Discovering Your Life Purpose

I'm publicly sharing one of the exclusive Q&A episodes recorded for my Patreon supporters, so you can hear a sample of the bonus content. This episode answers a question from the listeners about "Discovering Your Life Purpose." The Q&A content for patrons of the show is shaping up to be somewhere between personal mini-readings and universal questions people have about spirituality and personal development.

This episode has a full text transcript below.


20 - Discovering Your Life Purpose


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Hey, thanks for listening to the ‘Shift Your Spirits’ podcast. I’m your host, Slade Roberson. For eleven years now, I’ve been a professional intuitive and the author of the blog ‘Shift Your Spirits’, where I try to write about spirituality with fewer hearts and flowers than most new age blather. I also mentor emerging intuitives, psychics and healers in a program called Automatic Intuition.

Today I am talking about life purpose. Of course, as always, I have an oracle segment at the end of the show. So be thinking about a question or concern you have, hold it in your mind and I’ll come back on at the end after the final links and credits and leave you with an extra message.

But before I forget, I wanted to mention a few milestones that are happening right now. It is Wednesday, July 26th, 2017 as I record this. My birthday was Sunday, July 23rd and I am the first day of Leo. Hey to all the other Leos out there.

I should’ve told you last week so you could’ve, you know, sent me a birthday message in time, but I, you know, sometimes the way I record these episodes and when they actually go live is not so timely. I also like to make, you know, this content as evergreen as possible, but I have heard from some of you that you do enjoy it when I tell you a little bit about what’s going on in my life, currently, and those of you who keep up and listen to each episode as they come out will probably appreciate this a little bit more, but, who knows. It might be interesting to look back someday if I ever listen to an archive episode and remember, you know, where I was at the time and place that I created the episode.

Anyway, so the reason why this is significant other than this being my birthday, it was also a new moon in Leo. And it’s one of two new moons that are occurring in Leo, which is very unusual, from what I hear. And it’s also the start of an eclipse season. We’re going to have an eclipse coming up here in August. I’m sure you’ve heard about it. If you want to know the exact dates of all this stuff, like the new moon in leo, and when the eclipse happens and what sign it’s in, all that stuff, be sure and Google it for exact information. I don’t go really deep with a lot of astrology because that would be entirely its own podcast, and there are people, greater minds than me, speaking about astrology. Incidentally, I really like Chani Nicholas, as far as an astrologer that I follow and read, and Rob Brezsny’s Free Will Astrology always makes me happy. I’ll try to remember to go back and put those in the show notes for you so you can check them out.

But, you know, just to, kind of, bullet down for you as you’re thinking about, what does this all mean for me right now, you know. If you’re listening to the archives in the future, I want you to think about the fact that it doesn’t mean that it’s not relevant. Because there’s always something significant about when a message comes to you. And that can happen out of time, so just, you know, think about what I’m saying here about what this means and apply that to wherever you are at this time when you’re listening to this.

This phenomenon, or this energy that’s moving through right now, from the best that I can tell, is really about identity and issues of, you know, shedding your skin and transforming in some way, and so, everything that I’m reading, it kind of feels disruptive and major and it’s revolving around big questions, like, who am I in the world, and, you know, what am I doing, and what is my role? And I know it felt a little bit more intense to me leading up to the new moon, whereas the new moon feels like it kind of gave new energy to this question. So it went, for me, from feeling like a crisis of “oh my god what am I doing with my life” to more of a sense of “okay, you know what, this is who I am, this is what I really need to kind of man up here and let go of, and here are some things that, you know, aren’t working for me as much anymore. And, my theory is that when you hear something like this, you know, whether you believe in the astrology or maybe you believe in the synchronicity of what I’m talking about and how it applies to what you’re going through right now. Whenever you get these messages, I think it’s important – there’s a part of you that - flash - instantly knows, what it’s talking about, right? There’s a part of you that’s like, ohmygod, that’s talking about my job, or, you know, whatever it might be. Or “ohmygod, they’re talking about that project that I really secretly want to do.” And when you have that sense of knowing, like, “Ooooo I know what this is talking to me about”, I think you need to willfully take that, drag it out into the light, and deal with it as purposefully as possible. Because when you don’t, what tends to happen is, it kind of – you get dragged into it and it kind of tends to happen TO you, and you have less control over it. The circumstances are usually not as empowering as well.

So, when you know you’re like, facing some kind of change and you have a glimpse into, *sigh* this is what I need to do. Do it. Just make it happen. Don’t wait for it to happen to you. That’s my philosophy. And, as always, you know, it is a choice. So I don’t know. I like to be the one who gets to make the choice, if at all possible. There’s a lot of responsibility in controlling something, but I do believe that, you know, stuff happens and you’re going to have to go through stuff, and it’s just so much easier to do it like a leader, you know. Just to go in and make something happen, even when it’s difficult. So, that’s kind of my thought process. That may be very personal to me, but hopefully that mirrors you in some way. And is adaptable to some of what you’re contemplating this week.

Anyway, other milestones about the podcast.

This is the 20th episode of the podcast! And, from all the statistics that I’ve read, there’s this figure that always floats around out there. If you are in the podcasting community, or you listen to people who teach and talk about the medium, you’ll hear a lot that most podcasts do not make it past 15 episodes. So I’m a little bit happy that I’ve flown past that mile marker there. And thank you for your support in making that happen! I mean, if you weren’t listening to it, there’d be no reason for me to keep making it.

I’ve heard this other metric about podcasts – that there’s a kind of significant milestone when you reach 20,000 listens. That somehow really legitimizes what you’re putting out there and makes you kind of visible as someone who is, you know, doing this for real. It tends to be that people who advertise are looking at that metric as a kind of proof of staying power. So, 20,000 listens sounds like a lot, but, at the time that I’m recording this, we are at 9719 listens for the show, like 300 more episode downloads and we’ll be at 10,000. I’m actually pretty confident that by the time you’re listening to this, we’ve actually already crossed the 10,000 mark. So, you know, in a few short months, we are halfway to that milestone of 20,000 listens! You know, halfway there. So, that’s really cool, and exciting.

And, the other thing that I wanted to say about the podcast this week is, just kind of how blown away I am by how many of you have responded to my request to support the show on Patreon. I cannot tell you how much it excites me – the whole Patreon phenomenon, which, you know, you can – I’ll give you a link in a little bit and you can go check it out and see what it’s all about – but, I can’t tell you what this would have done for me 11 years ago when I first started blogging ‘Shift Your Spirits’. At that time, the only way to really support your show financially was through, you know, annoying Google ad-blocks, and I really hate that automated third-party advertising. It just – it feels really inauthentic to me. And, you know, sometimes you get this weird, like, you know, political ad or something, you know, that you would totally not support and it’s like flashing right there in the middle of your post that you spent all this time and energy on, and it’s – in some cases, maybe even, you know, opposite of the message that you’re trying to put out into the world. There are a million reasons why I just don’t like it, but 11 years ago, you know, I chose to put it out as a passion project, and to work week-after-week putting out content. And, you know, I supported myself through doing readings for other people, and that really, you know, kind of paid for the show, so to speak, and allowed me to keep doing it. But it would have been really amazing 11 years ago to have had the opportunity for people who loved the blog and were reading each week to just have a way to donate to the show and support it. And I can’t imagine what kind of support that could have grown into over this length of time.

So, anyway, you know, that didn’t happen. That didn’t line up for me. But it’s lining up for me now as I’m shedding my skin and kind of evolving my storytelling and writing into being this conversational audio medium, which is very exciting and I really love to do it. So there’s this whole, kind of, re-birthing going on for me, and a shedding of the skin, which, you know, there’s a lot of people who are dropping away at the same time who, maybe the audio doesn’t appeal to. So, you know, there’s some growing pains involved in this, but there’s a real passion behind the people who really like the show, and that means so much to me, and it’s really evidenced by the support on Patreon.

So, one of the things that we are doing to address the fact that there are still a lot of people who love this show, or love this content, who have been following the blog for many years, who just want to read it, or maybe they have a limitation that makes the audio difficult for them, and that is to offer full transcripts of the shows, which is amazing for a lot of different reasons. So, you know, just as synchronicity would have it, someone within my community, one of you out there listening, Alan – thank you very much - introduced me to a young woman who is transcribing the show! Long story short, she was here and she found me and the story of how she found me was really too cool to ignore, and so I decided to go ahead and pay myself out of pocket, up front, even though the podcast is not really at the point that it can support her, I’ve gone ahead and hired her. She’s too good and too perfect for what we’re trying to accomplish here. So yes, thanks to Linda – Linda, I’m sure you’re listening and typing away – anyway, just a little shout out to you.

Also a shout out to the latest supporters on Patreon:

Leanne Steiner, Titti Backstrom, Helen Auburn, Laura Speltz, Nick Lovelady

Nick, I gotta tell you, you’re the first and currently only male supporter of the podcast. Now, I know there are other guys listening, because I hear from you and I know who you are and I talk to you about the show. Thank you for listening. So I am challenging the other guys though, to show up and make their support known on Patreon as well. I truly appreciate all of you who have pledged your support. It demonstrates that you’re enjoying the show and you want for it to continue, and that’s very encouraging to me. In addition to covering the young woman who is diligently transcribing these episodes, you can also support my time in producing the show by pledging your support on Patreon for as little as $1/month. And listeners who support on Patreon can also access bonus Q&A episodes where you send in questions, I record answers to them, and they go out to patrons of the show exclusively.

So, if you want to find out how you can become a patron, especially if you would like to see transcripts of all these shows continue, please go to

And speaking of the bonus episodes, today I’m sharing one of the exclusive Q&A episodes I recorded for my patrons about life purpose. So you can get a glimpse into what these extra episodes are all about. I am actively collecting questions from my patrons. One of the things I’m noticing about these episodes that’s different is these kind of, they’re kind of like these mini-readings. Or somewhere between a personal, individual reading and a public talk on the subject. And it’s a really good venue for speaking directly to your question when it represents something that a lot of other people are interested in hearing answered as well. You know, the Universal stuff. And it’s proof of how our most individual questions are also universal questions, right? So it’s interesting that pattern is emerging.

Anyway, without further chitchat, here is a taste of the exclusive bonus episodes for my Patreon supporters: Discovering your life purpose.

Hey, welcome to the first Q&A of the ‘Shift Your Spirits’ podcast. This episode was created exclusively for people who support the show on Patreon. So, of course, thanks again for your support. It truly means the world to me and I am happy to record some special bonus content just for you guys. If you have a question you’d like me to answer, you can send me a message through the Patreon page itself, or you can just email me:

So our first question comes from Emilia and it’s a doozy. It’s a big Life Purpose question but, you know, I think it’s probably truly representative of one of the biggest questions that everyone has. Emilia writes, “How do you figure out how to serve spiritually? How do you find your "why" or what it is you are put on this earth to do. It's my biggest frustration, because I know the answer is probably sitting right in front of me.”

Okay, yeah, so, I mean, part of that you answered yourself in that, you know, it probably is sitting right in front of you. It’s probably so much a part of what you already do that there is a little bit of a ‘forest for the trees’ scenario going on here. And, you know, I always have the image of the person who is looking for their sunglasses and they’re on the top of their head, you know that thing that we do. Those kinds of things come to mind. But I get it, because there’s a part of it that’s inherent and it is what it is, and it’s sort of foisted on you, or it’s sort of a part of your DNA, and then there’s another aspect of it that’s very much chosen. It’s a wilful choice. And I just want to say, kind of as a disclaimer, that this is a question that is a lot easier to get at working with someone one-on-one, obviously, right? So, if you were to book a reading with me or book a session around this, this is, literally, like, 90-something percent of the readings that I get touch on this idea of life purpose or career or creative entrepreneurship. The place where sort of all those things swirl together. What’s my major? That kind of thing.

It’s weird that I really struggle to come up with some sort of Top 10 list of ways to discover your purpose or something like that. So forgive me. I’m going to go with a little bit more of a rambly thought process. I’ve been jotting down notes since I received Emilia’s question and, you know, she didn’t really use the term “life purpose”, but that’s sort of what she’s getting at. And, so, I’m going to do my best to give some general thoughts that maybe anyone can sort of apply to this question, or this search, and, you know, it’s a hard thing to say to someone, but relax the search a little bit. Sometimes the people who are trying so hard and so desperately and working and really sort of exhausting themselves trying to figure this out are not getting any closer by doing that. So, just keep that in mind. Let’s chill out on this a little bit and relax and think about letting it emerge for us. Because the thing is, whenever anyone mentions life purpose, or what you came here to do, or what your dream is for your life, there are things that flash on the screen of your mind, and I would bet that a lot of what you do when that flash occurs is suppress it. Ignore it. Sweep it under the rug. Tell yourself, like, no I can’t be that. I can’t ask for that. There’s something there, oftentimes, that people simply don’t acknowledge. You kind of know what your purpose is, but you’re afraid of it.

So I have a couple of questions for you that I really want you to think about and meditate on. If you want to pause this, grab a pen or grab your phone, notes, app, or whatever it is so that you can write these down. I want you to really sort of contemplate a couple of things.

So question number 1: What’s the thing you’re afraid to tell people your purpose is? Okay. The other question that I want you to think about is, what did your purpose used to be before you talked yourself out of it?

So, a few things should be coming to mind there. And maybe you need to go off when you’re not listening to me ramble on about this. You know, go and really meditate on those two questions. But, some things should start to emerge for you. Do some journaling around that. Put those questions at the top of a page as header and set a timer and just do some automatic writing, and write everything that you can think of in answer to that question and see what comes up for you. There are some things in there that want to emerge. I promise you.

So, lets - again, it’s kind of hard to speak about this in a general way because it sounds really abstract. So, let’s think, you know, that thing that kind of flashes in your mind, the thing that you’re sort of afraid to tell people that your purpose is, you know, the dream that’s too big to share, the dream that scares you or embarrasses you a little bit. Whatever that might be, let’s put it front and centre in our consciousness, right? And the first thing that I would advise you to do is just sort of move towards it vaguely, with a lurch, with a guess. Just sort of an educated, like, I want to go over that way. My purpose somehow is to be a writer so the first thing that I’m going to move towards is simply writing something. Or towards creating a list of ideas of things that I’d like to write. So just a general movement towards that thought process. Okay?

And so, the next step, or maybe, you know, it’s something more altruistic. It’s some kind of volunteer work or philanthropy. And so, you think, you know what, in my heart, I want to be someone who raises tons of money and really changes people’s lives. I want to go into a town and, you know, establish clean water for an entire village in a part of the world that doesn’t have it. And, by the way, I know a woman who did that. She never bragged about it. I only found out about it at her memorial service after she’d passed. But anyway. So - maybe she’s here with us reminding us of different examples of what purpose is. It’s not always something creative. Emilia’s question was specifically about how do you serve spiritually.

So let’s say you have just this sort of vague sense of – I want to do something to make a difference. I want to help people in some way. I want to change their lives. So that’s a vague kind of bulls-eye, but it’s still a target and it’s something that you can move towards. So the first thing you want to do is simply try something in the vicinity of whatever that thing is. Make something or do something. Here’s the key - for others. Make something, do something, for others, that’s in the vicinity of that feeling, right? Because you’re kind of testing, you’re pinging the idea, you’re throwing something at it. You know, the image of throwing spaghetti at the wall and seeing if it sticks, okay? That’s what you’re doing. That’s sort of the first step in trying to find your way. So it’s a call-and-repeat, a Marco Polo kind of game that you’re playing with yourself and the rest of the world and the Universe. And it involves other people.

So, the answer to your purpose is in the feedback from other people. So, sometimes you have to start that volley, start that conversation, that back and forth, the experience. So you have to lop the first shot. You have to say, I’m gonna volunteer for this soup kitchen at Thanksgiving. I’m going to go and serve some meals, or whatever. From that experience, you know, things happen. You make other connections. You meet someone there. You’re able to share again. Put it out there. Share it with someone. Let someone in that environment know about your dream. Share it. Someone will then have a next step for you. So the feedback will come from other people in the vicinity of what it is that you’re doing.

If your purpose is something more creative, like the example of being a writer, then you need to write something. And put it out there. And allow people to give you some feedback about it. You need to get direction from outside your own head. And you also need affirmation. You know, that you’re kind of on the right path. The thing is, once you take that first step and get that feedback, that clue, it’s like the Amazing Race. Every step there’s like a ticket waiting for you with an instruction for the next round of activity or action. So, all you got to do is move towards the vicinity of what you think your purpose could be, what you’re afraid it might be, what you’re shy about it, acknowledging it, or maybe you’re truly passionate and really direct about it and you’ve just been procrastinating. You know, there’s those people who – they really know what their purpose is. You know, maybe they’re a singer or musician and they haven’t performed in years. They sing in the shower but they haven’t written a song, they haven’t picked up the guitar that’s sitting in the corner of the room. You’ve got to do something and you can’t do it in your ivory tower where there’s no feedback. You need feedback from other people. You need to hear – "Yes, you’re really talented" or "Yes, that resonated with me." "There’s something there", "You’re on to something." And then you follow those clues towards the next step.

Another thing that’s really effective in getting a ball rolling and serving spiritually is simply to host something. Hosting something is a really powerful position to be in. And, you know, this doesn’t have to be necessarily a big event that involves a lot of expense or, you know, logistics. It could be something as simple as hosting a Facebook group where you can discuss a particular topic. Invite all your friends and, you know, get other people involved. The idea in hosting something is, it’s a selfless thing to hold space for other people to participate around that topic or that purpose that you have. So it’s not just about you saying, “I’m a leader, here follow me”. It’s more about you saying, “Here, I’ll cover the admin. I’ll make this space and create a cool graphic for it, and I’ll, you know, monitor the comings and goings of people who want to join the group. You know, I’ll market it a little bit, put the word out there, I’ll be in charge. You guys just come and participate. Come and participate with each other.”

And, the cool thing is, in providing a forum or space for an event that you’re hosting for other people, thinking about them and the connections they make, everyone knows who the host is. Everyone goes through the host. Everyone greets you. Everyone sends you the Facebook request to ask to be in the group. And so you kind of get to touch everyone in the room, and everyone associates it with you in a way that may come up for them later. But by hosting something, you’re establishing yourself in a very passive way, and in a way that serves other people as being someone connected to this idea, and so you are kind of planting yourself in other people’s minds as being someone connected with this idea. And so, that will create opportunities for you because when they are looking for people to participate in their events or their charities or their projects, they can invite you. You’re going to be top of the mind for everyone in that group. So hosting something is a really good idea. It’s a powerful marketing tool, by the way, and it’s a very authentic and unsleazy way to put yourself out into the world. So host something.

The thing to remember though is, once you put whatever it is outside yourself, it’s kind of not yours anymore. And you don’t really want it to be, right? Because you’re wanting to serve other people. So it belongs to the world, once you create that thing and you put it out there. It belongs to the people who receive it. And those people who care about it can begin to manage some aspect of it for you. And often you will find allies. You know, I recently had the experience, if you listen to the podcast, which I know you do, of having somebody take a post that I did and turn it into a coaching modality. Diana Frajman with the 3x3 project, and a lot of people have written to me and, you know, it resonated with them about how they’re applying that to themselves. So my purpose was really so, kind of, secondary in that whole experience. I mean, it’s part of what I do. I share ideas around spirituality and productivity and, you know, just how I manage my own life. And I put it out there in a way that it’s meant to serve other people. Someone else came along and took it up and adopted it and made it into something else. And so, you know, I’m attached to it in a way, but, you know, it’s almost as an observer and as a participant myself. So that’s a really cool feeling.

And the fact of the matter is, I didn’t do that on my very first post. You know, this is after years and years of writing, and there are little things here and there that I’ve put out that people have taken and done other things with, and so it really is about other people. You know, putting yourself out there in a really authentic way and kind of not having any expectation about it. And waiting and seeing where other people place the emphasis. And then you can respond to that further.

So, you know, at that point you’re really just kind of following where people are asking you to go. And this is a really good clue about developing a practice, developing a business. Being – this is something that I tell my students in my intuitive mentoring program – your clients have the direction and the instructions for you about where you’re supposed to go. It’s not so much about you, again, going into the ivory tower and deciding what your purpose is and then coming down off the mountain with your stone tablets and announcing to the world what it is. It’s a little bit of a back and forth. You’ve got to get it going outside your head. You gotta ping the Universe. You gotta throw something out to the crowd. See what they do with it, and adapt accordingly. And follow where they want to go. If you simply look around in your life and you step back and you take note, start, maybe, even taking a record. What do people ask of you? You know, what do people come to you for. There are certain kinds of things that you’re the go-to person for, right? Maybe it’s things that people complain to you about. It may not seem so altruistic and lovely, but start to take note of what it is that people are asking you to do, because you could go through life in service by simply answering the questions that people have for you. Or by simply doing the things that people request whenever you see someone in need of something and you think, “Okay, well how can I provide that for them? You could go through your entire life just, sort of, doing that, and I would say that that would definitely be a life of purpose. You have to really listen and observe. These directives can kind of go right over your head because you’re so busy looking for something – Tada! You know, like, big and important and The Thing.

So I imagine in my mind that there’s like a Venn diagram, right? There’s an overlap – imagine 3 circles – what you’re good at, what you enjoy, what other people care about, and there’s a point in the centre where your talents and what you love and what other people care about overlap. But also think about, you know, the thing that you have had to strive the hardest to conquer in life – how that overlaps with something that a lot of other people suffer as well. What’s something that you have struggled with and survived, that you see a lot of other people struggling with in the world? Think about that Venn diagram. Where does that overlap occur? That can also be a clue.

You know, there are clues to your purpose hiding in your dreams. There are clues in your childhood play. The things that you pretended and the things that you love to act out. It’s interesting to me – I always think it’s fun to think about the fact that kids like to pretend to work. You know, they play office and play all these like, you know, sit at a desk and perform menial paperwork. We used to like to pretend that we worked in a library and we would, like, stamp all our books. It’s such a, like, a thing that if you did have to do it as a job, you would not think of it as a joy. But obviously children recognise a joy in service, and in work and in performing those kind of activities and being efficient and creating organization out of chaos. So think about the things that you like to play as a little kid. What kind of stories are you drawn to? What do you love to read about? What stops you in your tracks on Facebook? What gets you to post an angry face? What gets you riled up and feeling outraged? There are clues there.

There are also clues, you know, in the thing you like to escape into. Maybe it’s as simple as the thing that you’re drawn to escape into, maybe you need to create that kind of escape for other people. Maybe you just, you know, voraciously read happy ending sweet romance novels. And, you know, it’s just your secret candy that you live for that keeps you going and bolsters you emotionally in the background and nobody even knows about it. So maybe you need to put some of those out there into the world. You could do it under a pen name. No one even has to know.

There are also clues to your purpose and how you can serve other people in your astrological chart. And again, this is something that I would look at with an individual person that I was doing a reading for. You know, I look at the True Node, or the North Node. There are a couple signs that show up there that tell me specific things. Obviously, I work with people who tend to have more similarities of purpose, and so there are certain things I look for there. There are clues in the Ascendant in your astrological chart, your rising sign, which is, you know, who you are in the world to other people, how other people perceive you and how you interact socially. There could be some real clues there. There are areas of your chart that, you know, affect your career, finances, creativity, sometimes there are clues in that part of your chart as well. But it’s really a synergy of all those things, you know, is there a pattern there? I might look at several different things and see something reoccurring and that might give me a clue.

But even when I’m doing a reading for someone, there’s a conversation. There’s a part of it that you have to provide. I can get you going in a general vibe, but when it really starts to come together is when you have those details and you have those specific things that light you up. And I can sense when we hit it, because I’ll get up and start pacing the room. It changes my energy when I’m talking to somebody about that stuff.

One other thing that I really want to stress again, you know, I did mention, you know, maybe your purpose in how you serve other people is connected to something that you’ve had to fight against, or something that wasn’t so great. Maybe it’s the worst thing that’s ever happened to you, or it’s the one thing you would change about your life. If you could get rid of anything about who you are and what you’ve experienced. You know what? I hate to tell you but that stuff’s gold, you know? One of the reasons that I interviewed Ryan McRae, the ADHD nerd, on the podcast was because he’s someone that I’ve encountered who chose this thing that’s been a huge challenge for him. It’s probably something that he never would’ve wanted to have. But he’s worked so hard to overcome it, and it occurred to him that like, “This sucks and this is hard for me and I’ve had to create all these systems just to allow me to kind of be on an even keel with other people”.

And so, what he does is he represents that sucky thing for other people who are experiencing it as well. There’s something extremely powerful and authentic in being coached or led or encouraged by someone who has crawled through the same shit as you. Obviously, the ditch that you’ve been through gives you some credibility that somebody who is just Pollyanna-perfect is like, no. You don’t want to hear what they have to say. You want to hear what the person who’s been through it has to say. And only someone who has been through what you’ve been through can really, really understand.

And so, think about what is it in your life that might represent that? How could you put that out into the world? How could you turn that around and make it service? And you know what’s funny is, as I’m saying that, I realize that that may be one of the most challenging ways to serve because it brings up a lot of issues of shame. Even if it’s something you can’t control. Something that is, you know, a disability, or something that was imposed upon you that’s not the result of something that you did or chose, but just a crappy hand that you were dealt or whatever. There’s still a lot of shame in standing up and saying, “Hey, I’m messed up in this way”, “I have this physical disability”, “I have this mental illness”, “I have this disease”. But if you can make that shift, if you can get past - what are my family and friends going to think - there’s millions of people out there for whom you could be a hero. So yeah, it’s not always something you’re good at, or you’re talented, you know, at doing. It’s not always, like, “Oh I’ve always wanted to dance and I took ballet when I was a child”. Sometimes your purpose is sharing how you survived the horrible, most worst thing in the world, and how you overcome a struggle for which you had no inherent gifts or talents or abilities and you had to scrap it together, you know. There’s a great opportunity there. There’s a wealth that’s a treasure chest. What’s the Joseph Campbell quote… where you… something about where you stumble is where your treasure lies.

“It is by going down into the abyss that we recover the treasures of life. Where you stumble, there lies your treasure.” ― Joseph Campbell

You know, your sense of purpose should be less about living a purpose and more about living with purpose. So don’t overlook the purpose you express in your every day life already. It’s in your relationships, it’s in how you conduct yourself with empathy and compassion. It’s a filter through which you judge everything. What you prioritize, the decisions you make. The bottom line may simply be, how do you contribute to others? How do you make the world a better place? How do you make someone’s day a little bit easier? And, you know, back when I first started doing this thing that I do that you know me for when I first decided, “Okay fine, I’ll do this purposeful thing. I’ll put myself out there and talk about my spirituality or whatever”. The message I kept getting from my guides – it was pretty creepy - I’ll have to tell you the story sometime of how I went to this trance-channelling event and the trance channel even said this message, but - the message that sort of launched ‘Shift Your Spirits’ that remains the driving affirmation, I suppose, is that:

You’re already everything that you’ve ever wanted to become. You fulfill your life purpose with every breath you take.

I want to leave you with one little thing. I was looking at, you know, the different things that I’ve written about purpose on my website, you know, seeing if I have any articles to pull from – which I really didn’t. I just kind of winged it, because it’s not something, like I said, that I’ve ever created a comprehensive BuzzFeed checklist post for. But I ran across this thing in my life purpose category. It’s a post called “How Badly Do You Want it”. And I wanted to read this and do a reading of it and kind of share this with you.

[Reading blog post] How Badly Do You Want It?

There seems to be this perception that identifying your passion is the hard part. Once you really nail that down and put your energy into something you truly love – can’t live without doing – that everything just “flows."

The flow, free of obstacles, is somehow the ultimate judgment on your choice and your efforts.

And then, here comes this video of Oprah talking about “failure" as simply helpful information trying to move you in another direction.

(I happily shared that video on Facebook; in the moment I ran across it, I thought it was a great message for anyone feeling overwhelmed and burnt out…)

But, wait – if it's not going well, I must be doing it wrong, right? That’s kind of the message. The idea that failure is trying to move you in another direction and be helpful. Some higher power must be trying to move you in another direction. So, where do we put all the success stories about perseverance, about all the people who didn't get it right on the first or second or third tries?

All this sounds good in new age theory, but I have to admit something to you: it is not my personal reality.

My websites have been hacked multiple times over the last few years — I didn’t take that as a “sign” that I should simply abandon eleven years' worth of published writing and twenty thousand readers and, “Oh well, you know, I’m getting hacked a lot. That’s the Universe’s way of telling me this is not my purpose. I’m just going to go do something else.”

My last book launch suffered from some technical difficulties and every planet you can name was in retrograde at the time that it happened. You know what? I have a whole other catalogue of books to release. So, that passion hasn’t changed. Just because everything in the world got thrown at me, and it was a hurdle, it's still the direction that I’m meant to go. You know, I didn’t decide that that’s somehow telling me “No, it’s not flowing so obviously you’re not supposed to be doing this anymore.”

My latest book — HAVENWOOD — which was really the Big One. I’ve put out non-fiction, obviously, and some shorter fiction, but I’d never written and released an epic historical fantasy novel. This was “I want to be a writer when I grow up” Big. It was a life-long dream of mine. It is a passion of mine.

After nineteen months of work, I imported the final edits for the formatting stage of that book, and… The text was jacked up with errors and random code.

It’s my “passion.” And it ain’t “flowing."

So here’s what I wanted to share with you from this:

Sometimes I think the Universe is sparring with me. It’s egging me on. It’s literally testing me. It’s not just trying to point out – oh things aren’t flowing very well for you, therefore you should change direction and that’s what failure’s trying to teach you. No. Here’s what I think is happening. I think the Universe is saying, “How badly do you want this?"

And I say, “More than all your potholes and razor wire, Universe. More than all your barriers and blocks.”

It’s not the first time that I’ve crawled out of a ditch and crossed the finish line bruised and bloodied.

It won’t be the last.

Fuck your flow, Universe. Fuck your flow. It’s not always about it being easy and it’s not always about it being flowing.

This post is ultimately a message about Perseverance.

So, yeah. Serving. Serving with Purpose. Finding your Purpose, choosing a Purpose. You know, you can make one. And you’ve got several. Do them all. Do a little bit of everything, but the main thing is, put it out there and get feedback. And the feedback will guide you. Maybe the feedback will tell you this is a brick wall, go in another direction. And it could happen. But don’t be discouraged. Because if it’s really something that’s meant to be, and it’s something that you’re really super drawn to, and you don’t have to think very hard to discover what it is and to go after it, then sometimes all those hurdles and the fact that it’s hard is, you know, the Universe’s way of testing you.

So, the thing about Purpose. You know, the conclusion about purpose is it’s both this big willful act, and at the same time, it’s this passive, just breathing and being who you are at the same time. And so it’s a volley back and forth between those two things. And I think what those things are is a spectrum of your energy as you project who you are to the world. Sometimes it’s just a little moment: you being you, smiling at a stranger on the sidewalk, answering a text from your friend, taking your kid somewhere they need to go. And then other times it’s you off in your office working really hard, blood sweat and tears for 19 months to produce a piece of art. So, it’s all that and everything else in between, but I hope that some of what I’ve said here has given you something to contemplate and to allow you to either affirm what it is that you’re doing or maybe gives you a new sense of direction.

Anyway, I’m going to stop rambling for now. Thank you for being a patron, and participating in this Q&A episode scenario. Really, seriously, send me your questions. This is a great prompt, and, you know, you can make them relatively personal. This is still a small group of people, so try to keep in mind, you know, that your question obviously I’m going to answer it in a way that it will speak to more than one of us, but there’s a small group of you in the room right now with me energetically out there representing, so send us your questions and I’ll keep creating these for you guys.

Thank you for your support.

Thanks again for listening to the ‘Shift Your Spirits’ podcast. For show notes, links, transcripts and all the past episodes, please visit

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Before I go, I promised to leave you a message in answer to a question or concern you may have. I pulled a card for a friend the other night after a long, late-night heart-to-heart conversation. From Colette Baron-Reid Wisdom of Avalon Oracle, which I have as an app on my phone. This deck and Oracle app were inspired by the Mists of Avalon, a novel by Marion Zimmer Bradley, which is one of my all time favorite works of fiction ever. It is probably why my own fiction is in the historical fantasy genre. Anyway, in just a moment, I’m going to read the card to you as today’s Oracle. The message of the card spoke not only to his situation and mine, but I feel like it speaks to this eclipse season as well, and the transformation that we’re going through.

So take a moment to think about your own issue. Hold it in your mind or speak it out loud. I’ll pause for just a few seconds right now.


Absolute truth, courage, self-respect and responsibility.

The Lady of the Lake represents the highest order of respect for yourself and the manner in which you operate within the world around you.

She is the harsher element of truth, where denial is swept away by a tidal wave of events.

In the ancient legend of Avalon, the Lady of the Lake presented Merlin with the sword of truth. The magic that welded this metal was fired by the will of the Goddess. When the Lady of the Lake appears, she demands nothing short of total truth and integrity; and she asks you to be mindful of all the signs, signals, and omens that present themselves to you.

This is not the time to second-guess. If a signal appears, be assured that a challenge has been presented. Moving forward without acknowledgment of the challenge will result in unnecessary difficulties. If the signal is to move, she pushes you to act. Do so, for a victory is imminent. Regardless of your question, the message is to take care when the Lady of the Lake appears, as serious business is at stake. The Lady reminds you of your personal responsibility in shaping your reality and its consequences.

Seek the sword of truth within yourself and great success will be yours. Have courage, for when the Lady appears, the strength of Avalon is behind you in support of your quest for wholeness and abundance.

and I’ll talk to you later.