“Doesn’t everyone sell his soul? I tell you, sir: the devil does not exist, there is no devil, yet I sold him my soul. That is what I am afraid of. To whom did I sell it? That is what I am afraid of, my dear sir: we sell our souls, only there is no buyer.” ― João Guimarães Rosa, Grande Sertão: Veredas
Have you sold your soul?
This world is full of opportunities to betray your values, priorities and relationships.
Whether it’s for money, glory or stability, many of us run into situations where we let ourselves down and sell our soul.
If you’ve done this, don’t worry. You’re not alone. I myself sold my soul years back and was left wondering if there was any way to reclaim it.
That’s the topic I’ll tackle here in this article.
If you sell your soul can you get it back?
The good news is that if you sell your soul, you can get it back.
The question, of course, is how:
That’s what I’ll outline here.
Essentially, getting your soul back is a process of reverse engineering.
Start with the current situation: you have betrayed your values, lost your integrity and sense of identity in some fundamental way.
You have, proverbially or literally, sold your soul.
The process of getting it back involves retracing your steps and undoing everything that led you to this point.
Let’s get started.
Getting your soul back
There are five main categories in which we tend to sell our soul.
Here is how to undo the common ways in which we sell our soul in these categories.
The first category in which many of us sell our souls is in career. Speaking as someone who used to be trapped in the 9 to 5 rat race, I can promise you that this is very much a real problem.
I sold my soul at an early age trying to get into the business world. I worked in a job in educational publishing that sounded good on paper but turned out to be a nightmare in real life.
I moved to a freezing cold new city across the country to take a probationary offer and met two coworkers who’d also been hired on a probationary basis. Only two would stay on after three months.
This dog-eat-dog job was grueling. Endless fact-checking for a tiny salary and led by a passive aggressive editor and a top boss who would routinely come in and verbally abuse and mock anyone within earshot.
I forced myself to play the game. I complimented my boss. I smiled as my editor endlessly critiqued my work and frowned over my hours of research.
Then one day I just broke. During a meeting about cover design together with us editorial assistants and graphics I began laughing as the top boss shrieked about how bad brown words look on a textbook cover and how they should be blue or neon green.
I was fired two days later.
Get out of the rat race! For your own sanity. If you’ve sold your soul to keep a job you don’t like, don’t let that define you.
I promise something better is out there if you don’t give up. Undo the steps that have brought you to the point of sticking with work that you hate.
Secondly, many of us sell our soul in our social lives. From a young age I can remember feeling that I had to be a certain way, dress a certain way and talk a certain way to be accepted.
Going through school I watched how social groups often bring out the worst in us and cause us to sell our soul and deny our true nature.
This is even more disturbingly true in cases of bullying and exclusion where otherwise fine people will cave in to their worst impulses in order to feel the rush of acceptance of their peers for being “cool.”
The trend only continues in various forms as an adult, particularly if we fold into social conditioning prepared for us by our economic and political masters.
If you’ve sold your soul to be accepted, unsell it. Start being yourself even if it carries a social cost.
Cut ties with friends who bring out the worst in you. Get your soul back by being crystal clear about where you stand and not changing it for any form of social acceptance.
Thirdly and unfortunately, we are all too often tempted to sell our soul in various ways by pressures and restrictions from our own self-identity that we believe will keep us safe.
We build strong and clear identities in order to feel secure and well-defined. These identities may form around our tribe, our faith, our language and nation or even our job and interests.
I’m not saying this is bad. It’s natural. But when we start to act against our conscience or even in illogical and irrational ways due to clinging to our identity, that’s when it can lead to selling our soul.
In order to get your soul back here, you need to prioritize your humanity over your identity.
Your identity absolutely matters, but your deeds matter even more. While you may have firm beliefs and values, never forget that you will meet many others who don’t always agree and that sometimes your identity will be at odds with the identity of others.
Honestly, as long as it doesn’t become violent, this is perfectly fine. Humanity, like nature, has plenty of diversity.
Spirituality and religion is also a significant trap for many people where they can end up selling their soul and denying the authenticity of their own experiences.
I’m religious and I think that organized religion is highly valuable despite its many drawbacks. I also respect that many people find value in spirituality and spiritual teachings, including those derived from paths like Buddhism.
However if you’ve sold your soul to a New Age guru or found yourself trapped in the more negative aspects of organized religion in people abusing power over you in the name of God, then you need to undo it.
Find your own path that’s true to you. Follow what you believe is true, not people.
Last and perhaps most of all, there is that infamous muse love. The elixir that drives many men to madness and many women to a broken heart.
Love can become our greatest blessing or our ongoing curse. You can meet the person of your dreams only to find they’re the person of your nightmares a month later.
That’s love for you.
The best idea is to undo all the toxic beliefs about love that have been implanted in you, sometimes without your knowledge. Of course, this is easier said than done.
Work on your most important relationship
One special note comes on the issue of relationships.
If you have sold your soul as a result of chasing love or bitterness over lost love, then you know how much it hurts to face constant disappointment.
You try to be kind, understanding and open, yet you keep getting burned.
You sell your soul at a cut rate to your latest lover, only to have it returned to you a few months later.
Why can’t love be how you imagined growing up? Or at least make some sense…
When you’re dealing with a feeling that you’ve sold your soul in love it’s easy to become frustrated and even feel helpless. You may even be tempted to throw in the towel and give up on love.
I want to suggest doing something different.
It’s something I learned from the world-renowned shaman Rudá Iandê. He taught me that the way to find love and intimacy is not what we have been culturally conditioned to believe.
In fact, many of us self-sabotage and trick ourselves for years, getting in the way of meeting a partner who can truly fulfill us.
As Rudá explains in this mind blowing free video, many of us chase love in a toxic way that ends up stabbing us in the back.
We get stuck in awful relationships or empty encounters, never really finding what we’re looking for and continuing to feel horrible about things like betraying our values and standards in the search for love.
We fall in love with an ideal version of someone instead of the real person.
We try to “fix” our partners and end up destroying relationships.
We try to find someone who “completes” us, only to fall apart with them next to us and feel twice as bad.
Rudá’s teachings showed me a whole new perspective.
While watching, I felt like someone understood my struggles to find and nurture love for the first time – and finally offered an actual, practical solution feeling torn between selling your soul or giving up on love altogether.
If you’re done with unsatisfying dating, empty hookups, frustrating relationships and having your hopes dashed over and over, then this is a message you need to hear.
I guarantee you will not be disappointed.
Reverse engineering enlightenment
There are plenty of gurus out there who will tell you to think positive and work step by step to improve your life.
Don’t do it.
Instead, start by focusing on the problem.
Then undo and tear down all the steps that led to this problem and its existence in your life, if at all possible.
By figuring out where you sold your soul, you can retrace your steps backwards and unsell it.
Did you sell your soul in terms of your career? As I said, work to find a career that undoes the mistake you made when you took a job that was against who you truly are and your skills.
Did you sell your soul in your social life by being friends with people who go against who you want to be but make you feel accepted? Stop being friends with them. Talk to the folks you always previously overlooked.
Did you sell your soul in love? Work to start loving and respecting yourselves. Lower your expectations and raise your confidence. Stop thinking anyone will come along to make you happy or that you have a “right” to find love. That’s just not how any of this works.
Did you sell your soul in clinging to an identity over your humanity? Learn to balance your strong ties to who you are and the importance of those labels with your universal identity as a human being.
Seeking spiritual guidance
As I mentioned earlier, spirituality can often cause us to go off track especially when we sign up for sleazy gurus or get-happy-quick schemes.
But spiritual guidance is still invaluable.
One of the most surprising experiences I’ve had is regarding seeking spiritual guidance from gifted advisors about the state of my soul and my destiny.
The signs above and below in this article will give you a good idea of how to get your soul back and reestablish your spiritual integrity.
Even so, it can be very worthwhile to speak to a gifted person and get guidance from them. They can answer all sorts of life questions from relationships to career and take away your doubts and worries.
Like, are they really your soulmate? Are you on the right path in life? What can you do to reconnect with your destiny and core mission in life?
I recently spoke to someone from Psychic Source after going through a rough patch in my life where I felt totally hopeless. After being lost in my thoughts for so long, they gave me a unique insight into where my life was going, including who I was meant to be with.
I was actually blown away by how kind, compassionate and knowledgeable they were.