You possess unlimited resources for focused, productive, and creative work that is meaningful and adds value to the world. But all the distractions and stress of modern life mean that we can lose touch with our center of wisdom, our ground. Everyone has “hooks” or distractions that cause us to make bad decisions. When we’re cut off from our inner wisdom, we feel frustrated, have less energy, and wonder why we’re running the rat race. It’s okay – We’ve all been there. That’s why we created the Centering for Wisdom™ programs and resources to help you learn mindfulness and centering meditation and to get you back to center.

Once you have mastered the basic skills and competencies in your field, the single most important leadership skill you can develop is the ability to maintain a non-judgmental, present-centered awareness and to bring it into everything you do.

Thomas J. Bushlack, Creator of the Centering for Wisdom™ Assessment 

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What is Centering for Wisdom™?

Business People Having a Meeting

Centering for Wisdom is a practice of letting go of distractions while surrendering in to challenging situations in order to access your inner core of wisdom.  “Surrendering in” is like leaning in, but with a minimum amount of effort.  With regular practice of centering you begin to discover that problems begin to resolve effortlessly.  You become aware of greater inner resources to support your creative energy, focus, productivity, and calm presence.

“The type of leadership which creates the least stress also happens to be the type of leadership that is most effective”

– Edwin Friedman, Rabbi & Leadership Coach

How will the Centering for Wisdom™ Assessment help me improve my leadership skills?

Anxiety, stress, and distractions are the enemy of effective leadership.  The more you advance as a leader, the more challenges and stressors you are expected to handle.  Email inboxes overflow.  Calendars are packed full of meetings.  Persons demand your attention.  Decisions that need to be made are placed on the back burner.  In this un-centered state, neither you nor your organization can grow to the next level. 

Advancing leaders often find themselves overwhelmed.  This can lead to an over-active mind that becomes paralyzed by mental distraction, blocking wise decision-making.  Buddhist tradition calls this “monkey-mind,” and the poet R.S. Thomas calls it “the wild hawk of the mind.”  You begin to experience chronic fatigue but feel unable to let go, to rest, or to sleep well.  Job performance and relationships begin to suffer. 

Buddha image with monkey in the ruined ancient.

If you find yourself experiencing this kind of overwhelm, it’s time to evolve your leadership and your organization to the next level.  The Centering for Wisdom™ Assessment (CWA) will help you upgrade your operating system.

The CWA is based on the belief that all persons have a natural ability to make wise, efficient, and ethical choices and decisions. 

Wise and ethical decisions are those choices and actions that will:

  • support your success in personal and professional life
  • enhance your health, resilience, and well-being
  • contribute to the common good of your organization and your community

The CWA provides you with individualized feedback on how strongly you tend to react in ways that make you feel more distracted and anxious.  This information helps you to see clearly where you are most likely to become overwhelmed and distracted, or where you lose touch with your center of wisdom.  Results are displayed in four areas of awareness, displayed in the graph below.  Higher scores indicate higher levels of reactivity where stress is more likely to lead to poor decisions.  Badly made decisions block future growth toward your financial, spiritual, personal, and professional goals.

It is important to keep in mind that there are no “right or wrong” answers, nor are there “better or worse” scores.  Rather, the report shows you your unique ways of reacting to your environment.  It is a tool for self-awareness, not for self-judgment! 

Distractions of “Judging Mind”: Pride and Shame

Scores on the X-axis of the CWA graph, or “Judging Mind,” help to identify ways that you tend to react to other persons by judging yourself and others in overly critical and reactive ways that undercut wise decision-making.   Centering for Wisdom™ is developed by holding the centered belief that all persons are of equal dignity, value, and worth, and that no person is inherently better or worse than other persons.

  • Pride scores indicate the strength and frequency with which you tend judge yourself as “better than” others (or to judge others as worse than yourself).
  • Shame scores indicate the strength and frequency with which you tend to judge yourself as “worse than” others (or to judge others as better than yourself). 

With practice, you begin to live from the centered belief that:

“All persons are of equal dignity, value, and inherent worth.  I am neither better than, nor worse than, any other person.”

Distractions of “Desiring Mind”: Attachment and Aversion

Scores on the Y-axis of the CWA graph, or “Desiring Mind,” help to identify emotional reactions that can inhibit your ability to see a situation clearly and accurately, which can lead to poor decisions.  Centering for Wisdom™ is developed by accepting the present moment as it is, and by letting go of the desire to feel secure through trying to control or manipulate the situation or others.

  • Attachment scores indicate the strength and frequency with which you tend to be drawn toward or to maintain contact with pleasurable things, persons, or experiences.
  • Avoidance scores indicate the strength and frequency with which you tend to avoid situations that you perceive as difficult or painful.

With practice, you begin to live from the centered belief that:

 “I accept the present moment as it is.  I observe my thoughts and emotions, without the need to control or manipulate the outcome.”

As a tool for enhanced self-awareness, the CWA results help you to identify how “centering” practices – such as mindfulness, meditation, or contemplative prayer – can facilitate movement toward your center of wisdom.

Frequently Asked Questions about the Centering for Wisdom™ Assessment:

How long does it take to complete?

The full assessment takes approximately 10 to 15 minutes to complete.

What will I be asked in the survey?
  • The CWA includes 24 survey questions and 5 demographic questions.
  • Each survey question presents you with a situation that you are likely to encounter in professional or personal life. You are then asked to “rate how accurately each of the following statements describes your experience over the last 14 days.”  Your response is recorded on a scale of 1 to 5 (1 = Never or almost never; 5 = Always or nearly always).
  • You may feel that some questions bring about a personal or emotional response or are challenging to answer. If you do not wish to continue taking the assessment, you may simply close your browser.
What will I get if I purchase the assessment?
  • After completing the assessment, you will immediately receive a 15-page report that provides you with your individualized scores in each of the four categories of awareness – Attachment, Avoidance, Pride, and Shame.
  • The report shows you how to interpret your results so that you can bring a more centered presence into situations or relationships where you are most likely to become “hooked” or distracted.
  • We will be launching a feature soon that will allow you to return and retake the assessment at a discounted price of $29.99. 
Do you offer a corporate discount for small or large groups? I want to use the CWA for my company, school, or organization.
  • Absolutely! The larger the group, the higher the discount.  You can submit a request for bulk purchases on the assessment product page.
  • Additional discounts apply if you hire an in-person public speaking or workshop event for your group. Please contact us to inquire about public speaking and CWA combined packages.
Is my payment information secure?
  • Yes, we adhere to PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard), the industry standard for payment information processing security. We partner with Elavon Inc., a processor of credit card transactions and a subsidiary of U.S. Bancorp, offering the highest level of consumer security, protection, and customer support.
Will others be able to view my responses? Can my employer or the owners of the CWA view my individual responses?
  • No, your answers remain completely anonymous. No personal identifying information is collected in the survey.  Only you will be able to view your individualized report and responses, unless you choose to share it with others. 
  • We collect aggregate data from survey responses for analysis and research. However, none of the data we collect is associated with any personal identifying information.  Our research protocols have been fully approved by IRB (Institutional Review Board) ethical standards.
  • Because payments are processed separately from the third-party site where the assessment is hosted (at MindGarden.com), your payment information cannot be linked to your CWA responses in any way.

Centering for Wisdom™ – Playlist

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