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W W W. S A N TA B A R B A R A S E N T I N E L .CO M

with Mark Léisuré

Mark spends much of his time wandering Santa Barbara and environs, enjoying the simple things that come his way. A show here, a benefit there, he is generally out and about and typically has a good time. He says that he writes “when he feels the urge” and doesn’t want his identity known for fear of an experience that is “less than authentic.” So he remains at large, roaming the town, having fun. Be warned.

Conscious Networking Event

T

he Santa Barbara Consciousness Network’s monthly Conscious Networking Event reached its one-year anniversary of the communitybuilding gatherings held at Unity of Santa Barbara in February. What did founder Forrest Leichtberg do to celebrate? Nothing. That’s not entirely true. There was a gathering off-site among friends and invited guests to mark the occasion, and one more Conscious Networking Event back at Unity. But then Leichtberg decided to take a step back to re-evaluate the reality of the previous events against his vision. You know, as in actually living the title of his organization and being more conscious about what was going on. Leichtberg, a relatively newcomer to Santa Barbara in his early 20s, created the organization and the monthly gatherings to realize his vision of hosting networking events where “conscious people could come together and nurture their collaboration in their efforts to impact the world and build community.” “People want to connect with others of like mind,” he explained. “The idea was to create a hub where everyone could get together, meet each other, connect, get some inspiration from each other to take home and make a difference.” The format was to start with an hour

for vendors in such area as healing arts, practitioners, healthy food, and more to mingle with potential clients before bringing everyone together in the hall for music followed by a presentation by a speaker. The events were an immediate hit. Seventy people showed up to the first Conscious Networking Event in February 2016, and by the time Rikka Zimmerman was the featured presenter in September, more than 200 people were attending each month. Rinaldo Brutoco, the past president of Chopra Foundation, and Pamela Oslie, the popular psychic and coach who specializes in color and auras, were also among the guests. Accordingly, Leichtberg’s learning took place in leaps and bounds. “At the beginning, it was like diving into the deep end of a pool without knowing how to swim,” he said. “I just had an idea and made it happen. But over the last several months, it’s taken on a life of its own. As it unfolds, it’s easy to see and feel into what needs to happen next to impact the audience and the community more. The experience we’ve had at each of the events has led to the next step; the ideas come from the trenches.” What that mostly looks like is going bigger. “A lot bigger, and better, and more organized,” Leichtberg said.

“Maybe 40 to 70 vendors. Bigger names “We’ve never done an event that’s as speakers. Getting the word out so that centered about love and intimate it becomes a staple in Santa Barbara. And relationships,” Leichtberg said. “For so then using that reputation to replicate many people, it’s one of the core drivers in other areas. Creating a community in their lives. The Hendricks’s work newsletter to connect events. Becoming touches people’s hearts. (After hearing a nonprofit and connecting with others.” them) people can make real changes in Leichtberg has been touched their lives and take something away.” frequently by the response in the first Indeed, the couple plan to offer onyear, nothing that feedback has moved site experiences, as well as tools to take him. “One woman came up to me and home at the June 2 presentation, Gay said, ‘Each time I come to your event, Hendricks said. The information they1987 Since I meet someone who changes my life impart comes directly from their own completely,’” he recalled. “There are lives. lots of magic moments, things that “It’s 100 percent,” he said. “We’re IansTire.com make a difference. I want to create a completely transparent. Everything we VOTED BES Se habla stronger way to be more cohesive for teach isespañol kitchen- and bedroom-tested. PLACE TO that collaboration to happen, so people We do everything at home before weSinc GET TIRES can experience things that might never bring it to the world. We never ask any happen any other way. We’re working person to do anything we haven’t done • Results Guaranteed on finding more ways to cause that to ourselves and found to be IansTire.co useful.” • FourOne Wheel happen during the expo networking method is to set aside time for parts of the event.” regular conversations toVOT Se intentional habla español Alignments Later this summer, the gatherings handle conflicts or challenges, he said.PLA – with a new name that’s still being “We separate business and romanticGET finalized to more accurately reflect the relationships, and partition those things We off. SellIf• Results updated vision – will move to UCSB’s there’s something going on, we Guaranteed All Major Lotte Lehmann Concert Hall, which don’t do it on the fly because relationship Brands • Four Wheel seats nearly 500, more than twice is a sacred space.” Of Tires Alignments Unity’s capacity. There are improved The Hendrickses will also talk and more focused efforts to reach more about individual growth as it relates members of the community, vendors to relationship, he said, focusing on Sell and individuals who might benefit. “the We importance of authenticity – All Major But first there’s one more transition beingBrands yourself. It’s learning how to event back at Unity, with a couple who communicate Of Tireswho you really are in your are among the biggest names in the work and coming from the deepest part personal growth field. Gay and Katie of your own authenticity, instead of Hendricks, who have written more than occupying a façade or what you think 40 books combined including numerous they would like… As people get more bestsellers, and whose work has been 4299½ deeply into that, all of their relationships State St. · Santa B featured on The Oprah Winfrey Show work better, both at work and at home.” and more than 500 radio and television For more information about the programs, will be on hand on Friday, Consciousness Network and the Events, June 2. They’ll talk about “Improving visit www.sbconsciousnessnetwork. Your Relationships Consciously”. com.

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