Evaluating Your Ruling Passion Exercise

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In my previous blog I outlined an exercise designed to help you clarify what you really want out of your ideal partner, career, pet, vacation, community (and any other area of experience you can think of). I urged you to choose a dream or goal or experience, then write down twenty-one physical, emotional, intellectual, or spiritual elements you feel your dream, goal, or experience must contain if you are to be truly satisfied.

Now it’s time to evaluate the twenty-one elements you have identified as essential to your ideal dream.

  1. Go to the top of your page and read the first element you listed. Now read the second element you listed. Now ask yourself, “Assuming my ideal dream will contain both these elements I have listed, which element is the more important to me?” For example, let’s say I’ve listed twenty-one elements I believe are essential to my dream career. And let’s say the first element I wrote down was “lots and lots of money.” Now I would compare item #1 to my second listed item, which let’s say is “government contracts.” Next I would ask myself, “Rand, assuming your ideal career will bring you lots and lots of money AND government contracts, which element is more important to you?”
  2. Following your gut instinct, circle the number of the element that feels more important to you or which excites you more or which feels the more core of the two. Remember: you are not giving up one of your ideal elements in favor of the other. You can have both. You are just prioritizing the two. TIP: Some people find that placing one hand on their stomachs or over their hearts makes it easier for them to tune in to their priority.  Let’s say I choose number 1, “lots and lots and lots of money.”
  3. Now take the element whose number you circled (in my case, “lots and lots and lots of money”) and compare that element to the third item on your list, which let’s say is my hypothetical case is “three-month luxury vacations.” Ask yourself, “Which do I feel is more important, the first element whose number I circled or element number 3 on my list?” In my hypothetical case, assuming I may have lots and lots and lots of money from my ideal career as well as three-month luxury vacations, let’s say I still feel the money is more important—more core to my dream—than the vacations. But I could just as well have chosen the vacations over the money, again, assuming I can have both. Circle the number of the element you prefer.
  4. Continue down the list, comparing the last item you circled with the next item on the list, until you have finished the list.
  5. Now go back and read each element in your list that you circled on your way down the list. You may have circled the same one throughout, or changed your mind several times. The point is, the very last element that you circled on your way down your list is the Ruling Passion for your ideal dream: that is, it represents the element you feel deep down is the most important quality, experience, or benefit that your dream is designed to bring you. And the other elements you circled on your way to the last one you circled are the Secondary Passions your ideal dream is designed to fulfill.
  6. Remember, you do not have to give up the elements you ended up not circling. They remain important. But in working the Wheel of Creation to make your ideal dream come true, it is the Ruling Passion and Secondary Passions you will need to keep focused upon as you plot the strategies, actions, support, and communication required to manifest your heart’s desires.

Next: The Wheel of Creation: Action.

The Ruling Passion Exercise

ImageThe Ruling Passion Exercise is designed to help you clarify what it is you really want in a life, date, relationship, career, job, vacation, pet, community, home, religion, garden—anything you can imagine. My clients and I have found it useful because like many folks, we often confuse what we really, truly want deep down with what we think we really want, what peers, bosses, coworkers, family, life-partner and society tell us we should want, and what we think we can get.

The Ruling Passion Exercise is based on the idea that we all come into physical reality to create certain experiences for ourselves, experiences which, if left unfulfilled, may cause us to feel that we have wasted our lives. This exercise is also based on the idea that we each have a Greater Self who knows what we really want, and is constantly seeking to nudge us toward the experiences that will give us the greatest joy and satisfaction.

It’s not enough to have a dream. We must also know what experiences we wish that dream to give us. Armed with such knowledge, we can work out a practical strategy for translating our dream into physical reality without having to waste years of effort following false trails.

The Ruling Passion Exercise

Copy the following form onto your desktop or onto a sheet of paper.

WHAT I REALLY WANT IN MY IDEAL_____________________________________________

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Instructions:

  1. Set a timer for 5-10 minutes.
  2. At the top of the form fill in the blank following the title phrase WHAT I REALLY WANT IN MY IDEAL (career, life-partner, vacation, etc). I.e., write down the general category of dream you would like to clarify in this exercise.
  3. Start the timer.
  4. Beginning with line 1 above, list all the physical, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual pleasures, benefits, experiences, or qualities you would like from your exercise’s chosen topic in an ideal world. This last is very important. Forget about past failures or successes. Set aside just for the 5-10 minutes of the exercise all the reasons why you imagine you cannot have what you really want: your age (“I’m too old!”), looks (“I’m too fat!”), money (“I’m too poor!”), status (“I have too many people depending on me”), level of ability (“I flunked out”), character shortcomings (“I’m too lazy”), fears (“What if I fail? I’ll be a laughing stock”), and self-condemnations (“I’m too much of a screw-up; nothing like this could ever happen to me”).
  5. Write as quickly as you can, with as little self-editing as possible. Don’t be alarmed if some of the things you write down are “politically incorrect”, shocking, or unexpected. When you run out of ideas, stop.
  6. If you have not listed twenty-one, ask yourself, “Am I really being honest with myself?” If you can’t think of anything to list at all, ask yourself, “Whom do I know or have read about who has the successes, qualities, or experiences I would like to incorporate into my dream?” If you still can’t think of twenty-one things you want our of your ideal dream, try turning the exercise on its head: try listing twenty-one things you would hate your dream to bring you. Then write down next to these hates their opposites. (You may also set aside the exercise for a day or so and return to it.)

Next: Evaluating Your Ruling Passion List