Welcome to our brand-new series, “My Soulful Life”. Each month, through 13 life-affirming questions – inspired by the points on The Art of Soulful Living compass – we’ll ask one luminary we admire to reflect on and reveal their true self.
And who better for our inaugural interview than Rituals’ Creative Director, Dagmar Brusse - the brains behind The Art of Soulful Living philosophy, and editorial director of our sumptuous new coffee table book The Book of Rituals? But having spent years developing The Art of Soulful Living, has she also mastered it? Read on to find out.
1. When in the day are you at your most reflective?
“In the shower and late at night when the house has quietened down, everyone is in bed and I can simply sit with myself and my own thoughts without distractions. Funnily enough, these are also my most creative moments when new ideas start to spin, churn and flow.”
2. What one person, place or thing is guaranteed to give you joy?
“I would have to name a few I’m afraid, because there are so many things that bring me joy. Regarding people; the most beautiful creatures on earth, my four daughters of course, and my family, sisters and close friends. For places; most definitely New York. When it concerns things, I wouldn’t even know where to start.”
3. Do you think it’s more important to forgive or forget?
“Forgiving is always the better option. Not always easy of course, but the feeling after you have truly forgiven someone is incredibly rewarding. Forgiveness literally sets you free. Not that I am always good at that, let that be noted!”
4. Which moment in your life are you most grateful for?
“The moment I listened to the true calling of my soul and decided to give in to it completely. I felt in every fibre of my body that I had to pursue an opportunity that would change the direction of my life. There was no way back, and nothing or no one would have been able to stop me. It was of course to join Rituals - the best call I ever made and I haven’t regretted that for one single moment.”
5. Have you found your life’s purpose yet?
“I think I have. My purpose is to create. In whatever form that feels good, at any given time. That can be landscaping my own garden, writing, or my job - creating and nurturing the Rituals brand identity. It is all about the creation of something that I can enjoy. And hopefully other people will too, because that would be a massive bonus.”
6. Do you believe that compassion can be taught?
“Yes. I believe that compassion is a natural human quality we all possess from birth onwards. But sometimes we lose touch with it because of our experiences, our expectations, our disappointments. But you can train yourself to focus on compassion. To make a positive difference in someone else’s life, to do and be good.”
7. What do you wish you could do more mindfully?
“Making more time for other people. I can be so immersed in work or following my passions that I tend to become a bit selfish. I seem to forget the world around me and just focus and go with my own intense flow. Even while pursuing your passions you should take moments to be mindful. Not mastered that one quite yet though...”
8. How would someone know that you love them?
“They will feel it, because my energy, attention and efforts will all centre around making them happy.”
9. Which 3 words describe your authentic self? How often does she appear?
“Honest, passionate, fiercely loyal. Ok, four! And I think she is there all the time. I like to believe I project myself as I am. That can be unpleasant for some, but I truly believe in spending time with people who take me as I am and like me for my good and my bad qualities.”
10. Are you faithful or fickle with your passions?
“A bit of both. I am faithful to my bigger passions, but I can also be easily aroused by newer ones, because I love learning new things. But I can also quickly leave a passion behind once I find I am not terribly good at it and/or never will be.”
11. When in your life have you most needed a positive mind-set?
“With every challenge I encounter, basically. And positivity is also something you can train…”
12. What is always guaranteed to grab your awareness and keep you in the moment?
“People. Inspirational people. Warm, open and honest people with soul, who are truly interested in life and in others.”
13. What was the last random act of kindness you did or witnessed?
“When my husband Feike, my girls and a few friends went all out to surprise me on my 50th birthday. Lunch, outdoor dancing, a photographer, personal stories and gifts. It was truly soul-touching and unforgettable.”
This is an excerpt from The Book of Rituals, available to buy here. A collection of inspirational articles, unique art work and wellbeing wisdom, this beautifully designed coffee table book is the ultimate guide to soulful living - and the ideal gift for you or a friend.