Conscious Relationship as a Path of Awakening

How we relate with our intimate partner is core to our health and sense of well being. When we approach our relationship with dignity and sincerity it can also be a path of awakening.  In this workshop series we will explore what it is that helps us to grow into stronger, more compassionate partners.

There are five essential qualities that are part of our nature and working with these qualities consciously supports our individual development and growth as a couple. These five qualities are: Joy, Strength, Will, Compassion and Peace. Each of the five workshops in this series will explore in depth one of these qualities and how working with principles and skills related to these qualities enhances our contact with ourself and our partner.

Nina Miller and Don DeMercurio invite you to join them in a rich and dynamic exploration of these intrinsic qualities, while inquiring into many important questions such as:

  • How do we think about differences?
  • How skilled are we in managing our own feelings and being present to another under stress? 
  • What skills do we need to stay honest, open and kind with our partner especially under stress?
  • How do we hold a positive vision for the growth and unfolding of our relationship?


Nina Miller, LCMHC and Don DeMercurio

when and where

Five Sundays:
2014 – October 5th & December 7th
2015 – February 8th, April 12th & June 7th

9:00am – 5:00pm

Essence Institute
Richardson Place
2 Church Street, Suite 4E
Burlington, VT 05401

 workshop details

This is a 5 part workshop series for couples.  You can come to any or all of the one day workshops, each of which explores a particular theme. In each of these 5 workshops we will create a safe, fun-filled and dynamic form for learning skills and principles that bring more vitality, love and hopefulness into our daily connection. We will teach simple, grounded skills for talking with your partner about the themes that we are working on. Several times throughout the day you will practice these skills with each other and can choose to share as much or as little as you are comfortable with during discussion periods.

Workshop 1B – True Joy & Delight
In this weekend we will explore perspectives and skills that open space to know yourself and your partner in new and more meaningful ways.   When we are stressed in  the daily demands and responsibilities of life, we can lose our appreciation of our partners and our understanding of their unique strengths and challenges. Often, without being aware of it we may allow our primary relationship to be drained of vitality and true nourishing connection. This weekend is about revitalizing our important connection through the practicing true curiosity and sharing of joy.

Workshop 2B – True and real Strength
In our most intimate relationship one of our tasks is to grow in our capacity to allow the rhythms of being close and being separate.   In this workshop we will explore what it feels like to have the strength be ourself and express our truth to our partner. And, at the same time, to develop the capacity to en-courage our partner to fully express his/her truth.

Workshop 3B – True Will
It takes determination to stay open through the hard places in a healthy primary relationship.   In this workshop we will explore the capacities and skill sets needed to stay present while working through challenges in our loving relationship.  This particular skill set allows us to learn more about self and other without shame, blame or judgment. It helps us to heal old wounds and come up to date — strengthening the love and vitality of the present relationship.

Workshop 4B – Loving Kindness and Compassion
This will be a day of gentle practice of cultivating kindness towards oneself and ones partner. We will explore the simple and powerful impact of practicing kindness and generosity and how it affects our daily life with each other.

  • How can we deepen our capacity for empathy and compassion?
  • How do we set boundaries with kindness?
  • What happens inside us when we are having a hard time being kind?
  • How are the acts of generosity that most positively affect us?
  • What are the kinds of things we most enjoy doing with and for our partner?

Workshop – 5B  Peace and Absolute Stillness
The cultivation of inner peace is a lifelong practice.  The deepening of self acceptance and peace with ourselves – our strengths and weakness, failings and triumphs brings us closer to our inner selves (our own contact with Presence) in a truly nourishing way.  It also makes us less defended and more open in all of our significant relationships.  In this workshop we will explore practices that cultivate meditative awareness and presence. On a practical level these practices reduce stress in oneself and in the dynamics of the relational field. They also provide a pathway for developing peace and presence within the loving connection.

registration and fee schedule

Pre-registration required. Space limited to 10 couples.

Workshop Series
(Early registration discounts)
$950/couple if registered and paid in full before July 15, 2014
$1050/couple if registered and paid if full before August 15, 2014

(Regular registration)
$200 non-refundable deposit due with registration

$950 balance due on or before September 15, 2014

Individual Workshops: 
$100 non-refundable deposit due at registration
Balance due 2 weeks prior to workshop

cancellation policy

100% refund less non-refundable deposit if cancelled 45 days or more prior to workshop date. 75% refund less non-refundable deposit if cancelled 30 – 44 days prior to workshop. 50% refund less non-refundable deposit if cancelled 7 – 29 days prior to workshop. No refund if cancelled less than 7 days from workshop date.

Limit 10 couples.