12 Movements of Resiliency
A project of Growing Together: practical and spiritual resiliency and sustainability
By Sara Lewis
This program is designed to be used by individuals or groups, exploring different aspects of life and how we can all live more resiliently and sustainably. Using the metaphor of a tree, twelve aspects of life are explored with encouragement to move in a direction of greater intention, flexibility, and strength – all the ingredients of resiliency.
Tree of Resiliency
There are many uncertainties in the world right now: climate chaos, economic uncertainty, racial justice reckonings, and more. Uncertainty and change and challenge are all givens, just as they are for all living organisms. But, somehow, some life finds a way to weather those times of challenge, face the uncertainty, change with changing circumstances. Life is adaptable and resilient, and we can be too.
You don’t have to be perfect, and you don’t have to find the one right answer to anything. It’s going to take a whole lot of imperfect beings finding partial answers and working together to piece a patchwork quilt of resiliency to weather the coming changes. Each of us can increase our own personal resiliency and also build networks of mutuality that result in greater resiliency for us all.
We are about to embark on 12 movements of resiliency, making movement toward greater resiliency and sustainability in our lives. One way to think of these 12 movements is by placing them in a tree. The first five movements are the roots holding your tree in place and nurturing it. The next three movements are like the trunk, giving shape and stability to your life. And the final four movements are up in the branches, over everything, in touch with the transcendent, and feeding the tree from the sun.
I’ve used this metaphor, inspired by the ecological and biological reality of trees and by the archetype of the Tree of Life that is found in many cultures and traditions. Trees are symbols of growth, strength, and generosity. We can learn a lot from the trees.
In each movement, there are several exercises to try. Not all of them will appeal to everyone, and that’s fine. Explore and challenge yourself, and take what works for you. If you are doing this work alone, then use the reflection questions for some journaling or other method of reflection. And if you are doing this with a group, come together for discussion and sharing.
Next: Who I Am