Updated: Feb 7, 2020
What is my life’s purpose? This question surfaced again after some time. You know those moments. When you are sitting, reflecting. Looking at the flame of a candle in deep thought. Then the flame flickers and you hear the questions. Or in this case a question. Do you have those magical instances too? Or do I sound like a crazy witch? It could very well be the latter..
One of my favorite paintings. La madeleine à la veilleuse by Georges de la Tour
What was I put on this world to do? For several years I have intertwined passions with a partially clear vision on what my main purpose is. Trying out different things. A true multipotentialite, a term used by author and artist, Emilie Wapnick (I highly recommend her TEDTalk. You can find the link below). Being a multipotentialite means embracing your plurality. And I have, but with one key component flowing in and out. My dharma, if you will. Dharma is our duty as individuals. The basic principle of our existence. Sometimes I felt like I had it, then it withered away. This was followed by a period of doubt, layered with overthinking and anxiety. This time, the question came to me in a different form. Instead of asking what is my purpose here? I asked myself. What if I do everything I want to do but with purpose? I often thought I should only do one thing. And some people do have one passion and that’s great. But I am different. I would not be honoring my true self if I said I only had one passion in life. Suddenly, it all made sense. I can work on the many passions I have, so long as I do it with and on purpose. If I add purpose to what I believe my dharma to be, which is to teach. The equation is complete. Regardless of the medium. Yoga, English, acting. All I had to do was re-frame the question to see the answer. Fuck, gotta love grammar.
Do you have one gift or many? There is no right or wrong answer. You have the potential for either!
Walking around in the beautiful and extremely crowded city of Munich during peak Christmas shopping traffic. I felt a deep sense of relief that what I have been longing for is within reach. All I have to do is change my perspective and finally accept what I really should be doing. Working on my true passions with the love and attention they deserve. Very similar to switching my perspective from feeling overwhelmed by so many people. To just looking up at the beautifully lit, giant Christmas tree in the center of the square. I laughed. Touche, universe. Touche. Now, some will say that you can’t work on different things at the same time. I disagree. Anything is possible if you have direction and intention. And where do my values come in? Are they separate from my passions?
I tried getting a straighter shot. I’m just not tall enough, hehe.
In my opinion purpose should not only be applied to what I have been referring to as our gifts and dharma but also to the values we hold dear. Doing what you think you came here to do and aligning that with your beliefs, gives you freedom. It allows you to finally be who you are. Not what others think you should be. For me whether it is adjusting to a healthier lifestyle, helping the environment, being closer to nature or helping others. It has to have the same intention with which I work to fulfill my life’s passions. Otherwise they are not values. Just opinions that hold no weight. And I have been lazy for some time. Using the excuse, oh it’s harder when you’re traveling or I don’t have the means to do what I have to do. That is in the past. Today I am different. I feel that I am slowly growing into the person I’ve always longed to be. The metamorphosis continues. What will my butterfly wings look like when I emerge from the chrysalis? I sure hope they glitter! I think I would be a butterfly unicorn fairy. Too much? Maybe. I’ll settle for shiny rainbow glitter wings.
Here’s a short guide I used on what to do with your gifts and how to find your dharma. I extracted this from one of my favorite books: The Great Work of Your Life: A Guide for the Journey to Your True Calling by Stephen Cope.
Trust in the gift or gifts: You can have many gifts! Not just one. And if you think you only have one. That is great too. We ALL have different things to bring forth in this world.
Think of the small as large: Small actions you take become a collection of steps that will help you get closer to your purpose.
Listen for the call of the times: How can you use your gift or gifts today, tomorrow?
Once you have declared your gift(s):
Look to your dharma: Look to your own duty
Do it full out: Do it with EVERY fiber of your being
Let go of the fruit: Release your attachment to it
Turn it over to the universe: Dedicate all actions to the force of love within you.
Some extra resources: