It has been almost three years since I stumbled upon The Desire Map in a Facebook post and went on to literally devoured its contents. And as I sit here, ready to go through the process yet again and take my core desired feelings (CDFs) up a vibrational notch, I thought it would be the perfect time to give you my Desire Map story. Well, so far at least…
Back in 2013 I thought I was in an OK place in my life – I was juggling family life with self employment and the management and renovation of our very old house – so I must admit that I couldn’t have predicted just how much of an impact this book would have on me. But as soon as I started reading I realised that it was more than just another ‘how to’ book or a few bits of well-meaning advice and I wrote on my blog:
“I am only part way through the book and workbook but have already felt an enormous weight lifted from my shoulders. Danielle has written The Desire Map as a holistic approach to planning your life. It guides you to identify your core desired feelings, and to use those feelings as the drivers of what you want to do, have and experience in your life. In effect it turns goal-setting inside out, and that’s what I really like about it. As well as the fact that she realises that most of us have really busy lives and won’t get all the exercises and reading done in a day or two! I feel that she’s given me permission to work this around my young children, my businesses and other commitments.” ~ Holly Hinton, June 2013
The more I read and worked my way through the workbook, the more it dawned on me that I wasn’t really happy with the way things were in certain parts of my life and that I was merely existing; getting through each day doing everything I could to help everyone except myself. I had lost my way a little and was sidetracked from what I really wanted my life to look like. I was taking the not-so-scenic route to avoid some very tough decisions and ignoring what really mattered to me to keep the peace. I was also eating and drinking to numb the pain and convince myself that I wasn’t worthy because I wasn’t being treated like I was either. Avoidance at its best!!
The first thing the book did for me was to help me change my mindset from one of lack and undeservedness to one of positivity and worth. My opinions DID matter and my feelings WERE important. Now this wasn’t an overnight ephiphany or instant change, but a steady commitment to my newly discovered core desired feelings:
GRATEFUL, INSPIRED, CONNECTED, AUTHENTIC and PROSPEROUS
These words embodied how I wanted to feel. And not just how I wanted to feel in the future, but how I wanted to feel every single day. I started writing what I was already grateful for in my diary just before I went to bed at night and waking up and giving thanks every morning too. This daily gratitude habit very quickly helped me feel happier about where I was already and to notice the amazing things I already had in my life. It also started to show me where the disparity was between the great bits and the bits that just weren’t working in my life. It was like shining a light on my soul and demanding answers – like a form of interrogation that I just couldn’t hide from!
Roll on a few months and I decided to do the exercises again for new year. So in January 2014 my CDFs changed a little and became:
ABUNDANT, INSPIRED, AUTHENTIC, CONNECTED and RADIANT
I no longer needed to include Grateful as it was part of my daily habit and a huge part of staying positive, so I replaced it with Radiant and put Abundant in the place of Prosperous. This word said more to me about abundance in every part of my life rather than just in cash, as prosperous had. I also moved Authentic to the centre of my words as I realised that this was my most important CDF at that time. I had once been told that I was “too Australian” and had spent years feeling that I had to apologise for my heritage, upbringing and cultural differences, rather than being allowed to be myself. Well that was stopping NOW! My path was changing and I was no longer hiding to suit others.
When Danielle LaPorte announced that she was inviting devotees of her work to run Desire Map Book Clubs I jumped at the chance. I could see how much of a difference it made in my life and was excited to share it with anyone else who would listen! My book clubs were great fun but a lot of work without any income and I really wanted to make The Desire Map more of what I offered to clients so that it could fulfil my CDFs as well. What the meetings did bring me was two amazing new friends who I still couldn’t imagine life without today – one heard me speaking at a WiRE networking event and and the other had been a client who had heard about The Desire Map and wanted to know more – now that’s what I call synchronicity!
During this time my CDFs stayed the same for the whole of 2014 and they were part of everything I did. Every decision I made, including my decision that I wouldn’t run any more Book Clubs, were run through my CDFs. If they didn’t fit, they didn’t happen. AND that’s when Danielle announced the Licensee program – I always knew we were on the same wavelength! Again I jumped at the chance to be involved, this time with a way of incorporating it into my holistic business and providing some great tools for my clients to see real change in their lives.
My world was getting better and better, and then a very good friend died suddenly. Instead of ignoring it, I dealt with it. I sobbed, I hid, I looked at old photos and I worked through my grief. He had been like a little brother to me and all of my Desire Map work helped me deal with it and allow myself the time to grieve. And his death showed me how short life can really be and that although I was facing my life head on now, I was ignoring one very important part of it… my marriage!
The more I grew and realised what I wanted, the less my CDFs were being met in my relationship. It was time for some serious words which lead to a very, very tough decision. Please do not think that it was a decision taken lightly (it may look like that in the small space of a blog post) but a terrible, anxious and debilitating decision that to avoid any longer would just make us both more miserable. We’d had some wonderful times and my whole reason for being in the UK was for my husband. Our separation was mutually agreed and the rest of 2015 was tough. It was a year of adjustment and pain and all of the other emotions and practicalities that come from leaving a long-term relationship that includes children.
And over the year my CDFs morphed from small wishes into big, bold statements:
ABUNDANT, CHERISHED, INSPIRED, AUTHENTIC, CONNECTED and FREE
Would I go back and change 2015 now if I had the chance? No way. To face my deepest, darkest fears and find that on the other side I feel more like myself than I have for over a decade – that is my truth. And The Desire Map has been a huge part of that. It has helped me find my way back to me when I didn’t even know I was lost in the first place. It has given me a framework to find happiness everyday – even during my darkest hours, I knew there was something to be grateful for.
So that is why I am so passionate about sharing this journey with anyone who is just ready to discover just how awesome they really are. Life is about choices and sometimes facing the most difficult ones can bring the greatest rewards.
I am in such a different place than I was when I first started my own Desire Map journey and I am now finally ready to spread my wings even more and set myself some new and very liberating CDFs. As this card I drew below says, “Brand Spankin’ New”, and that’s what I intend to do. And if you would like to know my new CDFs, then head over to my new post all about them… H x