The Year of the Big Shift


Is there one big way you would like your life to change?

If not now, when?

Do you long for big change but don’t know where to start?

Is there a big dream you’ve tried to accomplish yet always fell short?

Will 2019 be your year to shift — at last?

What will your change be?


Is it your career that needs an upgrade or a makeover?


Is there a way you long to express yourself creatively?


Do your health and the habits around your health need more attention?


Are you in a time of transition from one big life stage to another?


Are you called to build something really new where no one has gone before?


Maybe the biggest dream of all is to be fully yourself in this world – and to discover what that means!

Let’s discover your big dream and make it a reality… In a year-long journey… Together.

What is different and special about this program?

There are lots of “goals” programs out there.

Most of them start with getting specific about your goal and making it measurable. That much more income, or that many more clients.

But what if the idea of having a “goal” like that feels more like a straight-jacket? What if you want to nurture and follow a dream of a more meaningful life that can’t be slotted into the structure of having a specific and measurable outcome?

This program isn’t about a big goal. It’s about a big shift.

That means a big shift in your inner sense of who you are and how you show up in the world… more in alignment with your deepest longings.

I’m using everything I already know AND I’ve created new exercises and structured processes that are specifically for bringing your precious vision into reality… whatever it is!

Join me for a year-long program, starting January 14, 2019.


Go for the the moon! Now’s your chance!

I’ve been there, perhaps my struggles sound like yours…

I’m Ann Weiser Cornell, and it has been my life’s work to help people transform in the places they are stuck — starting with myself. And believe me, I needed it!

  • I had complete writer’s block.
  • I was unable to make phone calls if they were important.
  • I thought I could never own a home.
  • My business used to run out of a room in my apartment and barely supported me.
  • And I know what it’s like to be so unclear about what I really want and how that matches up with what I am “meant” to do… that it takes months to even begin to articulate it.

Big life shifts are not simple.

There’s a lot going on. But all of it can change. I know about making big changes. And I can help you make the big shift that you want to make.

Ann Weiser Cornell

Why We Don’t Achieve Our Big Dreams (Click to read more)

In surveying people on our list, we asked what is the biggest factor holding them back from going after their big dreams.

The top answer was the inner critic – that undermining, doubting voice that makes you believe you’re not good enough. Is that a big one for you too?

Do you hold yourself back in a smaller sphere because when you think about moving out of it, you get scared and feel that you can’t do it?

The inner critic is always about fear and doubt. Always. 100% of the time.

It’s not reality, it doesn’t tell the truth, even if it has a lot of so-called “evidence” on its side. It’s actually trying to save you… saying anything that will stop you from doing what it thinks is dangerous to you.

I know how to help you shift your inner critic. My own inner critic has gone almost completely quiet… and when it does come up, I can shift it in a few minutes.

Did you know there are actually two kinds of inner critic that get in the way when you are going after a big dream?

There’s the one that undermines you, that says you can’t do it, that you of all people do not have what it takes. And then there’s the one that pushes you, that says “What’s wrong with you that you haven’t achieved more in your life? Just try harder!”

In a way the second one is even more insidious… because it seems to be on your side, but actually it can suck all the joy out of your dream faster than a minute. It doesn’t help. It hurts.

How do you move forward if you don’t have an inner mean voice slogging you on? If you don’t know, I’d love to show you!

The second answer was the lack of clarity.

In that same survey, people told us that the second biggest reason for not achieving that big dream is lack of clarity on exactly what you want.

That makes sense! Without clarity, it’s hard to feel passion and commitment and really make something happen.

But you can’t just wave a magic wand and get clear.

Getting clarity is a process. And it’s a process I know all about. I know how to help you start with a vague, unclear feeling and follow it with patience and intention until it opens up into something you never could have imagined…. and that feels really right for you.

I don’t expect you to get clear in a moment, or in a few weeks. We’ll keep returning to the formulation of the goal, because part of what we’re learning how to do is hold the intention with loose fingers and allow it to develop and evolve.

This program is not about just setting a goal and muscling ahead!

We will be spending a lot of time with critics and lack of clarity… and other obstacles… and we’ll be finding the gifts of healing in each of them so they resolve and release… and your movement toward your goal becomes joyful and fulfilling and easy. That’s how it should be!

If you got your fortune told, and it said,
“This year you will have a huge breakthrough…”
— what would be your first thought?


With The Year of the Big Shift You’ll:

  • Discover true clarity about your intention, your steps and your outcomes
  • Experience yourself moving forward beyond your (previous) limits because you’ll uncover and explore the parts of you that hold you back
  • Learn how to ask for and receive support from other people, so you get the priceless benefit of having others on your side as you move forward
  • Access your energy and momentum by finding out what’s in your way (now or in the past) – and learning how fears and anxieties can shift to being skills and strengths
  • Get in touch with the larger vision and sense of mission that your goal is part of so that larger vision carries you forward with a sense of passion and purpose
  • Achieve one big shift, something you’ve wanted for a long time, but simply haven’t gotten there… Something you take on with a full commitment and accomplish within the year.

If you were 101 years old and looking back on your life, what is one big thing you would regret not doing if you hadn’t done it by then?

What You Can Expect from this Program

  • Clarity about your goal – what you really want
  • Knowing how to revisit and even change your intention — from your inner sense of rightness
  • Taking the next step without knowing all the steps
  • Learning how to not be crushed by the inner critic… in fact how to use its energy to carry you forward
  • Being able to ask for help and receive it
  • Overcoming seemingly insurmountable barriers
  • Shifts in the areas of “do I deserve it?” and “is it OK to want it?”
  • Holding an intention without becoming rigid
  • A greatly expanded sense of who you really are and what is possible for you

“Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” – Mary Oliver

The Structure of the Program

12 monthly themes

that make up a journey of exploration and transformation. Each month we concentrate on one aspect of exploring and creating your big shift.

24 Live Meetings (Online)

I’ll meet with the group and offer supportive guidance to help you through obstacles that come up along the way. Plus you benefit from listening along with other participants’ processes which probably mirror some of your own stuck places.

48 Weekly Video Modules

with a different guided exercise each week, accompanied by a written protocol so you can do the exercise with a Focusing partner if you like.

2 One-to-One Sessions with Me

We’ll have two 50-minute sessions, just the two of us, at 3 months and 6 months, so you can receive support tailored to what your Big Shift project really needs.

An online community space

where you can share your process every week in an online format (if you like). Stay connected to other group members and me and experience group support whenever you need it. (Note: This is a private, password-protected space, not “on the internet.”)

PLUS A 30-minute chat with me

at the very end of the program to celebrate and receive what has shifted, and create next steps

This program may be for you if…

  • You long to change your life in a big way… and feel frustrated about not having been able to do it till now
  • You’ve tried to change on your own and struggled enough to know that having support and structure could make all the difference.
  • You are ready to commit to doing the work… And you know that now is your time to make a Big Shift.

Course Registration

The last day to register is January 8th, 2019.
Get started with a $500 deposit or pay in full.

Want to talk about it before you decide? I’m happy to chat with you about whether this course is right for you.
Just email me and we’ll find a time.


What People Are Saying…

  • Linda Lid
    "I came to The Year of the Big Shift to embark on a more creative, whole, happier life. What's so different about this course is that the way of working is so soft and empathic. I realized that making friends with the warring parts inside me means I love myself more and feel happier. I'm appreciating the tools from this course and how they help me move forward as a more empathic leader of my whole self."
  • Diane W.
    "This is what I've been waiting for... a program that offers unconditional acceptance of all the aspects of personal change! Ann's inspirational teaching and guided exercises combined with the on-going connection of the group are a huge support. Throughout this course, I've made so many changes...and now I'm living my life differently, from a place of deep self-compassion."
  • Charles Herr
    "I started Year of the Big Shift as a hopeful skeptic. I believed a Big Shift was possible. But I was a skeptic in the sense of "Maybe it'll happen--and maybe it won't." The amazing thing is that I have indeed experienced a Big Shift, not as a one-time event that occurred in the past, but in the way I am now living in the present. Tangles are no longer blocks, but exciting opportunities. Life flows more freely. Living unfolds. I live with a sense of excitement about doing my projects. I feel happy."
  • Barbara D.
    "Halfway through the Big Shift course, I'm already enjoying a heightened awareness of how my life has brought me to this moment, and how I want to go forward. Awareness for me is the key to achieving a purpose-driven life - to be useful, serene, grateful, accepting, to be conservative of my resources, yet generous and supportive."
  • Cielle Backstrom
    "I've been taking courses with Ann Weiser Cornell for over 10 years. Knowing what a great teacher she is was a big draw. And I was not disappointed. There are so many special things about Year of the Big Shift. One of the big ones was a strong sense of support from the other participants. We formed a community very quickly and that was very important to me. Now that I've completed Year of the Big Shift, I can see how it helped me get in touch with hidden parts of myself that held limiting beliefs. Encountering them in new, deeper ways was transformational. Now, I have more spaciousness, compassion, and ease when I approach big life changes."

About the Teacher

Ann Weiser Cornell


Ann Weiser Cornell

Ann Weiser Cornell struggled with painful addiction, anxiety in social situations, and an inability to do the thing she most wanted to do – write.

Ann created Inner Relationship Focusing with her long-time colleague, Barbara McGavin, to help alleviate the thinking and feeling cycles that kept her stuck in hard places. It changed her life, and it became her mission to help others create quiet miracles in their lives too.

For over 35 years now, Ann’s been teaching this practical, revolutionary process to people all over the world.

Additional Information

How Online Courses Work

We use Zoom, an online video conference platform, to connect you to other students and the teacher. Before the class starts you will receive a Zoom link to use each time the class meets. You can join us via your camera-equipped computer, tablet, or smart phone. Prefer not to be on video? You can turn off your camera. Don’t want to call via computer? You can call in by phone. Zoom is free and easy to use. You will be able to sign on in advance to make sure you can access it, but we’ve had very few problems with it. Students also receive access to a private webpage where course materials can be found.

We use Ruzuku, an online course content platform, to provide your course materials, recordings, and a discussion forum. During the checkout process, you’ll be invited to create a Ruzuku account (if you don’t already have one) or add the course to your existing Ruzuku account. Please be sure to watch for this step and contact our Customer Happiness Manager right away if you don’t see it.


This program is open to anyone who feels ready to make the commitment.

The exercises in the program are based on Focusing. If you have previous Focusing training, your benefit from the program will be even greater. You may also want to take Focusing courses simultaneously with the Big Shift program. If you want to discuss your readiness for the Big Shift program, please email Ann to set up a chat.


Continuing Education Credit & Course Completion Certificate

Course meets the qualifications for 48 hours of continuing education credit for LMFTs, LCSWs, LPCCs, and/or LEPs as required by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences. Focusing Resources, CAMFT Approved CE Provider #62524.

Focusing Resources is approved by the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists to sponsor continuing education for LMFTs, LCSWs, LPCCs, and/or LEPs. Focusing Resources maintains responsibility for this course and its content.

There is a $25 administrative fee for CE units. Course completion certificates are awarded at the end of the course upon completion of all requirements and the course evaluation. (If you don’t want CE units but would like a completion certificate, the $25 fee does still apply.)

Eligibility for CE units requires at least 80% live attendance. Missed classes must be made up.

Cancellations, Changes & Refunds

Until end of day January 7, 2019: We will refund your course fee less the $250 non-refundable portion of your deposit.

From January 8, 2019 onward: 100% of course fees are non-refundable.

When Something Doesn't Go As You'd Hoped...

We are always open to discussing experiences with our courses that didn’t work for you or didn’t go the way you expected. Depending on the circumstances, you may want to email your course instructor, the staff member in charge of your course, or Ann Weiser Cornell. Email addresses for all these people will be supplied on registration. We will work with you to find a way to meet your needs.

2019 Monthly Themes, Bi-Monthly Meetings & Weekly Exercises

January: Clarity

January 14 Meeting – Beginning the Journey
Week 1 Exercise: What do I want… the first formulation
Week 1 Bonus Exercise: The Wanted Feeling
January 28 Meeting – Who am I? Who do I need to be?
Week 2 Exercise: If it happens… and if it doesn’t…
Week 2 Bonus Exercise: Inner Critics and Doubts
Week 3 Exercise: Why?

February: Commitment

February 18 Meeting – The Power of Showing Up
Week 4 Exercise: The Promise
Week 5 Exercise: The Gifts of “Failing”
February 25 Meeting – Joyful and Aware Creating
Week 6 Exercise: Your Comfort Zone
Week 7 Exercise: How Will You Show Up?

March: The 'Adversaries'

March 4 Meeting – The Pusher and the Crusher
Week 8 Exercise: Shifting the Critic
Week 9 Exercise: “I Don’t Really Want It Anyway”
March 18 Meeting – How to Not Believe Your Thoughts
Week 10 Exercise: What Your Critic Wants for You
Week 11 Exercise: Becoming Unstoppable – One Step at a Time

April: Other People

April 1 Meeting – You Are Not Alone
Week 12 Exercise: Exercising the “Asking” Muscle
Week 13 Exercise: Healing the Wounds Around Asking for Help
April 15 Meeting – Asking for Support – and Receiving It
Week 14 Exercise: Selfish or Selfless – Or…?
Week 15 Exercise: Woven Into the Web of the Larger System

May: Your Heart's Desire

April 29 Meeting – Allowing Yourself to Want
Week 16 Exercise: Can I Want What I Want?
Week 17 Exercise: Healing Our Wounds Around Wanting
May 6 Meeting – What I Want to Create Also Wants Me to Create It
Week 18 Exercise: Your Big Shift Project as Something You Want to Create
Week 19 Exercise: What Is Wanted

June: Take One Big Step & Then Celebrate

June 10 Meeting – One Big Step
Week 20 Exercise: What Is the Best that Could Happen?
Week 21 Exercise: Receiving the Steps No Matter How Small
June 17 Meeting – Being Open to Help from the Larger System
Week 22 Exercise: Your Big Step… How to Love the Resistance
Week 23 Exercise: Sensing Back and Sensing Forward

July: New & Sometimes Harsher Critics

July 8 Meeting – How Moving Forward Scares Parts of Us
Week 24 Exercise: Calming the Terrified Inner Critic
Week 25 Exercise: How to Not Believe What We Think
July 29 Meeting – Compassion for the Petrified Parts
Week 26 Exercise: When It’s Hard to Feel Compassion for the Harsh Critic
Week 27 Exercise: Becoming Your Own Protector – or Starship Captain
Week 28 Exercise: Emerging on the Other Side – The Protectors Give Their Gifts

August: Rhythms of Rest & Self-Care

August 19 Meeting – Resting, Refreshing, Energizing
Week 29 Exercise: Trusting Your Body
Week 30 Exercise: The Difference Between Being Blocked and Resting
August 26 Meeting – “Without Haste and Without Delay”
Week 31 Exercise: Discovering New Pleasures
Week 32 Exercise: Your Ideal Day of Work and Rest

September: The Bigger Context

September 9 Meeting – Passion and Mission
Week 33 Exercise: “I was sent here to…”
Week 34 Exercise: What Kind of World?
September 30 Meeting – Being Part of Something Larger
Week 35 Exercise: How Others Benefit from Your Shift
Week 36 Exercise: The Human Need to Contribute and Be Received

October: Who Am I Now?

October 14 Meeting – The Odd Feeling of Being Different Than You Were
Week 37 Exercise: Role Models and Inspirations
Week 38 Exercise: The Sky’s the Limit – Really?
October 28 Meeting – Being a “Work in Progress”
Week 39 Exercise: Being… Becoming… Being…
Week 40 Exercise: Embracing Imperfection
Week 40 Bonus Exercise: Daring to Grow Beyond My Limits

November: Harvest

November 4 Meeting – Receiving What Has Shifted
Week 41 Exercise: What is Clear and What is Still Unclear
Week 42 Exercise: Comparing Yourself to Yourself (and Not to Anyone Else)
November 18 Meeting – Creating a New Integration of Your Old and New Selves
Week 43 Exercise: Taking Action Without Knowing It All
Week 44 Exercise: How You Have Surprised Yourself

December: Momentum

December 2 Meeting – Feeling the Momentum
Week 45 Exercise: Sensing the Next Steps
Week 46 Exercise: Next Year…
December 16 Meeting – Completing and Looking Forward



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