Landmark Forum Changed My Life
The farther away from it I get the less it seems real.
What I felt in that room, when we were all coming to terms with the fact that all the drama, all the stories, all the negative emotions and preconceived notions - we made it all up. It wasn’t actually there. We certainly CAN feel and others CAN feel in reaction to our behavior - but we can’t know it for certain, ever. Even if they say “what you did made me sad”, it isn’t true. It’s their own story.
I don’t want to spoil the content for anyone. It’s in the order its in for a distinct purpose - getting all of that out of order or in a different environment or in pieces or in worksheets just wouldn’t have been the same. Even taking notes is truly inefficient. The best way to get the most out of it is to be present in every single moment.
You wouldn't think so at first, but the breakthroughs come when you’re listening to other people share. They especially come when you’re watching someone else get coached. They’re being asked a question over and over and it seems so simple to the audience, we all want to SCREAM our own answer at the person being coached because not only do we think we know them, we also empathize down to an atomic level.
Barriers break down between people in that room.
You talk to folks you wouldn’t have talked to, people know more about you than your siblings and your best friend, and you didn’t even plan for that to happen. But when you’re in a room full of people who are showing up just as vulnerable, trusting, and scared to death as you, it’s like creating a bonfire with your feelings, rather than lighting a match.
Thirteen hours a day for three days is absurd, but I’d do it again. [I will be this weekend in the Advanced Course!] Being in a windowless conference room at a hotel IN the airport, eating Panda Express and deciding which Starbucks coffee is the least bad in order to get your fix... it’s all part of it. You’re meant to be uncomfortable. You’re meant to be completely out of your comfort zone and completely absorbed by this world. You’re nuts if you try to “go out” afterward - at 10pm on the outskirts of Orlando. You’re lucky if you can cram breakfast in your face before the 9am start time.
And that start time is no joke.
I’ve been late for everything in my life up til the Landmark Forum. It made sense to be late. I was typically working up to the buzzer on something else and then rushed out sloppily, sending an apologetic text from behind the wheel asserting how important my life was that I have every right to delay the other person’s schedule.
That’s literally impossible when you have integrity.
Not integrity like morals, ethics, good standing, etc. Integrity like all you have is your word and at a very base level, you are your word. When you make a commitment - any commitment - coffee date, wedding date, contract for work, promise that you’ll keep a secret; you will keep that commitment.
Integrity, like anything, is a habit. And habits are addicting. Anything rewarding (positive or negative) has the propensity to be addicting. I’ve decided to take full advantage of that human factor. When I have integrity in one moment, I’m even closer to having integrity in the next. Suddenly, I’m making phone calls preemptively, arriving early to lunch meetings, and tidying my place because clutter has no purpose in my new realm of possibility.
I can say with confidence that I’m a motivated and inspired person. I didn’t go to Landmark Forum to be motivated or inspired, and make no mistake, they’ll never let you get the impression that they’re trying to do that for you. I went to Landmark Forum because I lived in a story where I was the broken but earnest heroine, trying to do good in the world but held back by all of her flaws and inadequacies. I was hoping Landmark Forum would fix me, even though deep down, I didn’t believe it was possible.
I believed I was irreparable.
The truth is, Landmark Forum didn’t fix me. Through the curriculum, the sharing, the sobbing, the confronting my past, the calling my parents, and completion of the trauma in my past that was illustrating my future for me before it happen - I discovered something I can never unlearn.
I am not broken and I do not need fixing.
How I show up in the world is my choice - if I bring drama, take on other people’s problems as my own, and worst of all: interpret situations through the lens of my past experiences, rather than the reality of what’s in front of me; I’ll remain in a fog.
What I learned in the Landmark Forum is the tools to overcome those barriers to showing up in the world as my truest self, offering the best that I have to positively impact others.
My truest self, as I’m elated to find, is whole, complete, and perfect.
Trust me on this - so are you.