By Emily Merrell
Daria is one of those humans that lights up her room. Her smile is illuminating and her energy exclusively radiates positivity. When Daria told me about her love of neuroscience and her creation of “the Dream Sprint”, I truly doubted it’s greatness. The dream sprint is run through Whatsapp and the first 10 days are free. If you don’t complete the assignment you’re removed from the sprint. It took me 3 times until I was really ready to commit and wow – I was blown away. In the 30 days of the sprint you’re working on rewiring your brain and your beliefs – all while getting crystal clear on your dreams. I am so grateful for Daria and what she’s created. I now have all of my clients go through her sprint to help them get the clarity they need. Keep reading to learn more about this wonder woman.
SDS: How did a woman from Siberia get her start as a mind expert? What ignited your passion for neuroscience?
DARIA TSVENGER: My whole life I was pretty good at achieving what I wanted. Before I turned 21, I already had a number of outstanding accomplishments under my belt. I was named one of the top 100 young innovators by the Russian Prime Minister, published my poetry book, received two national awards for my creativity, hosted a TV show, worked for UNESCO and NBC – all while being a full time university student on a scholarship.
I had a winning mindset by default, thanks to my upbringing. My family didn’t have the money, but my parents gave me the most important things – time, love, attention, freedom and education (in Russia, it’s free). Since the age of 17, I was proving myself. I knew what it meant to be an ambitious, positive and independent young woman.
I also met the love of my life at a pretty young age (18!) Once I turned 21, we got married. When my husband offered to move us to the US (he is a tech entrepreneur and Silicon Valley was the place to be at that moment), I didn’t hesitate at all. As it is said, “Only through true moments of suffering the greatest potential opens up”. I thought I was invincible and didn’t have any dark thoughts whatsoever.
But a cultural shock, multiplied by no understanding of an American accent (and sprinkled with no work permit and no friends or family around) did the job. From a positive and ambitious outlook, I became a bitter, angry and mediocre person with a lot of dark thoughts and lack of self confidence. On top of that, I was blaming myself for feeling this way – I didn’t tell anybody.
After almost a year in this state, enough was enough. I started to wonder, “Why do I feel what I feel? Why do I think what I think?” These questions led me to study neuroscience (and things that science even can’t explain yet). The game was afoot! On my journey I had a chance to collaborate with top world neuroscientists and take part in forward thinking research. I am a fan of transmitting scientific knowledge into practical applications. It took me about half a year to bring my brain back to the state of a winning mindset. Now I help people overcome any mindset blocks that are in the way between them and their ambitious desires.
SDS: You are the founder of The Dream Sprint (which I’ve already completed). What is the Dream Sprint and what are the benefits of being a part of it?
DT: The Dream Sprint is a self discovery challenge which is designed to improve your mindset and help you achieve your bold desires. 1000+ people who completed the Dream Sprint report these three things:
– Clarity on “where to go and what to do”.
– An increased motivation for taking actions.
– Their dreams start coming true at high speed, with circumstances aligning!
SDS: In addition to The Dream Sprint, you do mindset coaching — what tips do you have for people as they go through COVID and face unknowns in their jobs, businesses, and personal lives?
DT: I’m not a fan of the “take it easy and just rest” type of mindset. Now is a great time for self-discovery. When the world is changing and transforming, it throws you out of your comfort zone – in this zone, your desires can come true. People who adopted a winning mindset proactively seek the zone of discomfort.
There are three steps to thrive in the unknown:
1. Figure out what your personal fears are. Where do they come from and what supporting stories does your brain make up?
- Understand that your brain doesn’t want you to be happy, it wants you to be safe. Yes, and it LOVES to do negative projections (aka bringing a piece of negative info and fantasizing about a number of the most hurtful applications in your life). That’s it. So if you want to be happy, you have to proactively figure out how to do this.
2. Take responsibility for YOUR life and start doing what you can with the resources you have.
3. Have a coach who can guide you through this. Enjoy the results 🙂
SDS: You strike me as someone who would have an awesome morning routine. How do you start your days? For those hoping to carve out their own routine, what advice do you have?
DT: Love this! Yes, I do indeed have a morning routine, but I don’t always stick to it. Sometimes I wake up at 9am and jump on a phone call straight out of bed. In those days I give myself permission to do this (no guilt /shame allowed – it never works).
In my ideal days I wake up around 6.40am and reserve 1.5 hours for sun salutations, mini cacao ceremony, visualization and dancing! This gets me in the zone of high energy and makes me ready for a great day.
SDS: Having hosted several Dream Sprints, what are the common themes you see pop up? Do you have any tips to help ambitious people thrive in times of uncertainty?
DT: Oh my! I’ve hosted 18 Dream Sprint groups and 5 of them during the pandemic. The common themes are anxiety, uncertainty, lack of direction and lack of productivity.
It’s super normal to procrastinate and hide away during such times. BUT! There is a way to remove this friction to be able to do what you can with the resources you have. Figure out your fears, recognize them and throw them away. Sometimes professional help may be needed.
SDS: Lastly, what is one piece of advice you wish you had heard at the beginning of your career?
DT: You’re never too young or too old: the time is NOW!
Daria Tsvenger is a Forbes-featured mindset expert and founder of a self-discovery program “The Dream Sprint”. Her work has helped 1000+ people tap into the power of the brain to gain clarity and turn their dreams into reality. Daria shared her expertise on TV shows such as “Good Morning LA-LA-LAND”, “Simulation” and the major publications like “Vogue”, “ThriveGlobal” and “Forbes”. She is also a mentor at a top world accelerator “500 Startups”, where she helps entrepreneurs manage stress, increase confidence and supercharge productivity. More than 30,000 passionate leaders are following Daria’s work. Follow Daria’s work on Instagram, Facebook @daria_tsvenger @the_dream_sprint