Yes, but you should do it anyway!
I have received a plethora of questions about the Landmark Forum and how it played a role in my starting this business. I figured a blog post about it would be a great way to tackle the subject.
Landmark is an ontological based company who offers a three-day (plus an evening) course in personal development called the Landmark Forum. It’s like nothing else you’ll ever experience. You can count on that. Here’s a list of simple Q & A from the bank of my noggin. This is not from the folks at Landmark, this is straight from me. Since one of my core values is autonomy, I haven’t run these up the Landmark flagpole, and for all I know, they wouldn’t approve of my spoutings.
Q: Is it weird?
A: Yes, it struck me as incredibly different and uncommon. I love different. I love weird. Nothing new comes from mediocrity or more of what you already know.
Q: Is it brainwashing?
A: You wash everything else, so why not your brain, too? Just kidding. No, it’s absolutely not brain washing. They push you to remain independent and to think for yourself. They have some pretty neat and radical things to offer you, and they ask that you “try them on” to see if they fit. You’ll be completely free to choose what you keep and what you toss. For me, about 85% of the offerings in Landmark Forum were things I have chosen to embrace and implement.
Q: Does it stick?
A: Oh my goodness, YES! It becomes innate. You have to choose it as such, and declare for yourself if “sticking” is something you want. But for me and lots of others, a resounding “YES” is my answer. Every single day, I intrinsically apply what I learned at the Landmark Forum and as a result, my life has never been better, or more fun.
Q: Is it faith-based?
A: No. However, anyone who has a strong commitment to God will tell you that after completing the Landmark Forum, they began to worship more freely than ever been before, and that their bond with God is stronger than they imagined possible. They don’t address God in the Forum. They don’t address religion of any kind in the Landmark Forum. They help you become truly connected to whatever you choose. WHATEVER you choose. Health, spirituality, money, relationships, whatever! And yes it’s truly applicable to anything. Coming from a girl whose nickname is the niche-bitch, you should know that I don’t say that lightly. “One size fits all” approaches makes my skin crawl, and yet I promise you that whatever you’re interested in harnessing, you can make happen from within the Landmark forum. In the words of a six-year-old, “for reals.”
Q: Is it intense?
A: This is a personal interpretation of course, but my answer is yes. I saw and heard things that weekend that will stay with me forever. Growth doesn’t come from comfort. Growth comes from the fire and there were times in the weekend that I wished I had a mental fire extinguisher. Of course I am glad the figurative fire crew didn’t show up because walking through the flames myself turned out to be awesome.
Q: Can you leave at will?
A: Good grief, yes! I can’t help but laugh when people say they’ve heard you aren’t allowed to leave. Pfffft! Try that one on this fiercely autonomous Leo and let me know if your dental records are still in tact. Yes, you’re absolutely allowed to go to the restroom, walk out the front doors and come back or walk out the front doors and not come back. Yes, you’re allowed to leave. However, if your flight instinct kicks in, you should ask yourself why it’s happening. Regardless though, no one will stop you if you need to bolt.
Q: Is it a cult?
A: No. Stop it. You can’t be serious. Do you look up words before you use them in sentences? Here, let me help you:
- A system of religious veneration and devotion directed toward a particular figure or object.
- A relatively small group of people having religious beliefs or practices regarded by others as strange or sinister. “A network of Satan-worshiping cults.”
- A misplaced or excessive admiration for a particular person or thing.
- A person or thing that is popular or fashionable, especially among a particular section of society. “A cult film.
- Synonyms: obsession with, fixation on, mania for, passion for, idolization of, devotion to, worship of, veneration of.
No. Landmark is not any of those things. And for the love of Pete, please grab a dictionary before you go tossing around emotionally-charged words. Apple is a cult. [Excessive admiration for a particular person or thing.] And I am one very proud card-carrying member! Landmark? No. Not a cult. If they feel excessive admiration for any particular person or thing, it’s YOU.
Q: Is it perfect?
A: Nope! Not in my estimation anyway. But here’s the thing . . . we only get 100 years on this planet. Do you really have the luxury of waiting for the perfect seminar? And truly, the things that I wish were different about the Landmark forum don’t hold a candle to the tremendous benefits of the course.
Q: Should I go?
A: YES! There’s quite an experience waiting for you. It’s incredible. Everyone has a past and everyone stands to break through when they get complete with it. Not because it’s bad or good, rough or smooth, but because it just is. Attending the Landmark forum will help you separate your stories from reality. In many cases, they are stories you don’t even realize you were telling yourself. And then you’ll be free. Go take your life back! Do it! Your only regret will be that you didn’t go sooner. My advice is to embrace the Forum with both arms.
Q: Is there something I could do instead?
A: Nothing even comes close. In my experience, there’s nothing that will give you the breakthroughs that the Landmark Forum offers. I have been to so many cool workshops, but nothing has so much as scratched the surface of delivering what the Forum delivers.
Q: Do you have advice for someone who’s registered and is headed to the Landmark Forum?
A: Yes! As Sheryl Sandberg says, Lean In. Lean in, HARD. I spent the first day of my Landmark forum skeptical and waiting for the other shoe to fall. There’s no shoe. Participate. Push yourself and get up to the microphone. Question everything. If you’re thinking it, say it! Say it loud. Push the course facilitator hard. Don’t hold back and don’t be concerned with good manners. It’s your Landmark Forum. Get your money’s worth. Let it all hang out and empty yourself of everything that’s on your heart and in your head. And whatever you do, complete the forum. Don’t bail early. It’s Friday, Saturday and Sunday and so many light bulbs go on during Sunday afternoon. It’s quite a process.
Q: Should I go further than the Landmark Forum?
A: I have no idea. I have only completed the Forum. Someone whom I trust told me to “get in, get your breakthroughs, and get out.” So far, I have followed that advice carefully, though I am considering doing the advanced course. Going further is just a personal choice. Choose it or don’t.
Bottom line . . .
Based on my own experiences, and the nervous-nelly inquiries I’ve received from friends and family, my guess is that just about everyone knows a Landmark Forum zealot. You know, the kind of person whose approach that makes you think, “Um, what compensation is this person going to get by getting me to say yes?” I assure you there’s no compensation. There’s only genuine love for humanity. Like nothing I could have ever imagined.
In the Landmark Forum, you become present to such intense clarity and passion that you want it for everyone you know. In a matter of three days you become profoundly aware that if every human on the planet took the course, there would be no war. No family arguments. No pain from our past. No blaming. No finger pointing. No self-sabotaging. It’s a pretty powerful mental space to dwell in. If someone you know asks you to check out the Landmark Forum, don’t go into interpretationville, where you assume they are saying that you’re broken or screwed up. It’s just them loving you and wanting you to experience the breakthroughs that they did. If enlightenment exists, you’ll experience it on the third day of the forum. Here’s their website.
Here’s to creating a fresh canvas so you can paint your life with intention!