What Do You (Really) Want? Getting in Touch with Deeper Desire

Years ago, my therapist asked me the question:
“What do you want?”
It seemed like a simple enough question at the time, so I thought for a second and answered with things like “work-life balance (which I’m pretty sure is a myth), to get married, be a better mom, etc.”

After listening to my fluffy answers, she leaned forward, looked straight in my eyes and slowly said “Ok, now tell me…..what do you really want? What do you secretly desire?”

Her question shocked me. No one had ever asked me this before. And to be honest, I don’t think I’d ever asked myself this question.

I sat for there for the longest time pondering in silence….. “What do I really want?” I had no answer for her. I had no answer for myself! I was used to making goals – but they had always been just “goals”, things like: book more clients, go on vacation, meditate more, lose 10 pounds, update my website. My goals were nothing more than a pumped up “to do list”. Things that rarely involved much vulnerability or risk.

I left that appointment in a fog, it seemed like the simplest question, so why was it stirring up so much inside of me, and why the hell couldn’t I think of an answer? I thought that maybe I just didn’t have strong desires, or maybe I was content with life, isn’t that a good thing?

And then, that night I was jolted awake by the words:

“Stop pretending you don’t want more, just because deep down you secretly fear that you can’t have more, or worse- that you don’t deserve more!!!”

Those words literally shocked my ass right out of bed!
Finally, I had hit the truth. The truth that I had been letting fear squash my true desire for years. Fear had been running the show in my life, but finally the gig was up!

After working with many women over the years, I know I’m not alone in this experience. I’ve seen how fear keeps many of us from taking the leap into our greatness, or reaching for more. It works slyly like a computer virus in the background of our lives…. everything seems to be working fine, yet under the surface, fear is there there wreaking it’s havoc.

If you’re having difficulty connecting to your own deeper desire, I find that it sometimes helps to look at things from another perspective. Ask yourself: At the end of your life, how do you want to be remembered? What mark do you hope to leave on the world? Remember that deeper desires are not about tangible things (eg: a new car, bigger house, etc), but about how we want to experience and engage in our life.

So now it’s your turn….
What do you really want? What are your desires that can’t be silenced with another glass of wine, or a piece of cake?

If you really knew you were worthy and born for greatness, then what would you ask for? how would you show up differently in the world? Would it change what you desire?


“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.”
-Marianne Williamson

Melanie Soleil

Melanie lives in Northern California with her daughter, fiance, and (super-cute) puppy. She owns a successful wedding and boudoir photography studio in Grass Valley, and publishes the annual Sierra Wedding Guide magazine. In addition to photography, Melanie holds a masters degree in healing science and has over 15 years of experience as a somatic therapist working with women.

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