It’s a fact: if you want to greatly improve your life, you’ll have to get deeply acquainted with your own desires.
However, desire is not always what it appears to be on the surface! Not every desire is created equally.
While some desires are rooted in our own power, others are not. Some desires aren’t even our own! So it’s important to dig a little deeper under and question where your desires are really coming from.
Of course, you always have the ability to ask for anything you want in life. But we all only have so much time and attention to go around. Why spend time chasing down a desire that’s not meant for you when you can focus your attention on what is?
Authentic desire (aka those desires that are meant for your soul!) are some of the most powerful things in the world! Stepping into your authenticity is part of your journey as a conscious creator!
Any time we must learn to dig within our own shadows and confront what we find there we must also dig into our fears. Being real with ourselves is scary at first! But ultimately this journey is about you finding your true path and power. So don’t be afraid of being honest with yourself about what you want in life.
There are three main types of desire to be aware of: programmed desire, ego desire and authentic (soul!) desire.
Authentic Desire Vs. Ego + Programmed Desire
Desire Type #1:
As an independent adult, it can be quite disconcerting to realize just how many of our “desires” aren’t actually ours at all! Instead, they’re just the result of years of picking up other people’s thoughts and opinions.
The truth is we’re all programmed to think, behave and–yes!–even desire in a certain way. For example, just think about the pathway that we’re all “supposed” to fulfill: college, job, partner, 2.5 kids, house in the suburbs. Yet that’s only one way to do life–and it might not be right for you! This vision of adulthood is shown to us over and over again, so often that we don’t even realize that there are other ways of being a successful and happy adult.
If you don’t ever discover the world of personal development, you might never even realize this has happened! Many of us get on this path and then “wake up” at some point realizing that they’ve never really listened to their own authentic desire.
But please know that it’s not that your parents or friends or society had bad intentions for you. But we’re all very much a product of this “group think”. Figuring out who you really are also means being brave enough to throw all those old-fashioned ideals in the garbage. But if that’s what you have to do in order to be truly happy, then isn’t facing the uncertainty worth the risk?
Just remember, the more you say no to what isn’t serving you the more energy you’ll have to pour into what does!
Signs Of Programmed Desire
- feeling obligated or like you “have to” do something
- not wanting to let someone (your parents etc.) down
- not feeling that excited
- feeling like you’re just going through the motions
- feeling disconnected or like you’re living someone else’s life
Desire Type #2:
Our ego pushes to label everything good or bad. It wants to place everyone (and everything) on a hierarchy. It does this because it wants to place itself above everything! But ultimately, that selfish desire comes from a place of fear.
Our ego is highly concerned with our place in the world! It’s the part of us that’s keeping tabs on other people and either wanting to “one-up” them or to prove something to them somehow.
But our ego also has a big effect on the things we want in life. If you’re after something in life because of how it will look or of how someone else will perceive you, then it’s probably your ego talking.
Of course, you are allowed to want whatever you want! But this kind of desire is by no means authentic. Yes, it might feel good to show the popular kids at school how much money you’re making these days. But that will only temporarily fill the real problem! The wounds inside of you can’t be fixed by other people’s opinions.
It gets sticky here because of course some of our genuine desires cross over into this category! So it’s up to you to be honest with yourself: are you wanting something because you truly want it? Or because of how it will look? Be honest with yourself! Only you have the true answer.
Signs Of Ego Desires
- feeling bruised when things don’t go exactly the way you want them to
- circling thoughts about your desires (negative rumination or anxiety)
- feeling anger or fear about not getting your desires
- wanting to control the how or other people
- feeling like you’ll be worthless unless you acquire or achieve something
Desire Type #3:
Authentic desire is any desire that stems from your soul. These are the things that genuinely light us up and make us happy. They are our unique preferences, interests and gut instincts.
We all have a completely unique path in this life! We’re all here to do something and the way we figure out what that thing is is by following the path of our desires. We get closer to who we’re supposed to be by listening to the voice inside of us, not to the fear of our ego or the programming we’ve received from the outer world.
Authentic desire is part of your core essence. It’s the kinds of things you would do over and over again, whether or not you’re “good” at them or if you’re getting paid.
Stopping yourself from experiencing that kind of joy will just create resistance and pain! It takes a lot of energy to pretend to be someone other than who we really are.
That means you might be feeling some dissonance here! Perhaps in your heart you’re meant to be an artist but your family has raised you to pursue a career in medicine. Perhaps for the last ten years you’ve been an accountant but somewhere inside you you know you’re meant to design jewelry instead!
That isn’t to say you need to drop out of your job immediately. But you also need to fulfill your authentic desire in one way or another.
Please also understand authentic desire doesn’t also mean that every desire will be realized! Our desires are designed to bring us lessons; they help us to grow and expand. Sometimes that means we’ll find a new goal on our path and not realize the old one. Please know that this is totally normal!
The soul desire of all human beings is to just be and to eliminate suffering. Our individuated soul desire is a unique way of performing our individuated essence and is linked in some ways to our ego or personality type. It’s the gold at the end of the rainbow, so to speak.
Signs Of Authentic Desire
- joy and excitement, especially for no apparent reason
- feeling a sense of flow
- feeling deeply deserving of your desires as you already are
- experiencing synchronicities or just feeling connected to the Universe
- an easiness around your goals (not a grasping desperate energy!)
- feeling loving and accepting of others (not jealous or controlling)
Behind every desire is the motivation to just be happy! However, true happiness can only be found through love and acceptance–not in trying to fix ourselves from the inside out or from trying to please others. So be brave and dare to figure out where your motivations are coming from. You might just learn something new about yourself that will allow you to truly connect with your soul purpose and ultimate happiness!
I hope this post helps you untangle the sometimes complex world of desire! Let me know how your work goes with this and thank you so much for reading!