“It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for, and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing.” – Oriah Mountain Dreamer
Inside of living my divine assignment (aka purpose), I coach some amazing women on this planet, and through hundreds of hours of coaching, I have come to realize that we all ache or long for something in our lives. We are asked what our dreams are by the people we love, but true fulfillment is based in more intensity than just the dreams that we can describe to others. I say we yearn, long, ache in our bodies for those things that we are truly meant to create in our lifetimes; our yearnings are a matter of the energy that lives in our bodies that has to be expressed or it turns in on itself.
For women, I believe this longing lies in energy that lies somewhere between the root energy center (root chakra located at the base of the spine) and the sacral energy centers (sacral chakra which is located right below the navel). It’s an ache, a throbbing in our bellies that when we get in touch with can bring us to tears and move us beyond measure. It is the throbbing that has to do with a yearning to leave your DNA imprint, your unique electromagnetic signature on the world. Many describe it as a heat, or the opposite of sensations that feels like icy cold water in the gut.
It is no accident that the feeling I am describing is located exactly where we give birth to a life. Yet, even if we have children, I have found with many women that the ache to bring something into the world still remains. I describe it as a longing for something more to come through us. I say this longing is the divine wanting to realize herself in the this world. Mostly the act of awakening to and feeling your Soul’s yearning is literally a portal to the divine and HER direction that never leads us astray.
So what does this look like real time? Maybe your ache and longing is to finally find your soulmate, or to be in a job that uses all of your gifts, or maybe it’s to express yourself fully creatively. But here is the thing, we all yearn to create and contribute something that actually shows up in a longing. I have come to call this longing our “awakened yearning,” and it’s where I start with my clients. Accessing this yearning is the foundation of everything for us, it’s the authentic root system for our dreams from our hearts not our good ideas from our heads. The fulfillment of this ache creates the garden called our life, which can be filled with a gorgeous variety of plants, flowers, trees and foliage or not. This garden can simply be an amazing place to cultivate in ourselves.
No one’s yearning is the same.
I yearned for my twin flame (or Soul Mate which is what we called it in the 80’s) to show up. But it wasn’t from a place of needing a guy to complete me. It was from a place of wanting to experience love on the deepest of levels. Like the Romeo and Juliet kind without the sad ending. I journaled for hours what it he would feel like, look like, be like.
In the West, we get confused about the fulfillment of it, though. We ache to be fully self-expressed, so we think we need to be a celebrity instead of finding a way to fulfill on that self-expression, which maybe is about writing, singing or painting. We ache to feel powerful so we end up wanting money and the stuff that comes with it because we think that that will give us power.
The money ache is the biggest illusion in our current culture. We think and advertising convinces us that if we get and have all the stuff in life then we will be happy. I could count on one hand how many people I know who have been enormously successful in realizing the American dream yet there is no happiness to be found anywhere. I find more consistently that the more you have, the more dissatisfaction and unhappiness you can experience because you are in this hamster wheel of stress trying to hold on to it all.
This leads me to defining what the awakened yearning really is.
One of the definitions of “awakened” is to “rouse a feeling.” It takes going through a process of awakening to trust the inner voice (the gut sense) which ultimately takes feeling it. This is also called trusting your intuition that once you trust in it has the chance to start guiding you and your life.
This intuitive self absolutely has something to say about what is the right path for you to take. It takes weeding through our inner critics (masked in the voice that talks to us in our heads) with precision to find the nuggets of wisdom that lie deep within. In order to trust it, it takes doing the work to uncover any leftover scarring we have from our childhoods that kept us from being too big, too bright, too bold, too much for others and covering it up.
As I have shared, this kind of inner work can be sometimes gruelling, yet always produces breakthroughs that can lead to magnificent living if taken on with an “I am all in” attitude.
I use the word “yearning” because all of us have an ache or longing to grow, to learn, to develop ourselves and contribute something that may look however it looks. It could be by being the most amazing mom, or part of a company, or being an entrepreneur or politician. But we all want growth and our brains are actually wired for it. I know this sounds like a “pie in the sky” statement, but what occurs is also backed up by neuroscience. Research now proves that our brains are meant to expand, grow and develop.
We are born with millions of neurons that if not used go through a process of being pruned or basically eliminated. Activating neurons and connecting them is what promulgates growth, and as they say, neurons that fire together wire together. Another way of saying that whatever doesn’t get wired doesn’t fire together. To do anything in our lives takes a line-up of neurons working as a collective to produce activities.
Dr. Michael Merzenich, PhD, a leading pioneer in brain plasticity research and Professor University, said in an interview that “You don’t realize it but as you acquire an ability – let’s say, the ability to read – you actually create a system in the brain that does not exist, or that’s not in place, in the non-reader. It [the ability] actually evolves in the brain.”
We seek to learn and develop ourselves through learning a new language, taking a dance class, traveling abroad or changing jobs because we are meant to be growing and developing. As Dr. Merzenich also explains in his body of work, “your brain is designed and constructed to be stimulated and challenged, and to carefully examine, resolve and interpret your environment.”
I say that when we listen to our awakened yearnings, we are listening for those inner longings and desires (our soul’s desires not to be confused with your head’s desires) that create growth and expansion for us because they aren’t necessary logical or part of our normal day-to-day choices. Our brains want to grow, our very beings search for expansion and the awakened yearning is the language for the growth process.
Sadly, we are not trained to listen to or even if we do we are not nurtured to trust that voice within us. We are not told to trust our instincts as children. We are not raised to embrace what we think is true even if we think it is magical dragons floating around the room. This is of no fault to adults because as adults we think we are doing are best to prepare them for the “real world” by teaching our children about what is apparently real and what is not. Yet, our yearnings are sourced from a similar place of creation in our imagination. The difference being that we feel the yearnings in our body, and if you are sensitive, there is not much you can do to push the yearnings down or put the proverbial eternal flame out once ignited.
If you don’t listen to the yearning, you suffer. It’s that simple!
So how do we discover our awakened yearnings? Read on to find my recommended steps to take to awaken your yearnings!
- BE STILL: We are so distracted that we move constantly from one thing to another. The first step of awakening is to get still, be still for more than a few moments & be comfortable doing so.
- BE OPEN AND VULNERABLE: We use the distraction of being busy, social media, numbing out, etc, to keep us focused on our outer world. These can be tools for total avoidance of what we are feeling or experiencing internally. We need to shift our focus to being willing to be open and ready for identifying and recognizing how we feel. So breathe deeply and drop into your body.
- ACHE/ YEARN: Just sit still with your core yearning. Let it be there once it is awakened and present. Use the yearning to guide the dreams you have and the vision you see for your life. Now write in a journal: I ache for … and fill in the space or I yearn for…. and fill in the space. (For me, I ache for true and deep love and connection, and my marriage and my relationship with my fulfills on that yearning!)
- ALIGN: Now make sure your awakened yearnings that you wrote down *align with your dreams and ideally your big choices in life”. Aligning your yearnings to your career, your self-expression and journey provides the ultimate rich garden of fulfillment. (Note: your dreams can come from your head so aligning to your dreams making sure your body literally “feels” what it would be like to manifest a dream.)