The Sedona Method – personal growth book reviewed

Self help books – can you do it yourself?

There are so many self help books out there.  From strategies for assertiveness to how to get the job you want and being successful, there is a book that claims to help you to do it.  As a business coach and life coach, I decided it would be interesting to read some of them and see how effective they can be.

So, following a visit to my local Charity book shop – which has several shelves of used self help books, I set about my self help book project.  I did wonder why so many of these books are given to charity shops – some of them hardly used… is it that the happy readers have now improved their lives and relationships and have generously chosen to pass on the key to their success, or is it that they have bought the book with all the best intentions and found it, months later on a shelf, realising they may never do anything with it, and had a clear out?!
The Sedona Method is a strategy for getting rid “of your emotional baggage and live the life you want”.  Hale Dwoskin the author, learned his craft some thirty years ago, from Lester Levenson “a man who had mastered life’s greatest challenge”. He suffered from serious health problems and the doctors had given up on him.  Instead of giving up himself, Lester focused his mind and  came across “the ultimate tool for personal growth” which was a strategy for “letting go all inner limitations”.  The Sedona Method builds on this and encourages readers to “release”  or “let go” of all negativity and all tendencies to control others.

The reader is asked to write down goals or “gains” that they will achieve once the book is completed.  Then they must actively, several times a day, work on releasing  any resistance that is preventing you from achieving your goals.  I can definitely see the benefit from doing this, as once we are aware and can identify any resistance we have preventing us from achieving what we want, we are so much more likely to create a clear path to our goal. By actively working on acceptance and releasing, we bring a positive thought process into focus and this helps us move even more determinedly towards what we want and away from what we don’t want.

Quick summary:

  • Work through this and you’ll get a feel for the book:

Focus on an issue you’d like to work on.  Notice your feelings around this issue.

Then ask the following questions:

* Could I let this feeling go?

* Could I allow this feeling to be here?

* Could I welcome this feeling?

Once you have done this ask yourself the same questions with “would I” instead of “could I” eg ” Would I let this feeling go?”  Once you have done this, ask yourself, “When”

Repeat the process as many times as you need, until you feel you’re truly letting go of the issue and feeling better about it.

Generally, I think this book is useful, and would recommend to others – if you have the time and most importantly, the inclination to do something with it.  Reading it is not enough, you must follow it and complete the exercises regularly.  I think this is the major stumbling block for most people – it’s easy to buy the book and flick through it, but to work through it properly requires self discipline.  The book does suggest working through the activities with another or a group of people.  From coaching I know that telling someone else that you’re going to do something, makes us so much more likely to do it. I also recognise that if you have the support of another, you are more likely to help each other through it.

Who should read this? I think anyone who recognises they have some thoughts / beliefs that stop them from achieving what they want.  Anyone who makes assumptions about others, or allows previous relationships (work or personal) to prevent them from moving forward will benefit from releasing.  You need to have a good dose of personal insight and discipline and really want to make the changes necessary. It’s not a new book, by any standards, but presents some useful strategies.

Details of the book: The Sedona Method, Hale Dwoskin, first published in the US by the Sedona Press, 2003.