By Carly Sackellares, MSW
1. You will learn to utilize Naked Online and Lustier Life Skills material to encourage self-discovery, develop a stronger sense of your functional adult self, and improve your relationship skills.
Why wait until you are in a bad relationship to do some couples therapy? Dating experiences, good and bad, provide us an opportunity to practice our relationship skills. This work you do in the Mindful Online Dating Workshop is proactive. By gaining healthier relationship skills now, once you’ve found a special someone, you’ll have laid the groundwork for a healthy and happy partnership.
2. You will learn Chi for Two® body-based practices for staying playfully engaged in the online dating process.
Chi for Two practices grew out of the Lustier Life Skills. They are based in nervous system science called Polyvagal Theory. A lot of times with online dating, we oscillate between two nervous system responses: Fight/Flight and Shut-down. As you get anxious about the process, your inner-child may say, “I’m running out of time! I need to get started now!” In response, you swipe and swipe and swipe until you’re burned out and can’t find the strength to swipe anymore. Now, you’re in shut-down as your inner-child sighs, “I’ll never find anyone. What’s the point? I should just give up.” The Chi for Two practices help shift nervous system functioning. We can date using the nervous system called our Social Engagement system. When it feels fun and playful, we can take a step back to rest and digest before we engage again.
3. You will practice Lustier Life Skills within a supportive group environment.
This is where you, a potential participant, come into play. A special part of the Mindful Online Dating Workshop is the opportunity to cultivate supportive relationships with people who can relate to your experience. It can be hard to talk to friends and family about online dating when you feel they can’t understand. Join a group of people who get it and who will be alongside you through the process.
4. You will gain understanding of the connection between infant/parent dances and romantic dances.
As therapists, we know that romantic relationships and infant/parent relationships are interconnected, down to the fact that many partners call one another “baby.” The Mindful Online Dating Workshop gives you space to identify and gain understanding about how your unfinished dances with caregivers are potentially impacting your dating journey.
5. You will demonstrate attachment-based knowledge of staying individuated within the dance of relationship.
While having a partner can be an added bonus, it is important to maintain your own sense of self within romantic dances. In the words of Lousie Kaplan, we can learn to connect without feeling overwhelmed and disconnect without feeling abandoned. In this way, we can be self-supported adults within our romantic relationships.
6. You will develop understanding of multi-generational patterns and their effect on relationship dances.
This work goes beyond the infant/parent relationship to include patterns of relating spanning over generations. As you develop an understanding of these patterns, you can learn to change course where needed, to develop healthier ways of relating.
7. You will demonstrate basic knowledge of Polyvagal theory and the Nervous System Map in relation to the online dating process.
If you look back to expectation #2, you will notice I gave you a quick lesson on Polyvagal Theory, which is depicted on the Nervous System Map! The Nervous System Map is a tool like Naked Online: A DoZen Ways to Grow from Internet Dating. Using these tools in the Mindful Online Dating Workshop, you can have fun in the online dating process. I invite you to join the next workshop.