Herbal Self Care Class for Radicals, Activists and Organizers

An Herbal Self Care Class

for Radicals, Activists and Organizers

Over my ten + years working as an herbalist, many of my clients have been radicals, activists and organizers.occupy on a bus

They’d been fighting the good fight for years and would show up at my doorstep overwhelmed, stressed out and wondering how much longer they’ll be able to keep going.

Some were trying to unplug from this failed system, by growing more of their own food, reducing their carbon footprint, changing their buying habits, or by homeschooling their kids.

Some were engaged in community groups and activist organizations working for various types of justice. From fighting racism on the streets of Ferguson (#BlackLivesMatter) to stopping the Tar Sands to creating community birthing centres and everything in between.

The kinds of work they did varied but they all had something in common. They, sometimes secretly, carried a mix of sadness, fear, anger and, often, deep hopelessness at the state of the worldwoman being arrested.

More than most people, they saw how bad things had become in the world and how much change was needed. The enormity of the struggle was wearing them down. Their health, their energy, and/or their relationships were paying the price.

It’s a heartbreaking position to be in: to want to give so much and yet to doubt whether you’ll be able to.

It was for these people (and those like them) that I created …

Herbal Self Care Class for Radicals, Activists and Organizers

How to sustain yourself and your activism using herbal healing, empathy and deep nature connection

This 6 week tele-class will show you how and why herbal medicines, empathy and nature connection must play a major role in our lives and our justice work.

This is version 2.0 of this class. After offering it the first time in October 2015, I realized that I needed to include tools and teachings around emotional processing and the vital role that empathy can play in our lives.

These three pieces: herbs, empathy and nature connection are profoundly helpful tools that can keep us healthy, balanced and creative as we work to create the world we need.

Too often people put the “cause” ahead of their own needs. They rationalized their overwork by saying “I’ll rest when this struggle is over” or “I’ll take care of this health issue when I have time.”  I know because I have done the same thing.

But this pushing through attitude almost always lead to symptoms getting worse, to longer recovery times, to burnout and to more time away from their activism.

quote-caring-for-myself-is-not-self-indulgence-it-is-self-preservation-and-that-is-an-act-audre-lorde-45-67-08We have a long, challenging road ahead. We need all the bodies and hearts we can get.

And that means that we need YOU to be well, so that you can stay engaged and active.

 


“Sounds great! Take me to the dates & price.”


 

Who is this class best for?

After years of being around activists and organizer (and being one myself).  I want to highly recommend this kind of class if:

you might be suffering from capitalism

  • You’re feeling anxious and/or stressed more than you think is good for you
  • You’re tired of having self judgement and ‘shoulds’ rule your life
  • You stuck feeling overwhelmed or angry about the state of the world
  • You get through your day with 3+ cups of coffee, sugar or other stimulants in a day
  • It seems like you’re getting sick a lot, as if every “seasonal” illness hits you
  • You’re feeling overwhelmed, panicked or triggered (almost) daily
  • You’re feeling disconnected from yourself or your heart’s motivations driving your activism

I’ve seen too many beautiful, passionate people step back because they don’t have the physical or emotional energy to continue.

“Let’s treat each other as if we plan to work side by side in struggle for many, many years to come. Because the task before us will demand nothing less.” Naomi Klein addressing Occupy Wall Street

Let me add…

Treat yourself as if you plan to work for many, many years to come!

Not only will you feel better and be more resilient, but you’ll have more fun.

Revolution is supposed to fun, right?!

What my clients needed were self care practises that sustained them, their health and their activism.

But self care practices don’t work when they’re “just one more thing to do.”  Take a look at this list and see if you agree.

Here are 4 essential characteristics to great self care practices:

  1. rewilding bethyThey are do-able. When they fit easily into your life, you’re going to use them. And they’re going to work.  Don’t try to do everything possible, just pick a few things and be consistent with them.
  2. They support you physically.  Specifically, it’s very important to reduce the impacts of stress on your body.   Be gentle with yourself.  Focus on nourishing your body and relaxing your nervous system.
  3. They support you emotionally.  By taking time to track your internal reality, you approach the world differently.  You actually relieve both mental and physical tensions, you can calm and centre yourself and you can access your greatest creativity when you take time to process your emotional experiences.
  4. They connect you with Nature. Simply put, isolation is a tool of oppression. When you believe that you’re alone, you suffer. When you see that Nature is always connected, always working toward balance, you can feel connected with a deeper, more ancient drive that places your work, your life, your activism, within an Earth-based shift back into balance.

Don’t those make sense?  And so nourishing.

My hope is that these four principles become more deeply woven into your daily life by the end of our six weeks together.

From these 6 webinars, you’ll learn:

  • How to use herbs to increase your health and your resilience so you can be more effective and have more fun with your activism
  • Practical tools and techniques for dealing with anxiety and stress
  • Why and how nature connection is essential not just for your own health and happiness, but also the effectiveness of your resistance work
  • The basics of listening with empathy to support yourself and your community
  • Tips for creating or enriching your own support networks

About your  instructor:

garliq with violetHi there, my name is garliq.   I’m a radical, activist and organizer who is passionate about social and environmental justice.  My heart aches to see an end to the violence and devastation rampant in the world today.  I dream of a world that is beautiful, healthy, vibrant and just, where humans live in harmony (not dominance) with Nature and one another.

It was my experience with burnout that lead me to studying healing with herbs and empathy.  And today, I run my own herb school where I’ve taught hundreds of people how to empower themselves with local herbs.  With this class, I’m branching out so that this knowledge can be accessible to more people.

I believe that if we have any chance of changing things for the better, any chance of stopping the juggernaut of the dominant, power-over, consumption-based culture, then we have to root ourselves and our resistance movements in compassion and connection to the healing and wisdom of the Earth.

For me, that means plant medicines, deep nature connection and emotional processing have to play a crucial role.  And I’d love to show you why and how this can be done.

“If not us, then who? 

If not now, then when?”

John E. Lewis

After all…

We are the ones we’ve been waiting for!

 


“I’m super interested! Take me to the dates & price.”

Let me show you how Herbs, Empathy and Nature Connection can support you AND aid your resistance:

  1. Herbs can improve your health, your energy, and your resilience. They can help you to feel better, get better and stay better.  Herbs can reduce the negative impacts of stress and cortisol on your system.  They can help you avoid getting sick, speed your recovery and ultimately increase the longevity and effectiveness of you activism.
  2. Empathy can help you make sense of your world and to see beyond your own distress.  This is the most potent of these tools.  If you had to pick (which you don’t), I’d suggest prioritizing this practice.  And it is an ongoing practice of tracking your inner experiences and responses to the world.  When you know how you’re feeling and you connect with what’s really important to you, it relaxes your body and mind and brings you back to your centre.
  3. Nature Connection can teach our global justice movements how to root the change we’re creating in ancient Earth wisdom.  No global change movements will be ultimately sustainable without being in harmony with Nature. There are many lessons from Nature that can strengthen our movements, inspire creative (and more effective) resistance and show us how human cultures were meant to live with justice and balance.

Let me show you how Herbs, Empathy and Nature Connection can support you AND aid your resistance:

  1. Herbs can improve your health, your energy, and your resilience. They can help you to feel better, get better and stay better.  the god faceHerbs can reduce the negative impacts of stress and cortisol on your system.  They can help you avoid getting sick, speed your recovery and ultimately increase the longevity and effectiveness of you activism.
  2. Empathy can help you make sense of your world and to see beyond your own distress.  This is the most potent of these tools.  If you had to pick (which you don’t), I’d suggest prioritizing this practice.  And it is an ongoing practice of tracking your inner experiences and responses to the world.  When you know how you’re feeling and you connect with what’s really important to you, it relaxes your body and mind and brings you back to your centre.
  3. Nature Connection can teach our global justice movements how to root the change we’re creating in ancient Earth wisdom.  No global change movements will be ultimately sustainable without being in harmony with Nature. There are many lessons from Nature that can strengthen our movements, inspire creative (and more effective) resistance and show us how human cultures were meant to live with justice and balance.

So, what exactly is “empathy” and how does it help?

Empathy is about being deeply understood.  It’s about someone offering you non-judgemental ear to talk through your emotions and deeply listening for what’s in your heart.

heart compassWhen you “get empathy” from someone, they’re reflecting back to you the core of what they hear you say, what your heart is aching to express.   And this reflection is key to mental and emotional health.  Not only does this reflection help you get clear about how you’re actually feeling, but it helps you go deeper.  It helps you understand the emotions lying beneath your judgments, blames and ‘shoulds’ of yourself and of other people.

For simple example, if you tell someone, “those cops at Standing Rock are such jerks the way they’re treating the water defender.”  The person listening might reflect back, “are you feeling angry because you really value seeing people treated with respect?”  And whether that guess is accurate or not, it gives you a chance to ask yourself what is true in your heart.

Maybe you respond by saying, “no, actually i’m scared that the oil is going to pollute all that water.”  And that helps you connect with the fear you’re feeling underneath the anger.  You get to engage with what’s actually going on for you.  You get to move past your judgements and touch what you’re feeling and what you deeply value.

When you receive empathy like this, you’re getting in touch with your own heart.  You get to feel what you’re actually feeling.

And this sort of inner tracking is the doorway to knowing yourself and being able to respond to the world authentically.

What if I can’t attend the live classes?

A lot of people are busy these days, I understand.

I also understand that busy folks need lots of self care.  The more you have on your plate, the more support you need.

So, I’ve made this class flexible to fit into even your busy schedule.

Recordings of each class will be sent out with a day of class, so that you’ll have time to listen, ask questions on the forum and practice the skills before the next class.

That said, I want to be clear that you’ll get the most out of this offering if you attend the live classes.

The live classes give you a chance to make sure your questions get asked, to get some one-on-one coaching on the calls and to connect live with the class community.

Some live classes will include breakout sessions where you’ll have a chance to practice the material (which is more challenging if you’re listening to the recording).

Class Analysis: Describing the 6 webinars …

#1. Using Herbs to Reduce Stress & Anxiety

calendula in rainWhatever you’re working on, I’ll bet that you feel a sense of urgency.  This sense of urgency makes it really hard to slow down and to take time to actually relax.  But running on empty actually increases your stress and anxiety (and makes everything feel more urgent).

Capitalism makes us sick, literally and figuratively.

From this class, you’ll learn:

  • 3-5 signs that you’re over-stretched and running on empty
  • The three components of stress and its impacts on your body
  • Herbs that can reduce your stress and anxiety immediately  (“nervines” and “anxiolytics”)
  • Tools and tips for creating a relaxation practice that really works for you
  • How the stress caused by that “urgency” actually changes your view of reality and how to shift yourself back to a grounded place

#2. Preventing and Treating Adrenal Fatigue (“burnout”) using Adaptogens

fresh mint teaThe more stress, anxiety, worry or fear you experience, the more adrenaline gets pumped through your body.  This Fight, Flight or Freeze response, drains your energy reserves and specifically, your adrenals (the organ that produces adrenaline).  Over weeks, months or years of this, your adrenals can (and will) become exhausted.

Fortunately, there are herbs that directly target and nourish your adrenals.  You can restore your energy and your reserves.

From this class, you’ll learn:

  • What’s actually happening in your brain and nervous system when you’re experiencing Fight, Fight or Freeze
  • 4 signs that your adrenals are either running low and entirely exhausted
  • A few of the long term health impacts of adrenal fatigue (ie. why you need to treat this now)
  • Herbal adaptogens that nourish, balance and restore your adrenals
  • A few non-herbal suggestions to help nourish your adrenals
  • Why Nature Connection needs to be part of effective self care

#3. Introduction to Empathy

Empathy is a concept that has been gaining traction and popularity in recent years.  A lot of research has been done over the past 10 years showing that humans are wired for connection and empathy.  But what does this really mean and how do we actually practice empathy with other people?

Let me show you a simple and effective set of tools to practice empathy with yourself and others.

From this class, you’ll learn:

  • The basics practices to listening with empathy
  • To avoid the “Dirty Dozen”, common ways of speaking that can block connection
  • The vital importances of self empathy as a part of your self care
  • How to use self empathy to connect more deeply with your own heart and values
  • Tip and tricks to creating a safe, supportive space for people to process authentically

Starting with this class, you’ll have the option of being paired up with another student as an “Empathy Buddy” so that you can both practice these skills and enriching your personal support network.


“I’m in! Take me to the dates & price.”


 #4. Transforming Blame, Shame and Shoulds

angry kidSimply put, the practice of blaming, shaming and shoulding is eroding our resistance and justice movements.  In fact, these are tools of patriarchy and not our personal or collective liberation.  We need to transform these judgements if we are to free ourselves from these blinders, connect with our hearts and access our creativity.

From this class, you’ll learn how to:

  • Follow your judgements and blame (of yourself or others) to connect with the heart-felt values behind them
  • Understand what every ‘should’ is really trying to say
  • Connect with the authentic feelings and needs underneath your relex to shame
  • Build trust within our movements by learning to hear and value what someone’s heart is trying to express
  • Create an atmosphere of connection and unity in our lives by listening to each other with empathy, compassion and assuming the best intent

And we’ll practice these tools throughout the class.  The trick, of course, is to learn from your judgement without judging yourself for having it 😉

#5. Nature Connection – Connecting Directly with Plants

the god faceEven within our various global change movements, there’s an insidious assumption, an incorrect belief that Nature is  … well, stupid.  Largely this stems from an old, misleading idea that has become foundational to western industrial culture.  “I think therefore I am.”  The result of this idea is isolation, a disconnection from the Earth, that leaves you feeling alone (even as you struggle to prevent Its destruction).

From this class, you’ll learn:

  • A more accurate description of the interconnectedness of all life on Earth
  • A few examples about the awareness, intelligence and even decision-making capabilities of plants and ecosystems
  • An easy to follow guide to opening your eyes and your heart to the living intelligence of the world around you
  • How to connect directly with plants to improve your health, reduce your stress and even inform your activism
  • The three principles for maintaining Right Relationship with the plants that will become your personal allies

#6. Create Your Personal Support Network & A Culture of Self Care

connection-treeThe key to truly effective self care is support and nourishment.  Good food, herbs, empathy and nature connection work a whole lot better when they’re practiced in community.  This includes creating your own personal support systems AND changing the culture(s) within our justice movements.  (meaning we need to support each other rather than tear each other down)

From this class, you’ll learn:

  • The four keys to setting up effective empathy buddies
  • How to introduce the idea and ask for emotional support from the people in your life
  • The importance of creating regular processing times as well as having a list of people you can call when things feel really urgent (ie.  when you’re triggered)
  • My 3 best tips for integrating compassion and empathy into our justice movement and activist groups

But I’m not the only one with good ideas, so this class will include some brainstorming about creative ways to creating more support in our lives and our communities.

There are two options for this class…

Option #1 : The Core Class– You attend the 6 weekly classes and participate in the online forum to get your questions answered, check out further resources and discuss the teachings.

Option #2 : Self Care Praxis Group – You attend the 6 weekly classes PLUS you join the Self Care Praxis Group.  (praxis= theory in action)  In this small group coaching environment, you learn to effectively apply the  teachings to your own health and self care practice.

raised fist 500x500Everyone in the group will get a box of herbal remedies with an assortment of  herbs.   You’ll have the tools you need to immediately start applying herbs to your health and wellness.  You’ll be able to test out different remedies to see which ones work best for you and in which situations.  The goal is for you to find the herbs that you can deeply depend on.

Direct Action Gets the Goods, right?!

There will be an additional weekly, 1 hour Self Care Praxis Group  call to support your learning and integration.  In this call, you’ll have a chance to go deeper with the course material, to ask questions about herbs, to practice working with empathy and nature connection.

** only available in Canada and the continental US **

How the class works logistically…

  • There are 6 weekly teleclasses over 6 weeks
  • You’ll be able to access the calls by phone, skype or the web
  • They are 2 hrs each – 6 pm – 8 pm Pacific Time (9-11pm EST)
  • Core classes run Thursdays – Sept. 7 – Oct. 12
  • Praxis Group calls run Mondays 11am – 12pm pacific (2 – 3pm EST) from May 1 – June 5
  • There will be a Facebook Forum for asking questions and sharing stories (if you really dislike FB, I apologize.  I’m not yet able to set up a forum on my website)

Summary of all the class details…

What’s Included…

Core Program

Self Care Praxis Group

6 live classes (accessed by phone, skype or internet) happening 4-6pm PST on Thursdays from Sept. 7 – Oct. 12

Recordings from all 6 calls AND the handouts that go with them

Access to the Facebook Forum with regular online support from Garliq

A list of reference materials so that you can dive deeper into topics covered in the class

An assortment of bonuses that will nourish your activism or just bring a smile to your face

A Deeper Connection with Plants and “Nature” to draw upon for your own healing and your activism

An “Empathy Buddy” from the class

Access to the Empathy Buddy Classified facebook page so you can find even more support

An Active and thriving community of herby-s, empaths and other folks passionate about healing

A box of handcrafted herbal remedies (delivered to your door) so that you can immediate apply your new herbal knowledge

6 Additional small group support calls to provide the guidance you need to go really deep with the course material.
Calls will be 11am-12pm Pacific (2-3pm EST) on Mondays from Sept. 11  – Oct. 16

Early Bird Price (until Sun. Aug. 27):

Regular Price

$97

$147

$247

$297

Financial Accessibility is extremely Important to me.   There are scholarships available for 10 spots in the Core Program.  All you have to do is fill out the contact form below and tell me what you are able to pay.  No explanations needed.

To Register:

Fill out this short pre-registration form, to start.

Then send in your payment.  You can consider yourself fully registered when your payment arrives 🙂

And if you have any questions or comments, please send them using this form …

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