RESTORATIVE PRACTICES

RESTORATIVE PRACTICES

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A (R)evolutionary Wellness Model

 

Restorative Practices is a targeted experiential medicine for this moment.

Right now, in America,

  • 60-80% of visits to primary-care physicians are stress-related.

  • 80% of the adult population reports having experienced a significant stressor in the past month.

  • Of those people, 34% had physical or emotional symptoms such as headaches, 33% reported feeling overwhelmed, 33% reported feeling anxious or nervous, and 32% reported feeling depressed or sad.

  • As both a cause and effect of this, approximately 80% of the American population has experienced at least one significant Adverse Childhood Experience (ACE).

  • Heartbreakingly, in the US, greater than 1 in 4 children is physically abused, 1 in 5 is sexually abused, 1 in 7 is emotionally neglected, and 1 in 10 is physically neglected.

  • 1 in 4 families are dealing with substance abuse, 1 in 5 families with mental illness, and 1 in 4 families with parental separation or divorce.

  • Between 2006 and 2011, inpatient visits for suicide, suicidal ideation, and self-injury increased by 104% for children ages 1 to 17 years, and by 151% for children aged 10 to years old. For children!

These things are not happening to someone else. They are not happening over there. This is us. We are dealing, in isolation, with profound individual and social traumas, while all of the best neuroscience research on healing tells us that the most significant sources of resilience come from deep connection with three things: ourselves, one another, and the living world.

This is not a physical health issue (although people are physically sick).

This is not a mental health issue (although people are struggling with mental health.)

It is a physiological issue.

And it is happening because we have deviated so dramatically from the historical and evolutionary baseline that keeps humans well.

For 99% of human history, the way that we lived was all about connection.

In the 2 million years that humans have been on the planet, the entire foundation of culture was oriented towards optimizing human development and wellbeing by creating a context where we could deeply connect with ourselves, one another, and the living world. At an existential level, as deep nature connection teacher Jon Young explains, the role of culture is to do just that. At a physiological level, this profound orientation towards connection brings online and stabilizes our Connection System, the physiological system responsible for wellbeing. Yet our modern medical and mental health approaches have emerged from a profoundly disconnected individualistic worldview, so they treat individuals in isolation, and they treat the mind and body as if there were separate.

To heal we have to come together. Inside of ourselves, and with one another and the living world.

We are standing on the threshold of a profound revolution in wellness, heralded by the burgeoning mindful awareness movement, breath-taking advances in applied neurophysiology (centrally arising from the Polyvagal Theory), an awakening in science and medicine to the wisdom of indigenous and ancestral cultural and healing practices, and the emergence of new liberatory psychologies. Restorative Practices is a collaborative healing model emerging from the synthesis of ground-breaking work in mindful awareness, neurophysiology, trauma healing, somatic awareness, relational mindfulness, indigenous practices, psychologies of liberation, restorative justice, and work in diversity, equity, and inclusion. Our advisors are world-renowned pioneers in their respective fields.

Our mission is to re-unite the human family with themselves, one another, and the living world. As that happens, dis-ease falls away.

a 4 step process

1) Take the Connection Assessment

A proprietary assessment designed to assess the stability and strength of your connection system that maps your strengths and deficits to tailor Restorative Practices to your unique physiology, background, needs, and goals.

2) Join a Face-to-Face Group Cohort

A live, in-person, expertly facilitated small group that meets at regular intervals to engage in experiential learning together for a specified period of time (generally 25 hours of learning in 10 sessions.)

3) Participate in Deep E-Learning

Access to our remarkable film series that lays out the conceptual framework of this work, and then engages deep interviews with some of the world’s leading experts in connection to self, others, and nature. Additional readings, curriculum, and materials, accessible through the cloud, anytime, anywhere, on any device.

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4) Engage in Tailored Practices

A complete archive of 300+ restorative practices at your fingertips, indexed to meet your particular needs to enhance connection to self, others, nature, creativity, beneficial mindsets…hands, body, movement, emotions, communication, inclusion, groups, etc.

 
 

The Connection Assessment

A self-report measure designed to assess the stability and strength of your Connection System, which is the physiological basis of wellbeing and resilience, and identify areas where it could be strengthened. Based on the research of Dr. Stephen Porges, PhD, Dr. Beth Hudnall Stamm, David Black, PhD MPH, Dr. Lynne Underwood, PhD

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Assessment

The Connection Assessment is designed to measure the stability and strength of your Connection System, which is the physiological basis of wellbeing and resilience, and identify patterns of disconnection and dysregulated autonomic nervous system states. It is not a diagnostic examination, but rather an invitation to explore your own sense of awareness and connection. This assessment compiles information informed by several other psychometric instruments, including the ACES questionnaire, Dr. Stephen Porges’ Body Perception Questionnaire, the Applied Mindfulness Process scale, and the Professional Quality of Life scale (ProQOL).

 
 

Healing Happens in Community

 

From the time that we are born, our ability to thrive is directly related to the quality of human relational and ecological contact that we receive. This contact, when safe, stable, and attuned, brings online and stabilizes connection physiology, which are the biological systems that undergird wellness. Our modern culture is characterized by an accelerating and catastrophic deviation from these ancestral baselines. The route to re-igniting them is through connection. For this reason, the Restorative Practices model is based on an expertly facilitated community cohort, a small group designed to create safety, authenticity, and deep learning.

 
 
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Expertly Facilitated Small Group Cohorts

When you feel safe- bottom up- from the deepest oldest parts of your nervous system, healing possibilities spontaneously emerge. Much of the story of modern medicine and mental health mirrors the isolation we experience in mainstream culture at large. Social traumas, which constitute a large part of the lived experience of people whose positionalities are not centered are not even diagnostically classified in the DSM-V. There is no Racism Trauma Disorder, no Sexism Trauma Disorder– because we don’t even have conceptual categories for what this means. In community, through authentic sharing and a deep co-learning process, we can leverage our different perspectives to mutually enhance our shared understanding and move towards relational transformational processes. The cohort model has emerged from thousands of trainings, deep study of safety, neurophysiology, trauma healing, somatic and emotional awareness, and liberation psychologies. You will complete the training with new friends.

 
 

Self-Paced Deep Learning

At the heart of our deep learning platform is a multi-part film series: Applied Mindfulness founder Gabriel Kram’s visual dissertation. He says, “In my life I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to work with truly remarkable mentors in a variety of disciplines, and I started writing a book that would synthesize 25 years of experiences and mentorship into a single volume. Many of our mentors have created incredible bodies of work that are still to some degree inaccessible, because often the people who are interviewing them don’t deeply understand their work. I wanted to interview everybody in person, in a place where they were totally at ease, so I could sit with them, and watch their body language, and feel and hear their tone of voice, and I thought– I’ll interview them in this amazing zen center that I love. It’s a place where there’s a quality of concentration in deep nature that illuminates every word you speak against this backdrop of total silence. And then a light went on for me, and I realized- It will be so much more powerful if you film this. That was when we reached out to Camilla (documentary film advisor Camilla Rockwell, with a decade of experience as a producer and director for documentary filmmaker Ken Burns at Florentine Films) and went, How do we do this?

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Film Series

Funders have told us it should be a series on Netflix. But that will never happen, for a simple reason: films, by themselves, do not change behavior. Our series isn’t on Netflix because its purpose is not to entertain you, it is to first change your mind, and then your behavior. We learned from Dr. Delaney Ruston, producer of the film Screenagers, which is only viewable at screenings that conclude with a facilitated conversation about the film, that you must control the context in which someone is viewing your film in order to maximize its impact. The Restorative Practices film series isn’t a series to watch on the couch, it’s a series to study as part of a vital learning community. It delivers the deep theoretical content that drives discussion in the cohort, but optimizes our precious face-to-face time by giving us a way to teach deep concepts before people come together. The only way to access the film series is in a Restorative Practices cohort. And you can watch the first film here (48 min).

 
 
 

Hundreds of Practices

 
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Practices

At your fingertips, so you can get your hands dirty. An archive of 300+ restorative practices, indexable in any way you can think to organize it. Core practices. Practices related to self, including: mindful awareness, movement, somatic awareness, emotions. Practices related to others, including: building healthy relationships, mindful communication, relational mindfulness, relating across difference. Practices related to nature, including: attributes of nature connection, connection to plants, to animals, tracking, bird language, animal behavior. Practices related to creativity, organization, mindset, etc..

 

Join Us

on a journey that is about reclaiming our humanity.

 
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