How to Listen to your Soul

Go somewhere you find beautiful - the beach, an art gallery, the woods, your favourite part of your favourite city.  You do not have to be alone; you can be with others, of course you can, but it might serve you to be alone.  If the idea of being on your own frightens or discomfits you, you should definitely be on your own.

Walk and walk and look about you; stand for as long as you want to and stare at whatever catches your attention: a crack in the pavement, an image or piece of art that moves you, the sky, other people.  It is important that you do not rush.  And nobody should be expecting you.  You must not put a deadline on your wanderings, nor should you have someone waiting for you at the other end of your journey - hearing your soul speak takes time and patience, so give yourself time.  Listening to your soul move inside you takes silence and courage, so don't fool yourself that you are listening fully if you know that at your journey's end you will fill your mind with other people's voices.

Walk.  Sit.  Look.  Eat.  Drink.  Write if you want to, but do not read; books are just inanimate versions of other people's voices and you will not hear your own voice if you continually overlay it with other people's words, thoughts and feelings.

Don't actively seek your soul's voice; it cannot be hunted down and found.  Your soul's voice emerges when you are doing something else, when you are looking at the sky, or walking across the sand with the wind blowing in your face.  Just put yourself in the right place with a certain level of quiet and wait.  Make of yourself a blank canvas upon which your soul's voice will draw the colour and image.

All of us know for ourselves.  The answers to our own questions are always waiting within.  The rest of your life has already been planted within you, like a seed.

If there is fear, let there be fear - you are safe in your favourite place, let it be.  There might be joy, or excitement, sadness or pain, just let it be.  Your soul's voice cannot be heard above mental struggle, or above your efforts not to feel what you feel.  Just walk, stop, look around, absorb what is.

Do it once.
Do it again.
Turn your ear inward as often as you can.  Turn every dog walk into an opportunity to listen, every train journey, every delay.  Learn how to live alongside your own true voice.  It won't ever pretend you are what you are not; it won't ever be unkind to you.  Which is not to say that your soul's voice will always be an easy listen - the truth you already know is not always comfortable to hear.

If you stop trampling all over your own soul with your intellect, your struggling, your self-judgment, then you will find it there waiting for you, saying, 'My dear, what took you so long?'

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