Callings Lectures and Topics
The following topics can be presented in a range of formats, from a one-hour lecture to a full-day or weekend workshop to a weeklong retreat.
Callings: The Power of Passionate Work
Creating passionate, productive and mission-inspired work and workplaces begins with the individual----with the corpus (body) that defines the corporation. It involves aligning, or re-aligning, with your passion and sense of purpose, with your deepest values and not the advertised values, and with a fit between who you are and what you do----the best kind of success!
In fact, any leap you want to make in your professional or personal life that will bring you this sense of authenticity and aliveness is, by definition, a calling. That calling could be to make a career change or creative leap, take on a new role or let go of an old one, launch a new venture or style of leadership, or simply make a course-correction in your life or work. The result of engaging your deepest passions----and thus motivations----will show up at work as greater enthusiasm, creativity and health. The innerwork nourishes the outerwork.
In this presentation, we’ll explore the psychological, spiritual and practical processes we typically encounter in listening and responding to these calls. While honoring a calling’s essential mystery, we’ll also explore the questions that arise naturally in the presence of any calling: What does it ask of you? How do you tell the true call from the siren-song? How do you handle your resistance to it? What happens when you say no? What happens when you say yes?
Callings: In Search of An Authentic Life
Callings are urgings and imperatives from the deep self that tell us what it will take to make our lives literally “come true.” They point us toward awakenings, course-corrections, and powerful authenticity.
In this presentation, geared toward a general audience, we’ll explore the psychological, spiritual and practical processes we encounter in listening and responding to our callings, whether in the arenas of work, relationship, lifestyle or service. They may be calls to do something (change careers, go back to school, start a relationship, move to the country, begin a creative project) or they may be calls to be something (more adventurous, less judgmental, more loving, less fearful). They may be calls toward something or away from something, calls to change or renew your commitment to something, or calls to return to a place or pursuit in an entirely new way.
Dont Just Declare a Major, Follow a Calling
Students often struggle to know and follow their truest callings, to negotiate the tight passages of career choice or career transition, and to create a match between who they are and what they do----the best kind of success. These decisions need to be made as much from the soul as from the dictates of security. What’s at stake is a life of authenticity and integrity, a life that honors passion and purpose, and a life that’s an original and not a knock-off.
In this presentation, we’ll strike up a dialogue with the deep self, and hear what the soul has to say about anything as important as our worklife. With an eye toward gaining clarity and courage, we’ll explore the psychological, spiritual and practical processes typically encountered in listening and responding to callings, and the questions that bloom naturally in their presence: How do you tell a true call from a false one? How do you handle your resistance to a calling? What happens when you say no? What happens when you say yes?
The Call to Serve
People who are fueled by a sense of calling about service----a deep feeling of purpose and connection to something greater than themselves, a sense of aliveness and contribution, a fit between who they are and what they do----will bring that kind of passion and spirit to whomever or whatever they serve, whether it’s the community, the natural world, or human potential.
Their lives become channels through which their moral, spiritual and physical energies can flow out into the world, and through which the Larger Voices that want to speak through us can be heard and felt----even as they struggle to manage the tensions between faith and despair, and to continually renew their callings.
This presentation will help people gain clarity and courage to take whatever Next Steps will deepen their alignment with the call to serve, and follow what that call is calling-for from them now.
The True Material: Finding Your Call as a Writer
“What must I say?” is perhaps the foremost question writers have to ask themselves. In order to answer this question-----in order to know who we are as writers, to come into our full voice and power, to speak with our greatest authenticity-----we must read the clues embedded in our passions and obsessions, our personality and personal history, our spontaneous writing and journaling.
In this presentation, we’ll explore what your life and talents are calling you to write, and the questions, themes and visions that define your yearnings as a writer.
The Search for Signs of Authentic Life in the Universe*
Our callings come to us through a great variety of signs----dreams, symptoms, symbols, intuitions, events, synchronicities, memories----and we need to learn to recognize them. They are like divining rods, helping us to locate the underground streams so we'll know where to dig, so we'll know what is being called for in our lives at any given moment.
In this presentation, we'll explore the many channels through which callings come to us, how to turn our receivers on, and the challenges of discerning what the signs are telling us.
* with thanks to Lily Tomlin
We belong to a work-obsessed culture whose busyness-as-usual makes us forget that discipline also means knowing when to knock off. Just as the ear needs “rests” when listening to music, we each need time to linger and reflect in the onrushing of life, time when we’re not engaged in what the Taoists refer to as “the ten thousand things.” When we’re giving off nothing but busy signals, the calls of spirit, of soul, of the deep self can’t get through.
This presentation examines the challenges and benedictions of taking breathers, of remembering that life is meant to be savored and not just worked at.