The Authentic Self: Why We Must Give Our Unique Gifts to The World

The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.― Frederick Buechner

In my occupation there is a certain amount of disclosure that happens. Within any patient-practitioner model there is a level of intimacy and confidentiality that is a patient’s right. Within the patient-acupuncturist model there is often a lot more. Unlike the average physician I have access to a wide range of health details that are requested and willingly handed over. Lately among all those details, one thing is standing out to me: the most common cause of people’s stress.

It may seem obvious to everyone in the world but me, but I was, am I guess, surprised at how much people complain to me about their work. I anticipated a certain amount of spouse bashing, family bashing and the likes. For the most part I don’t get that. Most people seem to be happy with their significant others or in the process of ending the relationship. But lots of people are very unhappy about their work and are nowhere near ending it.

I’ve been working on this post for a couple of weeks and finally a good friend gave me the above quote to help me hone in on what I was trying to say. Take the “God” out of it if it bothers you, but I think we can all admit that this line is haunting.

“Your Deep Gladness” is a concept that goes against everything we think of in a 9 to 5 corporate, capitalistic world. Work is a job and we go there to make enough money to pay the mortgage and the groceries, if we happen to like the people or the tasks than great. But Buechner is not talking about a decent job. He is suggesting that the moment we produce something (or give something) that naturally flows from within us and also enriches our life to the point of delight; it is the only moment we stand to truly change the world.

One of the key themes for this blog is living a passionate life. I believe that so many of life’s diseases spring forth from the ignoring of one’s passions in exchange for the necessary drudgery of making a living. So I’ve decided to write a series of blog posts on how to take stock of your life and examine where there is the capacity to make change and where there is the capacity to make alterations in preparations for bigger change.

The world desperately needs people who do really good work. People have a tendency to do really good work when they love what they do. So this series will be about discovering where our love already is and what we are good at. Blog posts will go live once a week for the next four weeks. Here are the topics I plan to cover:

Post #1: The Creative Journey to Design A Career

Post #2: Convincing the Self That Happiness Is Worthwhile

Post #3: Why The World Needs Our Authentic Self

Post #4: Paying The Rent and Pursuing Your Dream

I’ll be including a whole slew of resources I’ve used over the years and will eagerly encourage the sharing of other resources in the comment section. If you love your job and feel good about your career track than this series can simply be a reaffirming validation of your journey. If you don’t love your job, just read and see what if anything speaks to you.

Image credit: silverjohn / 123RF Stock Photo

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