Everyone has heard the famous words of advice from revered mythologist Joseph Campbell: “Follow your bliss!” This is great wisdom, but do you know what he said next? There’s more to the story, and it offers hope and courage for plunging into the life you know you are meant for: “Follow your bliss and don’t be afraid, and doors will open where you didn’t know they were going to be.” In my work as an energy healer and spiritual teacher, I so often see the truth of these words. When you look deep into your being and discover your bliss, you’ll also find the gifts you came into the world to give. When you learn to focus on those gifts, you’ll recognize those doors opening for the first time.
Bliss is a lovely word for great happiness and utter joy. The call to “follow your bliss” is actually a powerful spiritual tenet which acknowledges your wiring as an energy-based, spiritual being. Embracing life’s challenges with an attitude of joy is one of the ultimate aims of your spiritual journey. Reaching for happiness in everything you do, large or small, will have a profound effect on your total well-being. In fact, following that sense of true happiness is the ultimate divining rod indicating which direction to go in life. First, you will need to know what makes you happy on the deepest level. Your core spiritual practices—prayer, meditation, and journaling—will help you define your bliss. Ask yourself, “What makes me truly happy?”
Finding your happiness and embracing its spiritual power will help you identify the unique gifts that you are here in this life to develop and to use in service to others and the world. Chances are good that your happiness, whatever you love to experience or create, is connected to your fellow beings. You are living your life purpose when you are fully engaged—mind, heart, body, and soul—and doing whatever you feel you were born to do. The world needs your uplifting contribution in the unique, mysterious way that only you can provide, and your soul, in turn, longs for the experience of self-expression. You can use your growing awareness of what makes you blissful to define your gifts and begin using them to create a life of joy and contribution.
Here are 3 steps you can take along the path to following your bliss and building a more loving world for all:
- Identify your unique gifts—Your gifts are easy to discover because they are simply the things you love to do. They make you feel good and they are usually also the things you are really good at. Can you sing, play an instrument, dance, draw, or write? Do you have a knack for politics, religion, or the healing arts? Do you have abilities or powers beyond the norm? Do you excel at helping others become their best—perhaps in a coaching, teaching, or mentoring capacity?
- Stay connected to Source—The stronger and more open your connection to a power greater than yourself, the more readily you will recognize your gifts and find ways to use them. As you pray, meditate, journal, practice yoga, walk in the woods, or engage in any activity that fills you with light, you step closer to your bliss. When those doors that Joseph Campbell talks about begin to open for you, you will be able to recognize them for the divine connections they are.
- Focus on service—As you begin to see and appreciate your unique gifts, find opportunities to use them in service to others. Whether large or small, your acts of service help align you with your life purpose, your spiritual path. Using your gifts is a joyful activity, and the bliss you feel reverberates through the web of life. Notice how your smile can bring a smile to other faces. Your wish to be happy carries within it a gift of love and good will for all. Your joy helps you grow in spirit and adds to the spiritual energy of all living things.
Your special gift is music that you have come into the world to play. Don’t keep your symphony under wraps. You know you’d love to play Carnegie Hall!