This is a follow-on article to my blog post entitled Darkness to Lightness of Being.
Sometimes we know what our life’s calling is from a young age. Our soul has already progressed to understand what it needs to be liberated; to live in full energy flow or alignment (Kriya energy). However, sometimes we don’t know from the outset what our Dharma is or even that we’re here on this planet to reveal and express it. Some never get to “wake up” to their Dharma and it then moves on to another time, space and dimension.
For me the ultimate Dharma is about raising our energetic vibration and the vibration of the planet by our impact on others. Energetic vibration is defined here as consciousness; a term used when someone is spiritually aware of themselves as being both separate from, yet also linked to, their mind and body. How we get to raise our energetic vibration is our own individual journey – our Dharma map or blueprint.
To unravel and connect with our Dharma, we have to acknowledge, understand and embrace our passions, gifts and life’s experiences (to date). To help you complete this exercise in recognising your own Dharma, I’m going to share with you what my own passions and gifts as well as my top 5 life’s lessons have been. From these I’ve interpreted my unique Dharma.
I’ve always wanted to dance from a young age. I used to choreograph my own little sequences to an imaginary audience or to my family at Christmas time. I went to various ballet, tap, contemporary and ballroom dance classes for much of my young life. What does this tell me? That I was born with strong Vata energy – Vata is a Hindu Dosha energy type that embodies creativity and is highly artistic, spiritual, ethereal, light and expressive.
Learning is a passion I cultivated when I started my Masters degree in Marketing (aged 42). I realised how much I enjoyed learning as a mature student and that grew stronger over time as I moved between personal development, training in holistic therapies and digital marketing.
Another passion or interest that I indulged in from a young age was language and etymology. I’ve always been fascinated with the meaning and origin of words. This led me to developing my gift.
One gift that was perhaps not at first obvious whilst at school (my English grades were mediocre) was my ability to write with intelligence, discernment, passion and creativity. This gift came with maturity and the ability to think more independently, and of course being able to consciously connect back to my childhood spirit of self-expression. This is a gift that I’m still honing and giving birth to. I know it’s both a passion and gift, because when I start to write (as difficult as it can sometimes be to get started), I lose all sense of time, I get lost in the pleasure of the creative process and the experimentation with words, expressions and phrases.
Executing Ideas and Plans
My other gifts, or should I say character attributes, are being persistent, determined and action-oriented. These are Pitta attributes. Pitta is the Dosha energy of fire and is connected to execution; getting SH1T done. I really ride on the energy wave of taking an idea and seeing it take shape in tangible form.
- My Money Story
I’ve had a fluctuating relationship with money. Like many, I was conditioned by my parents and peers to believe that money doesn’t grow on trees, that money is hard to come by or that you need to work hard for it, also that money hard earned is easily spent or lost.
My father went through an awful money experience. He retired early from the RAF and invested in properties (houses) and in a launderette business. He entered a partnership for the latter and was swindled out of a lot of money by his partner. In terms of the properties, most of them were sold too early before the property boom and whilst they made some money, they never were a goldmine they could have been. And later in life, when all 7 children were grown up, he invested heavily in a property development of over £1million and then had issues with road access to the property and was caught up in a very nasty, expensive legal case. The stress and worry that consumed him led to prostate cancer and his premature death.
As for my own experience, I married someone who also had a difficult relationship with money. He lost fairly significant amounts in 3 failed businesses. We also started a coffee shop business that appeared lucrative at first, but then became a cash and energy drain.
Whilst I’m good at economising and making money, where I fail to take monetary responsibility is in my training. I subscribe to lots of different training packages, often too many at once and as a result do not fully complete these.
My money lesson: money is just an energy form – it is neither negative nor positive. It flows to us or slips away from us, depending on our mindset and our emotional state. If we are irresponsible with it, there is a tendency to lose it. If we fear lack, we experience scarcity. If we embrace the possibility and probability that it is abundant and that we deserve it, we will experience financial prosperity.
I inherited a serious perfectionist trait from my German mother. It was also fuelled by a highly competitive childhood environment, where we were patted on the back and financially rewarded by our parents (particularly my father) for achieving high grades at school and university.
But the problem with perfectionism is that it stops us from getting started for fear of not being good enough. We always feel that we need to dot the “i”s and cross the “t”s, otherwise it will be rejected, it will not pass muster. Perfectionism is closely entwined with a fear of rejection and of not being good enough.
My lesson: perfectionism holds us back from living our Dharma. It’s better to be messy and have something to show to others, rather than hide away in our perfectionist bubble. By being messy, I mean, by just getting on with it we are able to hone our skills or craft.
- Love & Rejection
I fell head over heels in love at the age of 24. I thought that we were destined to be life partners. We had so much in common – our love of languages, our birthdays were 1 day apart, and there was a definite chemistry in our connection. But for some reason when he moved to Spain for a student assignment his letters petered out. I couldn’t fathom out why. I thought it was a family friend, who was affluent and well connected in business, who discouraged him from pursuing the association. But what it boiled down to is that I believed I was not worthy of his affection; I was not worthy of such love. I felt I wasn’t good enough for his well-connected family.
My lesson: I won’t receive reciprocal love until I love myself unconditionally, warts ‘n’ all.
Between the age of 12 and 17 I was verbally bullied at school, to the point where I broke down in tears during breaktime and a teacher discovered me and “made” others befriend me. I put this down to the fact that I was shy and fearful of expressing myself. But this wasn’t always the case. I remember having much happier childhood memories when I had lots of loyal friends during my primary school years.
The difficulty of acceptance always comes during teenage years when you become more self-aware. With the self-awareness came self-criticism: that I was not pretty enough, not intelligent enough, the belief that I was socially inept, not able to make new friends easily.
My lesson: bullying is the act of someone who is showing a character or facet of themselves that is a mirror of our own selves. They feel unliked, unloved, unaccepted and project these onto their victims in the form of anger, aggression and dislike. So, my lesson was that I needed to learn to like and accept myself first and to be comfortable in my own skin. Once that happens, the bullying stops or moves on to another victim. We become unassailable.
- Over-analysing & Overly Sensitive
I’m prone to over-analyse and be sensitive to every situation and nuance. It can mean that I can sometimes be overly defensive and lash out in criticism and judgement of others. I’m prone to reading into events and people’s reactions more than is deemed wise or is necessary.
My lesson: I will let go of the need to over-analyse and to know everything and not to judge others or myself harshly. In doing so, I learn to be free, to be open to being authentic and vulnerable and discovering deeper connections with others.
Living Our Dharma
In opening ourselves up to our uncomfortable truths we are transmuting our pain (Eckhart Tolle*) and we can use them in a way that can shed light on our Dharma and on how we are to show up in this world and serve others. So bringing together all my most important gifts, passions and life’s lessons my Dharma is more easily glimpsed.
I know that I have a very sensitive, expressive and passionate nature. I’m also an enthusiastic learner and competent writer and speaker. Thus, I can use these talents and abilities to good effect in communicating what I’ve learnt to others in a way that inspires and transforms them, whether through the written or spoken word.
I also know that I’m good at creating ideas and implementing them. That’s why I flourished in marketing. I also know that I’m a self-starter and work most creatively when on a subject I’m most passionate about. That’s why I prefer working on my terms and not dance to another piper’s tune or agenda. This means that I thrive best when working for myself as an entrepreneur rather than being employed. In this way, I’m fulfilling my own mission, not someone’s corporate mission. The latter feels too disconnected and alien to my spiritual nature.
I also know that as a Pitta type, I’m well organised, I quickly understand the tech involved and I’m good at taking action. I therefore assist others in bringing their own ideas to bear and help them with the marketing aspect of their business. That’s why I coach women who themselves are creative and artistic but lack the strategy and know-how to get their business up and running. I identify with them, but I also can see the bigger business and purpose picture. I have a lifetime of real experience to share.
But what’s truly important is that I’ve been in my clients’ shoes: I’ve faced my inner demons and challenges of perfectionism, the feeling of not being good enough, the crippling doubt of believing that I don’t have something of worth to offer others. I can totally empathise with them. But the great thing is that I now have the wisdom, techniques and the tools to support them in breaking free of their own limitations and doubts.
So if you identify yourself with any of these same challenges, you’ll know that this is something I totally get and can guide you through the maze of coming out of any patterns of self-sabotage. Let’s start this journey together. I’ll help you re-discover your gifts, passions and your life’s lessons and interpret these in a way that will help you to the next stage of your Dharma journey. If you’d like to chat more about this possibility, then book a call here: www.calendly.com/esther-788/30min.
*Power of Now & A New Earth – Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose
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