A Way of Living (General Rules)

Tim BrusterDear Friends,

This past June, Susan and I participated for the first time in an Intensive Journal® Workshop. Our Lay Leader, Paul Bodley, told me about the workshop and I was unable to attend when he brought it to our church. I will be forever grateful to Paul for introducing this to us. Intensive Journal is a nationally recognized program that was developed in 1966 by Dr. Ira Progoff to help people experience a life-changing process that gives them greater direction, vitality, and purpose. Although I had periodically kept a journal, this workshop was very different from anything I had ever done. This way of journaling opened up new ways of thinking through issues and events in my life. The Intensive Journal method uses an integrated system of writing exercises to help you discover new ways to improve your personal relationships, self-esteem, decision-making skills, career, health and wellness, and creativity.

Although we certainly didn’t plan it this way, we attended the workshop at a critical time in our lives. We had recently suffered loss and illness in our families, so the timing was just right. The Progoff™ method was immensely helpful to us. But, more than helping us with that time in our lives, it has continued to be a powerful way that is so much more than simply a diary of our activities. Perhaps we overuse the term “life-changing,” but as I think about my experience, the term certainly fits.

The Intensive Journal Program opens the door to all kinds of new resources and possibilities. Here are seven important reasons to attend:

1. Find yourself.
When you focus on your own interests, values, and priorities, it will help you lead a fuller life.

2. See the big picture.
Gain awareness, perspectives, and insights when it comes to specific issues in your life so they will be easier for you to manage.

3. Dig deep inside.
Use personal reflection to embrace your inner self.

4. Spark your creativity.
Explore your creative side to discover valuable talents and interests.

5. Live and learn.
Realize your own approach for using the method in your life journey.

6. Get in the spirit.
Search your heart for your spiritual beliefs to reach meaning and purpose.

7. Grow your career.
If you are in counseling, employee assistance, nursing, or social work, you can obtain continuing education credits toward professional development.

We are hosting the program this winter here at First United Methodist Church in Wesley Hall. Rev. Meredith Bell will be our workshop leader. The program is divided into two important parts: Part 1, Life Context — Gaining a Perspective on Life and Part 2, Depth Contact — Symbolic Images and Meaning in Life. Part 1 will be held on Friday, January 29, from 5:30 – 9:30 pm, and on Saturday, January 30, from 9:00 am – 6:30 pm. Part 2 will be on Friday, February 12, and on Saturday, February 13, at the same times. Click here for more details and to register. I hope you will consider starting your year with this wonderful program.

Grace and Peace,



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