By Carsten Graff

People have often told me that it's important to bring your soul into your work, but the question is: Will your soul ever be comfortable in a traditional working environment? Regardless of which kind of job I have had, my soul has always been preoccupied trying to make me go somewhere else. My soul has never been concerned with making money, being on time, acting professionally or working nine to five. When my soul is committed to what I am doing, my focus on time, money and achieving results evaporates. The only thing my soul cares about is that I grow emotionally, that I am surrounded by positive energy and that I am in a loving and meaningful relationship. If I try to bring it along to a staff meeting, it has usually already bolted out of the room before we even take our seats. My soul never tries to keep up appearances – Instead, it disappears without warning whenever I have to work with people who are stressful, restless, busy or not in the present. And there I am, left behind, trudging on and feeling empty and uninspired. With time, I have come to realize that my soul is much more honest than I am. It simply has a serious lack of respect for authorities, protocol and decorum. 


My soul at the office 
My soul has never had the desire for a job, an attractive résumé or the honour of becoming 'Employee of the Month.’ It would rather go on vacation than go to work. In truth, my soul is happier when I am relaxing, sleeping, going for a stroll, or just doing nothing at all. Some years back I, therefore, decided to follow my soul's desires and stay at home. It became my vision to devote all my time and energy to pamper my soul and let it decide what we should do. At first, it quite enjoyed giving lectures, but when lecturing turned into a successful business venture it wasn’t long before its enthusiasm started to flag. In the years that followed, it happily pursued numerous other projects without regard to expense and time — and every time I faithfully acquiesced. This included holding free, experimental seminars, discussing openness with random strangers in the street, living in open and monogamous relationships, working at a hospice, living in a caravan, running in the forest without shoes, being a father, traveling to developing countries to help children in need, being in love, being happy and hurt, among a thousand other things. As a reward for my cooperation, my soul gave me a few hours off each week so I could establish a publishing company to pay our bills. This permitted me to publish the books my soul wanted to write, while also earning the money I needed in order to give my soul the freedom to express itself.
My soul's passions 
So, what have I learnt about my soul's passions after having tried to stay true to it all these years? Overall, I have realized that it wants nothing more than to help people who are at one with their soul when they receive help. In such encounters, I can help without taking over, give energy without being drained, get close to others while still respecting personal boundaries. On the whole, I feel that I help create growth and freedom in other people’s lives. In this context, it is no longer obvious who helps and who receives help. When united this way, neither party can avoid growing – regardless of what takes place. Helping people who are not in touch with their soul is an entirely different matter. Every time I have tried this I have been unsuccessful, and instead of freedom and progress, I have created addiction and unbalanced expectations. After I decided to stay true to the wishes of my soul I have become allergic to people who are not in touch with their soul. Perhaps because I have come to represent something that they feel that they have lost.