This week’s piece won’t make a ton of sense without reading last week’s for context. Open last week’s piece in another browser tab and go read it first.
You back? Okay…here we go.
I want to share a story about a musician. This time I’m not talking about the fictional musician I wrote a book about. I’m also not talking about the musician who I call Dad.
But I guarantee you’ve heard of this musician.
In the early 70s, an up and coming musician and his band were playing in a smoky club in Asbury Park, NJ. The band had potential, but they believe they were missing something.
During work at his day job as a social worker, this cat who played in another Jersey Shore band got into a conversation with a co-worker. His co-worker said that he needed to go check out the up and coming band at that smoky club.
So, he did.
During the band’s break, our friend introduced himself to the band and said he wanted to sit in.
“What do you play?” The bandleader asked.
“I’ve got a tenor sax out in my car,” our friend said. I mean, I’m paraphrasing. I wasn’t there. God, I wish I was, though…
Our new friend got out his horn and they aimed a mic at the bell. In retrospect, they probably didn’t need the mic. Because as soon as this big, burly, black man put his lips to his horn, the entire band looked over at him. The sound coming out of this man’s tenor sax was rattling the glasses behind the bar. The bandleader thought to himself “this guy is the missing piece.”
This moment was later immortalized in the iconic song Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out. Because that was when the change was made uptown “and the big man joined the band.”
40+ years later, the relationship between Bruce Springsteen and Clarence Clemons developed into one of rock music’s most beautiful “bromances.” Here were two men with huge hearts and big presences and beautiful souls. A black former football player from Virginia and a skinny white kid from New Jersey with a Jewish-sounding last name were kindred spirits with a deep and abiding love for each other. And they made so much magic together.
Bruce has said that when the Big Man died, a piece of him died as well.
I share this story because of two reasons. First, I’ve been listening to a lot of Bruce lately and dying to see him live. #hinthintguys
Most importantly, I’d argue that those two men are the very definition of what it means to be lightworkers.
What is a lightworker?
When I first heard the term “lightworker,” here’s what I pictured. I pictured a light and airy woman who loves wearing white. She burns sage, believes in crystals, and can recite chapter and verse her astrological chart and understands it.
Come to think of it, this sounds like a friend of mine…
This friend once said about me “You’re a beautiful lightworker.” When she first said this to me I thought that this didn’t sound like something that a “man’s man” (whatever the hell that means,) could be.
But as my soul and spirit have awakened further and deeper, I’ve accepted and have come to love this side of me. Because it is me.
There’s no formal definition of what a lightworker is. Here’s mine.
A lightworker can be anyone and everybody who chooses to let their light blind the world. They let their highest self, their soul, and their beauty blind the world. They constantly try to be the best and seek out the truth in the world.
You don’t have to look like one of those sage-burning women who love wearing white to be a lightworker. For that matter, you don’t have to be one of those guys who wear dreads in their hair, smoke tons of weed, or meditate in ice baths like Wim Hof to be a lightworker.
If you’re one of those highly sensitive men I spoke about last week, and if this article resonates with you, here’s what you need to do.
This is about to be some world-changing stuff here.
Are you ready?
I hope you’re sitting down.
Are you sitting down?
Here’s what you have to do.
I can’t believe I’m about to give out this information for free.
All you have to do is be yourself!
I can hear phones and tablets and laptops from all over the world ‘splodin’. I’m serious though, all you have to do is be yourself.
There’s a real dearth of people in this world who are unashamed and unapologetic about being themselves. Especially, there’s a real dearth of men who are unashamed to drop their masks and be unapologetically themselves. No matter how it looks.
Because that’s all being a lightworker is. Living from your heart and remaining unbothered by what people think or believe about you.
That’s all Bruce and the Big Man did. They couldn’t care less about what the world thought of them. They just made magic together and built a truly beautiful relationship. And they played some kick-a$$ rock and roll while they were at it. Along with the rest of the E-Street Band.
If you haven’t figured it out by now, I’m talking about authenticity and vulnerability here. Because there’s a real dearth of authenticity in this world. Watch the news. It’s terrifying how many fake people are in the news.
I’d like to invite you to take a look at your own life and discover your authenticity. Because if you discover, uncover, and accept your authenticity, you’re well on your way to becoming a lightworker. Here are four practices I’d like for you to take on uncover your truth and your authentic being.
- Connect with your soul. At their root, the human being is a soul with a skin suit. We’ve all been here before. Think of your soul as the circuit between your head and your heart. When you complete that, you connect with your soul. There may be some healing involved. It’s a solid bet that you probably will need to heal something. But when you connect with your soul and complete the circuit, the result is beautiful.
- Balance your masculine and feminine energies. Regardless of gender, all humans have feminine and masculine energies. There are plenty of resources on the internet, and on this website, about how to balance your energies. There are also plenty of tests out there to determine how you line up.
- Forgive your past. This is a big one. From the mother and father wounds you (and I) may have, to the kid who called me a faggot in the 5th grade, forgiveness is crucial and vital! You’ll never uncover your authenticity without it.
- Don’t force it. To echo another line from one of Springsteen’s best songs, Jungleland, “The poets down here don’t write nothing at all. They just stand back and let it all be.” If you force your greatness and your light, you won’t accomplish what you are meant to accomplish.
Side note – if you’ve never heard the Big Man at his best, fire up your streaming service of choice and go to Bruce’s Live In New York City album from 2001 and listen to their take on Jungleland. The best solo of the Big Man’s life right there.
I’m over 1100 words right now, and here’s the big point of this piece. Anyone – regardless of what you look like or who you are – can be a lightworker. Connect with your beautiful soul, heal your past, and sit back and let it happen.
Real talk here – I’ve been working on this article for the better part of three days. And that’s all because I’ve been forcing it.
When I don’t practice what I coach, what I try to do becomes a difficult, jumbled up mess.
So, uncover your authentic voice and just let it all be.
Because you have a light that can blind the world. Find that switch and turn it on.
The world needs your heart, gentlemen. We need your light.
Just because you’re reading this piece – you, my friend are a lightworker. Let that beautiful light shine.