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Turning Towards Life 5 – Wild Geese

Lizzie and Justin were live again this morning, The source for this week’s conversation was Mary Oliver’s powerful poem ‘Wild Geese‘.

We talk about the constraining effects of inner criticism and the limits of our over-effort to be good or strong or loving or clever. And along the way we stumble into some realisations about what’s possible when we learn to trust something other than our own self-judgement, and reach out to others for help.

And if you’d like to join in with the growing community that’s forming around this project, and the lively conversation that’s taking part in the comments, you can do so here.

Turning Towards Life 4 – The Hidden Cost of Hiding

In our Turning Towards Life conversation of Sunday 15th October Lizzie Winn and Justin Wise took up the topic Hiding – the many ways we hide in our busyness, in our work, and in our wider lives. We consider what it is that causes us to hide, and what the costs are in aliveness and in the holding back of our contribution.

Our conversation was prompted by a piece written on Justin’s blog, called The Hidden Cost of Hiding.

You can join us live on FaceBook at 9am each Sunday morning here.

Turning Towards Life 3 – Fuel for Your Fire

In just a month over 350 people have joined our new Turning Towards Life project on FaceBook. It’s been thrilling to find a new way to talk about many of the concerns, ideas and possibilities that are still an inspiration for the On Living and Working blog, and I think it’s likely that our conversations will in turn be the inspiration for more writing over the coming months.

We felt particularly touched by our latest conversation on Sunday morning, which took John Neméth’s song ‘Fuel for Your Fire‘ as its starting point. The question we wanted to address is both simple and central to many people – how can we have our difficulties be a source of life for us, rather than a reason to turn away in shame, fear, or avoidance?

It’s certainly a profound question for many of us. It’s easy for when in some kind of trouble to imagine that we are somehow special, the only ones experiencing life in this particularly challenging kind of way. And when we take on this relationship to our troubles what we notice most is our separateness from everyone and everything – as if we are uniquely cursed, isolated from others and from the possibilities of care and help.

All of this, it turns out, is a profound misunderstanding. If anything, it’s our troubles that show us how human we are, how essentially alike we are. None of us are free from disappointments, mistakes, changes to our circumstances both within and beyond our control. None of us is free from loss. And when we know this to be an essential truth of our human condition, perhaps we can give up self-pity and instead take on the dignifying work of contribution. This – that contribution is often the most dignified and life-giving path for working with our difficulties – has in recent months, and when we remember it, been such a blessing for both of us.

We’d be really delighted if you’d join us in the 30 minute conversation below, which takes up all these themes and asks ‘How can our troubles be part of the path?’.

And if you’d like to join in with the growing community that’s forming around this project, and the lively conversation that’s taking part in the comments, you can do so here.

Photo Credit: darkday. Flickr via Compfight cc

Turning Towards Life 2 – The Longing for Realness

Our Turning Towards Life conversation of Sunday 8th October Lizzie Winn and Justin Wise took up the topic of our longing for realness, and the many ways in which we hold back from being real and truthful with ourselves and with the people around us.

You can join us live at 9am next Sunday morning here.


The source text for our conversation was written by Lizzie for her Sacred Rebellion blog:

The Longing for Realness.

As we commute with our hair washed and our smart clothes on,
Nothing is truly hidden of our flailing marriages, our domestic madness, our financial ruin, our anxious bodies.

Because we, ourselves can see it and feel it, even if we’ve become expert at hiding away and letting it all fester in our bodies and homes.

We get so lonely in our own, small worlds of circles upon circles of self criticism, questioning and confusion. Compensation, defensiveness, self-absorption.

We look good, like we should. Function well as the world tells us to do.
And mostly inside there’s much occurring, that doesn’t get to the light because keeping up appearances is safer in our world than being straight and honest.

What if we’ve got it horribly wrong?
What if our humanity has a requirement to be joined by other humanity, to remove the shame of our messed up minds, hearts and bodies?

What if our dark bits are there, calling us to bring them to the light, and we keep shutting them in. Until they make us ill, make the world ill?

What about us is really unacceptable? In truth, the full spectrum of our experience is acceptable. Surely it has to be.

Here’s to a world where we are each other’s acceptance as well as our own. A world where looking like we’ve got our shit together is less valued and approved of than being real, vulnerable, disclosive and open.

— Lizzie Winn

Turning Towards Life 1 – Days Are Numbered

The first conversation in the thirdspace Turning Towards Life project with Justin Wise and Lizzie Winn went live on Sunday October 1st. Lizzie and Justin took up the questions and possibilities posed in my post ‘Numbered‘, which Justin wrote in 2015 in response to the imminent death of a dear friend and teacher.

Our wide-ranging conversation covers living truthfully with the knowledge that life is finite, bringing ourselves wholeheartedly and courageously, and what it is to not turn away.

Recordings of all the conversations will be posted here week by week, and available under the ‘Video‘ tab on

And the very best way to interact with what we’re bringing is to join our FaceBook ‘Turning Towards Life’ group, which allows you to see us live on Sundays at 9am and to be part of the conversation.

Turning Towards Life – a new and exciting conversation project

The technology available to us in our generation gives each of us an unparalleled opportunity to reach the world with our ideas and contribution. No previous generation in history has had this available to them.

We’ve been struck over recent days how remarkable this is, and how easy to take for granted.

Ideas that destroy, divide, and diminish our humanity, dignity and shared responsibility can spread as fast as those that can serve life. And so we’re starting to see that we have a responsibility, where we can, to bring our courage, generosity and gifts in service of that which could dignify, heal, and connect us. And that there’s no time to lose.

In this spirit we began today a freely available online conversation project hosted by thirdspace called ‘Turning Towards Life‘.

Every Sunday morning at 9am (UK) we’ll be speaking live online for about 30 minutes about a topic to do with facing life with courage, wisdom and compassion. Or, said another way, to do with how we might each come out of hiding and take up our places in the world.

We’ll start each conversation with a source that’s inspired, moved or challenged us – a poem, article, reading, or book – and we’ll post the source on a Friday so it’s widely available before our conversation.

The best way to join us is in our new facebook group. You’ll be able to see us live there, watch previous videos, and join the conversation.

To get you started, here’s a short introduction to the project. Please join us, and join in. We’d love to have you with us.


Photo Credit: neil banas via Compfight cc


Integral Development Coaching Principles

Learn the principles of Integral Development Coaching

This programme, offered in partnership with New Ventures West, is designed for experienced professionals who are ready to add depth to their practice and a richer coaching structure to their client relationships. It will be led by James Flaherty, the founder of New Ventures West and originator of integral development coaching, and Justin Wise, founder of thirdspace coaching.

In this three-day programme you’ll gain a new appreciation for the full complexity of your clients’ lives using the three foundational models of our work:

  • The Ten Ways (a developmental approach to coaching interventions)
  • The Four Human Domains
  • The Six Streams of Competence

These models – and the methodology that goes along with them – also have profound and pragmatic use in any kind of organisation development and consulting where the lasting development of people is important.

In addition, this course satisfies the prerequisite for joining the Professional Coaching Course and awards 24 ICF CCEUs (Continuing Coach Education Units).

About integral development coaching

Integral development coaching is intended to make a profound contribution to individuals, organisations and society. It supports coaches – and consultants who work with its principles – in becoming skilled at working with clients in a way which frees them up to bring their intentions into their work and wider life with dignity, humanity and skilfulness.

The approach supports their clients in ongoing inquiry and practice. It allows coaching to include everything about the client and the client’s world, including how they represent themselves, their social world, habits, relationship with the body, quality of self-care, the amount of attention and energy available to take on change, and much more. It draws on deep philosophical roots as well as biology, cognitive science, linguistics, psychology, spirituality and more, providing many avenues of insight and practice.

Who would benefit

  • Experienced coaches
  • Graduates of other coach training schools
  • Managers and professionals with coaching experience
  • Anyone interested in bringing more rigour and structure to their coaching

Hear a little about the methodology

James Flaherty describes the ‘integrating stream’ – one of the streams of competence addressed in our methodology in the Six Streams of Competence model:

Here James describes the distinctions between integral development coaching and other approaches to coaching:

Outcomes of the programme

While mastering integral development coaching takes time and practice, this three-day class will allow you to:

  • Understand the stages of an integral development coaching programme
  • Learn how to conduct a developmental intake session
  • Design coaching conversations and deliver coaching programmes that offer powerful developmental possibilities for your clients
  • Design customised practices and self-observation exercises
  • Come away with your own self-development plan


  • Monday 19th September – Wednesday 21st September 2016
  • the course takes place in London from 9am to 6pm each day
  • includes a copy of James Flaherty’s book, Coaching: Evoking Excellence in Others
  • awards 24 ICF CCEUs (Continuing Coaching Education Units) 16 in ICF Core Competencies, 8 in Resource Development
  • fee: £1500 + VAT, of which £100 is a non-refundable but transferable deposit


To sign up for this programme

for 19-21 September 2016 in London

Contact us to find out more

All of our contact details are here.

Drop us a line – we’ll gladly call you back to talk about any aspect of our programmes or our work with individuals and organisations.

Tension & Trauma Releasing Exercises (TRE) Training

David Berceli’s tension and trauma releasing exercises are an amazing tool for helping the body let go of deep, chronic patterns. They are remarkably simple and the process of change they facilitate is very easy to self regulate. The goal of the exercises is to start a self-directed tremoring process. The tremors are deeply natural and release tension and trauma held in the body. Once you have learnt the exercises, and can feel and allow the tremors, you just let the body do its own healing and clearing out of overwhelming experiences. It really can be that easy.

We think it will be hugely valuable for us to learn this together, so we’re organising the initial training module as part of our graduate development programme.

This three day TRE Module 1 workshop facilitated by Steve Haines is open to everyone. You can attend to learn about using the tremors to support your own health; you will learn about being in your body and self-regulating in response to tension, stress and trauma.

The course will be very practical; each morning and afternoon session you will be supported through the exercises and tremors. There will be lots of time for discussion and sharing of experiences and we’ll explore the theory behind the model.  The workshop covers:

  • Anatomy, neurology and physiology of stress and trauma as it relates to TRE
  • Understanding the tremor response
  • Introduction to the polyvagal theory: How humans are always checking for safety
  • Defence reactions as they relate to TRE
  • Containment and grounding strategies
  • Introduction to basic skills of working with individuals and groups
  • Introduction to TRE and personal tremoring experience

While Module 1 is a self-contained workshop to support your own development, it is also the start of the process to teach TRE to individuals and small groups. Many coaches find TRE a very useful tool to offer their clients. Through certification you will learn how to competently and safely offer this self-help technique to support clients move beyond somatically-held patterns. If you wish to become a certified teacher, there is a structured certification program that takes about a year. The key elements are two 3 day workshops – Module 1 and Module 2 – about 3 months apart, a supervision process and self-practice.  More information can be found here.

Having completed Module 1 in January, a number of us intend to work through the certification process together over the coming year, joining the open Module 2 workshop planned for 9-11 May and working together through the supervision and self-practice, and we invite anyone who is interested to join us in this process to support our collective development.

Date, logistics, and registering your place

Date: Wednesday 27 – Friday 29 January

Times: 9.30am-6.00pm
Location: London Buddhist Arts Centre, Eastbourne House, Bullards Place, E2 0PT

Cost: £384.00 (£320.00 + VAT)

Register Now

Contact us to find out more

All of our contact details are here.

Drop us a line – we’ll gladly call you back to talk about any aspect of our programmes or our work with individuals and organisations.

Coaching Roundtables

Four times a year we host day-long introductory events in London, to which everyone is welcome. In the morning we run parallel sessions, one for those new to Integral Development Coaching and one for graduates of our programmes. After a lunch break, we bring both groups together...

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Professional Coaching Course Graduation

PCC graduation 2012

Our graduates and faculty from the 2011-2012 Professional Coaching Course (PCC) in London, which recently completed. The programme brought together students and faculty from the UK, Turkey, Poland, Egypt, Denmark, Switzerland, USA and India, and a group of exceptional graduates. The next PCC in London begins in March 2013.