I have written my first book, it is a very accessible personal growth book for anyone from any walk of life and is called…
See below for a sample chapter.
I have a publisher who expects my book to be ready late spring 2020.
Do use the contact page to message me and I will let you know when the book is available.
This site will link to the online bookshop as soon as the book is available.
Some chapter titles;
It’s never not now
It’s not out there
What we dwell on we become
We get in our own way
Have courage and be kind
A sample chapter…
Even pain can bring blessings
It may seem strange to start this book with the subject of pain, but through all my years of talking with and helping people, I have learnt that most personal growth journeys start with some pain – either of physical illness, emotional trauma, the death of someone close, being made redundant, or any one or even several of life’s painful events.
We don’t change our conditions very easily, even though they may be extremely uncomfortable. The one thing that seems to move us to change more than anything else is pain.
For me it was at the age of thirty. Suddenly my energy disappeared. I felt as if I had been unplugged from the mains. It was a Sunday – the 25th March, 1990. Until that day most people would have looked at me and my life and would have said, ‘Danapriya’s made it, what a good life he has!’ (although I was not yet called Danapriya then). I had a great partner and we had two homes, one in London and one in Brighton. I was general manager of a business travel company in Mayfair, London, and travelled extensively. I had many friends, I went to lots of parties, the theatre, and exhibitions, and generally I was having what I thought was a good life.
But one day, my body said, ‘No’. I became bed-bound for thirteen months, then flat-bound for about another eight. Yes, my life was good, but was it the life I was meant to be living? Was it my life or the life I thought I should be living, due to how I was told to live by others, by parents, teachers, society, culture?
I don’t remember ever stopping and asking, “What do I want to do? What sort of life do I want to live?” I had sort of just blindly done the next thing. Although my life looked as if I had made it in a worldly sense, my body had other ideas. It said ‘STOP!’ Suddenly I was in bed, being looked after, luckily so very well by my partner, family and friends, who were certainly all a great blessing. I’d lost my job, I got paid for three more months, and then I was living on sickness benefit. I had to sell my London flat and live in my partner’s home in Brighton. I had almost zero energy. I cried a lot during those early months, although strangely I don’t remember being unhappy. I think it must have been a relief letting go of a pretence that I had no idea I was holding on to.
After nine months of being tested for everything by the NHS, I was diagnosed with myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME) – basically, extreme fatigue – although with hindsight my own diagnosis would be emotional exhaustion (EE). After a very loving, stable childhood, as I reached fifteen, my mum left the family home; two years later my dad threw me out, because his new wife did not want to look after his children. These two events felt like rejections. I then went at life, people-pleasing and trying to be a perfectionist, in order that no one else ever rejected me again. And that’s exhausting. The NHS offered me antidepressants, and although I had been very upset in the early months, having lost my health, job, home and energy, I didn’t feel I was depressed. I was appropriately and healthily sad for my change of circumstances.
After about a year of my body resting, I started reading my first personal growth book, ‘Feel the fear and do it anyway’ by Susan Jeffers. This began my search. How did I want to spend this precious life of mine?
Western medicine was unable to help with ME at that time (in fact they had only recently labelled it as a specific condition), so I started to look for alternatives. My dear friend Glen was a spiritualist and he suggested that I try spiritual healing. At this point I was open to anything. My partner wrote to the National Federation of Spiritual Healers to see if there was a healer living in our area.
A few days later, it was a beautiful blue-sky December morning, and the sun was shining through the window of our second floor flat, which I had not been out of on my own since arriving there about fourteen months earlier. Normally I waited for my partner to come home in the evening to bring up the mail from the ground floor postbox, but this day I felt drawn to go downstairs to get the mail. There were two letters, both for me. I stood looking out the front door at the beautiful day. There was a street opposite called West Hill Street, with lovely white painted houses which I always liked. I left the house and began to walk up West Hill Street. After about thirty yards I suddenly felt absolutely exhausted, and realising I had overdone it, I wondered how on earth I was going to get back home. I sat on a house wall in the sunshine and opened the first letter which was from the National Federation of Spiritual Healers. It said that there was a healer in our area who lived at 25, West Hill Street. I just happened to be resting on the wall of number 25, West Hill Street!
I have always felt this moment was a momentous one, and one of great significance. I felt guided that day. That moment has helped me realise that if I can get myself out of the way, then I can allow myself to be guided by something. I don’t know what it is, and I don’t mind what anyone calls it, but it’s been very kind to me. It’s a delightful mystery. I know I need to listen to my inner world and to pay less attention to the outer one. In the quiet, I hear, feel and sense my true direction if I leave a space to listen and see the coincidences and signs.
If someone had said to me at twenty-nine that the following year I would have lost my energy, job and home, I definitely wouldn’t have believed them. I would have been very scared of any single one of those things happening. But they all did happen and they became the biggest blessing in my life.
I had to stop, look, listen and sense the deeper voices and currents within, and then ask myself questions:
What do I want to do with this precious life of mine?
How do I want to use my energy?
How do I want to manifest in this world?
How do I think others want me to be?
What do others think I should do?
Truly, who am I?
How can I let my truth live?
How can I be the best human being I’m capable of?
The answer was to listen deeply and I would know. But you don’t have to wait for pain or tragedy to strike, you can actually stop right now and look within.
In general we don’t stop. We stay with our discomfort, whether it be a job we dislike that we do day in, day out, week in, week out, year in, year out. We keep doing things that are uncomfortable, that we don’t like. ‘But’ we say. ‘But this’, ‘But that’. Any excuse not to let ourselves be free of the underlying pain. We don’t like change – or do we?
There is a chapter on change later in this book.
We stay in relationships that are past their sell-by date. We know it but we don’t do anything about it. We may talk to our friends about it; but do we really talk to our partner, to explore possible ways to change, so that we can help each other enjoy our lives. Or instead do we suffer in silence, and pretend?
I believe we often act and pretend. We don’t even know we are doing it, because we have not yet worked out what it is that we are meant to be doing in this lifetime. We act and pretend, we do what we think we should, or what we think others think we should, though that’s an illusion because we have not even asked the others what they think we should do! We have guessed and we could be wrong. Living in this way is really only half a life; not a fully lived and vitally meaningful one, where we make every moment count, where we savour the beautiful, where we leave a wonderful perfume in our wake.
The pain in my life has brought change and blessings. Had these not happened, I certainly would not have lived and still be living the rich, precious life that I live now. The pain has helped me develop compassion and empathy for myself and others. It is helping me put myself in others’ shoes and to be grateful for all the blessings of my life.
This book covers much of the fertile ground that will help you live the life you are here for.
Stop, look, listen and sense. You are so worth it. You matter.