Did I ever think that I'd be asked to offer couple's therapy at a music festival? Probably not, but that doesn't mean I don't love the idea! One of my favorite things to do in life is listen to live music outdoors. There is something about the combination of being able to look up at the sky, breathe in the fresh air and enjoy the sounds that is so appealing. I first started attending music festivals back in the Lollapalooza days and was immediately hooked (remember when those festivals first started?! It was such a big deal.) We used to throw a bunch of stuff in a car, hope that we remembered key things like tents and set off on an adventure. It was always a good time from beginning to end.
About 6 months ago, I received an email from a Festival organizer in Portugal asking if I would be open to being a couple’s therapist at their upcoming outdoor Festival. A million things raced through my head:
No, I’m not ready.
Yes, how fun!
No, there’s no way I should do this.
Yes, how could I turn this down?!
No, there’s no way I can guide couples at a festival in Portugal?!
I eventually had a call with the organizer and told her that I was very flattered she sought me out and I needed her to walk me through what the festival was all about and what was expected of me. She dove right in and it felt like she had designed the festival just for me (and 30,000 other people!) because it’s theme is about the feminine, truth, growth, expansion and clarity. It’s a mixture of workshops, music, dancing, swimming and all the best things that festivals have to offer.
I sat on the opportunity for a few more days and eventually went back to my initial gut reaction:
Now as I prepare for my trip, I’m thinking a lot about what I am going to teach and the guidance I am going to offer the couples looking to take their relationship to the next level.
One distinction I will be sharing is around listening, and how despite our best intentions, we often hear our partner but we don’t ‘listen’ to our partner.When you ‘hear’ someone, you are looking to agree or disagree with what they are saying. This is the typical way we listen to most people throughout our day and it’s not because we don’t care, it’s just the way we are wired. When you take time to listen, it means you are focusing far less on whether you agree or disagree and much more on what the person is saying, how they are saying it and what silent context does or doesn’t exist. This takes practice, time and focus. Luckily, the festival organizers are providing me with a pseudo-office under a tree with a couch and everything. This will be a focused area where couples can listen, not hear.
The Festival is in August so I will definitely be sharing more on this adventure mixing my passions of music festivals and helping build connection, so stay tuned!
I’d love to hear your thoughts so be sure to leave a comment below. :)
To your authenticity,