Are you longing for more meaning in your life? Do you want to experience your life more fully but aren’t sure how to do it? As the following testimony makes clear, the Personal Transformation Intensive workshops led by Heart-Centered hypnotherapists can literally change lives—for the better. To learn more about what the PTI program involves, visit www.wellness-institute.org/personal-transformation-intensive-take-a-pti-course.
To learn how PTI changes lives dramatically, read on:
In 2005, my life changed dramatically. I started a program called Personal Transformation Intensive. I really had no idea what I was getting myself into! My best friend was enrolling in the program and she thought it would be a good idea if I did too. I agreed and committed to five weekends over a five-month period.
It wasn’t a secret that I had been struggling with my life for a long time. My life looked good on the outside; I had a great job with amazing benefits, recently completed a marathon, owned my own home and had a lot of “friends.” However, on the inside I was fighting to keep my head above water.
Like so many of us I was raised in a family with a lot of addiction. I was molested at four years old and had a tremendous amount of fear and anxiety. I had body issues from the time I was very young and I had very low self-esteem, which equated into always comparing myself to everybody else.
Unfortunately, because of the way I felt about myself I started dabbling in drugs and alcohol when I was 14 years old. As with any addiction, the dabbling increased throughout my high school years. Although I graduated high school (first in my family of five) and college, I still took a lot of risks and got into many relationships that were not serving me.
In 1995 I had a painful breakup and moved back to my home town. Although the breakup was hard, I was excited because this was my new lease on life! I got my dream job and was spending a lot of time with my family, which, although dysfunctional, I loved dearly.
In 1996 I lost my mom to cancer. It was devastating for my family. We all went our own way and I just continued walking through my life even more unconsciously than I had before. About four months after I lost my mom, I met someone. I had this fantasy that my mom had sent him to me. I jumped right into the relationship and got married soon afterward.
The relationship was over before I even got married. My modus operandi with relationships was to jump in quick and then discover it’s not a good fit. I would stay in the relationship, however, convincing myself if my partner would just change, all would be perfect! I never looked at myself and my role in the relationship; heck no. Needless to say, my husband and I started talking about splitting up. However, we put that on hold when he suddenly got diagnosed with leukemia. We stayed married and I supported him through the treatments. He passed away in 2001.
Between the time my husband passed away and 2005 my drinking and drug use was at an all-time high. My anxiety was also at a new level; to the point I wanted to check myself into a psych ward. I had suicidal thoughts and just knew I didn’t want to live my life the way I was living. Keep in mind I still looked good on the outside to those that weren’t too close to me.
So when my best friend approached me to take the PTI 1 training with her how could I refuse! Intellectually I knew “something was not right.” I knew my coping mechanisms where not working but I didn’t have a clue on how to stop the destructive behavior.
Here is an example of what I mean: I knew drinking and drugging was not good for me or my anxiety and every time after a “binge” I would tell myself I would stop. However, I would continually find myself back out there doing the same thing over and over again. I should mention that I had been going to therapy on and off since college. It helped get me through some hard times but I didn’t want to just get through, I wanted to heal and feel peace within myself. I wanted to LIVE. The Personal Transformation Intensive 1 training through The Wellness Institute helped me with that journey.
A Personal Transformation Begins
I started the Personal Transformation Intensive training in 2005 at the suggestion of my best friend. I agreed and committed to five weekends over a five-month period. The first weekend of the PTI we gathered at The Wellness Institute retreat center on a Friday around 4 p.m.
I was really excited to start my new PTI adventure but nervous about what I was getting myself into. During our introductions, however, I realized I wasn’t the only one that was nervous. This put my mind at ease and I was able to relax a bit. That was my first indication that being in a group doing “my work” was going to be okay.
Not only was it going to be okay I knew I was going to be safe with this group. How did I know that? The Wellness Institute made me feel safe in this training by putting PTI Agreements in place for me and the other group members. We all had to sign an agreement which outlined ground rules. Ground rules about confidentiality, respect and openness without judgment.
After introductions and ground rules we shared a meal together, got more familiar with each other and then jumped right into our training. The very first process we did together was fun and eye opening. Right off the bat it gave me a tiny bit of insight on how I presented myself in the world.
The first weekend turned out to be simply amazing! I jumped in with both feet and dug in. It was hard as hell but I wanted to make some serious changes in my life. I wanted to stop with the addictions and start bringing in healthy, loving relationships plus so much more. I knew after the first weekend, PTI was how I was going to get there. I was “hooked”.
After the first weekend I didn’t feel alone anymore. The other people in the group had some of the same issues I had. I started to really bond with these folks. They were allowing me to witness their fear, pain, anger, joy, laughter, as I was going to allow them to witness mine. I can’t describe how that felt. It was unbelievably freeing!
I never fully had that experience with my family or friends. This was partly due to the way I showed up in my relationships. I’ve always described myself as a chameleon. I had many different parts of me and I didn’t have a clue on how to manage all the layers of myself. I was an addict, I was an overachiever, I was a rescuer. I judged, controlled, I held on tight to some people and built huge walls with others. I did things I didn’t understand. I loved big and had so much compassion but didn’t know how to balance it all.
How do I have compassion towards my heroin addicted brother but not rescue him? How do I let go of relationships that do not serve me and let in people that are healthy for me? How do I start living my life fully and stop with some of the destructive behaviors that keep me from living?
Throughout the PTI Leadership weekends I was able to start “dissecting” all the layers of myself to discover who I truly was. It was a very subtle process but I started really being aware of behaviors. I was becoming conscious of what I was doing. One of my teachers said to me, “The first step in changing the way you create your life is self awareness.” I was able to start making different choices from that awareness.
What a blessing!
A Life Transformed
I always say I’m a Personal Transformation Intensive Lifer! By 2009 I had finished PTI 1 and PTI 2. I also started doing seva with a therapist and helped with PTI groups for several years. I continued to learn so much about myself within these groups.
I have been clean and sober since 2009. I did have a small relapse since then but it was incredibly uncomfortable and didn’t last long. Drinking alcohol and “numbing out” just isn’t the same when you are so self aware. It was definitely something I didn’t want to relive. I wanted to do things differently and I wanted to live the fullest life I could. I got the support I needed during that relapse and moved forward.
PTI 1 taught me self-awareness and supported me to become conscious. It gave me words to put with what I had felt for most of my life. PTI 2 took me a level deeper. It helped me to recognize those “blind” spots that were very tricky for me to see. Why did I constantly get into relationships that didn’t serve me? What was I gaining from those relationships? What did I believe about myself?
I can’t describe the depth of learning and connection you will gain from PTI 1 and PTI 2. Not only do you gain knowledge about yourself, relationships, family, etc., you gain a powerful and supportive community. After I completed PTI 1 and PTI 2, I learned how to deal with emotions in a healthy way and so much more.
I am a changed person today than when I started my journey with PTI in 2005. I communicate openly and honestly, I have relationships that serve me. I am clean and sober and conscious. I experience life to its fullest.
I would be lying though if I said I am completely whole and finished with my work. One hard lesson I’ve had to learn over and over again throughout the years is I will never be fully “done” doing my work. Until it’s my time to transition from this life, I embrace that idea and know that I am a work in progress. PTI just made it possible for me to love the life I’m living!