As I am writing this article in the early part of 2015, I am now six weeks home (in the Netherlands) from an intensive stay at the Choose Again Centre in Costa Rica. I met Diederik four years ago in the Netherlands during a one-day workshop. It was there that I was introduced for the first time to his six steps to freedom. I still remember that Diederik then said that I am able to quicken my way out of negative emotions. That intrigued me and I was curious how. And I must say that I was immediately touched by Diederik’s approach: open hearted and uncompromising. I never thought I would get an opportunity to visit Costa Rica but end October 2014 I got the chance to go.
With Maurice, a good friend of mine I went to Costa Rica. For three weeks I participated in the intensive program of Choose Again. What a blessing!
Immediately I liked the daily structure which the Choose Again program offers. It is almost like in a monastery, but different! Yoga, meditation, Tai Chi and circle’s where the practice of the six steps took place. And don’t forget the tasty and healthy food!
What I learned there is that the solution for my so called ‘problems’ is not in sharing stories or naming feelings. Stories are not important. Neither are feelings! But feelings are the means of which well-equipped staff members lead the participants of the Choose Again program back to an early childhood experience. The time where that feeling was felt the first time. And there……. at the beginning where that feeling showed up the first time, is also the solution available. There I become aware of my judgements and core beliefs which I as a child believed about myself. And it is with these judgements and core beliefs that the six steps program works.
"Correction belongs at the level where change is possible.
Change does not mean anything at the symptom level where it cannot work."
What a joy to notice that all people share the same package of core beliefs. It is all so recognizable! And this encourages people to (almost) immediately feel at ease.
The view from my room each morning.
Diederik – and his well-equipped staff members – facilitate the participants to the Truth in themselves. Many participants have the core belief that there is definitely something severely wrong with them. And the first thing they’re going to hear is: there is absolutely nothing wrong with you!
And this message is brought forward with absolute clarity and confidence so that no one can escape this Truth.
Looking back now, it was a time of 21 days with no distractions and temptations so that I was capable of recognizing my own judgements and core beliefs. And finally they are recognized as lies and mistakes.
And then? Is that it?
No, then I discover the treasure in myself. The beauty everyone shares inside. The unchangeable Truth:
"I am the work of God, and His work is wholly lovable and wholly loving. This is how I must think of myself in my heart, because this is what I am."
In other words: my worth is not established by what I think, do or say or what other people think, do or say. My worth is established by God.
Thanks Diederik and Claudette and all beloved staff members!
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