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Below is a link to a post from five years ago, when I wrote a ripple story of Joy for my mother, who was starting a new business.



As the final prompt for 2018, I’d like to introduce you to…The Ripple Story.

The Ripple Story is an idea I created more than five years ago, as a way of supporting my English Language students who were completing a month long residential intensive at the Findhorn Foundation Community, and who were about to go back out into ‘the real world’ and their ‘old lives’ wondering what littl’ ‘ole them could possibly do, how they could possibly use what they had learned, the qualities they had cultivated and grown during their time in community, to make a difference in the world.

We feel small. The world is big. We forget…

small things

And sometimes those little things done with great love, and conscious intention, ripple out into the ocean of life to result in consequences larger than we could ever have dreamed of. The idea of the ripple story is to dream big – really, really big –  but ground it, centre it, at the start, in a single, practical, doable action.

We warmed up to this prompt by completing the following half sentences, each five times, with whatever thought spontaneously came to us.

I want… (complete x 5)

I need… (complete x 5)

I give… (complete x 5)

Then I asked people to read back, just for themselves, those fifteen sentences they’d just written, and find a single quality, a word, a feeling, a gift they’d like to grow and ripple out into the world. That word would then be written in the small central circle in a series of four or five concentric circles, drawn on a blank page.

In the second circle out from the centre, I invited people to write a sentence describing an action they could take, or had taken, to share this quality.

In the next circle, they were to imagine a potential consequence of that first action, as huge, as wild, as outlandish and wonderful as they could possibly imagine, and on, until all the circles were filled.

I am thrilled to be able to share two of those stories here, written by a couple of writers from last week’s group. It’s hard to describe the feeling in the room after we’d all read our stories. There truly was an almost tangible magic in the air – so much hope, and positivity you could almost have bottled it and shared it to be swallowed whole and taken as the best anti-cynicism medicine on the planet. What we do does matter. Our actions do have consequences, even if we don’t meet them face to face.

So, here are a couple of examples, one in its original ripple, and the other typed out for ease of reading. Enjoy 🙂

hilary love ripple



Wendy ripple

And if you want another example of the potential of the ripple effect, you might enjoy this wonderful film Pay It Forward, based on a book of the same name. Here’s the trailer.


What would you like to ripple out into the world in 2019?



If you enjoyed this prompt, then you can find more here:


and here: