Image / Wissawa Cinnacotra
In the last post, we looked at what our dreams are, their importance in our lives, and what happens when we ignore or silence them. Hopefully, you were able to tune into some moments of inspiration and expansion over the ensuing days, and have an idea of a dream - however small - that wants expression through you. Writing down our inspirations is a wonderful way to begin noticing them, as well as remembering them for later tending. We forget easily, especially when we're first starting out on our dream-keeping path! From your list or from memory, call up one of the dreams that made itself felt to you. We'll use it today to learn how to begin keeping and cultivating, and what we learn can be applied to your future inspirations, too.
If at all possible, it's wonderful to stop and give ourselves a moment or two to be with, feel into, or listen to a dream when it first lands on our shoulder (or in our heart). We want to experience it as clearly as we can, letting it move us. This is a wonderful moment to write it down, sketch it out, envision it in our minds eye, or create any symbol that will help us reconnect to the essence of our dream later. How we record our dream will vary based on our personal creative strengths, so choose the method that makes the most sense to you. As we're describing or sketching or dancing our dream, we want to continue to feel it as fully as possible, merging our symbol or our notes with the feeling of the dream's essence. Some dreams take time to bring into reality, and this symbol or story or collage or video is going to help us stay focused on our dream with clarity when doubt, confusion, or lethargy arise along our way. We make ourselves a map of the dream, so that we can remember where we're headed.
We'll place our symbol, story, or map somewhere that we can engage with it regularly. Perhaps we place it somewhere we can see it when we arise each day, so we begin our day giving energy and attention to our dream. Perhaps we have a sacred space for prayer or meditation, and we place our map there, to give it our best and most focused attention after our spiritual practice. Perhaps it works best for us to have a picture of our map on our phone, so that we can revisit the image of our dream throughout the day. Maybe we do all of the above! As we revisit our dream map, we'll allow ourselves to feel into the essence of our dream again and again, and to draw the vision of it into ourselves as much as possible. In this part of our dream-keeping practice, we're not planning and executing and making lists, but rather opening to and receiving the dream. Opening and receiving, opening and receiving, opening and receiving. If new layers or components of our dream make themselves known as we do this, we can add them to our map, being sure to express our gratitude for the insight.
Next, we want to determine what real-life action steps are necessary to bring our dream to life. Do we have the skills and information needed to create it already, or do we need to seek out some advice or training? Do we need the help of others to make our dream happen? If yes, who? What are the step-by-step actions needed to take us from right here where we are now, to there? We write them down, as clearly as possible. If at any point we start to feel overwhelmed, we can pause this part of the practice and return to feeling into the dream for a few moments - this should energize us and return us to an expansive state of possibility. We can also step away for a short while and do something fun and relaxing unrelated to our dream.
Depending on the size and scale of our dream, we pick a reasonable committment - maybe we commit to one real-life action step towards our dream each week until it's realized. Perhaps an action step a day is more appropriate for us. Some dreams, once mapped and outlined in this way, will demand all of our attention until they're done - we might go all in and do it now! Decide what makes sense for your dream and your life, and then commit - regular steps will keep you connected to your dream, and lead you steadily toward bringing it into form. At any time you begin to feel discouraged, too bogged down with details or overwhelmed with the enormity of what you've entered into, simply back up a little bit in your vision, broaden your view, and return to feeling the dream as you did in it's inception. Stay in this less-focused, less-detailed, feeling-centered place until you feel rejuvenated. And when your second wind comes, bringing with it the clarity of your next right step, return to action and take that step! Wishing you all productive play with all the dreams you allow to come through you!
Dana Wyss Healing Arts
Breathe deeply, practice often, be well.