On Divine Order


The quality of your being is shaped by your choices. What you do, or don’t do, shapes who you become. Doing isn’t necessarily better than not-doing, though in our hyper-driven world, we sometimes confuse action with wisdom, or at least cede it the moral high ground.

Wisdom lies in discerning what’s yours to do, at any given moment, and choosing that. Most often, the wisest thing you can do is bring your inner being into a state of greater wholeness and harmony first, before moving into action.

Strategy is Soul’s servant — its job is to put ground under your soul’s feet. It cannot choose the destination, but it can build the path that will take you where your soul wants to go.

That path winds through the ecology of your life. It leads you to your rightful place in the life of our world. Both are shaped by the hands of Divine Order, which is a quality of your soul, and of the Soul of the World.

Divine Order is precise, and fluid. It is the organic pattern that underlies every form of life — including your life, and your business’s life. Divine Order shapes the raw soul essence of each being into its truest, most particular self. Just as the acorn holds the pattern for the oak tree, your soul holds the pattern for your becoming.

There’s a perfect shape for your life, at every stage of your life — and this shape is flexible enough to express itself in many different forms. This means that you get to choose how your life will unfold. You get to choose how the life of your business will unfold.

If that power to choose scares you, if you’re afraid of making the wrong choice, and paralyzed by the responsibility of making the right one — that’s part of the journey of too.

You don’t have to make the journey alone. Your soul is your most potent ally. The soul of your business is, too. And you have a powerful ally in the Deva of Divine Order.

When you’re standing in a maze of choices, bewildered, overwhelmed, not knowing which path to take — attune to Divine Order. Feel where it lives in your body. It thrums underneath the confusion, as steady and reliable as your heartbeat.

Feel its presence in your life. Where is it strongest, clearest? Put your focus there. What you focus on expands. Let Divine Order expand within you. Let it guide you home.

Feel the resonance between organic order, and your own true desires. Your desires are the voice of your soul. They are the playmates of Divine Order. Let your deep desires lead you home.

Who do you become, when you embrace Divine Order? How do you feel? What flows naturally from within you, when you embody Divine Order?

Feel where Divine Order is most vibrantly alive in the world of your business. Which aspects of your business embody it most fully? Which aspects of your business are closest to their true nature? Which project, which offer, which creation is most in harmony with its underlying pattern? Focus on that, first.

What does your business, or your project, become, when it embodies Divine Order?

Divine Order puts everything in its rightful place. It holds the fixed and the fluid together. It embraces tidal rhythms — ebb, flow — and the unyielding ocean floor. It holds, in its ecology, the shore where you’re standing, and the receding horizon towards which you yearn. It nurtures desert and oasis, wind and sun, mountain and valley, shadow and light — giving each what it needs to become fully itself, holding them all in harmonious relationship with each other.

Trust the power of Divine Order, orient yourself to its regulating pulse, and the next step on your path appears magically by your feet. Step forward in faith, using only the effort it takes to make that one step — no more, no less.

Each step you take reveals the next. Each step you take also brings you everything you need to take the next step. The right support, the right allies, show up, in perfect timing.

By orienting yourself to the pulse of Divine Order, your soul regains its power to open the pathways through which miracles enter your life.

You cultivate Divine Order by choosing it as the central organizing principle for your life — and for your business, if you have one. What and how you eat; what and whom you surround yourself with; the love, care and skill with which you craft your time; how you nurture wholeness in your clients; how you treat your staff; how you create wholeness in the world of your business — every choice matters. Each choice, made with love, brings you, your life and your business into resonance with Divine Order.

Soul can act powerfully in your life when you care for yourself and your world in this way. A simple (and often overlooked) way to begin is by trusting and meeting your own needs first — no matter how frivolous, illogical, or contradictory they may seem. Your need to create. Your need to be still. Your need to play. Your need to rest. Your need for solitude. Your need for companionship. Your need for beauty, space, time, freedom, abiding joy. Meet these needs as they arise, and discover who you become when you trust your moment-to-moment desires to lead you home.

Each need honoured and met with love, is a step into the dance with Divine Order. Each need met with care and tenderness brings you home to your body, home to your soul.

When your inner being overflows with your soul’s presence, your creative energy returns as irresistibly as the incoming tide. Creative joy is an expression of your soul’s essence. It’s never lost, even when it seems to have receded out of sight. It’s just waiting for you to discover it, and give it its rightful place in the ecology of your life.

Your body is your soul made flesh. Your business is its soul made flesh. Tend to them both. Tend to your feelings, your deep desires, your needs, as lovingly as you tend to your child. Tend to the soul of your business — its desires, its needs — as devotedly as you tend to your beloveds. Discover who you become, who your business becomes, when you embody the power of Divine Order.

The tide, too, is Divine Order at play. It races to the far horizon. It returns to kiss your shore.

To Be Soul, Do Soul: Energy Alchemy at Work


You’re lounging in your pyjamas on a deliciously slow Sunday morning, reading a new book that has you in thrall. Your fingers are slick with buttered toast. There are crumbs in your hair. Life is good.

And then, the phone rings. It’s your friend, whom you love, and whose calls you’ve begun to dread because she’s become The Bad News Bear. She’s loving and kind and fun and you’ve known her forever and you can’t imagine your life without her, but…she kvetches. She complains. Endlessly.

She tells you, in excruciating detail, every terrible thing that’s happened since you last spoke — not just in her own life, but in her friends’ lives too. She tells you about deaths, tragedies, disasters. Everything — from tradespeople who don’t show up when they say they will, to her neighbour’s cat who was diagnosed with cancer and her aunt who is losing her marbles — is parsed with equal woe.

Your buoyant mood deflates as you slide further down your couch. Your toast grows cold. An hour later, you can’t feel your hand, or your ear. Your brain left the building somewhere in the middle of a long story about deadly aphids. You’re dying to get away, but can’t think of a kind way to end this conversation.

By the time your friend finally hangs up, all you have the energy to do is stagger into the kitchen and drown yourself in a pint of Chunky Monkey.

What you’ve just experienced is your energy field being flooded by a rising tide of your friend’s energy, along with her stories and fears, her feelings and thoughts. The Chunky Monkey? Sugar is one way your body gets back into present time, quickly. It has other, less salutary effects on your metabolism and moods, but it does restore you to yourself, at least temporarily.

So, yes, this is an extreme example of a common phenomenon. And, in this case, it’s fairly easy to track the pathway from you, enjoying a peaceful Sunday morning, to you with Chunky Monkey the only thing between you and ultimate despair.

And yet, we experience the effects of other people’s energy, their thoughts and feelings, and even of events that happen halfway around the world from us, every single day. All of these phenomena affect us, sometimes in painful ways.

We get stuck in narratives that aren’t ours. We feel helpless, hopeless, unable to effect change. We feel inadequate, alone. We find ourselves abandoning our dreams, sinking into a morass of despair or slogging through swamps of inertia and what’s-the-use. We lose our joy. We lose connection with what inspires and energizes us.

We are directly affected by the pressure of ambient events. We participate in the floating cloud of undigested feelings, incoherent thoughts, unintegrated energies that hovers around our world. Whether or not we’re aware of it, we feel the effects of all of these in our own bodies and energy fields.

The fact is, we live in intricately nested energy ecologies. The more skillfully you are able to work with your own energy field, and navigate the complex energy ecologies in which you are embedded, the more successfully you’ll create what you want to, in your life and business.

When you’re present and whole, your body and energy field are filled with the power and radiance of your soul, and of your incarnate self. Just as a healthy immune system keeps you from catching a cold — or any one of a multitude of virus-borne diseases that surround you at any given moment — a healthy energy body filters out energies in your environment that aren’t in harmony with your inner being.

On the other hand, when you aren’t present, when your inner state is more jumbled and fragmented than harmonious and whole, the unintegrated stuff within you becomes a portal through which energies that aren’t your own enter your energy field. You absorb energies from outside of yourself and experience them as though they were yours. This can lead to confusion, lack of clarity and direction, indecisiveness, overwhelm, and more.

Here’s a hypothetical example: You’re feeling kinda bored, maybe a bit lonely, so you browse your Facebook feed, or play on Pinterest, or dive into Instagram, feeling that familiar mixture of anticipation, overwhelm and increasing distance from your own body. Then, this happens:

a) You read one of your favorite blogs, or a great Facebook post. Or a sublime image pops up on your Instagram feed. You come away feeling inspired, enthusiastic, and buoyant with possibility. The feeling stays with you for a while, brightening your day, perhaps even inspiring a post of your own. Then, it dissipates…


b) You check out a link to a sales page or website. You find yourself feeling restless, dissatisfied with yourself or your business, convinced you need something. You don’t know what that something is, but you’re pretty sure you don’t have it. You’re also pretty sure you need to get it from out there — a book, a class, a retreat, a community, an experience. Maybe it will change your life. Maybe your world will morph from shades of grey to glorious color. Maybe…

In each of these scenarios, you’ve absorbed or matched the energy of the site you’ve visited.

The high you got from the inspiring post doesn’t last, because it isn’t your energy. It can reconnect you with your own soul, which is a powerful source of inspiration and enthusiasm, but if you don’t consciously shift your attention to the source of these qualities within you, the high will disappear sooner rather than later.

The dissatisfaction and restlessness you feel after visiting that website is not your energy either. But it plugs — like a bulb in a socket — into your own stories and beliefs about not being enough, not having enough, not knowing enough.

These stories and beliefs carry an energetic and emotional charge. So you end up feeling dissatisfied, restless, or empty, depending on how the energy interacts with your own stories. Or you feel suddenly angry, sad, thrilled or something else that you weren’t feeling before you began your Browse-a-thon. What you’re experiencing is the result of at least two things:

a) the effects of energy that isn’t yours, which can leave you with feelings and thoughts that aren’t your own, yet that feel overwhelmingly, and sometimes painfully, real


b) the prickle and zing of your own stories and patterns — your un-integrated stuff.

You can’t do anything with energy that isn’t yours. You can’t process it, encourage it to flow, or integrate it into your wholeness. But once you’ve identified it as not-yours, you can release it. It doesn’t have to run your life.

Discerning between feelings and thoughts that are your own, and those that are the result of energy you’ve absorbed, begins with knowing yourself. Be mindful of your own rhythms, your patterns, your loves and dislikes. Pay attention to the subtle movements of your own feelings, and get to know them. Know what your triggers are, and which patterns surface when your buttons are pushed.

Get to know your inner selves, and make friends with them. Bring them home to the heart of your wholeness, where they belong, so your inner three-year-old isn’t trying to run your business, or your thirteen-year-old self isn’t feeling responsible for managing that high-stakes meeting.

Develop an ongoing practice of centered awareness, and a daily practice of cleansing and harmonizing your energy field. This should be as simple and regular a part of your daily routine as brushing your teeth. You are a physical, emotional, energetic, mental and spiritual being, so cultivate and nourish each of these aspects of your being-ness.

Ultimately, you are an incarnate, embodied soul. You don’t have to do anything to be soul — soul is who you are. But you can experience your soul’s presence within you by expressing it in your life. You can strengthen your soul-ness by doing what soul does. To be soul, do soul. Be kind. Be generous. Be loving. Be powerful. Bless the people and places you encounter each day. Bless yourself, your beloveds, your business, your world. Partner with the Devas of your neighbourhood, your business, your country, the Earth, to make manifest the pattern that each of them holds for the perfect unfolding of the life in its care.

The more you act from your soul-self, the more you will strengthen your inner radiance and become a source of soul in your world. And, the next time your friend calls and launches into a litany of woe, you’ll meet her with sovereignty, truth, kindness and love instead of burying yourself in that pint of Chunky Monkey!

Want to learn practical energy alchemy skills so that you and your business both become sources of blessing, soul-stuff and sustainable prosperity? Join me for the fall session of Become Your Own Business Adviser, my signature 12-week program, which begins September 28th. You’ll learn powerful energy alchemy practices that will transform your life and the way in which you do business.

Choosing Matters

dreamstime_xs_15921334 fork in the road

Every choice we make has energetic consequences. Choosing matters. Who we choose to hang out with matters, because each encounter shapes us, and shapes our world. How and where we choose to spend our time, energy, resources and attention matters, because these choices shape our becoming, and shape the world in which we live.

There are no inconsequential choices. The seemingly innocuous choices we make day to day are powerful.

Receive the gift of choice with a discerning and grateful heart. Honour the choices that present themselves in each moment. Step into your soul’s light, and choose — choose from there.

Unconscious patterns of thought, belief, and behaviour carve deep grooves along which we glide, riding a cushion of air, removed from the truth of our bodies, separated from the light of our hearts, turned away from the relational power of our souls. Unconsciousness obscures our vision, and leads us to destroy what matters most — our souls, the soul of the earth, and the life which it holds in its care.

Consciously choosing that which is in harmony with our souls returns us to the heart of wholeness, where we belong. It restores us to the real. One precious, irreplaceable choice at a time.

Choosing matters.

On Support and Provision

New Holland Honeyeaters eating out of the palm of a hand

Support and provision are qualities of soul. Along with other essence qualities like power, love, truth and abundance, they emerge from the field of unity, of formlessness, and are at the heart of all forms of life.

Both support and provision are also among the primary qualities of your first chakra, the energy center that shapes your incarnation and your sense of safety, grounding, and belonging. When you truly know that you are safe and supported, when you know — viscerally and unmistakably — that you are provided for with every breath you take, that knowledge frees you to become more fully yourself. It frees you to participate in the life of the world as a source of those qualities that you alone can bring to it.

This doesn’t mean that you’ll never experience fear or doubt. These feelings, too, are part of the human experience, and they will arise to greater or lesser degree each time you choose to leave the safety of what you know, to discover what you don’t yet know or to create something new.

Support and provision give you the foundation you need to risk stepping into your future, even when you don’t know what it holds. Because something greater than your singular self holds you, provides for you, and sustains you. If you fall, you have a soft, loving lap to hold you until you’re ready to stand up again, to move towards your heart’s true desires.

Navigate Your Life: An interview with Jen Louden

Jen Louden

My dear friend, Jen Louden, is a writer, wise woman, and personal growth pioneer who helped launch the self-care movement with her first book, The Woman’s Comfort Book. She is the author of five additional books on well-being and whole living, including The Woman’s Retreat Book, and The Life Organizer.

Jen has led hundreds of retreats and online programs, written a national magazine column, and spoken around the world (and on Oprah’s couch), all in service to helping women choose vibrant lives they love. On September 17th, she’s offering a free Life Navigation Primer call, a preview of her upcoming Life Navigation Course.

As a prelude to this call, Jen has curated a series of articles on her blog by asking ten women to respond to this question: How do you create the life you want?

I interviewed Jen last week, and asked her how she creates the life she wants. It’s a question we’ve both been exploring in one form or another for most of our working lives. I know it’s one that many of you are asking and talking about, too. Listen in on our conversation, below.

Then, explore this question with the ones you love. And, if you feel inspired, head on over to my Facebook page and share your story: How do you create the life you want? How do you stay true to yourself when life becomes challenging? How do you open to embrace the gifts that life brings you, and embody more of the joy that is at the heart of your own being?

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On right relationship with power


To heal a world inflamed by abuses of power, each of us must take responsibility for exercising our own power wisely. Know the shape of your own, unique genius. Embody your soul’s gifts. Bring the healing balm of love and grace into each encounter, through the creative power of your presence, choices, actions.

Right relationship with power isn’t just a good idea, to be added to that long, who-knows-if-it-will-ever-happen, perhaps-someday list — it is as essential to your well-being and mine, and to the well-being of our world, as your | my | our next breath.

Today, I’m restoring wholeness and peace to my heart by swimming in its deeper currents. Today, I’m listening with my fingertips pressed to the pulse of the world. Putting my hand to the page. Writing, writing…against the fist of misused power pressed against my throat, your throat. Feeling the wind’s salt lift in my ribs. Writing my eyes clear so light can enter and be reflected, without impediment.

What’s your creative process?

dark alley in venice

Thinking about this quote, today, from American photographer Robert Adams.

“The operating principle that seems to work best is to go to the landscape that frightens you the most and take pictures until you’re not scared anymore.” –Robert Adams.

For me, there are creative projects that emerge from “the landscape that frightens you the most” — and then there are ones that invite me into their world with such glad welcome that they are, quite simply, a return home. More and more, my relationship with my creative process is an encounter with the heart of belonging.

When I take the time to restore my inner sense of safety and well-being first, then the thing that seemed frightening at first glance, turns out to be kin. There is a dimension in which all things are in me, and I am in all things. When I meet the landscape that frightens me up close — not as an idea of what it is, but by touching its soul and presence — then I recognize my kinship with it. This doesn’t mean that I don’t use discernment in what I choose to encounter. It does mean acknowledging the life that holds us equally in a web of belonging.

How about you?

Imagination is Freedom

woman on swing

Imagination is freedom — it can transform the world. Here’s a wonderful story told by Robert Hass, about the power of imagination in action in one of the direst places in our collective history.

“I’ll tell you a story that may or may not be true because it belongs to the history of marvels. The French poet Robert Desnos was in Buchenwald not because he was a poet but because he was a Jew. The story is that Desnos and all the men in his barracks were marched to a room and told to strip in preparation for being deloused in an adjoining room. They understood what that meant, and Desnos turned to the man next to him and said, “I read fortunes. Let me see your palm.” The man, stoop-shouldered, eyes wet with fear, held up his palm. Desnos looked at it and shook his head. A long lifeline, he said, but I see trouble in business down the line and trouble with your daughter. The man, stunned at first, laughed. And others laughed. And soon all the men in the room were standing around naked, laughing, with tears in their eyes, reading one another’s palms. The guards were so disconcered that they ordered the men to get dressed and marched them back to their barracks. The next day a transfer order came through and many were sent to a work camp and some survived to tell the story. Desnos was not among the survivors. Surrealism began with the idea that freedom of imagination could transform life, and in this instance, if the story is true, it did.”
–Robert Hass, from What Light Can Do

Work Is Gratitude

Stanley Kunitz quote

What are you settling for?

chasing a bubble

I’m astonished at, and saddened by, how little we are willing to settle for. We are fractals of the Sacred. Yet we settle for a living instead of a life. Fitting in, as a substitute for belonging. Approval, fame, stardom — each of these is but a pale reflection of our radiance, our deep longing to offer our soul’s creative presence to our world, and to be received with joyous celebration.

If you were to lose everything that you’ve settled for — all the roles, identities, possessions, relationships, and functions that define you — you would still be unmistakably, irreplaceably you. The Sacred incarnate.

Can you really be satisfied with less?

  • You are a sovereign being,
    a fractal of the Sacred,
    a fractal of Wholeness.
  • The flow of your life.
    The soul of your business.
  • Grow your business.
    Grow yourself.
  • Expand your life. Evolve your business.
  • The art of alignment. The miracle of action.
  • Trust in the power of your perfect unfolding.
  • Permission to grow, to flow, to know.
  • You learn about freedom by experiencing what it feels like to be bound.
  • Beyond your beliefs, beyond your drama — the truth of your life.
  • Success is becoming the person who can ask for hugs and holding when your own strength has deserted you.
  • Embrace the mystery at the heart of creation.
  • Your soul sends out tendrils of light and fragrance into the world.
  • You are the gift — and the giver.
    You are the Love, and the lover.
  • At the heart of all things — even limiting beliefs and painful programming — is wholeness.
  • Surrender is an act of will. It is aligning your will with the will of the Sacred.
  • You learn about sovereignty through the experience of being dethroned.
  • Love transforms.
  • Your soul's purpose is to participate in wholeness, to express wholeness.
  • True Desire is a messenger of your soul.
    It leads directly to your soul’s purposes.
  • Unfold the miracle of your life and business.
  • Business = Love in action.
  • Everything you need is already within you, waiting to unfold and express itself.
  • Your inner world shapes your outer world.
    Success is an inside job.
  • You are the story, and the story-maker.
    Your life is yours to shape.