We are going to jump straight into the myths, however if you want to understand more about what a calling is first, then head to this post.
Quick recap on how I define a calling from the post…
My viewpoint of calling
How I describe a calling, is that inner knowing and drive, that thing that you know you just can’t not do.
To break that down a bit more, I believe that a calling is:
- A way to develop a part of yourself, to learn about yourself and grow
- The highest activity or situation that you are called to do at a point in time
To bring some more clarity, in my opinion a calling is not:
- An occupation, career or vocation
- Your soul’s purpose
Onto the myths…
Myth #1: You only have 1 calling in your lifetime
As we live life, grow, change and experience so too do our desires, passions, dreams, likes and dislikes. We may attain new talents and skills, make new friends and relationships, move cities, towns or countries.
All of these things can shift our perception of what we believe, what we value and prioritise and how we wish to live our lives.
In the theme of a calling being a way to develop, learn and grow, there is no one way to do this, nor is there only one “thing” you must develop, learn and grow about yourself.
Some people are called to become and live a certain life. One that provides them all that they need to fulfil their calling.
Others may chop and change or express more than one calling at any one time.
To provide an example:
- you may feel called to look after a sick relative and raise socially conscious children and be the president of the local tennis club
- you may be called to become a Buddhist nun and live a Buddhist lifestyle
Neither of these are better, nor more prestigious than the other.
Myth #2: A bolt of lightning will deliver your calling to you
Finding your calling takes effort, courage, experimentation, discovering who you truly are and doing the inner work. By doing the inner work, becoming the observer in your life and being in communion with your highest self you will start to gain clarity on your calling.
The more present and observant you are to the present situations and circumstances in your life, the easier it is to feel what you are called to do at that point in time.
It is rare that you will suddenly just know what your calling is, you generally evolve into it.
Myth #3: You have to go through some epic journey, battle, trial or suffering to receive your calling
History shows us that heroes underwent journeys, battles, epic trials and experienced a great amount of pain and discomfort to achieve the life they wanted. It is inherent in society that good things, or worthy things can only be rewarded through suffering.
The same goes for your calling, many people still believe that by following your calling, that you must suffer in some way and do without.
The only suffering in life, is that which we cause ourselves. The universe does not need us to suffer to become who we are here to become or to grow.
When we resist, we create suffering.
Myth #4: Finding your calling means you have to leave your perfectly stable and secure job
This is probably one of the biggest and misunderstood concepts of following your calling. Many people associate calling with their work, career, vocation, when it is not directly linked.
Some people are called into leaving their work to pursue something else in life, whether to travel, go on a pilgrimage, change jobs or just take a time out.
Before leaving your perfectly stable means of income, dig deep and discover whether it is necessary to leave at all.
Myth #5: You need to earn money from your calling
Your calling does not need to earn you money or create income. This is where we tend to place a lot of pressure on ourselves.
We look at what we are being called to do, and suddenly because of Myth #4 above, we all of a sudden think that we need to leave our jobs and make money from what we feel called to do.
You may be called to donate your time, or contribute to society in some way, but this does not mean you need to leave your main source of income. You can fulfil both and still benefit from following your calling.
Your calling is not a job, occupation or the work you do. It can be, but it doesn’t have to be.
Myth #6: Your calling needs to be something epic, grand, ground breaking
Now the words grand, epic, ground breaking can mean different things to different people so I am not going to give examples of what these things could be because it’s not about comparing yourself to anyone else.
Some things you may be called to do could be:
- raise socially conscious, aware children
- to deliver Ted Talks on something that inspires you deeply
- to look after a sick relative
- to start a not for profit
- to create a better culture in the work place
- to make people smile everyday
You see it’s not about how big, grand or ground breaking – it’s about what makes your heart sing, what you feel an inner drive, an inner knowing to do. The thing that will help you become who you are here to become and express the highest version of yourself.
That thing that you just can’t not do – that is yours and is unique to you.
Some final words
Your calling is YOURS, it is unique to you and only you.
STOP comparing yourselves with others, you need to believe and trust in yourself, trust your intuition, trust the inner knowing.
Live your calling, bring that special unique you to the world. You have no idea what your contribution will be, you have no idea how many lives you may touch and change for the better.