#067 Spirituality and success with Danielle Van de Velde

#067 Spirituality and success with Danielle Van de Velde

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Episode Transcript

The transcript is computer generated. There may be errors.

Sharad: Hi, everyone. Welcome to how to live. A podcast that explores ways to live a good life. I'm your host, Sharad. This is episode 67. 

Does spirituality have a place at work? Many don't think so. Some feel yes. Maybe in stress management or mental wellbeing. But there's something even more powerful. Spirituality can enhance professional growth by opening up new levels of performance and self discovery. 

Joining us today is a remarkable guest, Danielle Van De Velde. She's from the finance industry, who's turned into a meditation teacher. Keynote speaker and spiritual healer. Dani's transition to spirituality wasn't sparked by one dramatic life event, but it was a deliberate search for personal purpose. She works with global leaders. Is an author have an incredible book And hosts the top ranked podcast, the modern crone that's ranked number one in the spiritual category in Singapore and beyond. Dani's a pivotal figure in integrating spiritual practice in the professional realm. 

In our conversation today, we'll cover how spirituality can amplify professional life. Navigating the balance between striving and accepting. Understanding purpose enhancing relationships and the power of discipline and repetition. Dani's soothing voice and profound wisdom are truly enriching. 

But before we jump in, thank you very much for your support. With listeners in 130 countries, we're in the top 5% globally. And if you value the content, please do follow us and rate us. Thank you in advance. Now here's the incredible Dani Van De Velde.

Sharad: Hi, Dani. Good morning. Welcome to the How to Live podcast. 

Dani: Good morning, Sharad. Thank you so much for asking me. I'm delighted to be here

Sharad: Dani, you were in the corporate world. You worked in finance. What led you to spirituality?

Dani: I was raised in a very spiritual family. So my family was a Catholic family, a devout Catholic family. They still are. So I grew up with prayer and ritual and ceremony and sacraments, which I loved. so I had an openness to this sort of other aspect of life right from when I was in utero, But I also grew up in a very ambitious family, We're all very highly educated. We were groomed to have successful careers. So I had these two aspects of myself right from the very beginning.

but I would say that my spiritual explorations were very much undercover. I enjoyed a fantastic career, which I loved too, but it did get to a point where I started really questioning my purpose.

And the more successful I was in my corporate career, the bigger that question became for me. And of course my spiritual explorations were happening all the time.

I wasn't getting any formal training. I was reading a lot of books. I was going to a lot of circles, especially during my time in London. there's a beautiful, rich, esoteric scene in London with some amazing people.

And, I think that fuelled it. And it got to a point where I think I was asking myself, how much is enough? What am I really here to do? I just didn't feel it was about, creating real estate investment trusts and running due diligence rooms

I enjoyed it, but it didn't fulfil me. And so I made a slightly mad decision to leave my corporate job right when I was flying very high. When I had made that decision I had returned back to London to offer my resignation and I had a conversation with my then CEO and he said there's been a restructure.

We'd like to offer you, the EU to look after, or you can take redundancy, and I just went option B, option B. So, in some ways, even though I didn't know what I was really moving into, but I knew I had to move away from what I was doing to explore that.

and that funded a couple more years in London where I could really start to understand where I'm going. Take some time as well to be still. to lean into teachers and reading and to find what it was that fulfilled me.

and that was really the start of what I'm now doing. I moved back to Australia from London and I found my first and enduring teacher who really taught me the discipline of meditation. And I went on with her to become a qualified teacher of meditation.

Sharad: And that was really the start of it.seems like a seamless transition.

The universe pointed you in that direction. And then you go on to meditation and things.

Dani: Yeah, absolutely. In shamanism, we talk about the sort of two paths to finding yourself.

And one is the path of the wounded healer, where you get pummelling by life and it's a wake up call. And one is called the ecstatic path, where there isn't really a problem, but it's just this sort of lovely, smooth. evolution into where you're supposed to be. And I would say definitely this life has been an ecstatic path for me, which I'm very happy with.

Sharad: for me it was the wounded healer. and that's how I also went into the path.

And you touched upon meditation as the first thing. If you can just paint a picture of what meditation really is, what happens inside when you meditate?

Dani: Oh, that's a good question. There's a lot of varied information in the narrative around meditation. but the one that I like to talk about is dhyana. And what that means is rotate your awareness inwards and pay attention.

That's it. without an end goal, without some kind of expectation, but just pay attention to your inner landscape. and there are five main types of meditation that you could describe, which range from mindfulness based meditation, contemplative meditation, body based meditation,

creative meditation, like the colouring in the Mandala books and so on, but all of them. Create some form of space within the psyche where we can rotate our awareness inwards and pay attention. And when we start doing that, a whole lot of amazing things start to happen. So first of all, we start to heal.

So our nervous system regulates. we, our cognitive function improves. Our immune function improves. And all of this is proven now.

I think that's telling us that our innate design, because it responded so positively to regularly, and I say regularly really intentionally, but regularly, diverting our attention inwards, away from the fray and the crazy and the dissipation of modern life, and just pay attention to what's going on the inside.

We start to heal, we start to feel better, we start to notice, reactive patterning, we start to notice perhaps what we're buying into, which maybe isn't based on anything. We start to respond to life with a bit more discernment, with a bit more choice. We start to understand

and see how it plays out in our relationships, in our opportunity, our sense of purpose, our self esteem, for example.

And that's what I call spiritual living. It's when you're living intentionally from the inside out.

Sharad: a wonderful way of describing it. And as you put it, it's like when we're looking inside, a lot of us high achievers want to change things and judge ourselves. It's about trying to leave those things and being curious on what really is going on inside. So it's a process of understanding, if I understand right.

Dani: Yes, it is. Yeah, observation. Observation. understanding and I love that word curiosity. But there is a paradox with it though. I work with a lot of senior leaders with my coaching and there is a paradox that when you lose the attachment to the winning the game and you start to focus on yourself as a person and you start to explore the incredible being that you are in terms of the mind, the body, the energy, the spirit, you start to win the game.

Sharad: Such a beautiful paradox. and I love what you said, which we're going to dig into where you have winners who come in, with a winning mindset and want to change, it doesn't work.

Once they completely let go, maybe by default or some way, they get an awareness and go back and start winning. A new gear opens up for them. So When high achievement people come to you in the meditation practice, what is it that they come with and how can they transition to letting go and letting the process take over?

Dani: There is a bit of a step in trust that's required, and that's my job as a coach. for a lot of people when they come in, especially high achievers, they're actually doing very well, but they've managed to bulldoze their way through life just with the impetus of their intellect,

And so they're not necessarily coming to me. a big existential crisis. Mainly, I would say the first contact that I get with high achieving leaders, senior people, is the need to manage stress. And the need to also improve their problem solving and cognitive function which is vastly affected by stress levels.

Or they may have feedback from the team that their EQ could be better.

And again, a lot of that is around your nervous system and your chemical regulation, which is what meditation induces. so the first thing I get them onto is a regular meditation practice. And if they're too fried with all of the information and the busyness of their life, I get them started on breath work.

That's number one. But the really big thing that I think people need to understand, which is part of this release of this outside pegged mindset, is that if I meditate once or twice, it's a bit like taking a pill and then I'm fixed.

So it's a lot more like getting fit. So it's got to be a little bit every day, and then the changes start to happen. And they're actually physiological changes initially. Your brain actually changes.

You have more telomeres in your system, which slows the ageing process, and which increases immunity. So You start to feel better initially and it's gentle and quiet subtle and I say to my clients it will be in retrospect and it also works with the principles of neuroplasticity.

So I say you need to commit to a daily practice for at least 21 days and then you're going to start to really feel an innate benefit and you'll look back over that week that's just passed and you go, that was a good week. I solve problems better. I dealt with that sticky situation better. I was more present with my family when I got home.

I don't fear, I'm sleeping better. My gut health is better. These are all the things that improve with regular practice. And it's much easier from a well mined body to then start to extend your spiritual practice into consciously creating new pathways that you may want to open or, having another exploration of your evolving purpose, and that's how I work with my clients initially.

Sharad: there is, like you said, there's an experiential change.

You see that, but at the same time, it's not just a placebo. You're actually changing. So the fMRI studies that have been done in the brain where people can look at parts that maybe the amygdala becomes a little smaller, or maybe your reactive sense becomes smaller, new neural pathways open up. So there are database changes, which luckily science has shown there's experiential changes that happen. And there's chemical

changes in your body. So all this happens. Of course, there's a disciplined way of getting there. Yep. you touched upon, pranayama Yes. And holotropic breathing. Yes. So for people, prana is Sanskrit for breath. So it's breath work. If you can talk a little bit about breath work, what is it and what it does,

Dani: So Prana, is the Sanskrit word for vital life force.

Yama is the breath, and so Pranayama translates to the energy breath. And what it accepts is that the function of the breath within the body, not only oxygenates the body and also is one of the most critical detoxes of the body as well. Also When we breathe out, we release a lot of naturally formed chemicals, like neurochemicals that are naturally formed by thinking during the day, and also other, oxidants that we're exposed to through the environment, through our food, through metabolising and all that sort of stuff.

But there is an incredible anatomical knowledge in them, so we know that breathing through the nose regulates and calms the system, and we know that breathing through the mouth accelerates and creates, more energy in the system, more getting up and going. And so Pranayama, almost exclusively, is nasal breathing.

When we breathe through the nose, the airflow stimulates the microscopic hair like nerve endings that line the nasal passages. that send nerve impulses to the left and the right cortical of the brain, which brings brainwave coherence. pranayama, also facilitates a shift to diaphragmatic breathing.

It sends a message to the brain to calm everything down. And they're just a couple of examples. What I love about Pranayama is the way that it's described, and certainly the way that I teach it as well, is there's a sacredness about it. And there is a sacredness and a mystery around our breath. it's the only function of the autonomic nervous system that we can actually control.

Working with the breath is fundamental to shift our state of consciousness from our mundane, linear, go, go, go, way of thinking. into a softer state of consciousness where we're better able to perceive. our intuitive guidance,

Sharad: I've never heard it said like this. Thank you for describing it when people come to you, they're told, especially high achievers, you have stress, go and do meditation.

But once breathwork comes in, there are other parts of them that open up which open a new gear. And they can actually go back and perform better. So if you can talk a little bit about

Dani: Yeah, I think that's absolutely true. When you create space in your life for some form of spiritual exploration, now for me I would say it's definitely meditation because I think you need some mastery of the mind to be able to observe what the mind is capable of.

but you start to very subtly view yourself and your life experience in a very different way. We know that regular meditation changes in the brain, and one of the initial changes in the brain is that the frontal parietal junctures, which are responsible in our brain for our ability to feel empathy, our ability to empathise with other people becomes much stronger and becomes much more natural.

And of course, business is all about people.regular meditation, even at the outset, where you're better regulated, you've got a pause point between your awareness and your interface with life, so you're not reacting to it, and you've got the ability to look at yourself and say, is my potential reaction to this based on anything?

Or can I do it in a better way? Is the idea that's coming to me threatening me?

Or is this an amazing opportunity that I could also embrace and work together with this person? I'm just using that as an example. That pause point is the main, I think, gift of regular meditation to get you started.

Sharad: That's such a good point, that pause point.

And as you were speaking, it struck me that the pause point happens when there's something within you that can see you. So you can be a witness to yourself, and then see what you're doing and be able to control the

Dani: Totally. And I think that's an understanding that comes.

You view yourself very differently and you realise that, that you're not your thoughts. you're not your reactions, you're not your story, but you are the intelligence actually that's observing all of that. And once that happens, which regular meditation does facilitate, you operate very differently. Altruism becomes very natural, working on impact type work, rotating your purpose towards helping others or making the world a better place.

These are all the outcomes that seem to happen. Especially with the leaders that I work with,

Sharad: find that so interesting that you go within and start with yourself. Yeah. Okay. And once you start with yourself through these practices, you see the connections and senses open up, like you said, empathy, altruism, which then bring you towards purpose, towards doing for others and bringing it out. And we talk a lot about purpose in this podcast.

I would love to hear you talk about it. What is the purpose to you and how does it come to life?

Dani: I, without a doubt, feel that I'm living and breathing my purpose, and I run my own show, but they say, how do you do it all? And I go, because I don't feel like it's work.

I feel like it's an expression of who I am. It fulfils me. It energises me. It brings great beauty and satisfaction into my life. And I would say these are the markers of living your purpose.

How Do you find your purpose? there are lots of really beautiful, models that you can follow, like the Ikigai model, the whole Sankarpa model in, in the Vedas,

I'm about to start a beta test called Spirit of Business. But it's specifically for people who have a business idea for the well being of others. so a lot of it has to start with purpose. And so the first set of exercises that they're going to be doing is to

Timeline their life. And work out how For how long has this idea, perhaps in its infancy and perhaps in different ways, been knocking at the window of their awareness?

I believe that our real purpose in life is with us from day dot.for example, for me, a large part of what I do through coaching and through courses is teaching.

And writing.ever since I was a little girl I wrote poetry. i always dreamed about writing books. always was the kid in the corner of the playground talking about ideas with other kids. it's always been a part of me and trying to express myself.

and I think our purpose is with us right from the start. So for you, for example, you connect people very beautifully. people to people, you connect people with ideas. Has that always been with you? Have you always had that element within you since you were a boy?

Sharad: I've had that. And sometimes it's the thing that you suddenly think you wake up a day and you know what you want to do. And you think it's just come right now. But then when I look back at my journals, I've been journaling, let's say, for eight, 10 years, I had those kinds of ideas earlier.

And then when I look, go within and look back at my life, even earlier, they were showing up some way or the other. As you mentioned this whole timeline concept that there are some of these things that have been hitting the door at different stages. And of course, when the time's right, circumstances are right, it'll come into play.

I love that model and I've seen that happening

Dani: It's very beautiful, isn't it? I think what that suggests to us is that purpose is not necessarily something of the brain.

I think purpose is something of the spirit, and that's what the Sankalpa model is all about. Sankalpa translates to, a vow,

There's an interesting take on it. when we choose as a soul to incarnate and have a life experience, we make a vow. And that vow is this life's purpose. And what drives us through life, and perhaps what also attracts and repels different opportunities and experiences, is the fruition of this vow.

Sharad: I have a very interesting story to share about sankalpa. Two, three years back, I got a CEO to run my company, and I was trying to figure out what to do.

Should I write? Should I read? And I would do a lot of yoga and nidra. And in the yoga nidra practice, often in the middle, the teacher asks, what's your sankalpa? And it's you're not thinking, you're just deep, and you just say something. And out of nowhere, I said, I'm

Dani: speaking. it

Sharad: It just came from somewhere.

I don't even know where it came from. I was not thinking about it. And that led to the podcast that led to speaking, but it was somewhere in there. It's not an intellectual experience. It just sometimes just comes out, bubbles

Dani: So beautiful. And that is, so yoga nidra, the psychic sleep.

That body scanning that you do, which is synced with the breath, softens the mind so you can perceive some of this deeper information and allow it to bubble up into your awareness. And,there are other frames where you'll, if you work with a guru or a teacher, will divine your sankalpa for you.

And that's been an experience for me. with a beautiful Lakota teacher, Gentle Eagle, and,

We were doing a week of ceremony together with a group and, in Utah, it was forest. and he shared with me what my medicine name was. It's Eagle Song.

He said, it's all about your voice. It's all about your comms. It's all about the way that you can explain things. And of course, by that stage, the book hadn't been written, but it was information. Like you, my journals were full of the book.

The podcast idea had germinated in my mind, was yet to be expressed, but it was, and I had already started producing guided meditation tracks. So I was very much moving into content and Hearing my medicine name to be Eagle Song was just a beautiful affirmation.

I do think the age of the guru is gone. I think it's all about, now we've got the smarts, we've got access to the wisdom, is to, find ways to allow your sankalpa, purpose, to bubble up from your own spirit bed, like your experience, because then you own it.

Sharad: And it does become a guiding principle, like you've experienced. as you were speaking, that's what I was thinking. There are many people who might have some inclination towards spirituality. And I like you said that the age of guru is gone. And you think, hey, who's the person to guide me?

How can they go about building this practice and finding their way?

Dani: Look, I, when I say the age of the guru is gone, what I mean by that, I think teachers are important and I have teachers. So you need someone to guide you but particularly someone who's mastered what they're teaching.

So I think you've got, finding your way to a good, solid, referenced teacher, I think is important, and good content, and saturate your mind, first of all.

When we read a really good book, and, or we listen to a really good podcast, those ideas that infiltrate our mind change us. thoughts are patterned energy. So content, I think, is just as important as practice. And I think there needs to be a commitment to practise with a curious, playful approach.

Sharad: Can you talk about playfulness a little more?

Dani: playful, I mean releasing the attachment to succeeding, because it doesn't work that way. I think it's better to move into any kind of spiritual pursuit, it's good to engage with them with a playfulness and without any expectation, like let's see what I can discover.

No gurus, just a good understanding of what the mind is capable of and a playful, curious attitude and some good, solid practice.

Sharad: I love this thought on curiosity because many of us are into personal development

So I need discipline, I need to grow, I need to do things. And if you're able to take that out and look at this play, this is fun, there's, we're not going anywhere. Nothing's happening. Let's just be in the process. That's when we can gain it.

Dani: Yeah, I do agree. I love discipline though. so it's this secondary intelligence that we were talking about. So this ability to witness those aspects within our personality and ally with them rather than allow them to govern our behaviour.

So one thing that I do say with a lot of my senior leader coaching clients is, if I'm getting them to take on a new practice, and I will say to them, just do it every day for a month. journal the experience and treat it like a spiritual experiment. So it's not overwhelming, it's not forever, it's not like they've got to adopt some full on training regime.

I just say just give it a month and treat it like a spiritual experiment. Observe it and see what happens.

Sharad: Interesting. So the pressure goes off, but there's discipline,

And when we get into the spiritual realm, sometimes when we're trying things, we want to be ambitious in life, but at the same time, some spiritual traditions help us to accept what has happened.

So what's the balance between striving for more and accepting where you

Dani: You are? Oh, it's, that is, that's the game, I think it requires constant cultivation. I'm a spiritual person. My whole offering is about spirituality, but I'm a very ambitious person, And I'm trained in finance, I'm trained in law,

it's an extension of who I am, my business offering, and it's, I have a great sense of purpose and satisfaction in it. And I think I need to constantly balance that in my life.

And sometimes I have to pull up and remind myself, okay, you're sailing your own ship, you can actually take a break. I think from observation, from myself and other people around me that have a spirited life, you move into a state of flow.

that striving and that pushing is no longer required. Something shifts where you have much more of a fluid intelligence and an intuitively led, projection forward where it doesn't have to be so hard line and intellectual. It's much more of a state of flow and opportunities open. There's, because I do think there's a harmonic resonance at play with all of us.

And we see that in our lives, don't we? if we're angry about something, if we've got a grudge, if we can't let it go, we tend to burn our hand on the iron, lose our car keys,our experiences will match the vibe that we're holding. similarly, if we're fostering, a part of our lives or a part of our being that's exploring our spiritual aspect and our vibe changes, our resonance changes into this understanding that we're connected, that we are quite mysterious and that this thing called the mind or our consciousness has no end and is capable of so much stuff.

I get into a purpose oriented project and I find that flow that you described. But as I go out and start meeting people, talking to people, understanding what the business is, understanding the commercial element, before I know it, I'm back in another state.

Sharad: But I need to do that because I need to see what's out there, understand from other people their experiences.So, when we're starting a purpose oriented project,

What is the balance between flow and practicality?

Dani: If we were sitting in a cave in the Himalayas, we wouldn't have these considerations.

But both you and I are in the business of sharing information, helping people liberate their minds. We do need to structure it and you do need to be savvy about it and you do need to apply business disciplines so that the beautiful vision and dream that you have gets out there and people can find it.

but I think. If you really tapped into your purpose, I think how you go about the business side of things is very different. and a great example of that is social media and how people communicate their ideas.

When I see someone and how they're presenting or talking about spiritual ideas, whether they're living it or not, I can feel it. And I think, again, it's around this harmonic resonance. you attract amazing guests to your podcast because you're very authentic in your San Culpa.

I'm here. Now, if I didn't vibe with you, I wouldn't be here. So because there's an authenticity with you, because you, you have an inner practice, You tapped into that sense of purpose with yourself and you're very passionate about it. It's magnetic. but

There were three other podcast invites in the last month that I said no to.

Sharad: Thank you for making time for this. It's a huge honour. We're not done yet, but thank you.

Dani: lovely. I'm loving it too.

Sharad: And just going into these check ins, sometimes you just, without realising, go the other way. How do you check in and get yourself back on track?

Dani: I have a daily spiritual practice.

It's a lot like when you want to get fit, and you're preparing for max performance or whatever, you have to exercise regularly.

And I think this is what we're doing with our mind-body energy system when we meditate and when we make time for spiritual practice. For a lot of us, we're not taught anymore through our families of origin.

A lot of us are divorced from any kind of spiritual framework, through our education system, we have this very Evidence based, approach to basically anything.

If you can't see it, touch it. destroy it or measure it. It's not real. Whereas we've got this whole other aspect, this whole other spectrum of our mind and our being and our energy system, which isn't necessarily measurable.

and so for me, just as much as I have a black coffee every morning and I put food into my body, I meditate every single morning, but my primary action when I wake up is to check in with spirit.

Sharad: thing. I guess when you're deeper in the trenches of commercialising your business, increase your spiritual practice or keep it because normally for me, like it goes down, increase it more. So the awareness becomes more on what you're doing.

Those are the check ins.

Dani: totally. And I think actually that's where the intelligence comes from.

And that's where the guidance comes from.every single morning, rain, hail or shine, if it's not raining, I ride my bike down the beautiful river here in Singapore while it's dark, I'm an early

Sharad: Just curious.

Dani: um, oh, it's pretty early, usually about 5, 5. 30, I love riding through the city when it's not awake yet, it's because it's beautiful, you think of Singapore, it's so densely populated and it's all buildings and but actually.

In the quiet moments before all of that peaks up, it's just all bird calls and all balmy breeze and jasmine and frangipani. It's absolutely beautiful. So I rode my bike down the river. I go to Marina Bay.

I sit under the merline and I meditate at dawn. Every single day.

if you think about it, as the day's just breaking, it's got infinite potential in it. And if I can drop into my spirit and connect with that potential within there, within there is the highest possibility for the day. So I'll enter meditation, it'll be some form of breath work, or some practice that I'm still

Sharad: How long Is it meditation?

Dani: I like to have about an hour. and, but, probably about 20 minutes of that is journaling.

Sharad: Do you journal there? Yep,

Dani: I take it with me, I've got a kit. Okay.

Sharad: kit. What, I'm interested in, what kit do you have?

Dani: I've got one of those. I say I ride my bike

It's like a Marsha Brady bike with a basket and a flower. So in there I've got my journal. I've got some incense and matches and I've got some oil. Actually they're very useful because, scent is very evocative.

the repetitive ritual is very And so I've got the same oil. I use beautiful Turkish rose oil. I've got the same incense. I've got my journal and I've got the repetitive pattern which is also beautiful to the senses. as soon as I smell that oil,I'm already moving into an altered state because I've done it over and over and

your system will start to recognise it. And it will start to alter and move and shift into a much deeper, wider, more expansive state. And in those states come those gorgeous spontaneous feelings of awe, of gratitude, of loving kindness. And we know that when those states resonate in the heart, we also have a big physiological response.

Our immune function improves, And so I start every day with a deep sense of gratitude and a deep sense of awe and wonder and that makes a big difference to how I roll with everyone that I deal with. If I'm being creative and I'm generating new content, if I'm writing or if I'm healing or coaching.

It's just a fantastic way to set the day. So, I don't miss that like I don't miss breakfast or my coffee.

Sharad: power of repetition, repetition. And I was one of these guys who would try different things all the time.

I didn't want to do the same thing. I still like novelty, but it was yoga that got me into doing the same thing every time. It can be enriching because you're different every day. So I'd love for you to talk about repetition and the power of repetition and what it does.

Dani: repetition, from a psychological point of view, we know that to form a habit or disrupt a habit, you've got to do it repetitively. And what I find amazing with human beings is that we are completely programmable.

We are like a computer program that can be programmed and up levelled to any form of new behaviour. New outlook, new perspective, but it requires cultivation, and cultivation happens repetitively. When you're establishing a meditation practice, it works with exactly the principles of neuroplasticity.

So where you do it repetitively, within three weeks, you've cut a neural pathway which facilitates meditation. And we also know that with repetitive practice, the benefits of meditation eventually aren't just experienced in the sit itself.

So it changes our default state of how we roll through life. The brain changes shape quite literally, the nervous system regulates, and you're more able to regulate the nervous system at all of these things start to extend beyond the meditation site, much like how your fitness extends beyond the gym. It's the Same thing.

Sharad: Dani, we've talked about so many things. Is there any area that we should talk about which we haven't covered yet?

Dani: Oh, look, it's your  podcast.

Sharad: Yeah, there's a lot. Yeah, there is. Well, look, it, uh, was self esteem. We did talk about that

Dani: self esteem. This is a good example of where an applied spiritual practice can be really useful. Also, I actually think cultivating a spiritual practice and living what I call a spirited life, is about living fully. in your relationships, but also living with an understanding that life is happening in your favour. and as your resonance changes, so does your experience of life, and so an example of that is in my Spirited Living membership, we do these, a number of different exercises together.

We've recently, earlier this year, done a self esteem booster, which is three weeks of self esteem. research based both practices, meditations, pranayama, energy practices and also these micro actions that you can take which are proven psychologically to boost your self esteem. And I do pre and post measurement on all of these things.

It's really fun and it's a beautiful community.

Sharad: leave a link to that, because I'm sure many people will be interested in joining the community, so we'll surely leave a link for

Dani: Yeah, thank you. Yeah, no, I'd appreciate that.

We made you speak a lot.

Sharad: Last one before we go. And this is a question I ask everyone. You've done so many things. At in the end, how would you know you've lived a good life?

Dani: I think it has to be on impact.

My immediate marker is my immediate family. So how are my children? What kind of people are they becoming? Do they love life? Are they curious and excited for life? And I would say yes on those fronts and my marriage, of course, and the quality of that's a yes on that front so far.

So that's good. And then beyond that, it's definitely for me, it's the extent of impact. supporting the displaced and the vulnerable. So that's a big part of my work. A lot of my business income is given away and I've always done that.

And that's another principle of flow, actually, where the more you give, the more seems to come through to give, which is interesting. So I think it would have a positive impact, and would be my marker.

Sharad: you're making such a huge impact, Dani. Thank you very much for your presence.

We need many more people like you in this world who are making such a big difference. And it's been a true honour spending the past hour with you. Thank you very much.

Dani: It is a true honour.

Sharad: Thank you, Dani, for such a transformative conversation. For those of you who are inspired and want to dig deeper, you can join Dani spirited, living community.We'll post links to Dani and the community in the show notes. As we wrap up today.I invite you to reflect on how you can start a spiritual practice in your daily life. Maybe it's meditation, yoga, or perhaps prayer. The key is to choose a practice that resonates with you. How do you make this Vivat into your daily routine?

How can you approach it with a spirit of curiosity and playfulness and stay disciplined?

Over the next month, I challenge you to observe the subtle but profound impacts this practice has on your life. Best of luck.

I hope you enjoyed this episode. The next episode will air two weeks from now, on May 21st. Do join us for that. Until then, have a wonderful day ahead. Bye-bye.