We had the good fortune of connecting with Danny McFarland and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Danny, what is the most important factor behind your success?
The most important factor behind my success has been my ability to trust my inner guidance and surrender to the divine unknowing.
Please tell us more about your work. We’d love to hear what sets you apart from others, what you are most proud of or excited about. How did you get to where you are today professionally. Was it easy? If not, how did you overcome the challenges? What are the lessons you’ve learned along the way. What do you want the world to know about you or your brand and story?
My life journey has guided me into creating inspirational content that stimulates more empathy and compassion in the world. I have an Inspirational podcast called “CONVERSATIONS with FRIENDS” that I co-host with the fabulous Dr. See Love. We share incredible stories of everyday people, from Hurt to Happiness. I am currently in production of a new inspirational web-series that I also host, called ‘Crossing Bridges’ (working title). Crossing Bridges’ is a participatory documentary series that shares the Hero’s Journey of people from around the world who have overcome incredible struggles to achieve a greater level of Success, Happiness, and Love. ‘Crossing Bridges’ brings a new and refreshing approach to our televisions with my unique background and interview style as a host. I am a retired Decorated Deputy Sheriff who was nearly killed and permanently disabled in the line of duty, who later healed himself holistically. I am an interesting blend of a mainstream Man’s Man and a modern-day Hippie. My direct approach, authenticity, and heart of gold give hope to a future where our differences can come together, and we can see ourselves each other. Becoming a bridge for a world stuck in duality, but ready for change. The time is now, and ‘Crossing Bridges’ is a pathway to our transformation.
My spiritual awakening started 20 years ago when, as a Deputy Sheriff, I was drug halfway hanging out of a suspects car for 115 yards and slammed into a light pole going approx. 70MPH. I broke my neck, I ruptured and herniated several disk in my neck and back, severe nerve damage and fibromyalgia throughout my body, obstructed my vertebral artery, along with several other injuries throughout my body. I suffered from debilitating pain every second of every day of my life. I also suffered from many psychological and emotional traumas associated with my physical pain and circumstances. After a decade without any improvement, I left Western Medicine completely and healed myself holistically with the help of an amazing holistic practitioner, Kim Meng. These struggles lead me on an incredible journey of self-discovery and the healing of my mind, body & soul. This spiritual awakening took me into studying holistic healing and completing my Master’s degree in Spiritual Psychology. This included the process of stripping away my ego, my illusions of reality, and learning to unconditionally love my authentic self. With these new tool and perspective, it gave me an opportunity to help others in a completely new way. I became a Mindset Coach, I co-created a Social Emotional personal growth program for underprivileged middle school children in Los Angeles, I am a Director for a Leadership Development company called “Institute for Next Level Leadership” (INLLE). My personal growth journey is always evolving and providing me new opportunities for growth. The past 6 years I have been on a deep dive of learning to trust my inner guidance and surrendering to the divine unknowing. For me this meant demonstrating my willingness to let go of my own plans for how I thought I was suppose to positively impact the world, and trust a deeper inner knowing, beyond my mind. This was especially challenging because I literally had no idea why or what it was leading me into. In fact, at the time is seemed like it was leading me into a completely different direction than I wanted to go. It required total surrender of my illusion of control.
One of the most difficult things I was guided into at the time was acting, which was completely NOT who I was or what I wanted to do. At that time, it totally went against that version of ‘me’ in so many ways. I was a very private person, I was secretively dyslexic, I had no training or experience in acting, I was highly analytical and very literal. I had unconsciously avoided anything that might make me look stupid in front of others or I was likely to fail at. It’s like everything I had built up until then was exactly the opposite of what I needed to be for acting, lol. Up until then, without realizing it I had designed a life that protected me from exposing those things I was most uncomfortable with about myself. It’s crazy to think now that I had never told anyone in my life that I was dyslexic. I’d done many risking things in my life that many would be fearful to do, but those things were in my comfort zone and I felt some level of confidence in doing them. In this case, the universe was literally throwing me into the deep end of the pool without knowing how to swim at all. This also required trusting I would be protected by something outside of myself, beyond what my mind could comprehend. This became the hardest part of my journey and by far the most expansive/rewarding. Acting gives you the opportunity every day to fall into the trap of seeking someone’s validation/approval outside of yourself, of attaching your value or worth to something external of yourself, the trap of trying to be what you think others want you to be, of becoming attached to the outcome, and you’re constantly faced with opportunities to judge your self worth or over inflate it with some success. It’s the struggles we all face in life, but on steroids! The mirror is constantly in front of your face, reflecting back to you any judgments you may have about yourself. With an unhealthy mindset this profession can tear you apart, and with the right mindset and tools, this profession is the ultimate vehicle for personal growth. The success is in showing up for yourself and unconditional accepting and loving yourself, regardless of the outcome. I am now so much more transparent, accepting, cooperative with ‘what is’, and deeply know and love my authentic self (which I thought I knew, but I was still operating at a deeper level from my conditioned self). Since then, I’ve been taken on a wild ride of manifesting things I could have never planned nor imagined. It is now crystal clear that I was guided on this path so that I could be more effective in front of the camera at authentically sharing inspirational stories, in a way that plants seeds of transformation, while also stimulating more compassion in the world.
The following approaches supported me in my most recent transformation:
If I am not falling, I am not trying hard enough.
Quiet the static (noise) on my line to get more connected to inner guidance.
Use mindfulness. Yoga, meditation, nature, coaching, etc. to support my journey.
Not to judge asking for help as a weakness. The idea that we do it alone is an illusion.
Becoming the observer of my thoughts, rather than being stuck in the noise of them.
The issue is not the issue, it’s how I relate to the issue that is the issue.
The outside world is a reflection of my inner reality.
It’s an inside out job, not an outside in job.
Stopped seeking validation and approval outside of myself.
Make the relationship with myself, the most important relationship of my life.
Just keep trusting my inner guidance, without being attached to the outcome.
Forgive any judgments made against myself and others. Re-enforcing new healthy empowering beliefs.
I stopped worrying about being misunderstand.
Be for myself, what I always wished others would be for me.
Embrace transparency and authenticity as strengths.
Complete and total commitment to my inner growth on a daily basis.
Grit and cooperation.
The following are some of the lessons I learned:
To love and accept all aspects of myself unconditional, even the parts I used to judge as bad or wrong.
I am the only one responsible for my feelings. I am not responsible for others feelings.
I am not my thoughts, I am the one capable of observing them.
Stop caring about what others think.
To not perceive myself or others as victims. To hold myself and others as capable.
To stand in my truth, and allow others to stand in their truth.
There is no failing, only steps in the process.
Have more grace and ease for myself.
To embrace being messy.
To release the scarcity mentality of perfection.
The success is in showing up for myself.
Not to take it personal if they want someone else. It is not a reflection of my worthiness.
Be “me”, not the person I think ‘they” want.
Be me and happiness will follow, regardless of the outcome.
Not to judge my ego as bad and to embrace my humanness.
Stop waiting for everyone else to get it before I move forward.
Trust my inner guidance, regardless of the outcome. The most important relationship to build, is with myself.
We are all on a incredible journey through this thing we call life, with our own lessons to learn and purposes to fulfill. I think of myself as a Lighthouse, and I feel guided to shine my light (my truth) for those ships at sea seeking my guidance and support. In no way am I suggesting my truth is “The Truth”, just what I’ve learned along my path that supported me through my journey of healing. I spent most of my journey trying to do it alone and without the tools or perspectives I have now. I know it would have been extremely helpful for me to have had someone share with me then, what I know now. So if anything I’ve said resonates with you or someone you know, please don’t hesitate to message me @TheDannyMcFarland. I will be sharing more soon about the many heartfelt projects I’m developing right now. I could not think of a more perfect time to bring people together. 🙂
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I’m much more of a nature guy than a city boy, so I would suggest they spend time in the South Bay, explore Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach, and Redondo Beach. Each has a unique vibe and I would ride bikes through them along the Strand. Go surfing and playing some beach volleyball. Definitely go sailing and if you have time sail to Two Harbors or Avalon on Catalina Island. I would recommend exploring Topanga and Malibu as well. So many great trails and beaches there as well. As far as the city goes you must explore art studios that resonate with your style and go watch some stand-up comedy, you can’t go wrong with The Comedy Store. Go watch sketch improv at Groundlings and catch some live music at Hollywood Bowl or Greek Theater. Catch a Rams game at the new SoFi stadium or a Dodgers game.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Kim Meng, MLK, John-Rogers, Dr. Ron & Mary Hulnick