A core ingredient of building resilience: Dare to dream…

Margo Groeneveld
17 May 2020

In the middle of this pandemic, it makes total sense to feel lost, to grief, to be angry. The antidote is find a sense of control. And there is a simple way of doing that. Dare to dream 🙂

Because if you can dream, you can feel. And if you feel, you are more likely to take a first step. A first step towards a better future. Here is a practice:

1. Set the space

Find 10 – 15 minutes of time where you wont be disturbed. And set a the space. It’s worth the effort, this time is for you. Make yourself comfortable. On a chair, on the ground. Get a pillow. A blanket. Get the temperature right. Put on some gentle music, stillness is okay too. Whatever feels good to you.

2. Unwind

When you are settled, take some time to unwind. Where is your attention drawn to? Can you feel your body? Is your mind racing? Are you aware of the space you are in? Simply notice what is going on for you, what is present for you. And whatever it is, know that it is welcome.

3. Breathe

As you begin to slow down, gently focus your attention on your breath. No need to change it, just become aware of it. Are you breathing calm and deep? Or is your breath shallow and tight? How is your chest moving as you breathe? And your belly? This is not about getting it right or wrong, there really is no right or wrong.

And, whenever you feel ready, gently shift your attention to the exhale and lengthen it a little bit without forcing it. Just see if it wants to lengthen if you bring your awareness to it.  It will support your nervous system to calm down. And if it doesn’t, just for today it doesn’t.

4. And then, dream!

And now, once you feel you have have slowed down even more, think about the future you would like to have. It can be personal, it can be work related. You pick your focus. How does the future look like? What do you see? Hear? Smell? Touch? Taste? Use your senses and picture it as amazing as you want it to be!

Maybe it feels a little awkward at first, but the more vivid you dare to dream, the better this exercise works.

Close the practice

To end this practice, check in with yourself: when you see this future, how are you feeling? Now, think of a simple, achievable action that supports building this dream. Write it on a post-it and do it! It’s not going to deliver your dream straight away, but you will feel better for the day. Share it with your friends, so they can chear you on. And who knows… action by action, one day…