By now, you may have seen some buzz about my new book In Pursuit of the Divine. I am beyond thrilled to announce that the book reached International Best Seller status on Amazon in under 6 hours. Amazing. To top it off, two days later we hit #1 in the category of Self Help Happiness books. After crying tears of joy and jumping up and down, it dawned on me how hungry our world is for the themes that run through this book; particularly the themes of hope, perseverance, being empowered as a woman and letting the joy of our authentic truth liberate us from our self imposed suffering. Now, more than ever, this feels like really important stuff.
I've been seeing these themes arise for my coaching clients recently, and since my clients are my mirror, I see that they've arisen for me as well. How can it be that our greatest pain, our most gripping fears and our deepest loneliness or vulnerability is actually what takes us back towards the light?
One of the readers who reviewed our book on Amazon had this to say: "The stories that these women share are raw and inspiring and they all serve as a reminder that our greatest wounds can be our most valuable gifts if we allow them to open to the light. In reading this collection, I am reminded over and over again that no matter the darkness that may be felt at times, the Divine is always within us, always supporting us, and that we are resilient and powerful."
While we may know intellectually that we are each divine and have the ability to shift from dark to light, how do we actually pull that off in those moments where we feel all hope is lost or when we've accidentally gone down the rabbit hole of negative thinking? This topic has truly inspired me this week as I see the global ripple effect and reach of our special little book. If you're in need of a dose of TRUE INSPIRATION, you can get your copy of In Pursuit of the Divine HERE. I promise it will open you in a way that you didn't expect. Get the kleenex and get your super hero cape out. You're going to need both after you're done reading it. As a special celebratory treat, I'm giving everyone who buys the book a copy of my expansive Limitless Life Meditation. CLICK HERE TO GET YOUR BOOK AND YOUR FREE LIMITLESS LIFE MEDITATION!
More than anything, darkness grips us when we are afraid to be in it. It makes me think of times in the past when the lights have gone out during a winter storm. Instinctually, our first reaction is to be afraid. Yet when we pause and catch our breath, we can slowly figure out where the candles and matches are and we remember that the flashlight is hidden in the kitchen drawer. Upon being relaxed, the dark stormy night begins to feel like an adventure - something fun and totally out of the ordinary that we never get to experience. Lighting one simple candle in that environments illuminates our entire experience and allows us to see things we've never noticed before.
1. Acknowledge Your Wounds. The same is true for our emotional landscape. What we resist persists. If you're wounded in your heart and you ignore it, your wound will become infected, just like a cut on your arm that you turn away from. If you're frustrated with your life but you step over your inner knowing and keep up a facade, you will become more infected there as well. The first step to accessing your most valuable gifts is acknowledging your wounds.
2. Get Curious. Let yourself be there for a moment in the dark without running. This is critical to regaining your power. We are powerless when we are too afraid to encounter our wound. So take out your headlamp and explore the territory here in the dark a bit. No judgement. Just curiosity. What do you discover? What is causing this darkness? How might you unintentionally be contributing to it? What is it costing you to avoid instead of accept this darkness? This is known as leaning into the wound instead of letting it run your life. You're not too afraid to look. You can lean into it with curiosity and gain more information here. Whatever insight you gain in this space becomes the path that will lead you back towards the light. You've looked and you've realized what needs to change. Start to open further... How can the insights that your darkness provides guide you back towards the light? Our gifts emerge from the darkness of our wounds.
3. Don't Accidentally Commit To The Dark. Once we take radical responsibility to admit that certain parts of our lives, our emotional landscape, our relationships or our health are "in the dark", i.e. not in alignment with our highest self, then we can do something about it. Here's where most people get stuck and accidentally stay in their wounds longer than is healthy. Our society, our advertising, even our medical system is wildly fear based and this has created the illusion that we need to get rid of whatever is frustrating or frightening us. We must put all of our focus, energy, time, thoughts, even money towards getting rid of our wound. Not exploring the darkness, but annihilating it at all costs. Make it go away! I don't want it here! The problem is that our shadows - our fear, vulnerability, false beliefs and our human condition will never go completely away. We're human! When we try so hard to get rid of what is bothering us, or what scares us, we end up giving it more energy and focus, and ultimately power. Upon looking at their darkness with curiosity, most people accidentally pitch a tent and end up living in their darkness for years. Acknowledging your wounds does not mean cultivating them. While you want to be willing to look at what's wrong, don't accidentally over identify with the negative to the point that you commit to your wounding.
4. Remember The Sun! You've acknowledged your wounds, gotten curious about them and realized that by exploring them, they give you insight to very important and timely information about how to make things better. This is where the magic is. This is how our wounds turn into our greatest gifts. You must now follow your inner knowing and walk towards what you know is right. It takes courage, it takes patience and faith... but most of all, it takes LIGHT. Once you've turned to face the light again, do everything to remember that sun is always present. Even when it's night time, the sun exists. Even when you hit a block of fear, your glorious truth and authentic power is always present. Find the people, teachers, healers, coaches, communities, activities, foods and places that ignite the light within you so you can remember and stay connected to who you really are. You are whole, you are safe, you are powerful, you are capable, you are beautiful, you are creative, you are healthy, you are more than enough. The more you do this, the more your natural born gifts will emerge for you.
Whatever we have our focus on grows. Allow your wounds to guide you towards what you have been avoiding. Allow yourself to turn 180 degrees around and face the light yet again. You'll be so glad you did and perhaps then you can contribute to your own inspirational book anthology about claiming the divine presence that is already within you.
Here's to your inner light. May you own it, celebrate it and remember that it's always inside of you. You are divine.