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The Founding of Lifespring

Reflections on the Worth of Lifespring

The Business Acceleration Workshop

The Basic Training In Federal Prison

How to Realize Your Dreams and Improve Your Life

A Graduate's Story

The Founding of Lifespring, A History by John Hanley

Most people attend their first growth seminar to make their life work better. I joined mine in 1971 to help me remember economic formulas. I was a senior at the University of Wisconsin then. Another student suggested that techniques in the course "Mind Dynamics" might improve my memory. So, I invested $200 and then sat in the back row with my eyes open for five days, resisting and criticizing everything the instructor and students said and did. On the last day, the leader asked me to participate in an exercise in which I was to close my eyes and try to describe the wife of the person sitting next to me without my ever having seen her. It was a game for me until my partner showed me his written card. I had described a total stranger in perfect detail.

I knew then that there had to be something to this awareness business, but I remained skeptical. I couldn't figure why those weird people kept jumping up and sharing that their lives were changing as a result of participating in the course. I just couldn't see it.

Shortly after graduation, one of the seminar trainers called from California to invite me to join Mind Dynamics' instructor training program. I was to cover all expenses until after my training. Then, if they decided they wanted me, I would earn $1,000 a month. There was no better offer at the time, so I charged my ticket on one of those credit cards you get while in college and headed for California.

I was pretty convinced I could get the job. But, halfway through the training, the Chairman of the Board, who was teaching the class, grabbed me and said, "Hanley, you can go home now. You are never going to make it here, and I just don't want you to do the class." What he really meant was that I lacked sufficient sensitivity for people and had absolutely no personal presentation. In those days I couldn't have led a group in silent prayer.

That was all I needed to get me working. Let someone discredit me or attempt to throw me out and my "prover" comes up. I get really clear on wanting to prove my worth, my value. So, I simply refused to go home. I told him I had paid my money and was going to stay and complete the instructors class. Then I was going to get a job with them. He told me there was just no way I would ever make it. I stayed anyway.

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