Our Soul’s Work


Tanis Helliwell LR viewDo not second-guess spirit;
your lists of preferences
mean nothing.
Spirit is not interested in your comfort,
but in breaking you apart
until your shell crumbles
and you are reborn as love.

(poem by Tanis Helliwell from Umarmt von der Liebe)

I have just returned from conducting a variety of workshops in May and June in Europe. It is my tenth year doing this and I am so grateful to meet people from so many countries, cultures and languages and to find again and again that the central question for all of us is “How can my life make a difference?” This is a soul question and one that will never be answered by choosing to work for money, status, what others think, or fear of not finding anything else. Of course, having these things helps however they do not make us happy.

Also, even if we love our work we need to find the appropriate amount so that we have time for relationships, play, exercise… you get the picture. Our world is currently in chaos with old structures collapsing everywhere we look. This death of the old is happening simultaneously as we are birthing a new world in which as yet we are new born babies having to learn the new rules from scratch.

New Rules

Scarcity is an illusion caused by attachment
One of the new rules is that there is no such thing as scarcity. Oh I know you might have little money, lousy health, no paid work, and you have just had a divorce. This LOOKS like scarcity however it is spirit calling you to faith and trust to give up your attachments and jump empty handed into commitment to serve your purpose in the world. We don’t have to look hard for our soul’s purpose. The signs are everywhere in our daily life…how we speak with others, what bothers us, our fears, our hopes, and celebration of all we are given are all areas that concern our soul.

Love what “is”

Our soul knows best what we need. It brings us the right people and right circumstances for us to accomplish our purpose. Only part of that purpose is our actual work in the world. Just as important to our soul is the kind of person we are and not only “what” we do, but “how” we do our work. This means that our soul does not keep a nine-to-five job and instead is on duty every minute. This means our soul’s real work is being conscious every moment and leading the best life we can in each moment. This might seem like an overwhelming task however we must trust that everything that comes into our life is an opportunity to do this.

Dream the New World into Existence

Do not limit yourself or others by an old view of what is possible. World hunger can end. Peace can be on Earth. Our Earth can have healthy water, air and soil overnight if enough of us believe this to be possible. And the same applies in your personal life. Ask spirit to give you what you think you need to better serve your soul’s purpose. Sometimes spirit needs to do some modifications on us to get us ready to receive our full purpose in life. Trust this process and rise every day committed to the process.

Verena Deeken interviewed me on the topic of Working with Soul in a magazine in Germany based on my new book Mit der Seele Arbeiten (Take Your Soul to Work). I would like to share the interview with you as it focuses on the topic we are discussing.

Verena: Is there anything like a right job?
Tanis: The right job is to embrace the work that our soul provides for us so that we can develop our best potential as a human being. The right job is where the doors open to our soul. And this might be something like looking after our family, or taking care of others, or something like housework or volunteer work that has been undervalued in our society. All of this can be soul work, depending on how we do it.
I talk about this in my book: in every profession or career there is a lower and higher path. For instance we might be a lawyer and want our clients to win, no matter the cost for others – and that is the low path. In contrast the high path is to look at what is honorable for both parties involved and for the society at large.
You can examine every profession and find that there is a low and a high path.
Walking the high path is about raising the consciousness of ourselves and others in what we do and that our work benefits our world long-term. People might have very noble words about their ethics but then treat the people working for them abominably. Honorable words must be in accordance with honorable practice.
The main question is: Does our work make a difference and do we bring our soul to work?

Verena: Could it be that sometimes we are looking too hard for the right work?
Tanis: We might harbor an utter fantasy about the ‘ideal’ job we would like but on the other hand – perhaps only our timing is wrong and our ideal job is awaiting us in the future. We must learn to hope for that future goal while continuing to live in the present and doing the best we can with the circumstances we face there. Also, maintaining a non-attached attitude in regards to the outcome is essential. We should not make ourselves miserable if we do not achieve what we have set out to do and we must trust the universe to open the doors to what we are meant to have.
I’m thinking of Barbara Marx Hubbard, a social innovator and futurologist, who only had medium success for many years and now in her 80s she is becoming very well-known. Or take Vincent van Gogh who never sold a picture in his lifetime and now his paintings belong to the most expensive ones to be sold ever.
What I’m saying is the universe has its own timing and plan for our life that we must accept.

Verena: How do we distinguish between staying in a job we don’t particularly like because it is in accordance with our soul or because we are afraid of change?
Tanis: There are two goals. One goal is that we get what we want and the second goal is that we do all we can towards getting what we want.
The first goal may never happen but the second always will when we have done and committed as much as we could. The result is peace, self-esteem , satisfaction and success. Whereas if we do not commit, we are left with a feeling of frustration and self-pity.

Verena: What started you on the path of taking your soul to work?
Tanis: Being a high intuitive, a mystic if you like, there weren’t many job options I had. So it was my own journey to create what I am best at, and that turned out to be to help people in a very practical and concrete way to move to their higher self and their heart and to take the practical steps to actually manifest their soul’s goals in the world. I was trained as a psychologist and so I worked individually with people to help overcome their fears and also with organizations, which are made up of people, and so basically the same rules and themes apply to them, too.
And I was fortunate. Just as I was writing this book that spiritual intelligence and spirituality in the workplace were becoming of interest to more people and so they were receptive to my ideas.

Verena: What is happening right now in 2011 at this moment in time for humanity?
Tanis: The way we have structured our society, business, organizations, and governments is no longer working. The signs of collapse are everywhere and can be seen economically, by the amount of depression in organizations, the amount of people leaving organizations to start working in their own businesses and so many other signs.
The pain of disintegration of the current structure is the catalyst from which will grow enough yearning by people to create new forms. These new forms will no longer be based on greed and gluttony but on long-term sustainability not only environmentally, but also in the sense of happiness. To regain our balance and to embrace the new emerging structures each of us needs to focus on what gives us joy, peace, and happiness.
In the new co-creative organizations and communities we will work with like-mind individuals to create new forms. Co-creative means to live in accordance with natural and spiritual laws and that is where we are going.

Tanis Helliwell, M. Ed., Gründerin des International Institute for Transformation, ist die Autorin der erst kürzlich erschienenen DVD Spiritual Transformation: Journey of Co-creation. For information visit www.iitransform.com.