How We Change and Why We Don't: The Art and Science of Transformation
December 3–5, 2021
December 3–5, 2021
with Cassandra Vieten and Bristol Baughan
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Have you ever worked hard to make a change, only to find yourself slipping back into old habits and patterns? Want to supercharge your ability to stimulate behavior change in others when it comes to the issues you care about the most? As the uncertainties of the pandemic continue, is it time to break free and build your next chapter? This workshop is for people who are in the process of change, and those who work as change agents with individuals, groups, organizations, or in society.

Through dialogue, experiential practice, and creative process, we will bridge the science of breakthroughs with indigenous, religious, spiritual, and secular models of transformation to:

  • Learn what works and what doesn’t to inspire lasting change in yourself and others.
  • Explore how peak experiences, a-ha! moments and awe can stimulate change.
  • Examine how we and the people we work with can get stuck or lost, and ways to shake free from periods of inertia or patterns that prevent us from moving forward.
  • Investigate the transformative potential of pain, hitting bottom and post-traumatic growth.
  • Delve into stories, symbols, and metaphors of transformation to guide your path.

This workshop is based on over two decades of research on how people transform their worldviews and behaviors. Some of this work is encapsulated in the book Living Deeply: The Art and Science of Transformation in Everyday Life, and extended in this report created for the Fetzer Institute. It was further developed into C3: Consciousness, Communication and Change, a program at the Institute of Noetic Sciences that integrates the science of transformation with input from social, cognitive, and brain scientists to help changemakers be more effective, and further adapted to create Campaign Science, for consulting with Democratic politicians to be more effective in their messaging after the election of Donald Trump.

Join us for this transformational exploration of our most deeply entrenched behaviors. Learn how to break free from the patterns that no longer serve you — and create new habits that will change your life.

Recommended reading: Schlitz, Vieten and Amorok, Living Deeply: The Art and Science of Transformation in Everyday Life.

Information on Continuing Education Credit for Health Professionals

  • CE credits for psychologists are provided by the Spiritual Competency Academy (SCA) which is co-sponsoring this program. The Spiritual Competency Academy is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. SCA maintains responsibility for this program and its content.
  • The California Board of Behavioral Sciences accepts CE credits for LCSW, LPCC, LEP, and LMFT license renewal for programs offered by approved sponsors of CE by the American Psychological Association.
  • LCSW, LPCC, LEP, and LMFTs, and other mental health professionals from states other than California need to check with their state licensing board as to whether or not they accept programs offered by approved sponsors of CE by the American Psychological Association.
  • SCA is approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing (BRN Provider CEP16887) for licensed nurses in California. RNs must retain this document for 4 years after the course concludes. SCA is an approved CE provider for National Board Certified Health and Wellness Coaches (CEP Number 100196).
  • For questions about enrolling in CE or receiving your Certificate of Attendance, contact Cassandra Vieten at cassandra.vieten@gmail.com. For other questions about CE contact David Lukoff, PhD at CE@spiritualcompetency.com.  
Cassandra Vieten

Cassandra Vieten

Cassandra Vieten, PhD, is a clinical psychologist, Executive Director of the John W. Brick Mental Health Foundation, Director of Research at the Arthur C. Clarke Center for Human Imagination at UC San Diego, and former President of the Institute of Noetic Sciences.

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Bristol Baughan

Bristol Baughan

Bristol Baughan is a professional leadership coach, speaker and executive producer of Emmy®-winning and Oscar®-nominated films. She is a TED fellow, founder of Inner Astronauts, and holds a master’s degree in Spiritual Psychology from the University of Santa Monica.

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Workshop Schedule

Fri 8:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Sat 10:00 am – 12:30 pm
Sat 4:15 pm – 6:15 pm
Sat 7:30 pm – 10:00 pm
Sun 10:00 am – 12:00 pm

More activities can be found on our open class schedule.

See general schedule information including arrival, departure and meal times.

Accommodations & Tuition

Click Register Now to view availability of accommodations and all-inclusive, program-specific tuition. Please note that not all accommodation levels are available for every workshop and additional faculty fees may apply.

We offer scholarship funds for those with financial need. Learn more.

Accommodations & Tuition

For this workshop, you will register and pay for accommodations and tuition in two separate steps.

First, sign up and pay tuition directly to

Second, click Book Accommodations from this page and enter the password to complete your reservation to stay at Esalen.

Prices for accommodations include your lodging, meals, open classes, and use of the baths and other facilities. View partner program accommodations pricing.

COVID Update

All guests and faculty must provide proof of negative test results at time of check-in. Please read our current COVID safety guidelines for complete details prior to booking your stay.

COVID Update

In addition to proof of vaccination, all guests and faculty must provide proof of negative test results at time of check-in. Please read our current COVID safety guidelines for complete details prior to booking your stay.

COVID Update

Effective January 7, 2022 in response to the rapid spread of the new Omicron variant, all guests and faculty will provide proof of negative PCR, NAAT, or antigen test results at time of check-in. The test must be taken within 72 hours nd results must come from a laboratory or healthcare provider.Please read our updated COVID safety guidelines prior to booking your stay.

COVID Update

Effective December 15 in accordance with new guidance from Governor Gavin Newsom and the California Department of Health, all guests, students, staff, residents, and faculty are required to wear masks in all indoor public settings, irrespective of vaccine status, for the next four weeks (December 15, 2021 through January 15, 2022). Please read our updated COVID safety guidelines prior to booking your stay.

COVID Update

Effective November 19, 2021, in accordance with new guidance from the Monterey County Board of Supervisors, all guests, students, staff, residents, and faculty are no longer required to wear masks indoors on campus. Please read our updated COVID safety guidelines prior to booking your stay.

COVID Update

Starting November 5, 2021, due to substantial levels of COVID-19 transmission in Monterey County, a mask mandate established by the Monterey County Board of Supervisors will go into effect. Please read our COVID safety guidelines prior to booking your stay.

COVID Update

All guests will be required to provide proof of vaccination upon arrival starting September 3, 2021. Please read our COVID safety guidelines prior to booking your stay.

COVID Update

Masks are no longer mandated indoors or outdoors, except during massage sessions. Guests are not required to provide testing or vaccination verification before arriving on campus. Please read our COVID safety guidelines prior to booking your stay.

All-inclusive Pricing
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