Book Series: The Desire Map by Danielle LaPorte

“Weave your inner awareness into your action plans.”

I found the color scheme and concept of the book appealing. Initially, I dismissed it to be fluffy and part of the “new-age self-improvement” trend that seems to be overtaking social media and bookshelves. Overall, I do think that this book should be read with a very healthy dose of skepticism and realism when being applied to various aspects of one’s life. It would most likely appeal to females who take into consideration their personal values, emotions and feelings when setting goals (to make it less dry) in a holistic and intuitive manner to achieve more and gain self-awareness.


“A Guide to Creating Goals with Soul” might sound intriguing to anyone who buys into the self-improvement and goal-setting wave that is sweeping book shelves and social media feeds everywhere. Furthermore, it is packaged prettily from the perspective of a self-made entrepreneur.

Here is a selection of some of the more thought-provoking quotes from the book:

  • Instead of talking about external goals, we talked about how we wanted to feel in the various parts of our lives.

  • This way of life-planning was more fluid and compassionate, and ironically, it was also more motivating.

  • We have the procedures of achievement upside down. So what if, first, we got clear on how we actually wanted to feel within ourselves, and then we designed our to-do lists, set our goals, and wrote out our bucket lists?

  • Knowing how you actually want to feel is the most potent form of clarity that you can have. Generating those feelings is the most powerfully creative thing you can do with your life.

  • You’re not chasing the goal itself - you’re chasing the feelings that you hope attaining those goals will give you.

  • When you get clear on how you want to feel, the pursuit itself will become more satisfying.

  • Feelings are how you perceive life. Perception informs how you live.

  • Far too often, we go for the external win at the cost of our internal wellness. And that’s because we don’t value inner attunement as much as we value outer attainment.

  • We can always find ways to justify our behaviors to meet soulless goals.

  • I’ve joylessly pursued goals that I didn’t fully believe in, because I wanted to be successful. My definition of success needed a major overhaul.

  • So how do you know when you’re stifling yourself with structure vs. nurturing, or setting yourself free, with structure? You know because it feels good to do it, and it leads to more good feelings.

  • You can’t always choose what happens to you, but you can always choose how you feel about it.

  • In the toughest of moments, what makes me feel better is thinking about my core desired feelings.

  • This is the single most practical reason to get clear on your core desires: you can make small improvements to your being and your life, on a daily basis.

  • Small, deliberate actions inspired by your true desires create a life you love.

  • Are we looking to ourselves to feel the way we want to feel, or are we relying too much on others to help us feel the way we want to feel?

  • Getting off track is not only natural, but it is also absolutely inevitable for every single one of us. Getting off track is essential to our growth.

  • We need to keep in mind how fluid and multidimensional feelings are.

  • Joy does not fit into the box of the status quo.

  • But when we avoid the greater range and depths of feelings over the long term it makes for shallow and narrow living - actually, it makes for now quite living at all. So upping our willingness to feel the full range of our feelings is a surer way to create healing.

  • Constant racing for success creates habitual and unconscious goal-setting. We need to re-learn how to move toward our dreams - with the trust and well-paced devotion.

  • The more I chose my core desired feelings over my external objectives, the more content I became.

  • I became goalless and more soulful. And all the outside things that I wanted to grow either grew or died off and made way for better things to show up. And isn’t that just the natural rhythm of life?

  • Just be in right relationship with getting what you want. And by right relationship, I mean a relationship that feels really good to be in most of the time.

  • Intentions and goals give you clarity, and clarity gives you peace of mind.

  • Intentions and goals bring people together.

  • The very act of pursuing intentions and goals - whether you manifest them or not - helps you to know, and transform, yourself.

  • Intentions and goal-setting work to help you get stuff done.

  • Shouting goals at yourself deafens your truth. Chasing meaningless goals will exhaust you.

  • Goals can define the trajectory of your life, but they are not a reflection of your value as a human being.

  • Strict goals are a win/lose equation.

  • Goals can perpetuate overplanning, and overplanning kills magic and possibilities.

  • Three Ways to Get Focused: 1. Know the meaningful why behind it. 2. Become acutely aware of your hunger. 3. Get real about what it will take to pull it off.

  • Lay down expectations, take up sincerity.

  • Expectations shrink your shine and weigh you down with worry and equations.

  • Healthy entitlement believes that everyone is entitled and that there’s enough to go around. It’s rooted in self-worth and love.

  • Focus on creating your core desired feelings, and as you begin to generate better feelings and experiences, you will feel increasingly worthy of the richness of life.

  • And there’s a beautiful twist that happens when you assume your worth: you value other people more.

  • Joy. It’s my deep belief that our true essence is pure joy.

  • I would have to show up more freely. I would have to desire more than ever. Joy it is.

  • Set out to do three or four things this year with gusto and excellence, rather than doing a dozen things just sufficiently. Trust me on this.

  • Everything is progress. You can change your mind, anytime. Just do something.


The latter part of this book consists of exercises which you are being forced to reflect and write down the answers to themes discussed in the book. This was rather enlightening and made me think.

As always, I would love to hear feedback from those who have read the book or are planning to. Cheers x