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Couples Class Series - Learning the Basics: Mindful Compassionate Dialogue (Portland, OR)

Is this you?
You are in a committed relationship and love your partner and you want to build a foundation for a lasting relationship.  Perhaps things are going well and you want that to continue.  Or, perhaps you feel frustrated about getting caught in the same arguments again and again and can find yourself in blame and criticism.  Either way, you are ready and willing to engage in experiential exercises with your partner to learn new skills that will support both a secure emotional bond and the ability to honor authenticity and autonomy.

How it Works
You have likely tried all sorts of ways to improve your relationship: spending more quality time, spending time apart, reading self-help books, and maybe counseling, and still return to the same conflicts, patterns of communication, or stuck places.  You are not alone.  Relating in a clear and self-responsible way in intimate relationship requires many complex and subtle skills, very few of which have been modeled for you growing up.  You need a comprehensive way forward that is concrete enough to make use of and subtle enough to adapt to your relationship. 

Mindful Compassionate Dialogue (MCD) brings a comprehensive set of skills as well as a subtle understanding of relationship dynamics.  MCD is a blend of Hakomi (body centered therapy), Nonviolent Communication, and Mindfulness. The goal of MCD is to empower you to create the change you want in relationship. Mindful Compassionate Dialogue naturally supports you in creating a secure bond, while at the same time promotes healthy differentiation in your relationship. MCD helps you cultivate self-compassion and a confident relationship to needs. You can learn to stay grounded through reactivity and set clear boundaries. As you and your partner follow the structure of MCD, you will be able to see relationship dynamics through a practical framework and learn a set of skills that enables you to make immediate changes.

What to Expect
In this six week course you will be introduced to the consciousness, framework and tools of MCD. Each class will focus on a specific concepts and skills that you will get to integrate and practice with your partner in structured exercises. You will have the opportunity for individual coaching from myself and two other assistant trainers (David & Sarah Zimmerman).  Debrief questions can be asked in the whole group or during individual coaching.

We will do a couple of exercises in small groups to build rapport and safety in the whole group.  For these small group exercises you can use examples from any part of your life and do not have to share something from your relationship.  Other than these two exercises, you will be working with your partner in 3-4 experiential exercises during each class.  These exercises are highly structured to help you learn skills, address relationship issues, and remain nonreactive.

In this course, most students will be new to Wise Heart, but some may know me and other couples from previous classes.  Group size typically ranges from 8 - 14 couples.  There will be two assitant trainers helping with the course.

Topics for this course include:
  • Appreciation:  Learn how this tool of clear communication about what works teaches you how to become more responsible and aware of your own needs and how to love your partner
  • Empathy:  Listening deeply while remaining self-connected
  • Honest Expression:  Recognize and name feelings, needs, and reactivity, and take responsibility by making requests that open up a grounded and compassionate dialogue.
  • Reactivity:  Gain a basic understanding of how and why reactivity comes up again and again and how you can make a change


Tuesdays 7pm - 9pm for 6 weeks beginning January 8, 2019
Friends Meeting House
4312 SE Stark, Portland OR 97215
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$315.00 per couple   Register Online
CANCELLATION POLICY:  to meet needs for inclusion, security, and predictability refunds are only given if requested 72 hours before the start of the course, so please discern carefully.