The unique therapeutic mindfulness program we offer at New Life is designed to provide you with a wide variety of tools to cultivate inner growth. Our supportive community provides the best possible environment for healing body and mind.
Mindfulness practice forms the heart of our program. Residents also benefit from therapy and counselling sessions with professional life coaches. In addition, we offer movement and body-focused therapies and practices such yoga and TRE (Tension & Trauma Release Exercises), as well as a wide range of group and individual activities.
Our community work centres on cultivating the foundations of sustainable living. You have the opportunity to learn about or use your skills in a range of settings including agriculture, natural building, recycling, maintenance, working with cows and ducks, and more.
Meditation and mindfulness
At New Life we offer a combination of guided and silent meditation sessions. You will become acquainted with breathing meditation, insight meditation, listening meditation, walking meditation, and forgiveness meditation. We also practice meditation on compassion, loving kindness, and equanimity.
Meditation allows us to observe our thoughts. We can feel our emotions fully without having to turn them into a whole story. We also learn to relate to ourselves with kindness and acceptance as opposed to becoming stuck in fear and self-criticism.
We have an in-house meditation teacher to provide guided group sessions as well as one-on-one support to help you develop your practice. In addition to daily meditation practice, the foundation organises retreats with local and international meditation teachers from a variety of secular and Buddhist traditions.
Residents receive two one-on-one life coaching sessions per week. Our compassionate, experienced life coaches are trained in numerous therapeutic fields. There is an approach to suit everyone.
Allison Bright applies Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP), Non-Violent Communication, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), and the 12 Steps program in her sessions to assist in addiction recovery, work-life balance, career and life direction, family of origin issues, and co-dependency issues, including self-esteem and boundaries.
Madelaine De Klerk has had extensive experience working with trauma and anxiety issues and assisting clients to make healthy behavioural changes. As an Ericksonian hypnotherapist, Madelaine specialises in brief solution-focused therapy, clinical hypnotherapy, CBT, interpersonal therapy, human givens therapy, person-centred counselling, and body-based therapeutic modalities like trauma release exercises (TRE).
Scott Thomson uses Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), TRE, Smart Recovery, Mindfulness Based Relapse Prevention and Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy. Scott specialises in mindfulness and behaviour approaches treating anxiety disorders, depression, addiction and finding lost purpose and meaning in life.
Tom van den Beemd’s approach utilises Enneagram-based coaching for improving awareness and acceptance of self and others. He specialises in mindfulness-based relapse prevention and therapies focusing on identifying and challenging patterns and core beliefs.
Rina Louw’s approach makes use of personal history and situations through conversation and ‘play therapy’ techniques such as storytelling, drawings (family history, DAP, time lines, etc.), and journaling to lead clients to greater understanding and acceptance of self. Rina also works with clay as a form of expressive therapy to give clients the opportunity to explore the self and find meaning and hope.
Sustainable living is an essential aspect of our healing and mindfulness program. It helps us fulfill our goal of being an environmentally conscious, self-sustaining community. Growing our own rice, corn, vegetables and fruit allows us to mindfully get back into our bodies and reminds us to enjoy the simple pleasures that reconnecting with nature can provide.
Our family of ducks and cows provide us with nutritious, organic, free-range eggs and milk, cheese, and yoghurt. We also connect with our environment through natural building, starting with making our own adobe bricks from our own soil, water, and rice husks. Our building projects to date have included a large meditation hall in the forest, a recreational hall, a wood-fire pizza oven, and several adobe living spaces located throughout the foundation grounds.
Yoga, TRE, and dance
Body-centred work forms a core part of our program. In addition to daily yoga sessions, we also offer a regular weekly TRE session. TRE is also offered on a one-on-one basis by our life coaches Scott and Madelaine as an optional part of life coaching.
Visiting dance teachers offer 5-rhythms, biodanza, journey dance, and dance mandala workshops to our community members. These activities help us to relax, connect with our bodies, restore inner balance, and unleash our creativity.
Workshops and support groups
At New Life, residents attend five afternoon workshops per week. We offer classes based on themes such as: boundaries; community; shadows; self love; communication; gratitude; body awareness; forgiveness and compassion; relationships; kindness; identity, values, and purpose; and meaning and perspective.
In addition to life coaching and workshops, we also facilitate a range of support groups, including a public speaking group, a performance group, Buddhist Recovery, and men’s and women’s circles. One of our most popular groups is the inspirational speaker’s meeting, in which a community member shares his or her life story.
We also support community members working with the 12 Steps program by organising transport to twice-weekly Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous meetings in the city centre.