Live Your Gift

By Dana V. Adams

This book will launch on Jan 8, 2020. Currently, only those with the link can see it. 🔒

What would you say if God asked you, Did you do everything with the gifts I gave you?

"If you want to finally unlock growth and live with a possibility mindset, read Live Your Gift! Dana V. Adams will show you how she conquered her hidden fears to start living the life she desired. With warm intelligence and refreshing clarity, she'll inspire you and teach you how to do it, too." -- Dr. Srini Pillay, Harvard psychiatrist and author

Do you desire living with a deeper sense of purpose and direction?

Live Your Gift will help you break through self-doubt and limiting beliefs. You’ll gain insight into yourself, your gifts, and your purposeful path.

By the end of the book, you'll know how to:

• Live in alignment with your beliefs, principles, and values
• Reach your most ambitious goals
• Bring more joy into your life

It's time to stop dreaming of what could be and start living the life you envision. Order your copy of Live Your Gift and the Live Your Gift Companion Guide so you can create your first life map today!

What is your gift? And, more importantly, are you ready to live it?

Your Gifts

Somebody should tell us, right at the

start of our lives, that we are dying.

Then we might live life to the limit,

every minute of every day. Do it, I say!

Whatever you want to do, do it now!

There are only so many tomorrows.

—Pope Paul VI

Living Their Gift

I want to share a story with you—one about a woman named Susan.

Some of you may already know of her and will thus be able to understand

why I chose her to open this book. For those of you who have

not heard of her, the following short narrative of what transpired over

the course of one magical night ranks among the most heartwarming

stories of the last decade—and a beautiful example of believing in

your gifts and chasing after an authentic life.

It is April 11, 2009, and Susan takes the stage of a

Glasgow, Scotland, theater. She is twice the age of many of

the contestants competing with her on a British talent show,

and the derisive whistles at her matronly appearance can be

heard as she approaches the panel of judges seated below her

in the auditorium.

“What’s the dream?” the lead judge asks.

“I’m trying to be a professional singer.”

“And why hasn’t it worked out so far, Susan?”

“I’ve never been given the chance before, but here’s hoping

it’ll change.”

“And who would you like to be as successful as?”

“Elaine Paige,” she responds.

The judges’ laughs are joined by countless snickers and

harrumphs throughout the theater. And then the music plays,

and she begins to sing . . .

Before the first verse was completed, Susan Boyle, an unassuming

unemployed forty-seven-year-old from Blackburn, West Lothian, Scotland,

had the audience on its feet screaming with joy and applauding

wildly. The lead judge, the notoriously hard-hearted Simon Cowell, was

stunned, as were his fellow judges Amanda Holden and Piers Morgan.

Within a week, Susan had become a worldwide sensation thanks to

millions of YouTube views of the show.

For most of us, standing on a stage and hearing the jeers that

Susan experienced would be enough to send us heading for the

exit—to give up on our dream. But what endears Susan’s story to

so many is that she was used to such treatment. Misdiagnosed as

having brain damage at an early age, she was constantly harassed at

school and called “Susie Simple.” (In 2012, she was diagnosed with

Asperger’s syndrome, a condition on the autism spectrum.) As an

adult, she was labeled a reclusive spinster by neighbors, one who lived

alone and sometimes did not surface from her home for long periods

of time. And when she took the stage during Britain’s Got Talent, she

was immediately judged by her appearance.

Inside her, however, was a woman desiring to lead the life she

believed could be hers, to share her incredible gift with the world—a

voice comparable to that of Elaine Paige that has since helped her

to perform all over the world, sell more than 25 million records, and

achieve numerous awards and distinctions.

Susan Boyle faced many challenges over her life. She faced disapproval

and ridicule on the stage that night. Today, however, because

she believed in her gift, she is a professional singer loved by millions

around the world. What perhaps is most fitting about her story and

her journey to her authentic life is that it began that night in April

2009 with the song “I Dreamed a Dream.”

"There are enough people in the world who are going to

write you off. You don’t need to do that to yourself."

—Susan Boyle

Finding Our Gifts

Gifts are those special skills we have that allow us to do some things

better than most other people. Think of the way Serena Williams plays

tennis, Meryl Streep effortlessly speaks with foreign accents to portray

characters, Ellen DeGeneres immediately puts her guests at ease, or

Warren Buffett zeroes in on opportunistic investments.

At times, our gifts may be locked away, hidden by past trauma

and pain, just waiting for the chance to shine, as in Susan Boyle’s

case. Lady Gaga has openly shared her story of being bullied; Mariah

Carey has told of her struggles with bipolar disorder; and Janet Jackson

has been honest about her battle with severe depression, all in

the hopes of spreading awareness so that others in the same position

may not feel so alone.

All of us have gifts. You might have always thought that you were

without one. But think again, because everyone has at least one, and

most have many. Try asking your friends, spouse, significant other,

or siblings about your gifts. Think about the things you really don’t

mind doing, the things that come easily to you. We express our gifts

effortlessly and naturally. We often take them for granted because we

don’t realize how lucky we are to have them. Others who don’t possess

them are keenly aware of their value. You might have to extract the

common elements from several different activities before the picture

becomes clear enough for you to see.

What do you admire most about the people closest to you? What

traits are unique to your spouse, partner, children, or best friend?

Whom do you call for help when your cable or internet access or your

computer is acting up? Do you know someone who paints beautiful

pictures, plays incredible music on the piano, or dances with grace?

Who lifts you up with encouragement when you are feeling down?

Whom do you turn to when you need a dose of honest advice? Who

is the go-to handyperson who has an engineer’s mind and can fix any

thing? A fabulous cook? Gardener? Everyone has a gift . . . everyone!

Your heart will overflow with satisfaction when you align your

gifts with your purpose. When you live your life aligned, a flood of

positive benefits follows. Contribution, accomplishment, fulfillment,

growth, and happiness, just to name a few. You might think that

some of the gifts that bring you and others joy are trivial, but nothing

is trivial if it positively impacts others. Something as simple as telling

stories to children might be your purpose. It may be the very reason

you are here. You may be one special storyteller who brings a child’s

dreams to life.

My fifth-grade teacher, Mrs. Hall, had a purpose. It was to make

every student she ever taught feel important, capable, and able to see

the world through a bigger lens than our classroom portal. She didn’t

get paid to do this; she was paid to teach a specific curriculum. Not

only did she manage to teach us the fifth-grade material, but she also

gave us the gift of accomplishment and a belief that we could achieve

great things. She radiated her passion every day, every time she saw us.

One of Mrs. Hall’s curriculum requirements was for us to learn

cursive writing. Oh boy, did we learn cursive! She inspired us to want

to have elegant penmanship. Everyone rose to the level of beautifully

composing fluid, rounded cursive letters to spell out “The quick

brown fox jumped over the lazy dog’s back.” Why that sentence?

Because it includes every letter of the alphabet!

She added a modest reward tied to excellence. Once she felt we

had mastered the technique of graceful penmanship, we were awarded

a prized pen. Every Thursday afternoon she administered the test and

when Friday morning rolled around, we silently but eagerly chanted

to ourselves, “Pick me, pick me.” Her sparkling eyes and smiling face

radiated pride the moment she called the next name on the list. I can

still hear her excited sing-songy voice calling mine. “Dana Mellin!”

Time froze as she celebrated my accomplishment. Standing beside

me, keeping one arm wrapped around me in a side hug, she grabbed

the special box off her desk and put it in my hands. I couldn’t wait to

undo the ribbon and hold my shiny new pen for the first time.

I can’t help but tear up when I write about this because that’s the

magic of how expressing our gifts can touch others in a way they will

never forget. Mrs. Hall’s joy from living her gift was so pure it washed

over us to the point it altered something inside. Some people confuse

purpose and gifts with career. They might be somehow connected to

your career as with Mrs. Hall. Teaching was just the vehicle she used

to express her gift. Or it may be a gift you are here to share with

others completely independent of how you pay your bills.

Mrs. Hall had the gift of drawing out the very best in her students.

She developed students with confidence and fostered a belief

we would all achieve our goals. While planting the individual seeds,

she nurtured and “loved on” a classroom of children who were all

growing in the same garden. Her gift of believing in us also taught

us how to cheer on our friends, encourage them, and celebrate their

successes, too. I have more friends from Mrs. Hall’s fifth-grade class

that I am still in touch with today than any other year in school.

Imagine if we all shared our gifts with each other. Our experience

of life would be magical!

It’s time to think about your personal gifts. What skills and abilities

have you been blessed with? What comes easily to you? What tasks

are you happy to do for others? Everyone has gifts and you should be

proud of what you do well!

In the Live Your Gift Companion Guide or on an individual sheet

of paper, list all the gifts, skills, and talents you believe you possess.

Consider asking three to five of the closest people in your life what

they see as your natural strengths and abilities.

About the author

Dana V. Adams is the founder of the Life Mapping Institute and considered one of the country’s top thought leaders on the life mapping process. Dana has inspired, empowered, and led thousands to embrace their life’s gifts to live happy, abundant, and authentic lives. view profile

Published on May 01, 2019

50000 words

Genre: Self-help

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