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The Hero's Journey with Danielle LaPorte

In today's episode of The Embodied Podcast, I am honored to be joined by Danielle LaPorte where we break down Joseph Campbell's hero's journey.

You can find a written breakdown of the podcast below, but here's a little bit more about Danielle's impact on the world:

Danielle LaPorte is a member of Oprah’s Super Soul 100, a group who, in Oprah Winfrey’s words, “is uniquely connecting the world together with a spiritual energy that matters.”

She is the creator of The Desire Map series—the book has been translated into ten languages, a day planner system, and online courses that over 250,000 people have tapped into. There are 500+ Desire Map Facilitators running programs in 23 countries.

Her podcast, With Love, Danielle, ranked in iTunes’ Top 10 Wellness category. She’s the author of White Hot Truth: Clarity for

keeping it real on your spiritual path, and The Fire Starter Sessions: A guide to creating success on your own terms, which also spun off into a coaching curriculum.

You can find her on Instagram @daniellelaporte.

To listen to today's episode, click here.


The Hero's Journey Show Notes

Below I offered some quick highlights and/or takeaways from each phase of the journey.


Status quo/Ordinary Life

  • This is where we begin our journey.

  • We’re "asleep" in this place.

  • There is structure and order here.

  • But within us, we start to become aware of out inner world.

  • The chaos of the world is not consciously acknowledged or it is repressed/suppressed.

The Call to Adventure

  • Some information is received that acts as a call to head off into the unknown.

  • The "hero" is presented with a challenge.

  • The hero can no longer go on with ordinary world

Refusal of the Call

  • The refusal can comes from within yourself or from without( aka from family or friends)

  • This refusal may be from a sense of duty or obligation, fear, insecurity, a sense of inadequacy, etc.

  • This represents an internal refusal to exit your sphere of comfort.

  • This threatens the ego and challenges the Self.

  • This is the stage where the hero wants to stay in his or her egoic "comfort zone."

Supernatural Aid

  • A mentor prepares the hero to face the unknown.

  • Here a guide and/or "magical helper" appears or becomes known to the hero.

The Crossing of the First Threshold

  • Where the hero actually crosses into the field of adventure, leaving his/her known limits of the world and venturing into an unknown and dangerous realm where the rules and limits are unknown.

  • This represents the hero’s capacity to handle the new world

  • This is where/when the feeling's of "I cant's" come up.

  • Faith and discernment are required here.

    • Sometimes you think it’s an opportunity and it’s wall, but sometimes it’s a wall and becomes a bridge to the unknown

  • Sometimes you are driven into or ripped into the unknown vs. being invited

  • There is a release from ego whilst passing through the threshold.

  • The “I” perspective begins to shift.

Belly of the Whale

  • By entering into this stage, the hero shows willingness to undergo a metamorphosis.

  • There is a willingness to be "swallowed."

    • Rather than an unconsciously escaping, you are consciously swallowed into the unknown.

  • This space is beyond the confines of the visible world, the hero goes inward, to be born again

The Road of Trials/Approach of the Innermost Cave

  • These are a series of tests that the hero must undergo to begin the transformation.

  • Often the hero will fail one or more of these tests.

  • You begin to reach the edges of the unknown.

    • You start to forget the tools you have developed internally.

    • By peeling back the hero’s tools, this leaves him or her with no outside help.

    • This is the opportunity to define yourself on the journey.

    • Here you are facing the limits of yourself.

      • In fairy tales, movies, and myths, this is where the hero almost dies.

Woman as the Temptress

  • The hero faces temptation, often of a physical or pleasurable nature, that may lead him or her abandoning the journey.

    • In tales, the hero is often tempted by lust from his spiritual journey.

The Meeting with the Goddess

  • This is where the hero meets with the Goddess of the UnderWorld and experiences a death in some form.

    • Not physical death, but a metaphorical death in some way.

Atonement with the Father

  • Here an abandonment of the attachment to ego itself is required.

  • One must have a faith that the father is merciful, and then a reliance on that mercy

    • Death of the ego with the knowing the father will be merciful.

    • You begin to see the light and dark side of creation.

The Ultimate Boon

  • The ultimate boon is the achievement of the goal of the quest. It is what the hero went on the journey to get. 

  • This is the point of realization in which a greater understanding is achieved.

  • You are now armed with new knowledge and perception

  • This represents that the hero is no longer a part of the "ordinary world" aka the previous unconscious ways of living no longer "feel right."

Refusal of the Return

  • After the hero find bliss and enlightenment in the "other world," sometimes the hero may not want to return to the ordinary world to bestow others with his or her new knowledge.

Rescue from Without

  • Often the hero has powerful guides assist with his or her return to bring them back to everyday life, especially if the hero has been wounded or weakened by the experience. 

The Crossing of the Return Threshold

  • "The returning hero, to complete his adventure, must survive the impact of the world."

  • The trick in returning is to retain the wisdom gained on the quest and to integrate that wisdom into a human life, and then maybe figure out how to share the wisdom with the rest of the world.

Master of the Two Worlds

  • For a human hero, it may mean achieving a balance between the material world and the spiritual world.

  • The person has become comfortable and competent in both his or her inner and outer worlds.

  • He or she gives up all attachment to personal limitations, idiosyncrasies, hopes and fears, no longer resists the fear of the death-rebirth cycle.

  • Personal ambitions are being totally dissolved, he or she no longer tries to live but willingly relaxes to whatever may come to pass.

Freedom to Live

  • This is where the hero is freed from the fear of death, which in turn is the freedom to live.

  • This is sometimes referred to as living in the moment, neither anticipating the future nor regretting the past.


To listen to today's episode, head over to The Embodied Podcast, to listen to Danielle LaPorte and I unpack this journey using our own "dark nights of the soul" and personal journeys to give this context for the listener.

As always, if you have found this episode meaningful, please rate and review the show.

If you are looking for more help unpacking your personal journey, fill out an application to work with me 1:1 or check out my signature group course Born to Heal launching this October!

Sending all the love,


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