For a handful of clients I take them through the steps of Designing a Balanced Life one-on-one. It’s a big honor to work with people this way. Besides meeting specific goals, we also explore the stories that make us who we are, create barriers to moving past our mind’s limitations, and help us connect to our deepest passions. People tell me they want to:
- Start a business.
- Start a new career.
- Restart a career after the kids start school.
- Learn to relax and focus instead of feeling overwhelmed by too many choices and too little time.
- Get back to the feeling of “home” when away from home.
- Get back to what matters most.
- Find work to love.
- Find Flow.
… and soon enough we are looking at locks that keep the doors to dreams shut tight. We tinker with the locks through the practice of taking small steps and focussing on goals, discovering what paths break down the barriers, and what pleasures can be found even in the mundane tasks that steer our lives in a better direction.
I am so fortunate to work with people making remarkable changes to their lives:
“I have been a lifescience professional for the past twenty-five years. I developed a serious, disabling health condition last summer that prevented me from functioning – I could not walk, drive, or work. The worst thing was that I could not be exposed to any infectious disease so I was forced to live like the ‘boy in the bubble’.
“I met David at the nadir of my life. David helped me to ‘design a balanced life’ despite these seemingly insurmountable challenges. He became my muse, helped me to explore my art, spiritual practice and writing, and introduced me to people with similar interests. David has enabled me to recapture my life and build new dreams; I am deeply indebted to him. I highly recommend David to anyone who wants or needs to change their life for the better.”
- — BG
Artist, Scientist, Entrepreneur, Survivor
“Before taking the Ten Lesson for Designing a Balanced Life, I was often stressed and didn’t think I’d ever have work I enjoyed. I spent a lot of energy trying to adapt to oppressive ideas about careers and jobs.
“During my sessions with David I learned to set goals to achieve more Flow in my life. I was able to identify what activities had resonance, and I learned to focus on what is most important to me. It became apparent that I really like walking in the city and interviewing people, so I started a video interview series that I published as a podcast. I was able to design and follow through on a method to achieve Flow in my work. This was a huge development, as I had very little Flow at work before. Then, I set up informational interviews with potential employers to talk about my video interview series. Finally, I ended up getting a new job as a Video Ethnographer.
“Today, I continue to manage my schedule with the Pilot Fire Planbook to stay focused on what’s important.”
- — Nate Mahoney
Flaneur, Video Ethnographer, Swimmer
City Walks Video Interviews at NateMahoney.com
“This may sound funny, but working with David’s system for Designing a Balanced Life I actually discovered parts of myself that I didn’t know I had. Put another way, David helped me unpack the different ‘roles’ I play in my everyday life including the underlying narratives that influence everything from the way I teach English to the how I feel about myself at the end of the day. And, after showing me these facets of my life, David provided a unique set of skills and tools for integrating them back into the whole person, helping me find a greater sense of flow by staying focused on what matters most at any given moment.
Throughout, David was responsive to all my concerns and insightful enough to quickly design and customize exercises for me that were relevant and productive. Best of all it was really fun.”
- — Craig Medvecky
Here’s how it works:
The Ten Lessons take about four months to complete with one meeting every week, for a total of 16 sessions. Our first meeting is 3 hours long and best done face-to-face. (We can make special accommodations when that’s not possible.) We get a lot of work done in this time. See the description below. For subsequent meetings, we meet for an hour either through Skype, on the phone, or in person, depending on what works best. The key is regular meetings with time to practice in between.
This is very personal work and everything we do I keep strictly confidential.
At the end of our time together you will be practicing a system for paying attention to what’s most important to you every day, every week, that you can use for the rest of your life. Your new habits will be in place, and you will see progress on the goals we decide to pursue.
Is this course for you?
- You are ready to discover and pursue your passions.
- You are ready to make fundamental changes to how you make plans and follow through. (This is a system to help you design your life. You need to do the work to make the change.)
- You are willing to try new things and sometimes fail.
- You are willing to truly focus on what’s most important to you.
- You are ready to take action.
- You want a cost-effective course compared to to private lessons, with the benefit of group feedback.
What you get
By the end of this course you will get:
- A simple, reliable, easy-to-implement system to make sure your actions align with your values.
- A deep understanding of the particular roles you play in your life.
- A clear map of your roles, goals, and relationships that allow you to be your best.
- The regular practice of making a great Week’s Plan in 20 minutes.
- The regular practice of making a great Day’s Plan in 2 minutes.
- A simple method for turning your biggest desires into a plan you can implement.
- Actual progress on at least one of your important goals.
- Methods for getting unstuck.
- A clear understanding of the tools you need to manage your attention.
- Knowledge of how to harness the power of the unconscious roles you play.
- Practice taking small steps that make a big difference.
- Encouragement to take meaningful risks.
- Several private coaching sessions to address your specific roles, goals, and relationships.
Lesson 1: Digging In Fast
We will meet for most of a day to set you up with the fundamental tools you will use in the following weeks. Using an Attentionometer made from popsicle sticks, you assess the things in your life that need more attention, what needs less, and what’s already in balance. In this lesson you will:
- Experience Flow and why it’s at the root of all goals.
- Understand how to use interation as the core of your process.
- Learn to expect failure and celebrate it.
- Identify the important parts of your life that need attention
- Start building your Attention Management System.
- Make your first Week’s Plan you know you will do.
At the end of this lesson, we both decide whether we want to work together. Usually that answer is an enthusiastic YES! If so, then the first payment is due, and we schedule a regular meeting time for our continued lessons. If either of us decides after the first meeting not to continue, for any reason, no payment is due.
Deepening the practice, Lessons 2-9
As you learn in Lesson 1 Designing a Balanced Life is simple. Just, figure out what’s important. Then pay attention to it. Simple sure, but it takes a consistent practice and technique so lessons 2-9 are all about refining and deepening your practice. Some lessons are covered in one session, while others take two or three. Some require probing and untangling, some are nuts and bolts practical, and some are playful and physical. We develop your practice around a few clear goals and use the lessons to develop your technique. You will have homework. You do all the work. I’m here to teach technique, provide feedback, and guide the program.
Graduation, Lesson 10
After the completion of the Ten Lessons course, you will have all the tools you need and plenty of practice under your belt. You’re ready to continue on your own. For the last lesson we meet face-to-face again at a special location to perform Lesson 10’s closing ritual.
Plus free, continued, private coaching
After graduation, you also get two free 60-minute private coaching sessions. As an introduction to coaching, these sessions are directed by you, focussing on the goals of your choice. We use the techniques you learn in the Ten Lessons without a curriculum. It’s all supporting what you feel is most important to you.
The private version of the Ten Lessons cost:
$1000 per month for 4 months.
There are a total of 16 meetings, including the first 3 hour meeting.
You don’t start paying until after our first meeting. At the conclusion of our first meeting, if we decide to work together, the first payment will be due. Then, after the fourth session, the second payment is due, and twice more, each after four sessions are complete, until all four payments are made.
You can quit for any reason at any time, and I’ll forgive obligations for future payments.
I limit teaching lessons privately to about half a dozen students a year. If you are interested, please contact me using the link below. Once I receive your note, we’ll set up a time for a free 30-minute phone call.