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How to shine

Here are seven ways to step up and shine in this period of change and uncertainty
How to shine

Jennifer Stevens and Pollyanna Darling of women-led reforestation charity TreeSisters suggest seven ways to use this time of uncertainty and change to develop our gifts and strengths.
1. Boost your wellbeing: Right now the sounds of nature are louder, clearer and more needed than ever before! If you can spend some time in your local park, sitting beside a tree, or just closing your eyes and listening to the birds outside your window, this can help centre your thoughts and calm internal turmoil. In a calmer state, your natural creativity and energy can emerge. Research shows that nature has a significant benefit to our physical and mental wellbeing

2. Sit back and listen: Slowing down can also be a way to step up! Despite pressure from your social media feeds, it is perfectly OK to come out of self-isolation without having learnt a new language, mastered cookery or built your own empire. However, this time is a good opportunity to listen deeply to yourself and your loved ones. On average we only ‘listen’ to 50% of what is said to us, so using this time to learn to really listen could have a hugely beneficial impact.

3. Tap into your inner wisdom and power: Understand your gifts and build yourself a toolkit to bring them forward. When you listen deeply to yourself, what do you long to offer the world? What are you doing when you feel most yourself and most alive? How could you liberate that energy or activity in service to our planet and all life – and what do you need to do to support yourself in that? If you’re stuck for ideas, try keeping diary.

4. Build an Earth-friendly legacy: As the saying goes, the best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. The next best time is now. If you have a garden, or access to outside space, why not start your legacy? If you don’t have the ability to plant trees at home, you can donate to a tree-planting organisation such as TreeSisters and fund the planting of tropical trees that grow quickly and benefit the whole world.

5. Volunteer your skills: At this time, many small businesses and charities are in need of a helping hand. Often volunteering can be done online from the comfort of your own home. Volunteering gives you an opportunity to share your skills, support your passions and give back to your community

6. Keep a journal: Weird things are happening every day and the only certainty we have is uncertainty. Writing things down can help you organise your thoughts and process the events of each day. It can increase empathy, reduce stress and unleash creativity. It is also fascinating to document your own experiences and read them through at a later date 
7. Make a plan: After all that listening, time in nature and journaling, create a vision of how you’d love to contribute to a healthy planet and build a plan. Good plans empower, provide structure and help give us a sense of direction. Right now it may feel impossible to plan anything, but that isn’t true. Build a plan for one of your days at the weekend or for a new craft project. What do you deeply care about and what would bring you joy to contribute, even in uncertain times? Planning helps us to focus on what really matters and bring that to our lives. 

TreeSisters will be hosting its ground-breaking online course The Courage to Shine from Wednesday 13 May – Wednesday 3 June, helping to draw more of the emotional and creative brilliance out of us all, as we collectively look for ways to contribute to our world. 

The 21-day immersion process will be facilitated by the charity’s Founder, Clare Dubois, who will host a free intro call on Tuesday 28 April. Click here for more information.

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