There is a deep need within all humans to find belonging and experience growth towards our truest self. We have a need to surround ourselves with people who believe what we believe so that we can build trust.

This allows us to take risks, fail, explore, experiment, try things out, and be curious; all of which are part of our journey. However, we all experience moments when we become lost, disorientated, disconnected, and feel as though we are stuck.

We all know how this feels.

In this place, we are not our best selves. We feel isolated, depressed, anxious, stressed, alone, frustrated, and/or angry. This mix of emotions causes us to behave and react in unhealthy ways.

So the question becomes, “How do I move forward? How do I get out of this?  How do I change?  How can I make things better?”

Enviros 2-day Shared Journey workshop reminded me where we need to start, in order to answer these questions.

“Everything that happens to you presents either an opportunity to grow or an obstacle to keep you from growing. You get to choose.”

I’m still processing everything I learned and experienced during this workshop, as it had a profound impact on me. So I will attempt to coalesce my thoughts into a few key awakenings: the Power of Relationships, the Power of Intentional Presence, and the Power of Self-Awareness.

The Power of Relationships

Participating in Shared Journey was so much more than attending a workshop or getting trained on the fundamentals of Experiential Learning. It was an opportunity to fulfill that deep need to find belonging among others.

I started the workshop as an individual and I left feeling a profound connection to everyone there. I felt like I was truly on a shared journey with these people and I had found a place where I could belong.

It is true, the power of human relationship invites belonging.  This bond that was formed over the 2-days became the “vehicle” through which the rest of my “awakenings” or learnings came.  There is nothing quite like recognizing that we’re all in this together, that you aren’t alone. There are people who are on your side cheering you on to become your best self.

The Power of Intentional Presence

Where you start and how you “show up” changes everything.

As we sat inside the tipi on the second day, the facilitator led us through a breathing meditation. At this moment, I began to feel a massive shift happening inside of me.  The act of slowing down, breathing, grounding myself in the present moment, this allowed my mind to reconnect with my body, it created this overwhelming sense of peace, openness, calm, and wonder.  Things began to “click” for me.

You know that moment right?  When everything makes sense, everything around you takes on a greater sense of clarity. You feel more compassionate towards yourself and others. You feel connected, and all-of-a-sudden you feel way more courageous to take on whatever challenge is before you.

The power of presence is a real thing.  I was reminded that this is the place I need to start from.

If I am to help others change. If I am to help myself change. If I’m going to help make my corner of the world better, then I need to be intentional in how I “show up”.

Because everything changes when I do.

The Power of Self-Awareness

Through relationships and presence, the facilitators led us through various experiences that gave us a greater sense of self-awareness.

We explored all the ways our senses inform us on how we experience the world and navigate our environments.  We were reminded of just how much information we process through our senses and how sensory integration plays a vital role in how we self-regulate.

This level of awareness is only achievable if we are present enough to notice.

It informs us on how we achieve balance and stability during our daily lives. And, how we choose to engage with challenges ahead of us.  It was also a reminder that tapping into these senses is a way to ignite one’s curiosity, which is the key to inspiring growth.

There is power in self-awareness. You begin to recognize the power of your own mind and body, and the power dynamics within all your relationships.

Being aware of these realities only serves to enhance your human experience and propels you towards becoming your truest self.

And I’m just scratching the surface…

– Joshua Clarke, Manager – ARCH, ExCel, Passages