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Awakening to Soul Purpose

By Steve D’Annunzio

There are two kinds of people in this world: awake or asleep; lightbearers and sleepwalkers.

People who are awake honor life, thus making the most of the grand possibilities that human life offers. Those who are asleep are predominantly unhappy and blame their unhappiness on someone or something else.

Lightbearers find happiness by aligning with truth, while sleepwalkers invariably seek happiness from counterfeit sources.

These sources can be as simple as working at an unfulfilling job just for benefits and perceived “security,” or doing things primarily to earn money rather than to serve others by living their dreams, or seeking glory in status and prestige.

In many cases, sleepwalkers seek happiness from more destructive sources, such as drugs and alcohol, selfishness, greed, excessive work, hedonism, and frivolous entertainment.

Sleepwalkers are also addicted to pain; they hold on tightly to wounds and injustices inflicted by others in order to have someone or something to blame.

Close to Home

My own parents were sleepwalkers. Though they were good-hearted people, they were confused.

By the time I was 12, I knew my father was an alcoholic and habitual gambler. I later learned that he was also a drug addict. These dark habits created serious strain on my mother; she was completely overwhelmed as to what to do.

There were very ugly scenes: father comes home late at night drunk, accused of carousing he violently strikes my mother, children awaken to screaming and crying, phone ripped from wall, police arrive, father disappears, etc.

Three-day long poker games were not uncommon in our kitchen. Nor were bill collectors serving legal documents to repossess cars or even our house. For my sister and me, marital discord, money worries, alcohol, and domestic abuse were the norm.

Happiness, inner peace, and life success weren’t even on the radar screen of possibilities.

By age 14 I was smoking pot with my father and by 15 I was addicted, which set the stage for a critical life event. I was caught by police with a large amount of marijuana and arrested. The bust took place on the street directly in front of my high school.

I’ll never forget the ugly feeling of being handcuffed and put in the back seat of the police car. As I made my one call from jail I found it ironic that the person I was calling to bail me out, my dad, was the person I was making the drug buy for.

The reality of what was happening hit me like a ton of bricks. I felt so weakened and drained I could barely speak to him.

Making a Change

For the next three days I sat alone in my bedroom dazed and confused as I entered a state of intense soul searching. I was in inner despair as I felt for the first time that I was here to be something purposeful, and my life up to this point was definitely not it.

Without any guidance from my parents, I’d been born with an inner connection to a Higher Power, and I now asked God what to do.

It felt like no answer came, but I immediately realized the only positive thing I had in my life was my love of music. I turned on the stereo and began to sing and immediately felt relief.

An inner light went on, and simultaneously a plan unfolded in my mind. I had no idea where it came from. It just arose in my consciousness a split second after I felt the inner light go on.

Prior to the arrest I had been on a certain course to become a high school dropout, since I hadn’t been to school for weeks. The “plan” said to go back to school, get a job, save money to buy a guitar and go out and sing and play for people.

The next day I went back to school. Though both the teachers and the students were looking at me like “Who are you?” because I hadn’t been there for so long, an interesting thing happened.

A fellow student walked right up to me and said, “I’m quitting my job at a restaurant right up the road. Do you want it?”

Somewhat shocked, I said, “Yes!”

I worked, I saved, I bought the guitar and studied music and soon became a very proficient musical presence on the local music scene.

An amazing series of coincidences began to occur. I met a musical booking agent who got me gigs in bars and restaurants, eventually asking me to work for him. Working as a full-time booking agent during the day and professional musician by night brought cash flow.

At the same time my family situation worsened; my father was now not only dealing marijuana but also cocaine.

I had the money to leave but I was still afraid to go out on my own. I was very immature with little knowledge of the world, business ethics, or success principles, but I knew I had to get out.

I had had a series of relationships with women that not surprisingly all ended badly, but the inner compass was screaming to get out of my current living situation. I was dating a girl who, without much thought, I asked to marry.

Within a few short years I was divorced and out of the music business chasing money in the corporate sales world. The job offered no fulfillment other than to the ego; pushing customers to buy, competing against other salesman for the most sales, out-earning other friends, and being recognized as “top dog” were my motivators.

I began to hate what I was doing and then to dislike who I had become.

Back to the Drawing Board

Once again I sat in my home alone doing a searing, soul-searching inventory of my life.

I was financially and morally broke, my relationships and family were broken. I felt like a bad parent, and now my health was broken too. I felt like a failure in every aspect of my life. It was so bad it was actually comical.

With a candidly dark humor I mused that I had amazing expertise in the art and science of failure!

But since the sleepwalker’s habit is to blame everyone else, I still wasn’t ready to surrender the ego. So I clung to the one thing that I believed wasn’t my fault.

My girlfriend at that time had just admitted to me that she had been diagnosed as clinically bipolar. Big surprise, I thought sarcastically. Clearly that couldn’t be my fault.

Despite seeing all my failures but relishing in victimhood I yelled to God, “Why do you keep sending me all these psycho women?”

Instantly a voice within gently asked, “What did they all have in common?”

“Great,” I thought, “I’m not only a loser — I’m also schizophrenic.”

The voice persisted, “What did they all have in common?”

I answered truthfully, “They all dated me.” Then it sunk in. “Wait a minute God — you mean to tell me that I’m the bad guy here?”

“You’re the bad guy.”

“I’M THE BAD GUY?!”

“You’re the bad guy, but you’re not a bad guy — you’re just asleep.”

“How do I wake up?”

Waking Up

“Through three things,” I felt through the inner voice, “Remember God, Choose Love, Create Value. When you remember Me, you will recall a primordial knowing that you are here for a reason, that your life has a purpose.”

“Okay God, what is it?”

“That requires you to do step number two, to Choose Love. Write down all the things that energize you most about life, things that you naturally love.”

I immediately did so. While the exercise itself was powerful and inspiring, by the time I finished and reviewed it a depressing thought crossed my mind.

“Okay God, this is a wonderful exercise, but I need money and I can’t earn doing these things.”

“Do number three. When you create value for others by doing that which you love, prosperity will flow back to you. Prosperity follows value; it’s inevitable and it never fails.”

And so dear reader, from the depths of despair, and from the ashes of an ego-drunken life that was mercifully burned down to the ground, I awoke.

Now, years later, I’ve had the privilege of helping thousands of people discover and live their Soul Purpose. I’ve personally coached hundreds of clients to awaken to their greatness, dramatically increase their cash flow, enhance their contribution, and find much more fulfillment.

I’ve worked with clients across a broad range of fields and income levels including ultra-wealthy Wall Street executives, Super Bowl-winning professional athletes, entrepreneurs, financial advisors, lawyers, doctors and Grammy-award winning artists.

All these things happened in a perfect timing that must be experienced to believe, for merely reading words on a page cannot convey how it happens.

Soul Purpose IS Divine Will; it is what God wants for you. But free will dictates that you agree to it, thus allowing God permission to work miracles for and through you.

Once you do so, the whole universe throws itself on your side. All the wrong doors slam shut (even though you may not recognize them as wrong and therefore suffer a perceived loss) and all the right doors open.

If I, one who had become adept at failure, can discover my Soul Purpose and deliver it to the world, I promise that anyone can.

My noble intention is that you awaken too, and it is my sacred duty to help you do so.

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Steve D’Annunzio is the founder of the Soul Purpose Institute, the author of The Prosperity Paradigm, and a productivity trainer and life success coach to Fortune 100 executives, professional athletes, and high-performance entrepreneurs. For twenty years, he has been helping people identify their passion, develop it into a business idea, and deliver it to the world.

A member of the Transformational Leadership Council, Steve has shared the stage with world-changers like Dr. Deepak Chopra, Dr. Wayne Dyer, Marianne Williamson, Jack Canfield, and Barbra-Marx Hubbard.

He uses principles of higher awareness to inspire others to be far greater versions of themselves than they ever knew to be possible. By combining scientific and spiritual truth, he co-creates inner transformations for people to experience more outer prosperity in their life.

He is an author and composer of many books, paradigms, and artistic projects that have the common theme of alleviating human suffering and enhancing joy.

Steve lives with his family in Rochester, New York.

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Awakening to Soul Purpose