“If you don’t consciously feed your desire, you will feed your fear.”
~ Steve Pavlina
On day three of Steve Pavlina’s Conscious Growth Workshop I awoke in terror. I knew that one of the topics we would be discussing was our social life, and after chatting with Steve the night before, I had a sinking feeling that he was going to call me up on stage to sit in the “hot seat” and be coached in front of the group.
I knew that no one could force me to share my challenges with the audience, but there was a part of me that WANTED to share. I felt a lot of anxiety within me surrounding this topic and I didn’t want to let it get the best of me. I had another big “a-ha” moment when I noticed that my fear of being on stage was NOT a fear of being in front of a crowd; it was a fear of allowing people to witness my vulnerability and imperfection; and the possible rejection as a result. This is an issue even in my closest relationships.
By the time Steve asked for a volunteer to come up and discuss their social situation with the group I was in a cold sweat. My heart was beating fast and I felt nauseous. I put my hand up anyway.
And then the most amazing thing happened… I didn’t get picked! I breathed a sigh of relief and the blood returned to my head. I was overjoyed… not only because I hadn’t been chosen but also because of all I had learned about myself in the fear of being chosen! I had learned what I needed to work on: allowing others to see my genuine, imperfect self, and releasing my fear of rejection.
We continued on in our personal development with an in-depth examination of our emotional well-being and spiritual development. Once again I learned more in observing the participants on stage than I did doing the written exercises.
One of the realizations I had on day three that made me feel really great was the awareness that everybody is working on “something”; even Steve Pavlina himself. I also noticed that some of the challenges other people face are a breeze for me and vice versa. It was a relief to know that nobody has it all figured out; if they did, they wouldn’t be on the planet.
It’s important to embody the fact that there will ALWAYS be a “Planet “B” – an unfulfilled desire you wish to bring in to your experience. Once you achieve any goal you’ll immediately be given something new to work towards. Since you never “get it done”, it’s crucial to appreciate where you are at this present moment in time.
This ongoing path of achieving goals and fulfilling desire gives us direction and pulls us forward, and the obstacles that stand in our way help us to grow. FEAR is the only thing that ever blocks us, but facing fear is the secret to exponential growth. One of the things I love about Steve Pavlina is how clearly he demonstrates this in his own life.
Day three of the Conscious Growth Workshop was definitely more emotive as we completed in-depth exercises such as gazing into a partner’s eyes while thinking, “you are loved” and participating in a calming meditation led by Steve’s wife Erin. There was also an all around sense of greater love and support by day three as so many of us had bonded over the weekend. Day three was by far my favorite day of workshop.
As the sun began to set on Sunday I felt very sad. It was hard for me to bear the thought of leaving this wonderful new family of supportive people that I had grown so close to in only three days time.
I spent two more days in Las Vegas, decompressing and absorbing all the new insights I had acquired. As I traveled back to Toronto on Tuesday night I knew that my experience at the Conscious Growth Workshop had caused a shift within me. I felt like a new and different person.