How to Find Clarity When You're Lost: 4 Steps to Your True Life Path | Dandan Liu | Skillshare

How to Find Clarity When You're Lost: 4 Steps to Your True Life Path

Dandan Liu, Filmmaker | Passionate Creative

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21 Lessons (57m) View My Notes
    • 1. Course Introduction

      2:35
    • 2. SPECIAL EDITION Class Project

      1:14
    • 3. The Honest Onion

      3:03
    • 4. Exercise 1: The Honest Onion

      4:42
    • 5. Unconditional Listening

      4:14
    • 6. Exercise 2: Unconditional Listening

      0:57
    • 7. An Important Note on Listening

      0:49
    • 8. Expanding Your Encounters

      2:36
    • 9. Exercise 3: Expanding Your Encounters

      0:38
    • 10. Finding Safety & Permission in Your Exploration

      2:03
    • 11. Exercise 4: Time Travel

      1:36
    • 12. Getting Clues from the Past

      1:06
    • 13. Getting Clues from the Present

      1:40
    • 14. Getting Clues from the Future

      1:43
    • 15. Making Connections

      2:31
    • 16. Putting It All Together into Roles

      2:21
    • 17. What to Do When You Find Something

      2:11
    • 18. A Note on Practicality

      2:55
    • 19. Course Wrap-Up and Parting Thoughts

      1:14
    • 20. GUIDED 15 Min Clarity Meditation

      14:57
    • 21. BONUS: Signs You have Found Something

      1:52
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About This Class

"I don't know what I want to do with my life!"

Whether you have no sense of direction or know that your current life is not right for you, this class is here to clear the confusion and guide you towards your next steps in embracing your authentic life path. 

Top teacher and wearer of many creative hats, Dandan Liu believes that the path to clarity comes down to 3 things: deep honesty, unconditional listening, and expanding your encounters. In this class, you will work with these 3 elements through 4 concrete exercises to re(discover) important parts of yourself and harvest clarity on your next steps. 

Additional insights are woven throughout to help you constructively reframe this process of self-discovery from one that is scary to one that is constructive and exciting. These insights and practices stem directly from Dandan's multi-year journey going from a lost, unfulfilled scientist to a passionate creative who loves her life. 

By the end of this class, your head will be buzzing with new ideas for your next steps, and calming insights that'll help steer you towards your true path full of purpose, joy, and magic. 

Transcripts

1. Course Introduction: I don't know what I want to do with my life. If you're feeling this way, I want you to take a deep breath and know that you've come to the right place. This class is all about how to claim clarity on your next steps and how to work with your fears so they don't feel like monsters as they do allies for your journey. For those who don't know me, my name is Dandan and I am a top teacher here on Skillshare, a documentary filmmaker, and a passionate creative. I'm thrilled to be sharing this class with you because I know how scary and debilitating it can be to not know what you want to do with your life. I know because I've been there and through my own journey coming to where I am now inhabiting a life that I love, I have come to understand that the path to clarity comes down to three things: Deep honesty, unconditional listening, and expanding your encounters. So in this class, we're going to work with these three elements through four exercises that will leave you with concrete, clear next steps. Throughout, I'll be weaving in additional insights that will support these main practices and help you progress sustainably to the life that'll make you feel most alive. Along the way, I hope you'll feel surprised as you discover how you are not as lost as you think. How the answers you're looking for are already inside of you. If you don't know what you want to do with your life, please don't settle for something that will bring you a short-term sense of security but the long-term unhappiness and unfulfillment. Believe me, there is this life waiting to be discovered by you and uniquely you, with its bounty of fulfillment, love, and excitements. Everyone can inhabit this life, including you. So let's begin this journey together. I'll meet you in the first lesson. 2. SPECIAL EDITION Class Project: Before we begin, make sure to have the classwork book on hand, which can be found on the project resources section. For your assignment, we have a special edition task. Here it is. To celebrate the inauguration of this class. I will be running the special Skillshare Annual Membership Giveaway. In this class, I have hidden in this iconic photo of grumpy, sheath Bernie Sanders. Your task is to find him and upload a selfie with him on your screen to the Projects page. If you're shy, you can take a photo of your plant, pet, or favorite item with him on the screen. Then write down one step you will take to align your life with your true self. The deadline to do this is by 11:00 PM Pacific Time on March 14th. I will be announcing the winner on March 15th. Be observant as he is hard to find in this class. Good luck. 3. The Honest Onion: One big thing that prevents us from gaining clarity on our next steps are the unconscious labels placed on us by others. We can be afraid of letting people down or being judged by others, so we push what we really want into our unconscious closet. For example, in my life I was labeled by others as a budding scientist from a young age. I come from a deeply scientific family, so it just made sense that I would follow in their footsteps. I grew up in my parents laboratory. Studied the heart sciences and landed a promising career in research. I never questioned this label even though I felt bored and unhappy with this profession. Even when I realized it wasn't for me, I still went at it for years, afraid of letting people down and diverging from their expectations. I was also afraid of the unknown that would arise if I let go of this identity. I found myself unwilling to peer behind it. However, as scary as it was, somehow through a slow and circuitous process, I finally got the courage to start questioning my outward scientific identity. That kickstarted my whole journey towards living my authentic path. I hope this process will be one for you too. Chances are that if you are unhappy in whatever you are doing now, you're not inhabiting your core layer. In this section, we're going to explore the labels that have been placed on us, and gently peel them back like layers of an onion until we get to the core. Contemplate who you might be without any labels. Who is behind the wife, or the academic, or the productive employee? Try to peel these back until you feel like you've hit something essential in you. The key is to accept whatever comes, no matter how crazy it sounds. Just like an onion, the shoot only sprouts from that inner core. It's the same thing with your path, a fulfilling authentic life only sprouts from your core layers. You'll see that the first exercise in your workbook is called The Honest Onion. In it, there's an onion graphic where you can fill in your layers. Start from your outermost layer and courageously start peeling yourself back, writing down what lies underneath each of your layers. If you don't know what your innermost layer is, don't worry. Get as close as you can to it now and we'll dig deeper with the next exercises. 4. Exercise 1: The Honest Onion : I'm going to share my honest onion with you. Keep in mind that it's totally okay if you don't know what layers lie at your inner core. Most likely you'll be able to get one layer closer, and that already makes a huge difference. The most important thing here is to kick start the process of becoming aware of those false, outdated layers of your being. That awareness, if sustained over time, will unpeel all the layers back for you. Scientist. For example, back then, I used to think I was a scientist. I had built pretty much my whole life and career path on this identity. Then when I was painfully honest with myself, I realized that that layer was not true to who I was. So I peeled it back and found there was an explorer behind, someone who loved learning about new worlds and watching documentaries on the Discovery Channel. Now when I first did this exercise, this is pretty much where my unappealing stopped. I didn't know what lay behind this explorer layer, but it was already enough to get me going in the right direction. I let in go of my scientific path, which was not easy and I started moving towards inhabiting this new inner layer step-by-step. First, I took small weekly trips to ethnic enclaves in my city. Then eventually, as my curiosity grew more and more, I decided to embark on a journey to live in monasteries around the world. When I started traveling and living with people of different cultures, I realized that there was another layer behind this explorer, a storyteller. I didn't just love learning from new perspectives and ways of life, but I loved sharing about them. I purchased a camera and started playing with it, which eventually blossomed into filmmaking, a medium I fell in love with to share the stories of the amazing people I met. As I delved deeper after several years, I realized that behind the filmmaker was a creative. I didn't just love making films, but I loved the act of creating itself. I enjoy channeling that love through many mediums like pottery, writing, baking, and creating meaningful gatherings. Years later, I'm still unpeeling my layers and underneath my creative identity, I have discovered one which I call human being. To get really deep, I've also discovered another layer underneath this one, which I don't have the words for except love. Today, I consider my core layers to be all the ones in work from the explorer. Together, they form the healthy soils from which my life path grows. Help me going through my honest opinion, has helped you gain some clarity on how to orient yourself to this process. A few things to keep in mind. This process is unique to everyone. It might not be linear. You might think one layer is true to who you are, but then later discover it's not. That's totally okay and normal. It also takes time to unpeel yourself. For some, just peeling back one layer is enough to bring them the awareness that changes their lives for the better. For others, it takes a few layers. The most important thing here is [inaudible] apart and examining your identity, trying your best to withhold judgment. Every time you recognize a false layer is a life-changing event, every time you make a brief choice that expresses that more authentic layer, the more you steer your life towards one of fulfillment and joy even if you don't know the final destination. 5. Unconditional Listening: When we don't know what we want to do, a lot of the times it's because we're not honest with ourselves. The biggest mistake I see people do is to strategize. But there are builds on this inauthentic foundation disconnected from the true self. Before the strategy, first, we're looking for honesty. The best way I know how to cultivate honesty is through unconditional listening. In my Thriving Through Uncertainty class, I mentioned how you have this inner intelligence that knows where you should go. The only thing is it speaks very quietly below the surface of your daily choppy thoughts. In order to hear them, you have to create an intentional quiet space in your day to listen. When you're facing uncertainty on the life level, compared to just at the project level, it's even more important to create that safe space to listen. As easy as it sounds, there is an essential ingredient most people overlook. That is unconditional acceptance. What does that mean? That means you don't immediately attach conditions to your questions or attack a new idea that threatens a desired self-image. For example, right now, a good question to ask yourself would be, what do I love? However, when asking ourselves that question, most of us will attach several fish hooks, we'll ask ourselves, what do I love to do that will bring me a lot of money? What do I love to do that I won't drop a year from now? What do I want to do that my family and friends won't roll their eyes at? And so forth. For this time, when nothing is clear, you especially want to leave your realism at the door. A big thing I see is when people immediately dismiss whatever comes up with, I'm just being silly and daydreaming here. A lot of us subconsciously hold this belief, that a passionate, creative life is an indulgence, like donuts. We believe that this kind of life is not as virtuous as working hard day to night in a cubicle. We have this unconscious internal resistance to finding you. As a result, we become our biggest barrier. Remember, you cannot listen to guidance and judgment at the same time. When you attach conditions to your questions or judgments to your answers, you do not give the free space or safety for your intuitive messenger to come out and speak. Just like in writing, you can edit later. For now, just focus on freely putting to paper, whatever comes out. Another big condition we often attach to our inner questioning is the long-term plan. What do I want to do from now for the rest of my life? When you don't know what you want to do with your life now, attaching such long-term conditions can really freeze the answers from arising. When our inner self hints us something, because we don't understand how it fits with the long-term plan, we see it as a distraction and don't go for it. Instead, when you don't know what you want to with your life, the better question to ask yourself is, what do I want to do in this moment? No, I don't mean eating chocolate. I mean, what pulls your heartstrings right now? Maybe it's a ceramics class. Maybe it's spending more time in the wild. All of these are valuable because they are breadcrumbs that could lead you to authentic path. The answer usually doesn't come in the form of a full-blown vision. It usually comes in the form of a crumb of curiosity. Your task now is to follow these crumbs. 6. Exercise 2: Unconditional Listening: If you turn to page 5 of your workbook, you'll see how presents two effective ways to unconditionally listen. First by free writing for five minutes using the prompt, what pulls my heartstrings right now? When you do this, make sure to keep your hand moving on the page so your inner editor doesn't catch up with you. The second way I love to unconditionally listen is through meditation. To help guide you through this process, I've created a 15-minute unconditional listening meditation, which can be found at the end of this class. Remember, any thought or tug that comes up is valid, even if it's working at a whale sanctuary in Iceland. 7. An Important Note on Listening: There can be days when you don't hear or feel anything from your inner intelligence and that is totally normal and okay. Chances are that if you haven't been in touch with this intuitive voice, it's going to be a little shy coming out. The important thing is to routinely create a safe space to listen unconditionally anyways. One day you will receive an answer, the cream always rises to the top. When the answer start coming, be specially aware of things that are repeatedly arise, intuitive tugs or curiosity crumbs that don't leave. 8. Expanding Your Encounters: When you don't know what you want to do with your life, not only do you need honesty, but you also need new inputs. We often don't know what we want to do simply because we don't have enough data to show what we like and what could be our next viable path. The only way to get this data is to actively explore. Psychologist Rollo May says it brilliantly, "Inspiration requires an encounter, " and I would add that, ''Inspiration requires many encounters.'' Actively explore new things, those intuitive bread crumbs on your list, and put effort in encountering diverse experiences, perspectives, and skills. What does this look like? It can be taking a local class, taking an online class, there's so many out there now. Or playing with some art supplies. Don't fall for the romantic notion that you have to do something drastic and have an Eat, Pray, Love adventure, although that can be beautiful too. Expanding your encounters is usually a quiet thing and it does not have to disrupt your life because it's easy to be complacent and stay on the couch of your current unfulfilling life. It's really helpful to turn this exploration into a daily or weekly ritual. Grab a buddy, if you wish. Some ideas for this are a weekly artist date, where you dedicate time to your inner artist, whether that's going to the museum or drawing for an hour on Sunday. Every month, explore a new skill or topic that interests you and make a small project using what you've learned. Every day at lunch, listen to a TED talk. Every Saturday morning, go to a quiet place and daydream. Take note of what images keep popping up. Perhaps twice a year, you could go to a convention or conference that centers around your curiosity. They can be invaluable experiences to meet people who can teach you more about their world, and you can also learn how they make it a full-time thing. See this exploration as a fun sidekick. Remember, there should be some effort here. The more effort you put into expanding your encounters, the more clues you'll have to direct you to your next path. 9. Exercise 3: Expanding Your Encounters: The next exercise in your workbook is dedicated to this fun, beautiful process of expanding your encounters. Here, I invite you to put down to paper what your curiosity crumbs are, then think of rituals you can make in your schedule that allow you to explore these crumbs. Here is an example of what my page look like. 10. Finding Safety & Permission in Your Exploration: For some of you, as it was for myself, I know that trying new things can feel uncomfortable because it comes with the likelihood of making mistakes and not achieving anything productive, so you feel like you've wasted your time. For you all, I recommend framing this period of active exploration as an experiment. In doing so, you take off the pressure of having to find your next thing with everything you try, because an experiment, by definition, thrives off of negative findings, also known as false positives. In the scientific world, a negative finding is just as important as a positive one, because it gives you more clues as to what you're really looking for. For example, if you follow the bread crumb of ceramics and you realize it's not for you, celebrate that, you learned an important thing about yourself. That you don't like handy work or the mess or the potterer way of life. When you frame your encountering as an experiment, your family also does a whole due to the expectation that they will work out. Framing my time self-learning film-making as an experiment, was a game changer that led me to feel safe enough to actually do it. I like how writer Elizabeth Gilbert puts it when she talks about focusing on those quiet curiosities over those loud passions. She says, "Remember, it doesn't have to be a voice in the desert. It's just a harmless little scavenger hunt. It may even eventually lead you to your passion, through a strange, untraceable passageway of back alleys, underground caves and secret doors." So see, this is a fun scavenger hunt and expand your encounters. 11. Exercise 4: Time Travel: The last thing we're going to do is time travel. This is one of my favorite exercises because it goes beyond thinking about potential interests and tackles on possible careers or roles that we can inhabit that align with who we are. This exercise has five parts, so it goes deep. I promise it'll be worth it. When we don't know what we want to do with our lives, we often just look for clues in our present but miss out on the valuable insights buried in our past or future. If you have the workbook with you, flip to page 11. You'll see that it is made of three columns: past, present, and future. Now in the first column, I invite you to travel back to your childhood and reflect on these questions: What did you love to do? What did you naturally excel in back then? What common threads wove through your favorite childhood memories? What kind of person were you like back then? Write your answers down in the form of keywords. Reflecting on these questions can help you remember really important parts of yourself that you have forgotten. When you do this, it can be helpful to have a picture of your adorable child self on hand. 12. Getting Clues from the Past: I'm going to share my page with you. As a kid, I loved arts and crafts. I lost the sense of time when I was writing poetry and playing music. I excelled in writing, and remember feeling poems deeply. My favorite memories took place in the outdoors. They also involve cozy gatherings with people I loved. As a person, I was reflective, creative, and like to understand the deeper nature of things. I love trying new things and I was always the kid who chose a new flavor of ice cream at Baskin-Robbins. As also someone who's a floater hanging out with all different groups in my class. Now, it's your turn. Either pause this lesson and complete the first column writing down a few key words, or continue on and complete this exercise later. 13. Getting Clues from the Present: Let's move on to the second column. Here, I invite you to ask yourself the same questions that you had just asked before, only from the perspective of who you are now. What do you enjoy doing? What are your strengths? What do your favorite parts of your current life revolve around? What kind of person are you now? I'm going to fill this column out now as a person I was when I had no clue what I wanted to do with my life, when I was still working an unfulfilling job as a scientist. I'm a person who loses a sense of time when taking photos. I'm someone who really enjoys connecting with people at a deep level. I enjoy meditation and learning about spirituality. One of my favorite parts of my life now is when I take a weekly trip to a different ethnic enclave in my city and learn about a new culture. Another part of my life I love are those intimate dinner gatherings with my friends. I'm also someone who loves to learn and is constantly questioning what is out there. As a person, I'm somebody who has an extroverted, adventurous spirit, but also an introverted in her home body. If you want to reflect now, pause this lesson and write down your keywords. If not, let's keep going. 14. Getting Clues from the Future: The last column is dedicated to the future. Here, I invite you to think about people you look up to or envy. This one specifically about their lives you feel pulled towards and write them down. It's important to get as specific as possible here. Maybe you look up to someone because they own their own freelance business or get to work with their hands on a daily basis. Again, I'm going to go through this exercise as a person I was when I didn't know what I wanted to do with my life. I really admire photojournalists like Sebastiao Salgado and Steve McCurry because they deeply connected with the people they photographed. I felt pull towards their lifestyle because they got to explore these unseen parts of the world, and share what life was like through these deeply, touching empathetic images. There's also something about Annie Liebovitz's poetic compositions and soft colors schemes that pull something in me, almost like they were calling me back home to myself. I feel pulled towards the lifestyle of a certain potterers who lived in nature because they get to work with their hands and express their creativity on a daily basis. Either pause and listen now and fill this column out or let's carry on. 15. Making Connections: Now with all of these columns done, we're going to take a step back and look at the whole page, looking out for any patterns or intersections among the keywords. Then, we're going to create possible rows from them. Looking at my page, it's clear that there are some intersections running through my past, present, and future. Creativity seems to be a big one. When I first started this exercise, I had no clue that I was a creative person. In fact, I actually thought I was uncreative and unartistic because I was working in unfulfilling operational job in the science lab all day. Let's see. Connecting deeply with people also seems to link this timeline, and this is also absent from my job as a scientist. Linking these columns also seems to be a love of trying new things and exploring, which was also absent in my current job at the time. I'm going to write this down on the margins of this page. Besides looking at the common threads that link all of these columns, it's also very helpful to see whether there's anything in your past and future, permissing in your present. For example, here I see that storytelling is written down in my past and future columns, permissing in my present. Maybe that's something I can incorporate more now. Another thing I see written down in my past and future columns, permissing in my present, is the connection with nature. I now live in a sprawling city with not much access to the wild, so this gives me a clue that my next step should take me closer to nature. I'm also going to notice down on the margins of this page. Take some time now to notice the connections running among your columns, either highlighting them or writing them down on the margins. Doing this should give you valuable clues as to where you could go next. 16. Putting It All Together into Roles: Now comes the fun part. We're going to incorporate some of the elements present inner columns into potential roles. Ask yourself, what roles incorporate my important keywords? Remember, you're not looking to be practical right now. You're just letting potential options freely arise. Here are some of the roles that I came up with and incorporated some of my keywords. I'm just going to highlight a few. Meditation teacher. This would allow me to connect with people on a team level. It incorporated my love of spirituality and satisfied both my extroverted and introverted sides. Potter, who also teaches pottery. This would allow me to express my creativity daily. It allowed me to work with my hands. That would give me ownership of my time and it also had a nice balance of introversion and extroversion. Documentary filmmaker, so many things about this seemed to incorporate the elements in my columns. On the one hand, you had the filming part which fulfilled my adventure side. It allowed me to connect deeply with people and share through the moving image. On the other hand, you had the editing part which fulfilled my introverted side, love of story telling and creating. You can also be more playful here. For example, maybe I can be a documentary filmmaker who does pottery on the side. There's so many people these days combining all kinds of roles and hobbies into a full-time pursuit. In fact, I find that a mix of many of these votes today. The only limits are your imagination and fears. Take a moment now and brainstorm how you can mix your elements into these potential roles. I hope this exercise will allow you to think of possibilities you've never thought of before and give you concrete clues as to your next steps. 17. What to Do When You Find Something: More often than you think inspiration or the answer to what you should do next has come to you, you just didn't listen or take it seriously, and it's not your fault. We are conditioned through our society to see inspiration suspiciously: as a sugar high of mind, as an unsustainable pipe dream. We like go of the inspiration and say it wasn't real. But here's the thing; chances are that if something is pulling your heartstrings, it's doing so for a reason, and that reason is it's trying to point you to where you should go next. When you don't know what you want to do with your life, even the tiniest inner suggestion is a mighty lead. Take the small whispers of curiosity seriously. When you do this, keep this in mind. The price of an authentic, fulfilling life is two things, trust and risk. Unfortunately, there's no detour around this. The ones who have crafted a life out of what they love are the ones who have trusted their visits of inspiration and one with it, despite the risk of failing and looking foolish. You have to put in courage. But the good news is that this courage is a skill. It becomes easier with practice. I love how author Tama Rieves puts it, ''An inspired moment is the universe's way of introducing you to yourself. Inspired moments are the times when you are connected with your true blueprint, a quiet wisdom or boundless love. But if you do not feed them, they cannot feed you. To live an extraordinary life is to trust your inspired moments more than you trust in anything else.'' As you go about your day, try to see if you're automatically discounting visits of inspiration. 18. A Note on Practicality: You're likely to notice how in all of these exercises we've done, I've asked you to not think about the constraints. For example, how can I turn this interest into my livelihood? At this phase, I encourage you to keep it that way, you really want to focus first on freely exploring your curiosity crumbs. Thinking about the constraints in this phase can block you from taking those crucial steps needed to start unfolding your authentic life. Remember, this exploration does not need to be dramatic. It does not have to be expensive, especially nowadays when there's so many amazing free learning resources out there online. It does not need to be time-intensive either, just like exercise, consistency over intensity is the key in this exploration phase. Later down the road, when you find something you'd want to make a bigger part of your life, that's the time to start thinking about the practicalities. For example, how can I make a living while engaging in this passion for significant part of my day? It's like writing a book. Most authors say they free write first, exploring every avenue of their story that comes to mind, even if they don't know what the whole story will look like. Then once they have explored and honed in on their story spine, that's where they start editing and thinking about the constraints of their book. In this case, you're exploring the potential avenues your life story can take before you start editing and putting all the parts together. I also encourage you to take a look around and notice what people who do what they love are doing to sustain themselves. When you do, you'll find how the traditional starving artists model just doesn't hold anymore. Nowadays, you find people running lucrative businesses from all kinds of passions, whether that's sourdough baking or pastel painting in a very specific style. We're lucky since the Internet makes this all possible now. You also find people who don't necessarily run businesses from their passions, but make their income through other creative ways that allowed them to have time to do what they love. Exposing yourself to these role models who make a sustainable and even flourishing income while doing what they love, can help you gain extra motivation to explore your curiosities as you now see what's possible. 19. Course Wrap-Up and Parting Thoughts: I hope this course has helped you recenter and has given you valuable clarity to help you discern constructively your next steps. Remember, this is a scavenger hunt, it's a fun side gig. Try not to take it too seriously, and let yourself have some fun with it. I know it's uncomfortable, but try your best not to rush. Follow the bread crumbs, follow love. I cannot wait to see what you will discover. For now, I'm going to leave you with the wise words of Steve Jobs, "You've got to find what you love. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it. So keep looking until you find it. Don't settle." Cheering you on, until next time. 20. GUIDED 15 Min Clarity Meditation: Welcome, everyone. Welcome to the safe space where we're going to recenter, reconnect with ourselves, and listen intently without judgment. If you are feeling scattered, anxious, or fearful that you don't know what you should do next, perhaps you're in a transition or you just don't feel like where you are now is authentic to your being. Know that what you are feeling is normal. As unsettling as it feels, trust me, I've been there, these feelings are not signs that you are hopeless, that you're failing, or that a joyful, meaningful life is not meant for you. No, these feelings form a totally normal experience when you are on the way to finding yourself and living out an authentic life. They are the rite of passage, you are not alone. This meditation is intended to guide you to coming home to yourself and reconnecting with your inner intelligence, listening and feeling into what it has to say. Now, there's no right way or wrong way to do this. All I ask is that you relax and let this gentle guidance move through you, loosening any knots you may find along the way. First, settle into a comfortable position, either sitting on a cushion or a chair. Hit pause if you need some time, and play again when ready. Now that you are comfortably seated, slowly sway your spine back and forth, side to side until you hit that sweet spot where your spine is comfortably upright. Imagine a string attached to the top of your head being pulled upwards and enjoy the small tilt as you stretch for your spine. Take a deep breath from your belly, the deepest breath you have taken in your day. Feel the firmness of the ground beneath you, pushing you up with support. Any striving, any weight that you're holding up, drop it to the ground, and feel the relief. Gently bring your attention to your skin. Feel the air making contact with it, the air's soft, cool caress like a soothing soul. Notice the sounds around you, whether it's a spacious silence of your room, voices of people nearby, or the soft pitter-patter of rain. Let these sounds melt into you, become one with the sound. We're now going to relax our body, loosening any tension from our head to our toes. As we travel down, feel the center of gravity moving from your head, down to your belly. First, let your eyeballs gently soften in their sockets and let your eyelashes fall. Let any furrows in your forehead relax. Unclinch your jaw and relax every tooth. Feel the hair on your scalp go slack. Now generally feel your throat, is there something unspoken stuck there? If so, relax. Imagine every vocal cord at rest, in peaceful stillness. Sensing into your shoulders, let any tightness soften. Your arm, drop them heavy, as if they were made of lead, and sink them down onto your lap. Relax your wrist and fingers. Let the muscles of your heart release anything you're carrying. Allow the softness of your breath to dissolve any hardness there. Let it all go. Now gently move your attention to your belly. Feel the rise and fall of your belly with every breath. Focus your attention on your navel, about two finger widths down from your belly button. Breath into this point as if you were shaking hands with it. This is where intuition lies. Feel its entering force and sense its wisdom, its intelligence. You may have felt its presence here when you felt something in your gut. You can visualize that a wise sage lives here. Perhaps he or she looks like yourself, just older and wiser. Let whatever image come to your mind. Imagine this figure smiling at you. Someone incredibly loving, who knows your purpose and is your past advocate. We're going to start asking your intuition questions. First, I will guide you, then I will open up the floor for you-all to have a conversation. Sometimes these answers come in the form of an image or a feeling. Sometimes nothing comes and that's okay. If you haven't been in touch with your intuition, chances are that it's shy and needs more familiarity with you. If nothing comes, just send it loving energy knowing you're building trust for future conversations. Embrace whatever comes. Kindly ask your intuition, are there any labels or expectations that are keeping me from inhabiting my true self? Now, ask you intuition, what is the next step I should take? Be open to whatever arises without judgment. I'll give you a few minutes now for you to reconnect and ask questions. Remember, don't scare your intuition away with expectations or judgment. If you still feel like staying in the conversation, pause this meditation and continue when you're ready. Wrapping up your conversational, saying your intuition with a smile knowing you made it stay by your visit and that you're always welcome back. We're now going to continue traveling down our body. Relax your pelvis, loosen your thighs, your knees, your ankles, your feet, and let this relaxation ooze into your toes, unwinding each one. Smile to your body, thanking it for all the hard work it does for you everyday. Now that this feeling of peace is the ground state of your being, like the ground beneath your feet, always supporting you, ready to welcome you back whenever you need it. We're gently going to open our eyes now. Take a gentle overhead stretch and close this meditation. Thank you-all for joining me in the space. Wishing you a beautiful day. 21. BONUS: Signs You have Found Something: A big question I get often is how do I know if I found something true to me that's worth pursuing? Here are the common signs I have found. When you think about this thing, you feel excited, lit up from the inside. Now this doesn't have to be fireworks. It can be a quiet spark, an invert, emitting energy within you. You feel an intuitive tag towards this thing. Almost a sense of familiarity, as if it's bringing you home. When you engage with it, you feel like you're playing. Whereas for others, it can feel like work. You want to learn everything you can about it, and may look like a mad person for caring about it in ways that others don't. You feel like this thing or medium is an extension of your body. For example, musicians will often feel like they're instruments are part of their bodies. When I'm filming, I feel like my camera is an extension of my body. You lose a sense of time and enter flow when engaging with it. You're able to perceive nuances in whatever you're feeling towards when others don't. For example, I know this ex lawyer, cheese maker, who at the beginning of this cheese learning, could perceive slight differences in the tastes and textures of cheese that most people couldn't. If something else comes to mind, I invite you to share it in the discussion. I'd love to hear what you think is a sign that shows whether someone has found their thing or passion.