I decided I was ready for some spiritual spring-cleaning, but I faced a dilemma: I was on deadline, and I didn’t have 49 days. What to do? Speed-read the entire 325-page book and cram 49 days into 10, or carefully read and perform 10 days’ worth of lessons? Woodward emphasizes that you should work at your own pace and not rush to meet a strict one-lesson-per-day quota. Good plan, I thought. According to my calculations, cleansing for 10 days would see me 20.4 percent of the way toward finding my “one,” so the odds of some reward were in my favor. Now I just needed a partner—Woodward also encourages doing the course with a friend, or likeminded others. Finding a full group is tricky, unless you are tied in to your local spiritual community—or take the time to read all the flyers at Whole Foods. So I half-enlisted my best friend, Melanie, who joined in via phone here and there. Together, we dove in.
Lesson 1: Open yourself to love and understanding so you can be prepared to call love into your life.
I sat cross-legged and stretched my arms out wide, saying to myself, I open myself fully to give and receive love, as instructed. You are supposed to do this 26 times; Melanie and I lasted about 15 (we had to put the phone down during meditation to stretch occasionally). Our silence was eventually broken when Melanie said, “Dude, my arms hurt.” (Note: Melanie works out five days a week.) I said the ache came from her brain, not her arms; we laughed, and I didn’t care if we were inching closer to our “ones,” because it just felt really good.
Lesson 2: Connect with those around you.
This lesson encourages you to be mindfully pleasant to those around you. You are to repeatedly meditate on this phrase: I am connected to everyone and everything. The problem is, there’s only so much soul work you can do while simultaneously living your regular life. It was also depressing and nixed my mojo.