Are you new to spiritual intensives? Are you not sure what to expect? Every intensive is different. Every location and group is different, so it’s hard to predict just what it might be like. However there are some commonalities from one experience to another. When you know what to expect, you can rest easy when it shows up. Here is a quick run down.
Feelings of Intimacy
Our groups are small. We talk about highly personal stuff sometimes. This can feel really bonding. Yet it always feels safe, so a feeling of deep connection can happen very quickly. It can let you know that this is possible and show you how to have it in your every day life. On the other hand, this may also show you your barriers to intimacy. If you have issues with emotional intimacy, they may peak here.
You’ll hear things that people don’t normally talk about. This can make you feel like you have a place in the world where people understand you without judging you. If you’ve never felt safe before, it could happen here.
You’ll See Your Stuff
Life is always a mirror for us to see ourselves, but often we look away. When you’re in an Intensive, this becomes really obvious. Sometimes painfully so. You can’t heal what you can’t see, so this is a good thing. The point of the intensive is to get intense, so this is right on target.
Letting go, learning, growing, and socializing takes a lot out of you. Expect to feel tired at the end of a great day. Leave yourself space for self care so that you don’t get overwhelmed and cranky. Lots of things are moving around inside. This is normal. So that you don’t take it out on others or go into meltdown from doing too much, be kind to yourself. Do good self care.
We do a lot of listening during a spiritual intensive. Sometimes we’ll see ourselves in others’ stories. Sometimes we will finally hear our own voices. There is an educational component to Intensives as well. This can lead to lots of new ideas about what needs to go, what needs to be created, or how to do things differently. You’ll never be told what to do, but you may just find the path to access your own inner wisdom.
It’s typical to come to an Intensive feeling tapped out. It’s normal to feel spacious and more expansive when you leave. It’s like somehow space is created inside, or maybe you’ve become bigger. It’s a hard thing to articulate. Maybe it’s just that you feel more like you after an Intensive.
We always spend time out in Nature. This can create a deep sense of relaxation. Nature is so rejuvenating after all that intensity.
I (Laura Giles, your facilitator) have a diverse cultural background. I bring all of me to the table. I also have a very diverse clientele, so there is no telling who might show up. Expect people of all ages, ethnicities, genders, socioeconomic backgrounds, and religions. It makes things interesting!
This is group experience; however, I do ask beforehand your goal for the Intensive. I take this in mind and seek to help you get what you came for. I am always available for questions and will give you all of me. I hold nothing back and like questions. Criticism is a gift that can help me improve. So, talk to me. Tell me what you need.
Doing a spiritual intensive takes courage. You have to step up and say that something needs changing (or else you wouldn’t be here). Then you have to show up… in front of other people! Yikes! Scary! No worries. You will always be supported through every activity so that you can get the most out of it and be as comfortable as possible.