What People Are Saying
We are very proud of the words our students and community share about The 7 Tools, about Dr. Steve Hall and about Grace Porter, MA. Click the testimonials below to learn more!
I am amazed at the extent of the change I see in my daily life
Taming The Bear was undoubtedly one of the most impactful experiences in my 15-year journey with TBI and PTS
Taming The Bear was undoubtedly one of the most impactful experiences in my 15-year journey with Traumatic Brain Injury and Post Traumatic Stress. Incorporating the Seven Tools of Healing into my daily life provided perspective and practical skills that allowed me to transform my perceptions and effectively manage my emotions. It is a life changing experience I would recommend to any service members or veterans that have been to combat and then find themselves in a battle to rediscover their souls.
-Charles Bailey, US Army, Retired, OIF and OEF Combat Veteran
I didn't realize how the course would transform my life. I also don't think I realized my life was in need of a transformation.
Before Taming the Bear, I can honestly say I didn't know what I didn't know. I joined the course at my friend's suggestion, and my only expectation was that I would walk away with a few stress-handling tools. I didn't realize how the course would transform my life. I also don't think I realized my life was in need of a transformation.
Curiosity is my favorite TTB word. (Sorry Compassion, you're a close second!) The whole course was a master class in being curious about whatever it is that causes stress and anxiety (or any other trigger emotion), and then following that curiosity deeper and deeper. It's a beautiful, messy, spiraling, magnificent scavenger hunt into your own unique headspace. I REALLY fell in love with this part of the process.
Grace is the magical guide that allows all of this work to flow in an organic and authentic way. She's beyond intuitive and amazing to watch and learn from. She created a space for all of us to grow, at our own pace, and within our own boundaries.
Throughout the course, I found myself more open. Open to laughter, open to mistakes, open to living a big juicy messy life. I can breathe easier. I can see the world around me a little clearer. I feel more connected - to myself - to my family - to my job - to what I want my life to be.
I am eternally grateful - for all of it. Thanks Grace!
Carolyn Andros, Professional Photographer and Navy Veteran
I find your simple thorough techniques of analyzing and working through these beliefs very helpful.
- Patricia Rutowski, PhD, Retired Science Educator/Marine Science Camp Director
Getting to the depths of what is true allows me to make better decisions.
I went into Seven Tools thinking that I would "fix" some things that showed up in my personal life--as a wife, mother, and friend. The course definitely helped me evolve on this front, but what surprised me was the impact that the Seven Tools made on my role as a corporate leader. The tools have helped me to alter the way I deal with pressure/chaos/conflict at work, and have moved me down the continuum of reactivity so that I can respond to issues that arise versus being purely reactive. Doing the work to learn and apply the seven tools has taught me to be a spectator to my own thoughts--suspending judgment of others (and myself) in a way that allows me to lead with more compassion and conviction. Decisions I make have more depth, as I've found a way to pull at the threads of instincts, reactions, and emotions to uncover what lies beneath the surface. Getting to the depths of what is true allows me to make better decisions and to authentically and honestly communicate "the why" behind them.
-Erin Scruggs, Senior Director, Global Talent Acquisition at LinkedIn
Taming the Bear has had the biggest/most outsized impact for the cost of anything I have tried.
I have reframed my difficult relationship with compassion for myself.
I'm learning to understand what my reactions are tied to--at the deepest level--and this understanding leads to self compassion and evolution.
This class then offers you tools to be able to hold yourself with tenderness.
This class was not about recognizing that I was overstressed and under resourced, but instead about recognizing why I continue patterns that lead me to stressful situations as well as my response to stress and how it is based on my beliefs.
Taming the Bear is a journey into yourself to begin the process of understanding deeply held and likely unconscious beliefs that are causing you more stress and internal dissonance and leading you to make decisions that keep you stuck in these stressful patterns. Through compassionate awareness, this class then offers you tools to be able to hold yourself with tenderness while you work on creating new belief structures / thought patterns to create a life with less stress and more joy and success!
My favorite thing about Taming the Bear is the community of people being real about themselves and their lives as we learned how to be more real each week. Watching the empathy for ourselves and each other grow.
-Deb Reid, Family Nurse Practitioner - Board Certified, Certified Functional Medicine Practitioner, Reiki Master
Early on, I realized that this course would be different.
I was so excited when Patti suggested that I take the class. I was in a space where my stress level was the driving force that determined so many of my thoughts and actions, and I wanted to change that. I loved the experiential practices every week. They reinforced the class material in a way that made it "sink in" more. I also really enjoyed hearing the experiences of everyone on the weekly calls. Even though we were all processing different life experiences, it was empowering to see how The 7 Tools were applicable to each situation.
Previously, I was trying to make friends with my stress through activities like yoga, hiking, and meditation. These are still important tools for me, but now I realize that these activities were mainly helping process the after effects of stress. I would be paralyzed by stress and *then* employ these tools to "feel better." The 7 Tools has added a framework for attending to my stress as it arises throughout the day.
I am not generally a willing group participant, especially when it comes to sharing my feelings. Although this was definitely the most challenging part of the course for me, I was not expecting to look forward to the calls every week. After going through the process, I now feel more empowered to share how I am feeling - and I know why it is helpful to do so!
The 7 Tools course is an in-depth study of the steps anyone can take to reframe their relationship with stress. Throughout the 12 weeks, participants learn practical skills that encourage a compassionate, fully present understanding of the stress response that leads to personal growth.
I was skeptical before signing up for the class because I have been "battling" stress for a long time - and have been on a constant, fruitless search for "answers" to the "problem." Early on, I realized that this course would be different because we weren't "battling" or "solving" anything. It took me a few weeks of working with the course materials, but I found a way recognize and transform how much of my relationship with stress was about overcoming it.
I loved the presence and kindness that Grace brought to the calls each week. It was so cool to listen as she helped guide participants with questions to delve deeper into tricky blind spots. The grounding energy she brought to the calls was much appreciated.
Dr. Hall has a unique ability to bring lightness - and bumper sticker-ready humor - in a heart-centered way that honors the depth of the work we are doing without getting weighted down in the difficult emotions that can arise when delving into the origins of our stress responses.
-Sara Siegel Web Developer
The combination of both Grace and Steve's thoughts was really nice.
Taming the Bear is gentle and kind class that explores not only what is a stressor and where it originates from for me, but what tools might help me on a regular basis to get to where I am preventing feeling stressed rather than reacting to it.
The combination of both Grace and Steve's thoughts was really nice. I could feel a different background in education but with a common thread/message and it made me feel that much stronger about the approach and methods. Grace’s listening capacity and kindness were overwhelming and I really appreciated Steve’s responses as they directly got me to think about my practices.
[In the past I have only addressed stress] on my own using TED talks, books, yoga, exercise…but that was more to essentially ‘Breathe’ or ‘deal’ instead of taking a deeper look into beliefs, faith and the way I work that is either helpful or harmful. Taking that look and assessing among and with others kept me accountable to really do the ‘work’ and gave me a perspective I had never seen before.
-LM, Entrepreneur (Initials used by request for privacy)
The Seven Tools....give me both a powerful structure and process to handling my stress.
Before taking Taming the Bear I felt that my adversarial relationship with stress was causing me to avoid opportunities for deeper personal relationships and full enjoyment of my career. I have tried several paths to change this including counseling and meditation. The integration of The 7 Tools into these practices gives both a powerful structure and process to handling my stress.
I have learned to pay attention not only to my thoughts about a matter, but to how I am experiencing that matter in my body. In Taming the Bear I learned to invite that feeling to take me to its roots. I have been able to apply this technique on my own and continue to develop new insights, which allow me to let go of painful things from my past.
In taking Taming the Bear, one not only invests in their own better future but becomes a part of a group of individuals who grow together through a common understanding of themselves and a desire to relate in a healthy way to their loved ones, careers and life events. Grace’s calm and caring leadership style makes this growth and group development possible.
Grace is an insightful and caring counselor who is well versed in The 7 Tools and is able to connect with each member in the group in a way that makes use of the tools personal and meaningful.
-BJ (Initials used by request for privacy), Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor
Taming the Bear is a class about true healing and resiliency.
After hearing Grace give an intro talk about Taming the Bear a long time ago, I had the sense that I would benefit from hearing all of the steps laid out in a linear process. Context is helpful to the way my brain works. Once I understand the big picture it is easier for me to take tactical action. I hoped Taming the Bear would help me step back from my exact thought place and gain a larger framework that I could then apply to my acute situations as they arise. I was also interested in what a group setting might be like.
I absolutely love (and think it is a big differentiator) how Taming the Bear is designed to be a mix of education and experience. The content is awesome, and I like learning new things. The experiential piece, both via video and on the calls, really elevated the course for me. Once I feel something myself, then I believe it every time.
The accountability and support of the group was great. I really enjoyed learning from listening to others share their experiences. Plus, when I see others growing and working hard, it is a great motivator for me to keep going.
I think the big difference for me with Taming the Bear was learning a structure/process that I could apply every time. Taming the Bear feels much more like a path to addressing the cause of my stress, as opposed to trying to mitigate the effects.
Taming the Bear is a class about true healing and resiliency, that is delivered in a really approachable manner. That it is a great way to open internal doors and gain tons of new perspective about yourself. The combination of information, experience, and group support is really unique. I tell people that it is awesome and that they should get over their fear and DO IT (never mind that I tell my own clients to stop shoulding themselves...).
This course is an invitation to new tools and levels of self awareness that will make a huge difference in your life. If you take the course you will gain actionable knowledge and insights that will help you in both the short and long term. You will need to be patient to get into the flow—to give it a few classes to really pick up momentum and get comfortable with the process.
-Bridget Ruiz, Executive Coach and 2 Time Taming the Bear Student (Testimonial given after taking Taming the Bear the first time as a private class with a group of friends)
Taming the Bear is a well planned and structured class that can help anyone.
I decided to take Taming the Bear because I thought it might get me thinking on a different level when dealing with the everyday challenges of life and business. I have been through a number of counselors throughout my life, all have helped me to see a new perspective on a different part of life. The group setting was a bit nerve racking at first but in the end turned out to be the best part of the class. It is a well planned and structured class that can help anyone (that wants to help themselves) with the everyday challenges of life.
-Len Bazile, Jr, Took Taming the Bear as part of a private class
Overall, the word that comes to mind to describe "The Chill Pack" is empowerment.
Wow. I have been exploring "The Chill Pack" for the past week, and it has been such an amazing thing to integrate into my day. First, you can tell that the whole pack was put together with a lot of love. It is filled with resources-- explanations of the meditations as well as a very comprehensive herbal booklet, which is filled with natural and easy to make remedies. I appreciate that the meditations invited me to take the time for self-care and to go within and to listen to the voice inside that knows all of the answers-- even to the question of "How do I heal myself?' I love that Dr. Hall acknowledges that spiritual well-being is intertwined with physical well-being and that your heart has all of the answers. The yoga nidra practices by Grace Porter are just utterly delicious! All of the meditations are easy to repeat; since they are inviting you to really sit with your own experience, they seem different every time! Overall, the word that comes to mind to describe "The Chill Pack" is empowerment. I feel empowered to take control of my own health and to carve out these moments of self-care!
-Erin McKay, Teacher