Key #2:
The One Thing (Part 2)

THE ONE THING = SACRED WORK

The "one thing" to which we should dedicate our lives is our "sacred work."

No, I don't mean religious work. (Unless that's your thing.)

By "sacred" I mean "of deepest importance."

 

Sacred work = "The work of deepest importance."

 

This kind of work isn't a career.

 

It's not a job you get paid for.

 

Sacred work is done on the level of the soul—the deepest part of our self.

 

And your reward for this work is both your personal healing and the healing of others.

 

Remember my dream of becoming a novelist?

 

Well, it wasn't entirely off.

 

I know I gave "following your passion" a hard time earlier, but the reason we're passionate about our passions to begin with is that they are usually unconscious attempts to draw us closer to our sacred work.

 

After I'd hit the bottom of my barrel and moved back in with my mother, I started seeing both a therapist and a coach.

 

With their help, I began asking myself:

 

Why did I ACTUALLY want to write?

 

What was it that I loved about it?

 

The answer I came to:

 

I wanted to help people find a deeper sense of meaning in the world.

 

When I realized that, it did two things:

 

1) It freed me to look for other ways, besides writing, to do this work. (Which eventually lead me to where I am now.)

 

2) I realized I'd been circling around this One Thing my whole life.

Surprise! You've had the answer all along.

Even as a kid, I remember spending long hours on the phone with friends trying to inspire them to live big lives.

 

I tried to encourage one friend to become a scientist so he could discover the cure for the genetic disease he'd been born with.

(I was an optimistic kid.)

The point being: I realized I'd always had this trait.

 

I was always trying to make life meaningful—either for myself or others.

 

Because, deep down, those were exactly the things I lacked.

 

My passion for writing fiction became a vehicle with which I tried to do this work in the world.

 

It wasn’t the right vehicle, it turned out.

 

But it was my soul's first major attempt to fulfill its mission: to help others find the true worth and meaning of their lives.

 

In the process, I hoped to find my own.

 

That’s the power of finding and doing our sacred work:

 

By healing others in the way we most want to be healed, we also end up healing ourselves.

 

OK, But how do I Find my Sacred Work?

For that, we'll need to drop down one last layer.

To find our sacred work, we need to descend into the sacred core:

The place where both our sacred wound and our genius live.