LIVING ON PURPOSE

The shift from a life of compliance
to a world of freedom

LIVING
ON PURPOSE

The shift from
a life of compliance
to a world of freedom

Are you living a life that SEEMS to be good enough, but still feels OFF?

 

Do you think there’s something wrong with YOU for not being more satisfied with your life?

 

If so, I encourage you to stop that thought right now. It’s simply untrue. You weren’t meant to settle. 

 

Your dissatisfaction is the clearest indicator that you are off purpose and off your path.

 

The shift to getting onto your path isn’t an outward show, it happens deep inside you. It’s a paradigm shift.  

 

And it organizes everything in your outer world in the most beautiful way. 

 

So you can finally step into the stream of destiny that has been calling to you.

Are you living a life that SEEMS to be good enough, but still feels OFF?

 

Do you think there’s something wrong with YOU for not being more satisfied with your life?

 

If so, I encourage you to stop that thought right now. It’s simply untrue. You weren’t meant to settle. 

 

Your dissatisfaction is the clearest indicator that you are off purpose and off your path.

 

The shift to getting onto your path isn’t an outward show, it happens deep inside you. It’s a paradigm shift.  

 

And it organizes everything in your outer world in the most beautiful way. So you can finally step into the stream of destiny that has been calling to you.

MY STORY

The steps I took to get from codependence to independence

For much of my life I was trapped by outer world pressures and others’ expectations. This repeatedly derailed my ability to follow my unique callings and walk my truest path.

 

But over the last seven years I made a massive shift to living with genuine inner freedom… a shift from codependence to independence. 

This shift represents the difference between living a life that’s pretty good and living a life that’s truly on purpose

Now that I’m on the other side of the shift I know what it feels like to live my purpose every day – and I could never go back.

 

Here’s my story.

Let’s turn back time eight years...

In 2014, many things in my life appeared to be on track: 

 

HOME: I lived in a charming apartment in Brooklyn right next to Prospect Park (with no roommates! What an NYC feat!). 

 

WORK: My yoga teaching career was expanding – classes were full, I was leading trainings around the world, and being featured in major marketing campaigns for Equinox Fitness Clubs. 

 

BODY: I felt fundamentally fit, healthy, energized and attractive.

 

ROMANCE: I was regularly going on dates with interesting, eligible people. 

 

FRIENDS: I had a robust friend circle with lots of social engagements to fill my free time. 

 

WRITING: The book I’d co-authored, Smitten, had just been published by a major publisher and I was doing publicity events and interviews. 

 

Outwardly, life looked right on track – even glamorous and aspirational! I was doing many meaningful things I valued – in fact, my entire professional life was value-based.

 

But inwardly I was debilitated by patterns of codependence that I could not shake. 

How did the codependence show up?

In my work as a yoga teacher it meant I had little perspective on my value to the studios and organizations I worked for. I gave them imbalanced power over me. This resulted in undercharging and not asserting what I needed to feel properly compensated as an adult professional. 

 

I regularly subverted my needs to “please”, thinking I had to just ‘take what I could get’, without being upfront and clear about my honest needs/wants.

 

In my romantic life it meant being especially drawn to charismatic, distant men. Kind, smart, available men held little interest for me. My longer “relationships” were with wealthy, established, notorious men who were not interested in commitment and kept me at arms length. This felt more comfortable than true intimacy… while being frustratingly unsatisfying.

 

It showed up in my enmeshed relationship with my writing partner. She had a dominating personality and I was constantly trying to please her and looking for signs of her approval. 

Because I was unable to set clear boundaries, I lived in a near-constant state of resentment toward her, while continuing to pretend to be the friend I thought I should be.

In terms of my family it meant I was not showing up in the way I yearned to be connected with them. I avoided deepening those family bonds in lieu of vacations with friends and tipsy weekends out on the town. I kept my distance while inwardly yearning for that familial connection.

 

As for my path/purpose, it meant I was unable to clearly see and claim my own sense of destiny. All of the things I was doing were valuable, but I was off the thread of my own essential calling: I didn’t allow myself to dream as big as I wanted to, didn’t think I could ‘go it alone’ so was often looking to collaborate, and was overly focused on what others wanted from me. 

 

These patterns of codependence brought about a strange agony – the agony of being in a perfectly good life, but not being in MY TRUEST LIFE.

I would over-give in all the wrong directions, feel angry about it, then feel guilty when I tried to pull my energy back and restore balance within myself. 

This caused me to blame, avoid and retreat… and the pattern just kept repeating.

 

Dismantling the codependent within me to claim authority over my path has been quite the process!

Actions I took to create the shift to independence

01.

My recovery from codependency started with deep-studying trauma which included two and a half years of work with a trauma-therapist and taking the three-year Somatic Experiencing trauma resolution training. 

Through Somatic Experiencing I also learned how to listen to my inner voice – the communication from my body that held honest responses and true perspective on all situations/people/choices in my life. 

02.

I chose to be sober for 2 ½ years and attended recovery meetings to better understand the part substances played in my own self-denial. Although I learned that I am not an alcoholic/addict, the draw to substances to deal with my own relational dysfunction – and please others who wanted me to party with them – had given drugs/alcohol power over me that I needed to transform.

03.

I organized regular women’s circles that brought groups of dynamic, creative women together to read empowering books (we spent two years on Women Who Run With the Wolves), do self-exploratory creative projects, and ritualize the changing seasons. 

During these circles I re-modeled how I wanted to be as a friend, and what I wanted my friendships to be based on. 

04.

I went nuts studying money and eliminated $36k of debt in 10 months while also transforming how I manage my own wealth, the way I charge for my services, and how I run my business.

I stopped ‘taking what I could get’ and started taking my finances seriously. 

05.

I went on a deep-dive into minimalism and ultimately purged about 90% of the items I owned. My process revealed that many of those items were not a match for my real inner self – they were relics of the past that carried much of the weight of my low self-worth: street furniture, gifts I didn’t like, hand-me-downs, etc.

06.

I started candidly writing and posting regularly on my blog about whatever lit me up that given day. I didn’t do it perfectly. I just did it consistently and unapologetically.

I practiced sharing what I cared the most about – whether or not anyone else cared. This inspired more authentic, heartfelt connections with others.

07.

I made greater efforts to spend meaningful time with my family, and to have open and healing conversations that would air out the past and bring us closer. In particular I reconnected with my sister who I had felt distant from for years and forged a stronger bond with my young nieces.

08.

I spent eight months living in a camper trailer in the desert. The culmination of all this change was the choice to close down the NYC chapter of my life, which felt complete, and move into a small camper to take a healing trip into the desert.

I had fantasized about buying a camper and sinking into nature for many years, but never thought I could find a way to do it. At that point though, it felt inevitable.

 

I lived in Joshua Tree in that tiny camper for three seasons – until I felt inwardly restored and ready for the next chapter of my life.

 

This represented a complete shift in my priorities from pleasing others to pleasing my own spirit.

 

It also represented what I know in my bones… that connection with nature is the ultimate source of restoration, and the most direct way to align with one’s path forward.

In essence, in order to achieve independence, I had to shift from being subservient toward others to listening to my truth and walking away. 

It has been fascinating to see how much life has blossomed since my time in the desert.

Changes in my life
since accessing independence...

Since making this shift from codependence to independence, I feel clear, alive, and powerful. 

I’ve gone from being kept to being free – knowing I am moving organically forward into my greater destiny… living in profound trust… feeling the flow of purpose moving cleanly through me every day. 

It feels like having wings.

If you can relate to my story (you are living a life that SEEMS to be good, but still feels OFF) and you want to change your trajectory, I designed Lady Quest for you.

  

My program, Lady Quest: Transform Doubt Into Certainty and Step Into Your True Calling, facilitates this shift. 

 

Each of the nine weeks of the program is a distillation of the most significant lessons contained in my transformation. 

 

Each of those lessons is paired with practices that will support your own inward shift… the shift that leads to brave and honest outer-world actions.

 

Curious? 

If you simply want to feel more at home and confident in your body, check out my virtual mindful movement program called EMBODIED with Ariel.

Best wishes and big love,

Ariel

ARIEL KILEY BIO:

Ariel Kiley is a certified Yoga Therapist, a Somatic Experiencing® (SE) trauma resolution Practitioner and transformational life coach. Ariel is also a published author (her co-authored book ‘Smitten: The Way of the Brilliant Flirt’, Chronicle 2013, is about empowerment and dating). 

 

For the past decade, Ariel has taught thousands of yoga-based classes in New York City and Los Angeles. She has created and led courses in money management, content writing, and wellness entrepreneurship in addition to coaching countless individuals on living their purpose. 

 

Ariel has also educated on techniques and methods for stress reduction and mindfulness for Harvard Med Students, and at Yale University. Ariel’s ongoing mission is to awaken humans to the extraordinary potential of embodied wisdom, and free them to walk their paths with confidence.