Over the next few weeks, I will share with you the journey of my student Bianca Sinclair, a former Distress Center Volunteer, yoga teacher and student of psychology at Athabasca University. Bianca also has been working as a business analyst for an oil & gas company to support herself and her two daughters.
Like so many others Calgarians in oil-driven Alberta, Bianca received notice that she would be laid-off. She told me that she went to HR and asked if they had a support groups for people being laid off, to which they said, “No, but that is a good idea.” Bianca thought “Yeah, it is a good idea”. . . given that she has to do 50 hours of practicum to complete her Embodied Awareness Facilitator Certification, part of the year long training program requirement of my program. Embodied Awareness trains people to connect with inner and outer healing resources and engage embodied awareness as a form of self-reflection that provides guidance and empowers Self-care during times of trauma or transition.
Bianca now offers Laid Off? groups on Tuesdays at her local public library free of charge. These groups are for people who are wrestling with the trauma of being laid-off and in sudden career transitions.
After her first group she wrote to me:
“I held my first group this week. Three courageous men showed up, all different yet so similar. I followed the agenda that you and I spoke of. It was a really powerful experience for everyone, they all shared and all reported feeling validated, relieved, hopeful and grateful by the end. The biggest thing they said they realized is “I’m not alone”. Now I just hope they come back next week! lol.”
She added, “One of the participants bravely took the initiative to teach us the breathing technique I taught them at the beginning. I’m so glad you suggested this as a tool for empowerment. This person–who up to this point in his life had worked solely as an electrical tradesman–surprised even himself.”
Contact Bianca for details at: laidoffCalgary@gmail.com
Please share this information and the attached flyer with anyone who might benefit.