In mid-December, I had the privilege of speaking with Nic Askew, the creator of “Soul Biographies.” You may have seen some of his inspiring and thought-provoking short videos here in this blog.

We quickly took a deep dive into our life’s work, talking about the journeys that have led us to where we are now. We explored what it really means to make a difference in the world. We posed lots of questions without any need to have answers. We were just bathing in the energy of possibility and wonder. That seemed like enough.

And then, towards the end of our conversation, Nic posed the biggest question yet: What is our responsibility, really?

He wasn’t just asking that question for the two of us. He was asking it for all of us. In the big picture of life, when it comes down to the essence of things, what is our bottom-line responsibility? Even now, a month later, the question won’t let go of me.

That moment was such a gift. There was silence for a long time. And then the silence reminded us of what we both already knew yet is so easy to forget: Our only real responsibility is to shine our light.

To shine our light. So simple. Just shine our light.

Funny how the simplest and most authentic things in life can also be the most daunting.

Last week, I wrote about hope, vision, and being a steward for whatever it is you hope for. To be a steward for something is to co-create with it. And being the best possible co-creative partner means showing up fully – bringing all of who you are in your perfection and imperfection to the table. Shining your light, letting yourself be seen in your brilliance and in your humility. Both.

You may have some baggage around shining your light and letting others see your brilliance. Lots of us do. Old stories, outdated fears. Perhaps you doubt that there is anything truly brilliant about you. Or maybe you tend to take on unhealthy responsibility for others or for making sure that things get done the “right” way. We all have our stories. In my experience, most of these stories are actually about the “doing” part of brilliance – “Will I do it right? Will I be good enough? Will I meet their expectations?”

Yet I’m talking about the “being” part of brilliance. As my friend Able said during a particularly challenging time in her life, “All I can do is be the love that I am.”

That’s it. Just be the love that you are. Show up as the love that you are, and your light will shine. It’s that simple – so simple that it might take the bigger part of a lifetime to fully embrace it.

So what if you were to set the baggage down? What if being love and shining your light is really all that you are responsible for? What if the world needs your light much more than it needs your baggage?

To truly have hope requires having a vision of something more, something better, along with some confidence that, in fact, whatever you envision can indeed happen. The best gift you can give in support of that vision is to shine your light on it – to give it your full attention and intention, and to bring your knowledge, skills, and abilities to the table in support of what wants to happen.

So then, yes, there must be action. Manifesting the vision will require that you take steps – that you say “yes” to what the vision asks you to do. And some of those steps may be really big – so big that you honestly don’t know if you can do them.

If you focus on how huge the steps are and what a challenge it will be to get the job done, I can promise you it will be hard work. In fact, it might even feel so challenging that at some point you give up.

Yet if you “be the love that you are” – if you tap into your brilliant love light and shine it on the vision – the vision will carry you. You will find yourself taking steps, even when you have no idea what the step after that will be. Inspiration will come, flashes of insight and awareness, and somehow you will know to trust. And you will just go. Your intellect may tell you that you don’t know how, yet your heart will lead the way and you will find yourself doing what you “don’t know how to do” anyway. Things will happen. Your vision will come to life.

Love asks big things of us, yet it also provides a huge wave of energy for us to ride. There are many challenges in the world right now. More will come. We have choices. We can choose to give in to our doubts and fears, keep carrying our baggage, and hide our light. Or we can focus our vision on something better and shine our light on it. If we listen to the vision for guidance and direction and say “yes” to what it asks from us, the love that we are will move us into action.

Not long ago, Nic shared this poem in his weekly newsletter. It feels like a great complement to this article and a beautiful invitation to awareness at the beginning of a new year.

As The Light Makes Its Way
by Nic Askew

A man had lived in his imagination.
Ever since he was a boy.

For it was full of wonder and adventure
when set against the outer world
that housed his everyday life.

His imagination surrounded him in light.
The outer world, in a darker shade.

But as he waited for this outer world
to catch the light,
he realised that it might not.

And so he stepped out into the world,
hand in hand with his imagination.

Knowing that together they would
bring light to the darkest corners.

And he is you. And me.

And together, the imagination of
our collective soul has already
begun its inevitable work.

As the light makes its way
towards the experience
of the world.


P.S. If you are looking for more support in being the love that you are and letting your authentic light shine, check out my little meditation-in-a-book, The Power Of Your Presence. Carry this pocket-sized book in your purse or bag, or put it beside your favorite chair. It’s a 20-minute meditation to help you develop your own authentic and powerful personal presence. An audio version of the book is also available as an mp3 download.


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