Ep. 194: Work – Survival Dance or Sacred Offering

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When I was a midwife, I LOVED catching babies. It was the best. And I loved it for many years and over 1,000 babies. But then I had my soul encounter, and I realized I was meant to do something related, but different: soul midwifing.


And while I still loved catching babies, I began to resent the job because most of my time was spent doing stuff I didn’t like: paperwork, referrals, admin crap. I was stressed and sleep deprived.


So, one day I had enough of being miserable and I realized that because I was going to be creating everything for my own business – graphics, website, ALL of it – it was going to be a slow process getting it off the ground and to a place where it was sustaining me.


You know what I did? I decided to be grateful that I had a job that was one I generally love and that felt honorable. I decided to look at it like I was getting paid to start my own business.


I have to say, it made a huge difference to see my survival dance as fueling my sacred offering.


Sure, there was a part of me that was frustrated that I wasn’t just jumping into my coaching biz like some of my peers who quit their jobs right away. But I also had a lot of self-compassion because I didn’t have the same financial security (or generational wealth) they did.


It can be a gift to get paid and have the stability to explore our sacred dance… our soul purpose. In fact, Native American teacher Swift Deer says our survival dance MUST come before our sacred dance. 


Finding and creating a survival dance is our first task upon leaving our parents’ or guardians’ home. But once we have that established, then we can wander (inwardly and outwardly), searching for clues to our sacred dance – the work we were born to do.


This is why all these types of self-reliance are so important – economical sustainability, social, psychological, AND spiritual – because to find our sacred dance, we’re going to need to take significant risks along the way.


We may have to move against the grain of our family, friends and cultural norms. Honing our psychological self-reliance (our ziji – that inner radiant confidence in ourselves) helps us stay focused on our goals in the face of challenges or confusion. Spiritual self-reliance helps us stay connected to the Truth that lies deep within us. All that we’ve learned about how the cosmos and the world works.


These risks are worth it, because once we get through the hardship and discover our sacred dance + learn effective ways of embodying it, the world will support us in doing exactly that. As Swift Deer says, what our soul wants is also what the world wants… and needs.


So how do we get there? Well, most of the time it’s not as clear as being told the exact steps to take. Instead, we wander and experiment and receive feedback from the world before finally landing at our sacred dance.


But what I DO know is that we need to start with creating a foundation of ziji, knowing we have our own back, and we can try to find (or create) a survival dance of integrity that allows us to be in the world in a good way – one that’s psychologically sustaining, economically adequate, socially responsible, and environmentally sound.


Now, ideally, we would be supported in this exploration like it is in more traditional, land-based cultures that value and appreciate the importance of knowing one’s Soul Purpose. But in modern industrialized growth society, it’s increasingly becoming more of a privilege. One that many don’t have access to.


Because of this, we can be feel less pressure when exploring our soul purpose if our survival dance has a strong foundation and feels aligned, providing us with some economic support.


So don’t worry if you’re in a survival dance instead of a sacred dance. You are definitely not alone.


What are some ways that you can add some of these elements of integrity or alignment to your survival dance, or that you can explore as you look for a new one?


A survival dance of integrity, psychologically and economically sustaining, socially responsible and environmentally sound.


Ideally, we have all those elements, but we can do our best in the meantime.

You will learn:

// Why the survival dance is necessary for each of us, and how it helps us begin exploring our sacred dance

// How self-reliance and ziji can help us power through moments of doubt and perceived failure on our journeys

// Why it’s become so hard for us to find and follow our Soul Purpose in a sustainable way

// Ways we can connect our survival dance to our sacred dance as we continue to explore our Soul Purpose



// Episode 64: Cultivating Radiant Inner Confidence – Ziji


// Episode 134: What You’re Meant to BE


// Episode 178: The Gift of Wandering – Exploring Our Purpose


// The Adventure Mastermind is FULL! .  


Get on the waitlist for the next one at AdventureMastermind.com. We might not run it next year, but we will have a new program in its place that you’ll want to be the first to hear about 


// Want something more self-paced with access to weekly group support and getting coached by yours truly?  


Check out Freedom School – the community for ALL things related to freedom, inside and out. Plus, we have entire months devoted to wisdom and compassion. Learn more at JoinFreedomSchool.com. I can’t wait to see you there! 


// If you’re new to the squad, grab the Rebel Buddhist Toolkit I created at RebelBuddhist.com. It has all you need to start creating a life of more freedom, adventure, and purpose. You’ll also get access to the Rebel Buddhist private group, and tune in every Wednesday as I go live with new inspiration and topics.