Sandpoint Men’s Group, a Nonprofit, is a network of men who meet every Wednesday night from 6-10 PM in Sandpoint, ID. Our goal is straight forward, to support each other in our personal growth and become powerful human beings. Our group’s approach is direct, loving, and fun. The intimacy and spontaneity allow for deep healing and creation that deeply impacts the course of each man’s life.
Reading Our Approach page will give you a sense of how we engage each other and approach personal growth.
Why We Attend
Why would a group of successful men devote four or more hours a week to being in group together? Simply said, each man wants more from his life. Here are some of the reasons men have expressed for becoming members:
- My relationships with others were not what I wanted. I realized I was the consistent variable, so I knew I needed to change.
- I longed for the camaraderie I had as an adolescent.
- I wanted a real connection to other men, a true sense of brotherhood to enjoy and support my growth.
- I saw in the men who were in the group something I wanted.
- I felt I needed support that would help me be the human being I wanted to be.
See Inside Sandpoint Men’s Group
During the summer of 2012 a filmmaker named Maja Bugge came out from N.Y.C. to make a documentary on our group. We provided her essentially unrestricted access to the group, all the men in the group and their families. It was a risk to allow her – or any outsider – access as one reason our group is so powerful is confidentiality. However, we negotiated with Maja the right to edit anything we felt would be harmful to a man, his family, or the group. Surprisingly not much was edited as the men and their families thought it was important to communicate the power of a men’s group to change lives, families, and communities. Click here for more info, the trailer, how to watch the whole movie online, or buy a DVD.
The Sandpoint Men’s Group (SMG) started February 2005 with 12 men. Their invitations to join came from Owen Marcus whose inspiration came from his years of experience leading groups and from his affiliation with the MandKind Project. We believe there are three main reasons SMG is so powerful and has had such a dramatic impact on our lives:
- The first is the safety of the container we create and hold men in during every meeting. This container is described more in our guiding principals.
- The second is the quarterly Sweat Lodges that are open to men’s partners and others in our community .
- The third reason is the Healing and Creation Journeys we have refined over the years. The Healing Journey is a gentle process of taking a man back to the origin of what is preventing him from achieving his goals. The Creation Journey moves us forward in connecting to our deepest calling and draws our visions, hopes, and passions into current reality.
The group grew to three circles or sub-groups. In June 2009 several men reformed Sandpoint Men’s Group into SMG 2.0. In 2012 our group was filmed for the documentary About Men. In 2013 we grew again into three circles and reformed as SMG 3.0.
Owen Marcus’ TEDx talk, What 10,000 Years of Progress Cost Men, released at the end of 2015 lays out the need for free men’s groups. The company he formed with other SMG men offer weekend trainings for men. They travel throughout North America training other men how to start and run powerful groups. Owen’s course Emotional Superman provide men with many of the principles and skills that the weekend trainings provide via an online course.
Over the years we have welcomed many new members and believe we positively impact the community by helping men create positive change and more connection in their lives. We particularly appreciate men who are willing to bring both head and heart – who are willing to connect with their emotions and bring their full-bodied presence. A desire and choice to show up fully present in group is necessary, and the group’s structure supports each man in doing so. We appreciate directness, honesty, and recognize vulnerability as a strength and a fast track to growth.
If you are interested in joining Sandpoint Men’s Group, please click the Get Started page.
SMG is not therapy; our focus is not pathology, but enhancement. We focus on supporting members in achieving a richer life. There are often times in men’s lives when medication and serious therapy may be needed, the SMG supports that need. We tell these men to consider joining the group when their pharmaceutical treatment is complete.
We ask that when a man joins the group he joins for himself first. The more a man is fully present and fully committed – the more he receives from the group and the group receives from him. A core tenant of the group is feeling and expressing what we feel and want. As simple as this may be, as humans we often struggle with totally showing up. To help each other in this endeavor we ask that the man be emotionally and physically present.
The approach to men’s work developed at SMG is the foundation of Evryman, an international platform for men and men’s groups. Owen Marcus is a co-founder at Evryman and SMG was the first Evryman group.
Evryman is well on its way to having a million men in their independent men’s groups. If SMG inspires you to start your own group, use Evryman to help you.
The entire team at Evryman supports men in having successful groups. Evryman also offers wildness expeditions, skills trainings, coaching and a certification training providing many ways to deepen your work and life experience.
Copyright by Sandpoint Men’s Group.