For the launch of Be Resilient, I created an activity perfect for people of any age, child, teenager or adult. You can adapt it to suit the person you are or the person you’re trying to help. It’s free, fun, easy, engaging and mind-occupying. And you get to cut up some card and make it into a shape! Well, I enjoyed that, anyway. Took me right back to the fun bits of school. (I am easily pleased.)
The Resilience-Boosting 12-Sided Dice
MAKE THE DICE
(Yes, I KNOW: the singular is DIE, not DICE, but it just sounds weird and a quick ask amongst my friends on Facebook and twitter revealed a very clear answer: “Say dice or no one aged below 59 will know what you’re talking about.”)
- First download the template. You’ll find two sheets of A4, one with the template for the DICE and the other with some instructions and ideas – but I’m going to give you more details below.
- Print the template page onto thin card. (If you can’t print on card, print on paper and then stick the paper on. You don’t want card that’s too thick.)
- Cut the shape out, carefully cutting round all the tabs. Then use the blunt edge of a knife to score all the lines so they’ll be easy to fold.
- NOW choose the 12 things to write on the sides. You need to write them BEFORE sticking the shape together. And this is where you need to adapt to suit the person this is for. See the tips below.
- Stick the shape together until you have a rather lovely 12-sided dice that is all yours, full of thoughts and challenges which will build your resilience.
You can make your dice last longer – and correct anything that doesn’t work for you – by doing this:
- Just write numbers 1-12 on the dice sides – no words
- Create a list of 12 numbered challenges or actions
- When you throw the dice, just refer to your numbered list. This way, you can change the challenges whenever you like but the dice still works just as well.
USE THE DICE
- Once (or more) a day, settle down in private or with just someone you like and trust. You can do it with a friend or family member or on your own. But you and they need to take it seriously. Have some paper to write on or use a tablet or computer if you prefer.
- Take a deep breath to settle your mind and build your concentration and then throw the dice.
- Whatever it lands on, think or talk about your response. Doing it with someone else can be really helpful here. Think about how this action is relevant to being more resilient, how it will help you be a stronger, braver, happier or more successful person. Then either do whatever it suggests or write down your thoughts, or plan how you will act on it.
- Take at least 20-30 minutes on this daily activity – but don’t beat yourself up if you miss a day!
- You can, of course, use any of the suggestions I give on the download but you need to pick ones that will work for YOU (or the person you’re working with.)
- Or you can choose anything else that fits whatever’s going on for you at the moment. Is there something bothering you or something you’ve been trying to improve? Is there a bad habit you have that you would like to address? Are you trying to get through a bad time? Are you worried about going back to school?
- Make sure you have a variety: some practical, some fun, some easy, some challenging.
- If you read Be Resilient this will be much easier! (And all the ideas I give will make more sense because you’ll know the five building blocks of resilience.)
I’m proud that… I’m lucky that… I’m happy that… If I practice a bit more, I can… I’m excited that… Some people like me because… One thing I like about myself is… I am kind, loyal and supportive… I am hard-working and determined… Make a card for someone… Today I will find an opportunity to rise to a positive challenge… I can take fair criticism but when people are mean it’s their problem… Today I will push all worries out of my mind… My exercise goals for the next week are… Today I will make three good decisions… Contact [name] and ask how they are… Three good things about yesterday were… My future me will be more […] and less […] Dance to music in my room… Find a photo of a happy time and focus on the memory… Do a helpful thing for my parent or older relative… This evening, I’ll switch my phone off and … Contact friends and fix a meet-up… Contact a friend who needs support… Do a task I’ve been putting off then have a reward… Take time being observant outdoors – notice everything… Try something new: a new skill, activity, recipe, book… Learn three new words or facts or spellings
How did it make you feel? What did you gain? Can you think about this again later today, maybe while you’re doing your teeth or any other routine action. Becoming aware of your emotions and responses helps you deal with them better.
Would you like to keep a journal? I recommend this, if you would like to. HappySelf Journals have a beautiful range. It does make it easier if you have one like that which has prompts but you can use a blank notebook or digital document.
My dice activity is all about guiding your mind towards useful, strengthening thoughts. It’s great for teaching you about yourself, how your mind works and how you can direct it to work better. That’s resilience: building a mind that works better!
Are you a parent who would like to know how to build your child or teenager’s resilience? (Or your own!) Are you a teacher or counsellor or mental health professional who would like some really strong ways to understand and build this key learnable skill? Then join my webinar on Boosting Teenage Resilience on September 14th. You’ll get loads of accompanying handouts and, if you miss the webinar for any reason, ticket-holders will have access to the recording. (And some lucky ticket-holders will win a signed book…)
And you don’t have to join in at all! You’ll be invisible. (To me, I mean. You won’t be invisible to whoever is in your house with you, I’m afraid. I don’t have that power.)
Would you like to see what my webinars are like? I have recordings of Teenagers in a Pandemic, Understanding Teenagers and Teenagers and Sleep – and I’ve just put the bundle of all three at a sale price for a short time only so hurry! (That is for the individual/family licence, not the school licence.) If you buy all three separately, the cost would be £31.97; bundle is normally £27.99 but sale price is now £22.99. Hurry – I might change my mind any time!