Timeline Walk

Set aside at least an hour for this practice

Go to a safe place outside with enough room to move at least 15-25 feet in one direction. A city park or forest path is ideal. Bring along a trusted friend or family member with who supports you fully on your life’s journey.

When you arrive at the location for your practice, take a few minutes to

  • put your phone in airplane mode if it is safe to do so,
  • take a deep breath and fully arrive in the place
  • look left and right, up and down, front and back to notice fully where you are.

Now, choose a beginning place for your timeline and mark it with a found object to represent your birth. (If on a city/suburban sidewalk, chalk is a nice way to mark these points.)

Next, move to a point in the distance to mark a spot representing a future moment of ideal happiness. Somewhere along the timeline choose a place to mark your coming out. 

Spend at least 20 minutes meandering along your timeline, forward and back, back and forward, adding found objects or chalk symbols along the way to represent important moments, feelings or people you’ve encountered on your path. If you feel compelled to photograph any of the objects, do! You can print those out or even sketch them later.

When you feel as if you’ve moved along the timeline long enough, return to the place where you marked happiness, freedom or love. Remain in that place for two, five or ten minutes – whatever feels right to you.

From that vantage point, observe the more painful moments with gentleness and compassion.

Take a deep breath and look left then right, back then forward, down then up and say, to yourself or out loud – Amen (let it be).

When you return to your journal, consider these questions to write about:

What from the past is it time to let go of?

What from your journey do you need to walk with for a while longer?

What goodness on the horizon do you hope to integrate into your formed and forming self?