Miriam van Groen (she/her), MSc studied International Development at Wageningen University. After that Miriam became a coach, teacher and skills trainer at Rotterdam University of Applied Science. A burnout forced her to reorient and she started and developed best practices at GuidedTripping.com. Guided Tripping has facilitated thousands of 1-on-1 journeys for personal development in Amsterdam. She co-founded and sits on the board of the professional association Guild of Guides Netherlands, where her focus includes ethical practice and access. As a practitioner, leader, and advocate in the mental health and wellness space, she sees a great unmet need for effective care and support. As Wellness Director at BlueDot, she is responsible for developing more and more accurate measurements of people's wellbeing, and for connecting them with the most helpful practices and practitioners.
As a recovering self-critical perfectionist I had to take a long and winding road to feeling better in my body, mind and life. My identity was very hung up on being smart and doing ALL the right and important things really well. Of course, I always fell short of my own expectations and felt undeserving, exhausted and disconnected.
My wellness journey began with my mom dragging me to a kinesiologist and family constellation workshops (systemic work). I then started getting into yoga and meditation (Tibetan 5 Wisdoms), I found Authentic Relating and Circling, Ecstatic Dance, voice liberation and music therapy, and various types of breathwork and bodywork. These modalities nourished me and gave me tools to navigate my inner and outer world more wholesomely.
And yes, I regularly engaged with psychedelics. Mostly with friends at celebrations, sometimes alone. I had accidental and intentional breakthrough moments where the stuff I’d learn in workshops would suddenly land in a much more embodied way. The most memorable one was a moment where I danced with a really sweet version of myself - the one others were able to see, but that I was so critical of. It literally clicked into place that it made much more sense to be kind to myself.
Yet I still had to have the almost obligatory burnout, when I ‘lost’ my job, home and decade-long relationship in the span of a week. My body was done asking me nicely for a break. It needed to stop being treated as a brain-taxi and it was high time for me to learn its language. I needed true restoration rather than quick-and-dirty recuperation.
The modalities I had learned at breakneck speed finally had a chance to integrate. I started a business that truly serves people and it grew steadily over the last 6 years. Never would I have imagined that people would describe me as grounded, non-judgemental and present, yet here we are.