Here are some School aftercare experiences sent in by participants at The School (Trumbull, CT 2007) in answer to the question: Have you kept The Work alive since leaving The School through the partnering exercise? If yes, what was your experience?
Yes! My experience has been profound. One of the things that I have noticed is an empty feeling. This has been somewhat disconcerting because suddenly my stories are not relevant, and I have somewhat of an experience of not knowing who or what I am. I guess this is where “It” comes into play. It is noticing certain things today.
Some of my children are expressing displeasure with me but I believe this has been accumulating for years. And, even though I have some fear that they will always feel displeasure with me, I am just as hopeful that expressing themselves will in some ways contribute to more intimacy, maybe. At any rate, I find myself being more okay with them expressing their “stories” of who I have been and am.
I have been amazed at how similar my situation has been to those of my partners, who were selected at random. One person whom I had some initial judgment about and who ended up as a partner turned out to be most like me. I have found some incredible unconditional acceptance coming from perfect strangers.
Also at home, which I dreaded returning to, it’s been a more peaceful and loving experience. My partner, ex-husband, has been very supportive even though I had anticipated that he would have a problem with me talking on the phone long distance every day instead of joining him in front of the TV set. Some of my grandchildren have actually asked for The Work and one plans to accompany me to see Katie in Kansas City next spring.
I am doing The Work and seeing results. I am sleeping better than I can remember in many years, maybe ever. I am addressing some problems and issues that I have spent years being fearful of and procrastinating over. I feel no need for medicating my problems or myself for the first time since I was a child. I know there is more but these are my initial responses to the questionnaire.
Thank you all and Katie, God Bless
Yes I’ve kept it alive and it has been an amazing blessing; it creates a space of openness and presence that stays with me until the next stressful thought. I’m doing The Work all the time and am offering it to others with very open responses. It’s like Katie says: When you think things are so good that can’t get any better, they have to.
When we received the original assignment I was in resistance. I didn’t really want to have to do the 28 days! I am so grateful, now, that we were asked to do it! Connecting with others to do The Work has been very gratifying and helpful.
Toward the end of the School Katie asked, “What is the worst thing that could have happened at home while you were gone?” My reply was that my grandsons were kidnapped. Because I was still having angst around that thought, I did the one liner “My grandchildren SHOULD be kidnapped” with one of my partners. As a one liner, I was terrified to even say it out loud. The awareness and clarity and peace that came from doing The Work on that one liner was very powerful and healing for me. One point that came to me was to experience my grandsons as first generation thought: boys. NOT as the source of my happiness and fulfillment…just boys!
I have kept The Work alive. I am doing The Work usually twice a day with my 4 day partner and my round robin partner. I’m also reading in between and looking at underlying beliefs that have come up. I have found the experience of going home fantastic. It’s really neat to see how my friends and family are my mirrors. At times when I normally would get angry, I can laugh because I can see where I do that too. I now also see when something happens, it happens for me. It also helps me to see what I need to work on next. Just recently, I came upon a big underlying belief. I thought by punishing myself with my thoughts I was helping me to do better. That was such a nice find because I can see where that belief is underneath a lot of my stressful thoughts.
I love the partnering; it has been very helpful. I used it partly to “inoculate” myself in anticipation of a multi-generational, once a year, multi-day family gathering. And, not surprisingly, nothing really fazed me in interactions with others. In fact, I was able to casually mention this cool thing I’d just done (the School) and how it was helping, when others were having meltdowns, were trying to pull me in, and I wasn’t buying.
It’s also helpful in business and other personal relationships.
My partner is most appreciative of my School experience, so much so that I only mildly get flack on the extra hour a day on the phone…teasing flack. Also, we worked through the biggest regret in her life; that seems to have won some appreciation for The Work and my participation in it.
Recently I was struggling with an issue; I had done many Worksheets and was at a loss. I was in the car and oddly lost despite the map I had printed before leaving. I turned on the CD, A Thousand Names for Joy, and the idea came to me to turn the question around to ask myself, “What in me does this person represent? What part of me is being mirrored?” That changed my perspective and gave me the piece I was missing and, interestingly, I found the right street in that moment.
The nine days was life changing and this follow-up is vitally important in my opinion. I feel I can call several of the people I partnered with for support beyond the end of this exercise.
This has been a wonderful way to keep The Work alive and to demonstrate how easily I can make time for it in my life. I’ve been impressed at how my partners and I have been so flexible and persistent, and how we’ve succeeded in making connections even when one partner was on a beach in Hawaii and I was sitting on a stoop in Chinatown, New York City! Having so many partners was a great idea as well, not only because I got to do such a variety of Work through them, but experience a variety of styles of facilitation for my own Work. It was fascinating.
I’m grateful that the partnering exercise was part of the School because I am now a much freer person emotionally. Even while at the School, I often didn’t know what to work on. NOW, as thoughts come up, I’m able to label them as something I should question. On of scale of one to ten, I think my experience was an eleven! I’ve concluded that you can’t take $10 out of the bank when you only deposit $5. Also, I’m taking The Work into the addiction facility I volunteer at. I use it for Relapse Prevention. (I’m a Drug and Alcohol Counselor)
I have had a phone session every day except the 4th of July. And I have sessions lined up to cover all the days ahead until I have a round robin partner. I am listening to the BK Rap in the car, and have listened to various other CDs as well.
The weeks since the School have deepened my commitment to doing The Work a lot. It is so wonderful to have a tool to pick up whenever stress arises. It is like having the right screwdriver at hand for just that screw. I get discouraged when the same old stuff comes up, but then I just do The Work on it again, and I can see that the ground of my responses is changing. And I love that there is nothing that can’t be addressed by inquiry.
Another experience I want to mention is the sense of seeing down through a root system of beliefs, each of them linked to the others in a web. I call this the knot. I have worked on many of these issues for years in other modalities and I have made progress… but here they are still, and I had never seen how they are connected until yesterday.
Yes, I have kept The Work alive since leaving the School, through the partnering exercises. My experience was very interesting.
I stayed at the hotel for 2 days after the School, so did the partnering exercise in my hotel room the first day. Then for the next 3 days I was at home. After that I had a 14 day holiday in a very remote resort with NO technology but a very old phone both about a 15 minute walk away from my cottage. The phone both was really cool, you know, like the “Superman” phone booths, only older. The calls became such a financial burden, at $40 per call, that I decided to ask my husband to do The Work with me the second week. The Work went very deep for me with my husband. At one point, we worked for 2 hours together. There were lots of ups and downs and by the end I had a long list of one-liners for me to work on.
When I got home I found my request for a round robin partner was answered. I continued to do The Work with my school partners and when I could not connect, I had my round robin partner to do The Work with.
My experience with The Work has been kind of “out of this world”. Sometimes doing The Work seemed to not go too deep and that was perfect. It felt like my brain needed a rest and I was still processing The Work of the day before. Sometimes I would do a one-liner by myself. It would wake me up in the middle of the night at 3 AM or 5 AM and I would be taken to notebook and pen to fill in the one-liner. These sheets went very deep with up to 10 extra pages and lots of tears and laughter.
My round robin partner has been very helpful and gracious in doing 1 hour and 1.5 hour calls. She is also in the certification program with me and I feel very blessed to have connected with her. The most valuable one-liner work so far has helped me to notice how I have used great amounts of energy to keep one belief alive: “I need to protect myself by competing to be the best, or no one will love me.” This opened up a beautiful list of more one-liners that I am eager to work on. One thing I learned is that I can be impatient to push myself to be the best and now I’m learning that The Work finds its own time to be Worked. When I am patient and wait to be moved to do The Work, it flows out of me with ease and grace.