You may know of Tony Robbins of Awaken The Giant Within fame…he’s one of the awesome motivational leaders of our time and a mentor for me. He talks about every human having two primary spiritual needs. The first is to grow or evolve spiritually. The second is to make a contribution to the world.
When I think about this one, I realise that I have always been very aware of my desire to evolve. I became conscious of it at about 20 years old – I had a spiritual drive to experience oneness, to find peace, lose fear and to live in what I call ‘The Gap’ – that audible silence that connects us to the source. I was literally dragged, kicking and screaming into awareness by the traumas of being young.
Since that metaphorical slap across the cheek that compelled me to WAKE UP, I’ve spent a lot of time avoiding my awareness. The trouble is, once we become ‘aware’ life becomes extremely painful if we try to ignore it. The slaps and kicks and wake up calls get bigger and bigger until they are heard.
People describe being unaware as ‘ignorance is bliss’… in a way this is true. If we are not aware, then we are not required by our conscience to take responsibility for the consequences of our actions and the manifestations that appear in our lives. We can run blindly into life, blaming our family, blaming politics, blaming the world at large for the strife we find ourselves in.
I discovered that I could ignore my awareness and dampen the pain that this caused by immersing myself in the ‘blissful’ numbness and ignorance of alcohol. Bliss. HA! I guess at the time, not having to feel the pain was a kind of twisted bliss.
For me, opening to the awareness budding in my mind at 20 years old provided the shocking realisation that dreams can be shattered, lives destroyed and happiness is nothing more than an illusion… it all is! I didn’t want to know! When I became aware of that, when life’s cruelty, bitterness and dishonesty cracked my mind open, the ground was rent apart below my feet, a giant fissure opened up and swallowed me whole, the universe shattered like exploding glass and sliced me to ribbons. I was never the same again. I became very bitter and self destructive for a while. As if punishing myself for the trauma I endured, and suffering for the ills of the world would eventually make it all disappear. Make everything disappear. Maybe even me. Perhaps that was my path to enlightenment… ultimate suffering and pain, the world’s sins on my shoulders. But at the time I just didn’t want to be part of it.
I still have moments of wanting to ‘go back’ to before – before my awakening – and walk down the other road, away from my awareness. Part of my ‘old self’ still thinks that it’s easier. With a lot of years behind me, I now know that it is not. It’s bloody painful!
Even though I sometimes slip back into old patterns, I try to see each awkward, uncomfortable and grating slip as another opportunity to hone my skill of awareness and clarify my intentions for my life. I have found that peace I searched for, almost 20 years later. I know the exquisite silence of ‘The Gap’ and visit it regularly. I know that happiness is an illusion, but joy is part of the soul’s expression and is as real as the Universe itself. The beauty that has grown from the seed of destruction that I experienced early in life is astounding and I wonder at it daily. Now I have a grateful heart. Pain is merely the flip side of love. The depth of our pain reveals the heights that are possible for us.
I have always been driven to help others. In the early years, I thought that meant becoming a healer or a nurse or a therapist of some kind. So I have gathered these skills over the past 20 years – I’m a trained healer, massage therapist, meditation facilitator, soon to be nurse and music therapist. I understand metaphysics, homoeopathy, herbs, crystals and more.
Don’t get me wrong, these are all wonderful things and I have loved the people, places, learning, opportunities and knowledge they’ve provided me. These skills have played a massive role in directing me to my purpose. But they are not the END, they are part of the multifacets of my life that contribute to the person I am constantly becoming. They are the stepping stones I have trodden from the depths of personal despair and destruction to stand here and now, transformed.
The difference now is that I understand that the greatest way any of us can help and contribute to humanity is to live our greatest life and to shine our divine essence into the world. Sometimes this means having to experience the darkness to understand the brilliance of our light. This is the most humble, the most precious gift we can give others… the gift of authenticity, the gift of permission to be as great as we’re intended to be, to shine our light!
We shine through all our skills, talents and attributes, but not one of them is all there is or the only way we give back, they are our toolkit of divine expression. When we grasp this, we can let go of what we do, where we’ve been, what we’ve endured, and be who we are at the depth of our core.
I was thinking about the areas of life that are illuminated for me at the moment and the skills I’m using… currently I have my light directed on writing. I sat down and started making a list of all the skills I have gathered over my lifetime in various sectors – I have recently renamed them the “Six Facets of Lifestyle Sustainability”…I’ve discovered that if we are too heavy or too light on in just one or two of these facets, life just doesn’t flow easily. We can be ‘top heavy’ or have a strong focus on one for a while, but sooner or later the imbalance makes our life unsustainable and we need to even things out.
I frequently do this exercise with my ‘Creative Strategy’ clients, but haven’t really done it thoroughly for myself before… WOW! The discoveries I made about my skills and the interests/talents/gifts that showed up were VERY ENLIGHTENING! I also discovered that I actually have a lot to offer the world – boy, did that give my dubious self worth a run for it’s money? You bet!
I’ll be posting my Six Facets of Lifestyle Sustainability and their skill set on a new tab shortly, but you can check out the facets on the picture here or on my Visualise This Enterprises website.
Why don’t you brainstorm your own list? If you’re not sure where your light is best serving you, just follow your awareness, look out for the patterns and where you are ‘top heavy’. This will show you very clearly where your divine essence wants to be.