One of my favorite authors is life coach Martha Beck. Her book Steering By Starlight has had a significant impact on my life, including my approach to writing. This exercise is my breakdown of the one in Steering By Starlight:
1. Find a quiet place where you can have ten minutes to yourself. Now, if you’re like me, this place may only exist in your mind, while tuning out Spongebob and after bribing two little creatures with ice cream.
2. Allow yourself to daydream of your heart’s desire. Pick it up, hold it close and imagine you already have it. Your wish has been granted.
3. Set a timer. For 10 minutes, absorb every sensation that comes with having your wish come true. The smell, the sound, the joy coursing through your veins.
4. When your mind wanders over to fears and doubts and all those things that it is built to do in order to keep you alive, don’t scold, don’t succumb. Instead, nod and smile and go back to holding your heart’s desire close. Savor it like good chocolate. Feel the gratitude and joy and pride and humility that comes with reward for hard, long, diligent work.
5. If you can do it for ten minutes, can you do it for seven days? Do this every day for a week and then see what differences you can find in how you move, how you breathe, how you feel.
Martha Beck calls this “Treasuring the future–now.” She says, “I can always tell which of my clients are actually doing this exercise because their appearance changes.”
I haven’t done this exercise in a while. But, I’m starting it again today. Will you, too? If so, next week, let’s report our findings. What do you say?