Personal Compass Exercise
Sometimes finding our calling isn’t so much about not knowing what it is and searching for it, but about feeling pulled in too many directions at once. Sometimes everything sounds like a good idea, or your desires and your obligations are in conflict and discerning where to invest is the difficult part.
When you’re feeling pulled in various directions and having trouble knowing which direction to pursue, the Personal Compass exercise can be a great visual way to practice discernment. It’s from Wilkie and Noreen Cannon Au’s book The Discerning Heart: Exploring the Christian Path.
You’ll need a piece of a paper and a pen, or if you’ve got time to spare and are feeling a bit more creative, several magazines, scissors and glue!
1. Draw a circle on a piece of paper. Divide the circle into four quadrants representing the four directions, North, South, East and West. Leave a space in the centre of the circle open.
2. In each of each of the quadrants write or draw or collage the words, events, choices, images, questions etc. that come to mind based on the prompts for each direction.
EAST: is the direction of the rising sun, the direction of new beginnings.
What new energy and/or movement is starting to emerge in you?
What is starting to happen and what are you taking hold of?
Where are you being called to embrace something new?
Are you aware of issues or areas in need of healing or change?
WEST: is the direction of the setting sun, the direction of endings and letting go.
What or who needs to be released, ended, shed?
What beliefs, attitudes, and so forth do you need to die to?
What maps no longer work for your life?
Where is deep healing needed?
NORTH: is the direction of your foundation. The North Star represents your guiding light, your deep personal and spiritual values, your mentors and stabilizing forces.
Who deeply loves and guides you?
What images of God nurture and sustain you?
Who are your spiritual guides and dearest friends?
SOUTH: is the direction of sunny exposure and warmth, representing your energy, imagination and spontaneity.
Where is your creative energy being called forth?
What do you really long to do or be?
How do you nurture yourself?
About which hobbies are you passionate?
In the CENTER draw or collage your image of an unconditional YES to your life, to living it fully, spiritually, mentally, physically.
3. When you’ve finished spend some time reflecting on what you’ve written or drawn. You might want to journal about the items and answers and questions your personal compass raised. Ask yourself:
Where am I saying yes?
Where am I struggling?