creativity inspiration & influence reading notes

Influence, gratitude and choosing to shine – Danielle LaPorte

February 25, 2017

A combination of influences helps us shine and sing our unique song. It was a pleasure to meet one of my shining stars of influence, Danielle LaPorte.

Influence over time

I have been following Danielle for some time now. After my brother’s death in 2007, the world turned upside-down and I was searching for meaning in many places including online.

I came across Danielle LaPorte through her book, Style Statement co-authored with Carrie McCarthy. I worked through the book assiduously and explored Danielle’s online presence at her website then called White Hot Truth.

 

Danielle LaPorte books

Through this work, I learned to better understand my key style drivers, my passions, what makes me tick, why I like what I like, why it’s important and how to cut through the restrictive perceptions that hold me back.

The entrepreneurship product The Firestarter Sessions appeared not long after, a guide for soulful guide to creating success that I dived into. What inspiration: white hot truth, passions, success on your own terms, entrepreneurship.

For the Sacred Creative type that I found myself to be from working through ‘Style Statement’, this was exciting, revolutionary and passionate material.

Advice I love:

Here is some of the advice from Danielle that I have loved over the years:

About Going with the flow:

Going with the flow isn’t about being passive or lazy. It’s not about just letting things happen “to you”. It’s not aimless wandering. It’s a co-creative act.

“The flow” is the ocean of cosmic intelligence. It’s the substance that carries the whole shebang. The flow is life energy itself.

Going with the flow is responding to cues from the universe.

When you go with the flow, you’re surfing Life force. It’s about wakeful trust and total collaboration with what’s showing up for you.

And from The suck factor of life balance, + passion as a cure to stress: one of my all-time favourite posts which questions the notion of work/life balance:

This is not a balanced life. But it works. And the more I pursue my passions, the more uncomplicated my life gets, actually. There’s not much in my life that I resent. And if resentment builds, I’m swift to get it off my plate. It’s not the imbalance-ness that stresses me, it’s doing meaningless things that aren’t taking me where I want to go.

Given passion is my word of the year – I need to be going back to this one and apply it. Perhaps stick the post on the wall or somewhere I can see it as a reminder! It’s all about the passion.

And this pure gem from Bag your Boundaries

You can protect yourself and be open-hearted.

Well yay to that! I so love that fresh, pure and direct thinking. I need to keep listening, going back to it and applying it like a salve.

The Desire Map and Core Desired Feelings

I’ve worked through the brilliance of The Desire Map and identified my Core Desired Feelings to help clarify my focus. It’s all about getting what you most want by defining how you want to feel as the roadmap.

I included my Core Desired Feelings in my Welcome to Quiet Writing as the summary of my passions and focus and how I want to feel:

Core Desired Feelings

And as I am writing this, I am realising more why passion is my word of the year. It underlies all of this and the clues as to how to get there: setting boundaries, being open, with working out how I want to feel as the guide. I need to be driven by passion not concepts of work life/balance and yes, I can both protect myself and be open-hearted. And not be afraid to be revolutionary in what I think and how I work.

Danielle comes to Sydney and I’m listening

So when I heard Danielle was coming to Sydney with the support of the Wake-Up Project, I signed up straight away for the opportunity to hear and see her live. Months went by and then the day came. Australian musician, Clare Bowditch, kicked off the night with her own brand of big-hearted music, creativity and fun with all of us soon singing and finding our collective voice.

Then Danielle stepped onto the stage to be her own kind of magic. That is what I love about her – she is her own person, unique, authentic, revolutionary and hard to define – and she encourages us to be the same.

The most amazing thing was how Danielle held the stage and the space with her presence and pure connection with the audience. After some initial thoughts, she encouraged us to give her a word, a thought and then would riff on that. It was like a musical experience, flowing, creative, focused and wise.

I was too busy listening and focusing to take lots of notes but here are some insights.

Key takeaways and riffing thoughts:

Setting boundaries vs barriers

Just as the quote above about openness and boundaries reminds us: it’s OK to set boundaries and they don’t need to be barriers. They are an act of self-compassion in a world where so much is being asked of our energy. To be there for others, we need to be looking after ourselves and setting clear boundaries is part of that. It’s saying things like: “This is OK, that is not OK.” “I’m making this space and time to do this writing/walking/xxxx.” “I’m not doing that/going there because it’s toxic/not working for me/is a waste of time.”

In setting boundaries, the mental fog goes away and we are rooted in self-love and self-compassion. And we can focus.

Memorable thought from the night:

Unbotherability is the fruit of the spirit.

Loving yourself may look unloving to others

Danielle talked about three key lies and from ‘Leaving the church of self-improvement‘ they are:

The Lie of Inadequacy: You were born not quite good enough.

The Lie of Authority: Outside authority validates your worth.

The Lie of Affiliation: Groupthink is good think.

Things we tell ourselves may run ourselves down. Things others tell us, the influences of church and state, may mean we act on what others may think, want or demand of us, if unspoken. Acting on our own truth and self-love may look unloving but it’s what we need to do for authenticity and to get our work done.

Self-compassion

Feel the pain and keep showing up. It’s about befriending pain and weakness, being kinder to ourselves and not letting that stop our work in the world. It’s being supportive of our own work and creativity and how it’s forming in us. Like thinking about what we say when we speak to ourselves looking in the mirror. And honouring the need to keep showing up – keeping blogging, writing that draft, working that intuition, connecting with others. And then showing up.

Having goals with soul and our Core Desired Feelings as an anchor

How we go about pursuing things really changes when we work from passion and what we really want.

Memorable thought from the night:

You can’t fight your way to peace.

Core Desired Feelings guide how we work as well as what we are aiming for, with the process and end result aligned.

Being present vs narcissism

Be present, generous with our time and listen. Have a beginner’s mind. Have a prodigal relationship with our own reality – get back to what really matters and counts.

Memorable thought from the night:

There’s an epidemic of women being boundaryless.

Narcissism is a disease of self-worth; being present and having a beginner’s mind is the opposite of narcissism.

Forgiveness

You can’t force forgiveness. It’s more about acknowledging the divine and the consciousness of the other person. That’s something I can work with. More thoughts on that here: What if forgiveness isn’t about forgiving.

Shining light

And then afterwards I got to meet Danielle. We smiled together. She signed my precious dog-eared, worked-through ‘Desire Map’ book. Feeling such a fan-girl, I said, “It’s such a pleasure to meet you!” She noted that my book was an old one and I had been around for a while.

That’s so true. There was so much more I wanted to say but being the introvert that I am, the words don’t always come straight away as I would like them, it’s usually later.

On Instagram afterwards, Danielle puts up an awesome post about people slipping her notes and cards after gigs that she reads them later, usually on a plane. That’s such a beautiful idea for an introvert like me who needs time to think and show gratitude in words, ideally by writing.

And she says:

And I cry. The notes from mothers telling me about their daughters reading my stuff (and how the mom had never heard of me before), those notes slay me. I’m really truly deeply grateful for the gratitude. ▪️ And, my perspective: someone making a change because of something I said/wrote…has microscopically little to do with me and epically everything to do with them. It’s all timing and choice. And courage. It’s all you, babe. All you.

So now, with a little more time, I say:

Thanks Danielle for the clarity, over and over, about myself and my soul goals. You’ve helped me work through them and keep in touch with them over a tough time when I struggled to know myself and my path. And you practically help me to focus each day with my core desired feelings especially now as I transition to a new business and life.

You’ve given me that strategy for passion that a Queen of Swords, INTJ type of girl needs. Though I think anyone really can work better from their passion and authenticity if they really understand it. And that’s become my passion now as I make a new start: working with others to understand their influence and voice their passion and authenticity in the world. And you are so right – it is all about timing, choice, courage, boundaries and self-compassion. This is the time. So thank you for your light to shine the way so I can choose to shine. Terri xx

And some final reflective takeaways

You can be an introvert + express feelings and gratitude.

Find ways to express it that work for you: being more prepared, thinking ahead, notes, cards, blog posts, personal messages.

I need to thank others more for their influence and light to shine my own.

Try and write shorter snappier blog posts – at least sometimes 🙂

Danielle LaPorte and me

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