The steps we take to recover from disappointment, shock and loss have everything to do with the meaning we make from those experiences. If we believe that we are powerless, that we are victims, and that life is against us, we will not recover. If we believe that our options for choice and personal happiness have come and gone, and that what remains ahead are crumbs, we will not recover. Oh, we may eventually get out of bed, but there is a world of difference between resignation and a life that is filled with the resplendence of joy and the invigoration that comes with having something to look forward to.
How do you go from resignation to passion? You have to have something to live for. You have to believe that there is something worth living for. You must be drawn to a vision that both contains and expresses your highest calling. Beyond that, you believe that you are the creator of your life, and that the larger force and field itself is personally seeking your partnership for co-creative endeavors that are dreams still in the making, and that need your assistance to manifest.
But, you say, I don’t have anything to live for. I don’t have anything to look forward to. I’ve explored my interests and taken them as far as I can, given current circumstances and resources. I’ve looked around, and I really don’t see anything that’s that compelling anymore. Been there, done that. All right, then. You have. Now it’s time to take a new tack and approach your situation differently. But first, you need to find your power so that you can revive your passion.
Let us begin here: from where you sit, what would you say you have too much of? What do you have too little of? What would you enjoy having more of? What would you like to have less of, or be rid of altogether?
What skills and capacities do you need to cultivate in order to have more of what you desire? What disciplines will you need to exercise in order to eliminate excess?
In the process of identifying those areas which need your attention you will begin find your lost power. As you look more closely at what you need to let go of and what you need to bring in, you will develop an understanding of those things that disempower you and those that empower you. As you feel yourself empowered, you will also feel passion. You will feel the force of your passion as it compels you to embrace your life force. Whatever your passion, it will lead you back to yourself. When you have passion you can feel the creative impulses that are bursting to express through you. You have now found your fire, your desire, and your power.
Now, it is possible that you no longer have much of a charge about pursuing anything. The fire that you once experienced burned out long ago. As you say, you’ve been there and done that, meaning you believe you have made the effort to explore your appropriate path and then applied your resources to it. If the results were less than stellar, that is, disappointing, then it is likely you have given up and these days spend most of your time in resignation and some degree of inertia. And so, while you are managing to pay the rent and feed yourself and your pets, there is not much about existence itself that infuses you with excitement and possibility.
So how do you make the leap from a lack of desire to engage to active participation? Letting go of the paths not taken and the roads not fully traveled, begin here: live each day as if it were your calling*. Without excessive attention to detail and over-thinking, choose those activities that seem the most right or important*. And instead of demanding immediate results, revel in the quietly unfolding intrigue of each moment. Take small steps, one at a time. There is no need to offer up arguments or resistance; simply do each step as an improv. You do not need to know the next step or the next action – by responding to the choices that call to you, to those impulses that seek expression – by degrees both subtle and sudden your life plan and purpose will reveal itself.
By listening to the call of your intuitive knowing, you will become more adept at discerning the next right action. You do not need to wait for inspiration per se. Simply take actions that reflect best what you know to be true for yourself, and you will again be on course as you remember your passion, which will re-connect you to your path.
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* Acknowledgements: Shepherd Hoodwin