We’re entering a new age that is calling us to step up both collectively and individually. Call it a new era or an evolutionary leap, it’s here, and if we want to jump on board we’ve got to let go of some carefully honed traits that no longer serve us (I’m talking about competitiveness, defensiveness, manipulation and perfectionism) and embrace the new skills we’ll need to navigate the brave new world that is unfurling before us.
When I was growing up in the eighties and nineties, the life-skills in demand were competitiveness, individualism, the ability to mask feelings and slap on a happy face and shallow images success (remember power suits with built in shoulder pads?). Hard work and effort were seen as the only ways to get ahead of the pack and numbing with drugs and alcohol was taken for granted.
The new skills we are being called to hone are almost opposite in nature to what most of us were taught. They are about promoting co-operation over competition, depth over shallowness, creativity over logic. The ability to feel is now a gift, surrendering is anything but a weakness and aligning with a greater power is necessary. Creativity and play are becoming as important as logic and analysis and courage is about, as the Barefoot Investor says, “treading your own path”.
Here are the skills that I see as being invaluable to the new chapter of human evolution. Imagine what it would feel like to become powerful practitioners of these incredible and neglected parts of our innate human toolkit:
- Feel. Most of us are used to numbing our pain and pushing it down, or looking for external ways to get rid of it. This is not our fault, it’s what we are taught. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work – the unwanted emotions just pop back up like jack in the boxes, usually when we least expect it. The new world is calling us to become aware of our unwanted emotions, to alchemise them and turn them into the gifts they were always meant to be. Another essential aspect of learning to feel deeply is that, as our sensitivity returns, we will again have access to the power of intuition and will become able to ‘feel’ an answer rather than simply analysing it. Feeling is hot, numbing is not.
- Intend. Ever wondered why zombie movies are so popular? The phenomenon could be speaking to the fact that so many humans (though increasingly less) live zombie-like lives, reacting and living by outdated programs that they never examine. The new world calls us to design our own lives and exist on purpose, a way of living that is underpinned by the practice of setting deliberate intentions. Intending is about living life on purpose and setting meaningful goals – both small and large – that align with the natural laws of life and the emerging consciousness. The minute you start setting intentions, you become the artist of your own life.
- Allow. The concept of allowing and surrendering goes against the grain of the old ‘work hard and reap the rewards’ mantra most of us grew up with. When you are able to effectively allow and surrender, you become a co-creator with the universe and manifest your goals in a more enjoyable and productive way. Allowing is not ‘doing nothing’, it’s taking action that is infused with the energy of trust and intend – carrying wayyyy more power than the hustle mentality. Try noticing the energy you bring to things you want to accomplish. Pushing is out, allowing is in. I never really embodied the idea of surrender until I gave birth naturally. After doing all the preparation I could, there came a point in the birth process where I had to surrender to the painful process of giving birth, and when I did, everything got easier. Just like in labour, forcing and pushing your mental agenda leads to burn out and stubbornness, whereas allowing invites a softer energy that ‘allows’ more good than you could possibly imagine into your life, via a generous universe that wants the best for everyone.
- Imagine. We all know the famous Einstein quote, “Imagination is more important that knowledge”, but how many of us work daily to exercise our imagination muscles? I believe imagination is THE most important skill to master in creating a new and more beautiful world. Think about it: Every luxury and convenience we enjoy has sprung from somebody’s vast and untamed imagination – aeroplanes, the internet, you name it – it was all dreamed up in someone’s mind before it became ‘possible’ on the material plane.Imagination is about playing with the boundaries between the possible and impossible. This is my number one journal practice and the basis for all the magic I have every created in my life. Told to ‘get your head out of the clouds’ when you were a kid? It’s time to daydream again.
- Play. Play feels like doing nothing and being unproductive, right? But cultivating the energy of play is an integral new world skill because it facilitates creativity, intuition and surrender. Play is not a thing, but a way of being. Steve Jobs was playing. Einstein was playing. It’s about bringing a fun mentality to whatever you’re doing to eliminate the perfectionism and fear of failure that keeps you small. Notice how you approach things you love and switch perfectionism for play. Guaranteed you’ll feel more magical and in flow.
- Listen. The skill it takes to deeply listen, first to your own inner whispers, and then to others, is extremely underrated in a society where everyone is desperate to be heard. I know that listening is a key skill in the emerging world because I have seen the magical healing that happens when people feel heard in my own relationships. Ten minutes of listening deeply to someone you love can mitigate years of ill-will, misunderstanding and bad energy – it’s that powerful. Imagine the mental health implications if people learned how to effectively and deeply listen to someone who is mired in depression or anxiety (we currently avoid these people or refer them to medical professionals)? The current challenges facing us call on to listen first to the deep whisperings of our own hearts, and then to others. This is how we create paradise on earth.
- Reparent. Try as we may, we can’t dodge our inner child. In the emerging world, I believe our primary ‘work’ will be re-parenting the inner child that lives in each of us through practices that take us deep into the denied aspects of ourselves and allow us to accept and, consequently transcend them. There is nothing that cannot be alchemised through developing the skill of reparenting. Imagine a world where everyone is supported to do the brave work of feeling their pain, examining their deep triggers and, finally, re-wiring their brains to reprogram themselves healthy beliefs? I believe this is what we are all worthy of.
- Create. You may be diligent in eating nutritious foods and exercising your body, but how well do you tend your creative yearnings? I grew up feeling like my creative energy was a force to be squashed in favour of more productive pursuits. Then I noticed that, the more I ignored my creative impulses, the sicker and more anxious I became. I then elevated creative practice to become one of my highest values, and have since enjoyed a better relationship to myself and a deep sense of joy, wonder and curiousity. I believe the soul speaks through creativity. I’m also aware that in the emerging world, creativity will be a highly prized skill – the creative aspects of individual humans cannot be mechanised!
Close your eyes and take a moment to imagine what your life could look like as a result of mastering these skills. Then visualise what our earth could look like if we all harnessed their power. Let’s do this together.