Review your last 12 months with the Dragon Way to Mental Wealth methodology to get an overview of your emotional life and motivations in 2019. We work with the Green, Red and Blue dragons to help understand how life has left it’s mark on our mind/body/heart. Were you kind to your hard-working blue dragon? Did Red derail you (again!)? Did you feed your Green Dragon and care for yourself and others in wise ways?
See where you have come from, in order to determine how to “Get into the Green” more easily next year. This will maximise your brain/heart potential to move forwards with care and compassion.
This will ensure that 2020 brings you more ease and kindness and a greater capacity to manage the moments of “Red” in life that are unavoidable.
Extract the learning from last year’s Reds, release and forgive, and focus your Blue Dragon energy for the highest intentions self care, presence, and purpose in 2020.
Exercise Duration: 30-45 mins (best reviewed and refined in a few sessions).
Materials: Paper, pens, journal, creative expression tools of your choice. A quiet place. A clear intention about why you are doing this (Tam suggests: I intend mindful and heartful learning from my experiences).
Note: If you need help with intention setting check out Juliet Adam’s great book Intention Matters.
Orientation: You can do this exercise in the Blue (learning mode) or Green (Compassionate Witnessing) modes. With Blue you are a bit more analytical and looking for “upgrades”. Ask “What could I do differently next time?”
With Green, you are purely witnessing with kindness and without judgement the realities of your last year. The Green mode involves feeling into your body and heart as you look at the reality of what went well and what went wonky in 2019. Insights may or may not emerge. They could surprise in both positive and negative ways. Intend openness to all.
Use this exercise as a practice in self compassion and non reactivity. If you need to, try a Three Cs or Hand on Heart Practice before you start. This is especially important if you have had a challenging year.
You could also try a Green Dragon Transitional Pause. This is a great way to prepare for any activity. The Dragon Way is FIRST GREEN THEN BLUE.
Process: First you will monitor, then review in an embodied way, then make a clear plan to make #getintothegreen a priority for next year.
Let’s Go! Work from January to January. Make sure you have a large enough sheet of paper, and some back up paper. You will need crayons or pens (or whatever you like to use to express yourself). Have extra sheets to hand.
Where in the World? Begin by mapping your geographic location. Start general (which country) and then get specific (city, towns, street, buildings etc). If you want to get really creative, map out your year by drawing in (or making a collage) of what you could see. Which nature or urban environments were part of your extended embodied cognition in 2019?
What was I doing? Try to remember specific activities or events and mark those in. Notice where you started writing first on the time line, how much you pressed the pen into the paper, how quickly you were writing. Did the red or green come to mind more easily?
Where was I flowing? Where were you super focused and flowing and using your Blue Dragon energy in way that felt effortless, but also got things done? What captured your Blue Dragon attention? Where were you disrupted or distracted by Red Dragon energy? How much Green is there?
Processo: Use colours, images, shapes, textures to capture your experience of Red, Blue and Green energy over the year. If any songs or poems come to mind, note them down. Use all of your senses to help you capture this snapshot of last year. Let all three dragon energies be there.
Notice how your attention moves in and of the memories, the mental story-telling around the experience, and the task of capturing it’s essence in your creation. Periodically take a break to move your body around, stretch or express your experience in a bodily movement.
How did I treat my body? How did you relate to your body over the last year (nutrition, sleep, exercise, care for the body)? These are the basic greens. Are you getting enough rest? Do you have time to digest? How did you take care of your body in the last year (and what does it need now to thrive next year?
Who was I with? Review the year looking through the lens of relationships and experiences within community over the year. Who was I with when my heart was singing? Who was a “radiator” and who was a “drain”? Which are the relationships I avoid? What’s that about?
How did I feed my soul? How did you honour what makes your heart sing over the last year? How did you listen to the music of your soul? Which moments were truly “magical”? Where did I get a sharp soul “wake up” call? What messages do I need to remember as I go into 2020?
What needs to die? Note any losses (in relationship or elsewhere) throughout the year. How did you do at letting go? What needs to die now as you move into 2020? What do you need to let go of?
And what else? You can also map at the Transpersonal level any spiritual insights or experiences over the year (spiritual/faith practice greens if this fits with your worldview). We know from research that a bio-psycho-social-spiritual health framework is very helpful, particularly in cases of chronic red (for example a long term health condition).
Mindfully Pause and Review: Take a pause and look at your year. Look through the eyes of the Green Dragon (how did I care for myself and others), the Red Dragon (how did I manage the challenges of the year) and the Blue (what did I get done that gives me a sense of purpose and meaning?).
Find and Amplify the Greens: Go through the timeline now and circle with a thick pen or pencil all the greens from the year. Foreground them in some way. You can use a side sheet or notepad to capture any themes that emerge. Look through them and write down next to them what was happening and how you were feeling in that moment. Be specific. Pause to remember and savour the moment – dropping right down into your body.
Share your Greens: Find someone who cares for you, or who is a reliable and consistent person in your life and share you greens. Help them to help you with clear communication about what you need.
Activate kind mind and review your timeline. Use this exercise as a practice in self compassion and non reactivity. Then you will get the most out of this exercise. If you need to, try a Three Cs or Hand on Heart Practices.
If you like this way of working, contact firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more about the Dragon Way to Mental Wealth, Get into the Green Workshops and our Young People and Family Systems Work with the Mini Dragons Team. See us working with the Dragon Method at Dragon Cafe in the City, This Can Happen Conference 2019 and The Future of Work 2020.