have experienced firsthand what science is now proving beyond a doubt: That expressive writing practice is good for both physical and mental health. Writing about personal thoughts and feelings for as little as 15 minutes a day strengthens the immune system, lowers stress levels, and decreases time spent in the hospital. According to one New Zealand study, physical wounds heal more quickly when we do expressive writing. I’m continually amazed by the benefits of this practice. It truly changes people’s lives.

I often say that writing saved my life. When you use this practice, you will see why. Like meditation, yoga, and prayer, writing is a powerful spiritual practice that strengthens the “witness consciousness’ – what psychology calls metacognition – allowing us not to be trapped in our thoughts, or fooled by the story making mind. The self-understanding that comes from this work can inspire genuine transformation and awaken you to a more liberated, authentic, and meaningful life.

More information and registration

How Do You Live? A New Video Series

Screen Shot 2017-08-11 at 10.24.59 AMIt was such a pleasure speaking to the British filmmaker, Magda Pniewska, for her inspirational new video series, How Do You Live? Magda asked me to talk about personal adversity, and how it is that life’s greatest challenges sometimes wake us up to our true potential. We discussed the power of gratitude and the virtues of surrender in the face of the unknown.  Here is a link to our interview. I hope you enjoy it.  http://howdoyoulive.com/

Writing to Awaken: Now Available in Paperback

WritingtoAwaken-CF.inddWriting to Awaken:
A Journey of Truth, Transformation, and Self-Discovery


An inspirational investigation of the self through expressive writing, guiding you along the path of awakening through radical truth-telling and self-inquiry.  More information on Writing to Awaken

Filled with powerful stories and revealing exercises, this book opens the craft of writing as a way to dive into the art of self-reflection. It will restore meaning in your life.”  ~Mark Nepo

“Who Am I?” Excerpt From New Teaching Series

imagesI recently did a four-part video teaching series based on “Writing To Awaken.” Here is an excerpt from the first installment, titled “Who Am I?”  This core question drives memoirists and seekers alike.   Rather than simply accept our stories at face value, we have the power to transform our lives when we begin to question our myths. In this video, I talk about how to use writing practice as a path of self-discovery, insight, and healing.

Writing about Intimacy and Self-Reliance at The Garrison Institute

imgresThis November, I’m leading a retreat at The Garrison Institute with my friend and collaborator, Dr. Maria SiroisIt’s called “Writing To Awaken: Exploring Loneliness, Self-Reliance, and Riddle of Human Relationship,” and takes place November 17-19. Garrison is a stunning venue on the Hudson River and I hope you’ll be able to join us!  Here’s a blog on the kind of work we’ll be doing. Click here for more information and registration.

Make Peace With Your Mind: A Conversation With Mark Coleman

Mark ColemanI had a terrific conversation with Mark Coleman, the meditation teacher and therapist, about how to defeat bullies within and without. His new book, Make Peace With Your Mind, is full of good stuff. Here’s a quote from our interview:

“The critic really started as a survivor mechanism in early infancy and childhood when we were trying to navigate our early family system and culture. When we’re learning how to fit in so we could optimize that flow of love and affection. It was an internal voice telling us to shut certain patterns and reactions down, that negativity bias that’s always looking for what’s wrong, looking for the threat. That tendency gets dovetailed into the critic, so that we don’t just notice what’s wrong. Instead, the critic comes in and nails us, slams us for it.”

Read the full interview here.