Our desires are clues to our most meaningful contribution

awareness calling dream Aug 03, 2022

I’m feeling really brave.  The clearing and purging process I’ve engaged in for the last couple of weeks has opened up a new space for me.  It’s giving me room to push the edges.  I’m now making things I always wanted to create. 

It’s an act of courage to admit what we desire.

To speak our desires out loud gives them a new power.  It lends gravitas. It plants our desire like seeds in fertile ground; here anything is possible. 

Is that martyrdom or sainthood? 

During all those years of imagining crochet designs in my head, I never realized that making them would bring me such joy.  Then, I could never find the time.  Never made the time to explore.  I didn’t realize that the desire to make beautiful things came from my soul. 

My secret desires stayed a secret.  Even to me.

Now I’m curious if a part of me actually enjoyed that deprivation.  I sacrificed my art for stability and security; that felt noble and good.  In our culture, those actions are celebrated. 

Deprivation of self can be beneficial when it builds self-control.  When we are martyrs, though, the only perceived benefit is to our ego.  We wallow in self-sacrifice to enlarge our self-perception.  We claim personal nobility when we “rise above” our wants.

But martyrdom doesn’t serve the common good. 

We’re only granted sainthood when our self-sacrifice benefits the world around us.  And that’s not a title we claim, it’s bestowed.

Ultimately though, self-sacrifice and martyrdom deprive us of our joy and deprive the world of our gifts. 

Healthy selfishness

There is a bubble that surrounds each of us.  It’s close enough to contain our personality but large enough to stretch into our immediate surroundings.  Within that bubble is everything we are in charge of.

Our body is in that bubble, we’re in charge of how it is treated and cared for.  Our thoughts are in there, we’re in charge of what influences we allow in and how we react to them.  Our spirit in is there as well, we’re in charge of our level of interaction with our divine nature.

Inside our bubble is everything we control.  We control where we focus.  We control how we perceive things. We control the decision of our next action.

And that’s it. 

Inside our bubble, when we listen to our thoughts, pay attention to what our body needs in this moment and allow the presence of spirit to inhabit us, we can’t help but recognize our gifts and share them. 

Holding our focus on what’s inside the bubble is how we grow and contribute to this world.  When we allow ourselves what we desire, others benefit.

Where do I start?

When I realized that this new direction of my crochet was a buried dream, I felt like a kid.  Setting up that table with all the supplies collected over the years was like discovering a precious gem in the bottom of my sock drawer. 

Honestly, though, it also felt a little selfish.  For a brief moment, there was a teeny tinge of guilt, but that “selfishness” actually felt really good!  It felt like a special treat.  It felt like I was pulling something out of a hat.  It felt urgent.

So that feels like a good place to start. 

What feels selfish?  Let’s try that!

Julia Cameron said, “… buried dreams are the calling cards of a true identity”. When we allow ourselves to feel like a kid again, to allow ourselves a special treat, to be selfish, we are opening our hearts to our deepest desires.

She suggests making a list of at least five responses to: “If I weren’t so selfish, I’d….”  then choose one item and make it so.

When we tap into desires and act on them, we are contributing as only we can.  And like a drop that becomes the ocean, we shift humanity one fraction in a different direction. 

Pay attention to what brings joy because that’s the direction of our dreams.  Our desires are clues to our most meaningful contribution. 

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