Whose Business is it Anyway?
Once in awhile someone tells me how they’re unhappy with their present job and they want to pursue work that is more spiritual so I usually offer some suggestions gleaned from my own experience in an attempt to be helpful. One of the main pieces of advice I offer is that if it is a calling from Spirit, then the path will open up toward a defined mission. Once you’ve asked your spirit guides for help, then all you need to do is get your ego out of the way and observe whatever signs, omens, or information show up for you once you’ve asked this question.
Sometimes when we fantasize about a career as a spiritual teacher or healer, the fantasy starts to dominate such that the various ways that Spirit communicates become shrouded in egoic distortions and misperceptions. It’s then we miss the signs or misinterpret them, whether they’re those that come with a whisper or those that come with a bang.
So learning to pay close attention to Spirit’s guidance, whatever form this takes, and continuing to look for those clues that tell you you’re on the right path will give you a better idea of how to bring your spirituality into this world. In distinguishing the voice of Spirit from any version of the ego’s voice, whether arrogance or false humility ”both voices of the ego” you may discover that your path is in indeed one of a spiritual teacher or healer. Or you may discover that your path is not.
If it becomes clear that being a spiritual teacher or healer with business cards, brochures, and websites that advertise you as such is not your path, the challenge then is to bring your spirituality into as much of your life as possible, no matter what type of work you’re doing. And you might as well have fun doing so. Of course, this is true in other areas of your life as well.
But let’s assume that you hear the call to more directly do spiritual teaching or healing, whether part time or full time, and even whether or not it pays the bills. Aside from some of the other elements applicable to any business, such as networking, marketing, etc., here are some important principles by which to guide your professional spiritual practice. By following these to the best of your ability, you can be assured that your spiritual teaching and/or healing business is truly spiritual.
You’re always co-creating, whether you’re aware of it or not. The art is to be conscious of this and to synchronize your will with the Will of Spirit. Okay, so how do you do this?
One of the best ways to assure that you’re actions are congruent with your spiritual values is to be clear on your intention prior to meeting with clients or teaching a class or workshop. Your intention has to do with how you want to show up, what you want the outcome to be, or anything relevant to the task at hand.
My sister Susan Clark, Executive Coach in charge of Leadership Development for Fairview Health Services, described how she states her intention prior to going to work each day and especially, prior to any meetings. She says, “I ask the Love and Light of all Creation to come into me, to fill me and bless me, touch and light all the dark spots. Heal me and pass through me so that all with whom I come in contact may see and feel and know that Love.”
She went on to say, “Once you set that intention of having the Love and Light of all Creation come into you, you become a conduit for the wisdom of Creation communicating through you and with you. You still have all your experience, wisdom, knowledge, etc., but once you set your intention in this way, it becomes a co-creation.”
“The other thing is to get your ego out of the way. If you goof up you goof up. No pressure to be perfect, so remembering this allows you to stay in the moment.”
This is another key to succeeding in this type of business (or most businesses for that matter). Collaborating with others means joining in an activity to produce or create something. It’s a given that in this sort of business you’re collaborating with spirit; it’s also necessary to see any work that you’re doing as a collaboration.
I’ve applied this way of thinking to my private consultations with clients where I do spirit animal readings and shamanic healing. I see these as a collaborative effort, first with Spirit in the form of my spirit guides, and secondly, with the individual with whom I’m working. I’m clear on my intention prior to the meeting, which is to bring all of my experience and knowledge to serve this individual and meet their needs to the best of my ability.
Once we’ve engaged in conversation and the relationship is established, we both enter into a “zone” where Spirit is consciously present. It’s actually a mild form of trance, one where the brain waves have slowed to allow greater access to input from our spirit guides. I always encourage my clients to pay close attention to their own intuition and inner promptings during the session and tell me whatever comes up. During the shamanic healing sessions, my client’s receptivity to the work is part of the healing process, no matter the form.
When I’m teaching workshops there’s collaboration between the audience and myself. It’s a relationship to a group, one where the audience gives clues as to whether as the speaker I’m on target or not. A formula that I was given years ago describes what can happen in this relationships and how a speaker can determine when he’s connecting with the audience.
If the audience is: then the speaker:
Restless Not clear
Spacey Not grounded
Angry Has a hidden agenda
These simple guidelines will let you as a speaker/teacher know from your attunement to the response of the audience when you’re off track. When you’re on track your audience, or at least most of your audience, will be right there with you, engaged and involved, in this collaboration between speaker and the group.
The first commitment is to be of service. When I’m doing power animal readings, healings, or teaching, I continuously remind myself that this is at the top of my list for intentions. My prayer typically goes something like this: “Thank you (spirit guides) for supporting me in providing the best possible service for this person (or group). Thank you for your blessings and guidance with any readings or healings that take place.”
I was playing some songs with a friend of mine, both of us playing guitar and singing. At one point she commented how much she admired Joe Walsh’s guitar style and playing. My friend was saying how when Walsh plays a lead, he commits to every note. I always thought that was an interesting way to describe it, because his playing is very clear and precise.
Although there are others, another model of commitment is the Scottish Medium, Gordon Smith. I’ve had the opportunity to see him do his thing and I’m in awe of how he comes off so clear and committed when he does readings from deceased loved ones. He tells the person in the audience to not give him any information prior to the reading and does not look for verification from the individual. Even when the person isn’t sure about what he’s conveying, he would say something like, “You’ll know what I’m talking about later on.” And he’s sat in Spiritualist circles for a number of years, so he’s honed his natural gifts, and is amazingly accurate.
Confident. That’s how you come off when you commit in this way. As in a saying I heard some years ago, “If you’re going to sit, sit. If you’re going to stand, stand. But don’t stay in the in between.”
So commitment is first to being of service, and from there it’s to delivering that service with the confidence and clarity, similar to Joe Walsh or Gordon Smith.