Somatic IFS Newsletter April, 2022
April 15, 2022
Since my last newsletter/blog went out, this subscribing group has continued to grow. Welcome and many thanks to you all for your interest in Somatic IFS. I tend to begin each newsletter with a seasonal nature photo as connecting with nature is an important support for our embodiment. Where I am in the Indiana Dunes the wildflowers are peeking out through last fall’s decaying leaves. A perfect symbol of the flow of life as a backdrop of some upcoming Somatic IFS programs.
As I wrote my last newsletter we were all preparing to attend the second Somatic IFS Retreat in Costa Rica. With Omicron on the wane, unlike the January retreat, we were a full group in March. I am still amazed by the depth and power of the work that was done there, the joy that was felt, and the strength of collective healing. Of the two retreats scheduled for winter 2023 in Costa Rica at the same location there is still room in the February 25-March 4 retreat. To apply go to https://embodiedself.net/ under In-person Programs. Another week-long winter retreat is being planned for California. I will have more information soon.
As in-person and virtual learning each have their risks, limitations, and benefits, I offer both. Back to the virtual world, we recently completed the Somatic IFS Series--the online equivalent of the week-long Retreats. These Series and Retreats are designed to cultivate our Embodied Self energy through the practices of awareness, breath, resonance, movement, and touch--integrated with the IFS Model. Many participants bring a wealth of other somatic experiences and training. Although embodiment is a life-time endeavor, these in-person and online courses prepare us to bring embodied Self to our professional work in the Somatic IFS Training. We are nearing completion of our online second Somatic IFS Training.
Our first (since the pandemic) in-person Somatic IFS Training will begin this summer where we focus on the clinical application of the somatic practices integrated with the IFS Model. After a one-day online introduction in June, we will gather for the remainder of this 54-hour program at the Ecology Retreat Centre in a 20-acre forest outside of Toronto. Completion of either the Series or the Retreat along with completing an IFS Level 1 makes you eligible to participate in this Training
More information for the in-person Summer Training and the in-person Costa Rica Winter Retreats is available on my website, embodiedself.net. Many of you have expressed an interest in individual or group consultation. You can find a list of SIFS staff who offer consultation in Somatic IFS also on my website under Online Programs.
My book Somatic Internal Family Systems is now translated, published, and on the shelves in both Japan and Korea. Much gratitude to Dr. Hanaoka from Japan and to So-young Park from Korea who is a graduate of the Somatic IFS Training. So-young also credits her mentors Dr. Lee Jinsun & Dr. Lee Haeok who brought IFS to Korea twenty years ago and whose “quiet devotion and diligent commitment” led her “through the dark tunnel during the translation.” So-young has donated the book to the LGBT expo and Pride film festival to spread warm energy and courage to this the largest minority in Korea. Writing this, again I feel energy coursing through my body to imagine all those who will benefit from the somatic practices, many of them inspired by Asian practices that have been introduced into the West by many teachers and integrated with the IFS model developed by Richard Schwartz. My book is in the process of being translated and published into German, Polish, Russian, French, and Spanish.
If you are new to Somatic IFS and are interested in an online introduction to Somatic IFS, you can attend a six-hour online program offered through LifeArchitect on May 10th from 8:00 am-2:00 pm Central Time. Although it will be in English, this workshop will also be translated simultaneously into Polish and will be available on a Polish channel on zoom. Here is a link to sign up for it. https://lifearchitect.com/somatic-ifs/
With this introductory program through LifeArchitect, I am proud to follow Irina Diyankova, one of our SIFS staff members who recently offered a program through Life Architect for Russians and Ukranians. https://youtu.be/kg3lDb6ULSc I am proud to follow her with this introduction that will hopefully touch the good people of Poland and others who have opened their hearts and homes to refugees from Ukraine. Here is also a link for the Q&A webinar that Irina, along with Iryna Natalushko and Eliza Mikucka did on cultural burdens on the cultural burdens in Eastern Europe.
Irina also asked me to announce a new initiative being launched by the Foundation designed to provide IFS-focused support for Ukrainian therapists, who are themselves in crisis and are serving individuals in crisis. The Foundation is looking to raise $20,000 to help enhance the readiness of volunteer IFS therapists engaged in this effort around the effects of war trauma and are considering other initiatives to assist refugees longer term.
The Foundation invites you to donate toward this significant effort.
Please (1) go online at www.FoundationIFS.org/support; (2) choose Fund for Self Leadership; (3) write "Ukraine" in Comments; and (4) complete the submission process. If you have additional questions, please write to the Foundation at Outreach@FoundationIFS.org."
We have now witnessed over two months of unbearable horrors of this Russian invasion of Ukraine. In any war we mourn the senseless loss of life on both sides, and wish we could end the horrific and unjust death and trauma. In addition to supporting these volunteer Ukrainian IFS therapists with our donations, as the earth grows warmer we can plant sunflower seeds in our gardens as a symbol of our hope for peace for Ukraine and for the people of Russia. I vividly recall watching the news on Day 1 of the war as a journalist was interviewing a Ukrainian citizen who was attempting to flee with her child. When the journalist asked her what she wanted the world to know, I thought she would ask the West for some concrete help. Instead, in a desperate voice she urged us all to appreciate every moment as we live it. I think of her often as I attempt to do that.