This next installment in this series is dedicated to your dharma...Everyone has a distinct purpose in Life. I'm not talking about how you make your money to pay your bills, although some people's dharma work does pay the bills, I'm talking about the special gifts that only you have and how using those gifts can make the world a better place. Are you living connected to your Soul's True Purpose?
D H A R M A
~There is nothing more liberating than stepping into your personal power and cultivating your gifts so you may live your life to it's fullest capacity~
Our life's story carries threads of our dharma throughout. We don't necessarily have one specific thing that we "do" throughout the entirety of our lives, but the things that we do "do" hold a cohesiveness and a commonality; they live along the same spectrum. When we are living according to our dharma we are open to experiencing pure joy, we are vibrant, & we are fulfilled. Now, this doesn't mean that living our dharma is easy, breezy, rainbow pegasus riding splendor...often times it feels like the opposite as we are stretched to our edges and molded into greater versions of ourselves than we ever thought possible, but when we are living our purpose we have a deep inner knowing that both the triumphs and the struggles are stepping stones towards our own expansion.
Over the years I have watched my own life shapeshift around my dharma and I've had the amazing opportunity to watch others step more fully into their purpose during various teacher trainings and workshops I've led. Through my experience, I have gained wisdom around this glorious divine unfolding in my own life as well as the lives of the people I have worked with and today I am going to share with you five secrets to live your life inside of your dharma.
1. Trust you are already on your path
You are on your path. I assure you even if you feel lost, you are already there. I like to think of following the threads of dharma much like following a breadcrumb trail. Life moves us from point A, to point B, C, D, E ,F, etc. We run into problems when we don't pay attention to the little breadcrumbs that are being left on the trail for us. Many times we are so focused on what is coming further down the line that we forget we have to get to point B before we can even see what point C is. When this happens we get stuck hanging out at point A and it makes us restless, agitated, and feeling unfulfilled. Trust your path as it unfolds; once you get to C, D will be revealed and so on.
Are you paying attention to the present moment? Can you allow yourself to Trust in your own unfolding? Do you feel unsettled when you can't see 3 steps ahead? Do you know your native genius and live in that zone on a daily basis?
2. Recognizing The Breadcrumbs
These are the symbols, desires, & feelings that we experience on a daily basis when we listen close enough. A breadcrumb could be subtle, such as a sensation in your hands that calls your attention, asking you to perhaps do something creative or healing with your hands. It could also be the elation you feel after trying something new, the goosebumps on your arms when a friend suggests you would be good at something, or even your excitement over what someone else is doing. Over the years I have found breadcrumbs in the feeling I had after leading my first workshop where people began to "wake-up" to their innate gifts and I was filled with a LOVE energy so big I couldn't deny I was in my purpose, or the goosebumps elicited by listening to a podcast led by a woman who is doing work I am passionate about on a big scale; my inner voice whispering "oooh I want to do that too", or the joy I feel as a mother watching my kids taking healthy risks to discover their own personal power and truth. When I look back on my life I can see the threads of my dharma, the commonalities in what was lighting me up from the inside. I see my own first experiences with empowering myself, mothering my children, creating community, leading yoga classes and teacher trainings, or in relationship with my family and friends; I can see where I have helped people discover their gifts and I have helped them navigate their own path towards their light within. I have followed the breadcrumbs and they led me to each of those experiences and many more! It's important to note that in order to be aware of the breadcrumbs guiding our way we need to get in touch with the feeling aspect of our wisdom. This is because our logical minds chime in with questions about how or why or how we are going to make money doing that??? We don't need to know the why or the how, we just need to listen and follow the breadcrumbs to the next point on the path; once we get there, we hang out, we do our work and we wait for the next breadcrumb to appear.
What do you enjoy reading about? What do you see yourself doing when you fantasize? Has there been a common theme throughout your life? Do you have a personal hero; if so what is inspiring about them? What do others see in you?
3. The Path Is Not Linear
The path of life is not a straightaway, it is a winding mountain trail switch-backing up and down. This winding trail will have us crossing raging rivers on rickety bridges as well as have us dancing through pristine fields of wildflowers. We have to learn to embrace both with equally open arms and heart. Yes, we learn from the breadcrumbs of joy and elation, but we also learn from the experiences that rock us to our core. There is wisdom contained in our wounding and it's this wisdom that brings us to our purpose; keep going. The stories surrounding our experiences will eventually fade away, but the lessons learned will remain. While we are navigating this winding path towards Soul Purpose it is also important that we don't get stuck trying to figure out our ONE SOLE PURPOSE. This is a mistake. Our purpose will continue to morph and shift with each new experience; keep going.
Do you own your past as a launching pad for the future? Can you release the drama of your stories & find the lessons within? Can you learn to embrace the struggle and receive the gifts?
4. The Dharma Filter
The #1 way I ensure that I am living within my dharma is by using what I call my Dharma Filter. It's like a special pair of sunglasses that I look through to determine if something is aligned with my Truth or not. This works by asking yourself questions before making decisions, such as does this job align with my personal values? Does eating this food or shopping at this store align with my Truth? Does keeping company with this person contribute to my highest good? By bringing awareness to how you may be unconsciously living outside of your dharma, you will naturally begin to create a life more in line with what your soul is seeking.
Does the way you generate income reflect who you are on the inside? Is your diet aligned with your personal values? Are you active in the causes you believe in? Are your relationships contributing to the life you want to lead? Are you holding on to beliefs that aren't your own that keep you from living your purpose?
5. An Important Point To Remember
Soul Purpose doesn't always have to be the way we make money and pay our bills. This is part of the freedom! It can simply be raising your children with love, guidance, and wisdom so that they grow up to embody the traits you wish to see in the world. Many of us falsely believe that once we find our soul purpose we need to build a career around it, or that our purpose should sustain us financially, or even worse if it doesn't make money then it isn't valuable. Of course, there are many of us who are sustaining and even financially thriving in our Soul Work but it is not a requirement. Sometimes we need to keep our day job in order to afford to do our dharma and that is more than okay. The idea here is to be open to infinite possibility.
What would you do if money weren't an issue? Does your fear of financial security keep you from acting on your desires? Where do you choose to volunteer your time and service?
It can be frustrating sometimes to try to figure out why we are here on this planet and what our unique purpose is. But when we take the time to look within we discover that we don't have to look very far because the answer is dwelling inside of our hearts. I want to hear from you! Please share with me how you feel about your relationship to dharma; I'd love to hear any questions you may have too, so please reach out!