Your Bliss Station

Bliss Station

When we hear the word “bliss” – many of us may be reminded of Joseph Campbell’s core philosophy on life: “Follow your bliss.” Sage words, indeed. But, in my humble estimation, not always an easy task. So I decided to delve deeper into this simple phrase and learned that, in order to discern one’s bliss, Campbell goes on to urge us to find our sacred space. He terms this space – this place “where you can simply experience and bring forth what you are and what you might be” – our “bliss station.” 

Reading these words made me exhale a deep sigh of recognition. I’ve been retreating to my own personal bliss station for years and can’t count the number of times I’ve recommended this practice to my clients. And this sacred space has become increasingly paramount during these trying times. These are days of perpetual input — phones, screens, news, children, work … the constant hum of humanity that reverberates throughout my soul 24/7 if I let it. When I become captive to this incessant kind of energy pull, I feel it’s akin to the little battery icon on my phone when it appears to be nearly empty – warning me that if I don’t plug it in, I’ll simply run out of juice.

Years ago I established my first personal bliss station: a remote area in my yard complete with a simple pergola, lush plants, and an enchanting bird feeder. I even added pillows embroidered with the reminder to “Stay Here Now.” I can wander out to this space and leave the world behind – sitting in silence, tending to the birds, watching the trees sway. My family knows that, when I am in this place, I am to be uninterrupted. “Mom’s in the ‘perg’”, they say, grinning. Smiling because they know I inevitably return more grounded, centered, peaceful. When I’m in my own private bliss station, I just get to be me. I plug into my center. The mere act of walking to this sacred space cues my mind to let go, to enter my own self. 

More recently, I unintentionally found a second bliss station. Mountain biking! Never would I have expected that racing down hills and navigating over rutted roads through the dust as enormous trees rush by would become a sacred space. Obviously, it’s not exactly serene, what with all the jostling as my hands grip the handles. It’s certainly not stationary. Anything but. But I find deep peace as I sail through the world. I get to a moment when time stands still. When I cannot think about anything else. Something clicks that just feels true. Joyous. My bliss state.

I advise clients – and friends and family and anyone who will listen – that finding this bliss station is transformative. A newness can emerge where you can truly connect with your deepest self. Where you can hear YOUR voice and identify what it is that you want to bring to the world. All the chatter melts away. Especially during the last year when boundaries have become increasingly compromised, establishing a sacred space has been paramount to my own sanity.

So how to go about finding your own bliss station? Start by experimenting and acquiring data. Are you pulled to be outside? Are you still? Moving? Quiet? Do you need stimulation? What senses want to lead? Perhaps it’s a corner of an office where you can light a candle. Or maybe it’s watering vegetables out in the garden. As long as it’s sacred to you. As long as you can establish a ritual that allows you to truly unplug.  One hard and fast rule of mine though: no technology allowed.

And I’ll leave you with this: be patient. You may not immediately find your bliss station or your bliss. Tuning out the constant chatter takes discipline. And as Campbell said, “At first you may find that nothing happens there. But if you have a sacred place and use it, something eventually will happen.”

Follow your Bliss. If you do follow your bliss, you put yourself on a kind of track that has been there all the while, waiting for you. And the life you ought to be living is the one you are living. Follow your bliss and don’t be afraid, and doors will be open where you don’t know they were going to be.

Joseph Campbell

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