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(The following aspirations are reviewed at the beginning of each meeting.  For the explanations behind these specific aspirations and wordings, see the annotated version.)


    • We do not leak anything shared in group (except credible, imminent plans of physical harm).
    • We do not privately address our concerns about another person’s story.
    • The group has no leader.  Goals are discovered from the inside, not assigned from the outside.
    • We allow current, active, “bad” choices, not just stories of messiness in the past.
    • We do not intervene, positively or negatively after a statement or confession.
    • We focus on “I” and avoid saying “you”, or inviting a response from the group.
    • We privately note new revelations based on others’ sharing time and abstain from exploring those revelations publicly.
    • We learn from each other only through the unintentional collateral benefit of identifying with another’s experience; not through teaching or advising.
    • We empathetically and compassionately hear each other, with active passivity.
    • We stay in our own lane. The group manages group goals; individuals manage individual goals.
      • We fully trust others to find, hear, and translate their own Guiding Light.
      • We do not play therapist, give advice or volunteer media recommendations.
      • We do not fix or resolve others’ problems. We do not silence, cover, nor alleviate each other’s pain.
      • We do not ask leading, judging nor fixing questions.
    • We fully accept each other, without requiring even partial agreement.
    • We do not conduct side conversations, crack jokes, or otherwise distract, interrupt, or draw attention from others who are sharing, except to clarify where the speaker was unclear.
    • We do not take the power of choice from someone else.
    • We do not allow indiscretions to disqualify anyone from having an opinion, goal or dream.
    • We respect each other by prioritizing attendance for all the meetings of a session.  When I have missed several meetings, I will let the group know I’ve put myself on the waiting list for the following session if I plan to return.
    • For the integrity of the group, we say, “I’d like to gently redirect,” when we feel the group aspirations are not met, and we welcome redirection with statements like, “Sure” or “Thanks” without objections like, “That’s not what I meant”.
    • We collide with transformative content.
    • We do not invalidate important, current negative feelings by prophesying future outcomes.
    • We don’t end meetings with conclusions or attempt to control outcomes.
    • We don’t break valuable, uncomfortable silence with a trite filler or reactionary answer.
    • We value experimentation over perfection.


    • I will focus on what happens inside myself, not outside myself.
    • I will not expect to get more out of the group than I have put into it.
    • I will not necessarily fix my problems or go home resolved. I am here in process, and, at best, I only leave with a new hypothesis to test.  Sometimes, not even that.
    • I will focus on “I” and avoid saying “you”, “we”, “us”, or requests for agreement like, “…right?” or “…you know?”
    • I will not generalize to the group, but will courageously say what I mean, without hiding in the crowd, even if no one else agrees.
    • I will not prophesy future outcomes, nor silence, cover, alleviate or stifle my important, current negative feelings.
    • I am here to identify and pursue the passions and dreams which resonate with the healthiest parts of my soul.
    • I am here to risk failure bravely and embrace the opportunity to learn.
    • I am here to reduce harm by identifying and working toward elimination of my self-destructive motivations, habits, and behaviors.
    • I will resist mono-dynamism: the urge to over-spiritualize, over-diagnose, or otherwise focus on one aspect of self (spirit, soul, body, emotions, etc.) to the detriment of the others.
    • I will not allow someone else to make my choices for me.
    • I accept the authority to take ownership of my triggers, emotions, and boundaries.
    • I will find camaraderie in the underlying emotions of our stories, while validating the uniqueness of each person’s experience.
    • I am the leader of this meeting with myself.  I will faithfully represent my developing truth and process, especially in opposition to the participants who seem “better” or “smarter”, or whom I’m afraid will disagree.
    • I will not resent others for crossing boundaries I haven’t expressed or enforced; or for enforcing legitimate boundaries I wish they didn’t have.


  • There is something inside my personhood that I want to explore.
  • I wish to change something, even if I’m not quite sure exactly what it is yet, and I am willing to try something, even in the face of hopelessness.
  • My heart needs to be nurtured, understood, and given an appropriate voice.
  • I am curious about my triggers; physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually.
  • I am open to questioning anything, being wrong, and changing my mind.
  • My self-care is a prerequisite for quality, long-term others-care.
  • For the duration of this meeting, my sole priority is to shed the concerns and stresses from today so I can temporarily dive deeper into:
    1. The voice of my heart, which is the controlling undercurrent in my life
    2. Internally empathizing, fully immersed with others as they explore

Use the next 120 seconds of silence to prepare your 7-minute timer for your exploration time, then silence your phone, and use the remaining time to settle your mind and check in with your heart.

Read on: Explanation of the Aspirations