Friday, July 20, 2012

What Confidence Is and Is Not

What do you believe confidence is? Maybe you’re right, and maybe you’ll be surprised.

Maybe you, like many, confuse confidence with competence. And that’s understandable because you’re advised to enhance your skills, knowledge, and expertise, and presto: The confident you will emerge and flourish. Well, in a way. You would feel confident about what you know and can do, but would you absolutely feel overall confidence as an individual? Not necessarily. Competence does not guarantee confidence. Confidence based on competence alone can be shaken the moment something goes off-kilter or you enter unfamiliar “territory”.

When confidence is low, we don’t feel and really aren’t fully present in whatever moment we find ourselves in. When confidence is low, our thoughts are wrapped up in anxiety, usually with garbage from the past and fears about the future vying for equal time. And amid that thought chaos, we’re busy thinking or worrying about what we’ll say or do rather than listening to what’s being said or observing what’s going on, and responding appropriately for us and according to what’s happening right then.

If you’re someone who feels you lack confidence or could use more, or know someone who feels this way, notice that when doing something interesting, engaging, or relaxing, confidence isn’t a concern. So when is it an issue? Any time there’s concern about what others will think about you.

Augusten Burroughs wrote: “Unscripted, unedited, and wholly authentic people are almost universally admired, especially if they have flaws, are not afraid to make live, red-blooded mistakes, and rather than trying are busy simply being.” Isn’t it interesting that people with these traits are admired and seen as confident when these traits are the very ones we’re discouraged from or even punished for demonstrating? Burroughs also said that when you desire more confidence, what you really desire is to control what others think about you. Let’s look at one reason low confidence may be an issue for so many.

Low confidence may have its origin from one “technique” parents and other authority figures use with children to get them to behave a particular way: They use shame instead of validation or guidance. Validation or guidance may take time and energy, or be a totally unfamiliar process for them, having been shamed themselves as children. Shame is a high-speed road to confidence issues. Even if the words “You should be ashamed” weren’t used, that message was implicit in whatever criticism was (or is) given. And, those shamed as children grow into adults who mimic this technique, as well.

Shame becomes like a garment worn into adulthood, one that covers or shrouds the authentic self who, as Burroughs stated, makes mistakes and keeps going, unimpeded by the opinions of others. Self-esteem or confidence issues stem from feeling some level of shame about being you, seeded by someone else’s disappointment or disapproval expressed to you. More often than not, their disappointment or disapproval was way more about them and their issues than about you. “What will people think about ME if you do that (don’t do that, look like that, etc.)?!” is often, but not solely, motivation for shaming rather than guiding. Ingrained feelings of shame lead people and their lives, but not in the direction they desire.

Shame causes you to believe you can’t do certain things or shouldn’t attempt them because “somebody” (other than you) may or will disapprove or be disappointed, especially if your attempt doesn’t have “perfect” results. Perfectionism blocks your ability to be creative and authentic. It denies your right to be uniquely you, to make mistakes and grow from them, to feel more fearless about discovery and exploration of who you are and what you can make of your life.

Are you beginning to connect how fear of being you, possibly or probably seeded by being taught shame, could affect your confidence and self-esteem? If you don’t trust your self, what can you trust? Confidence isn’t about always knowing the answer or doing the exact right thing, it’s about knowing you’ll seek and find an answer and are willing to learn and live who you are and came here to be.

Low confidence—confidence being that deep, true connection with your authentic self—is why many procedures and processes like plastic surgery, weight loss, and makeovers don’t always create the lasting feeling inside that the person hoped for. In fact, a study showed that the people who do feel good about themselves and continue to do so after such changes felt good about themselves before the change. They were also a very small percentage of those who underwent such changes.

It seems then that many of the externals we change or seek to are attempts to arrive at one thing: To feel good about being ourselves. We mistakenly think part of what will create that feeling for us is to do whatever it takes to make others approve of us. We chase our own tails with this one. If we feel good about ourselves, there will be people who enjoy or appreciate us for who we are. Maybe not everyone will feel that way about us, but getting everyone’s approval is a waste of energy and is unrealistic. It also puts us last instead of first, where we need to be if we’re to live our best life.

It’s time to acknowledge there is and ever will be only one of you. Stephen Greliet wrote something that may be familiar to you: “I shall not pass this way again . . .” Whether you believe in reincarnation or you don’t, who you are in this lifetime will never happen again. It may take time to take root, but remind yourself of this unique-you fact each day and as often as needed.

Confidence isn’t a show, despite that we’ve believed it is. It isn’t about being competent, though competence can lead to satisfaction within us. Confidence is about being at home with yourself and your right to your place in the world. It’s about being present with your self, being in the moment, and doing what’s appropriate and fulfilling for you and your process of self-discovery, rather than focused predominantly or only on the opinions of others. Ask yourself what feels right and true for you. Apply this question to topics, areas, and moments of your life, and do this at a steady, gradual pace. Discover and embrace how much there is to appreciate about you and life. It’s a good practice.

Practice makes progress.

© Joyce Shafer

Sunday, July 15, 2012

What Causes Negative Thinking?

Do you ever wonder if or wish there was an On-Off switch when it comes to negative thinking? Maybe if you know what causes it, you can find the switch and flip it.

What we usually notice about negative thinking first is the Effect, not the Cause, of it. In fact, we may not even be aware that we’re thinking negatively, we’re just aware of how we feel in response to it. Some of those feelings may include tiredness or exhaustion, frustration or depression, discontent or anger, anxiety or fear. And, we sometimes (or often) mistakenly attempt to fix or adjust only the Effect, or the process, rather than the Cause. Process and Effect follow the leader: Cause.

What is this Cause, and where is its On-Off switch? I believe it’s what Ernest Holmes calls a cross current of thought. That is opposite thoughts colliding in your subconscious or subjective (programmed, trained or habituated) mind. This reminds me of the original Ghostbusters movie when they used their equipment for the first time. They turned on their machines, and a current of energy streamed from each machine. One of the guys yelled that they were to avoid crossing the streams. When asked what would happen if the streams crossed, he stated, “It would be bad.” We get an undesirable result when we cross currents of thought and experience one or more of the feelings listed above or others. Actually, it’s like the riddle: Which came first, the chicken or the egg? The feeling or the thought? The origination is interesting but it doesn’t matter, ultimately, the result does.

Look at some examples of cross-current thoughts and see if you can identify negative feelings that might result (use the list above or whatever descriptors come up for you):

I want income BUT I hate my job (or am bored with it).

I want a joyful, loving relationship BUT I have a low opinion of men/women and/or myself.

I want abundance and prosperity BUT I don’t deserve this because (fill in the blank).

I want to be successful BUT I don’t know what success means to ME, and only me.

There are numerous variations of these and other statements, but you can see that what comes after the BUT is what holds the greater emotional charge. And the emotional charge, your energy stream, is the vibration you transmit to the Law of Attraction match-up field of manifestation. Even those who think Law of Attraction is a lot of hooey or too much effort still meet up with the effects of cross-current thinking.

We have to face the fact that we will have feelings; we are meant to. But we can face the fact that we are not tied to our feelings except by choice or habit. We also can face the fact that what is in our hearts (the feeling aspect of our subconscious, subjective mind) is directly connected to our thoughts. We think according to what we believe (feel), and what we believe is more often about the stories we tell ourselves rather than about the Truth of who we REALLY are and what we are really capable of.

The idea and practice of having negative thought patterns kicked into gear for you quite early in your development. Maybe as a child, you not only heard people express negative opinions about anything or everything and others, but perhaps about you as well. Whether they really meant what they said or not doesn’t matter. The fact is we learn behaviors and thought patterns so early in life that, as a rule, we don’t have a conscious awareness of them . . . until we begin to notice their Effects and begin to seek their Cause. It’s almost like, or maybe it’s even exactly like, a form of voodoo. And like voodoo, the spell or curse only works if or while you believe it.

So here you are years later, wanting to be a more joyful, fulfilled version of you, wanting your life to be more joyful and fulfilling, but you operate with cross-current thoughts. What can you do about this? It will help to make up your own BUT statements about areas of your life you struggle with or want to improve, to see what’s revealed. Like learned behaviors, we are so used to practicing the BUT side of our statements, we don’t even see this for what it is when we do it; we may even call it being practical.

Remember that what comes after the BUT acts like a voodoo spell (or curse) over you. Realize you are not tied to believing it. Realize that Law of Attraction doesn’t do anything to you; it works THROUGH you. You can change BUT statements to AND statements:

I want income AND I can get it by doing something I enjoy, love, and find fulfilling.

I want a joyful, loving relationship AND I’m willing to find out what that means for me, and my partner, and do what is appropriate.

I want abundance and prosperity AND I’m open to appreciating what I already have and receiving even more.

And so it goes.

If we contemplate the Good (make this a regular or consistent inner experience), we’ll experience the good we contemplate. We don’t contemplate the Good by thinking about its opposites. Holmes wrote, “Ignorance of the law [of attraction] excuses no one from its effects; but knowledge [of it] clothes us in the seamless robe . . . .” (In ancient days only those who were aligned with prosperity as their reality could afford a seamless robe.). You can “fail” to not use Law of Attraction, but you cannot fail if you use it as it’s meant to be used: with direct line of thought rather than cross-current thoughts.

Use the BUT/AND statements to help you find those switches so you can flip them. Lift the negative “spells” off of you and your life, and practice more supportive statements and stories about yourself, your life, life in general, and the bigger picture. Find what leads you to or allows you to align with BELIEVABLE statements and stories about you and life, ones aligned with the larger, universal Truth about you and what the Creative Consciousness has available for you. Kick the BUTS from your thoughts. It’s a good practice.

Practice makes progress.

© Joyce Shafer

Friday, July 6, 2012

The Mechanics of Manifestation

You don’t need to know how a clock works to get the time; but if you struggle with Law of Attraction, it helps to understand what makes it “tick”. It also helps to know how the mechanics of your mind participate.

Ernest Holmes explained that the Law of Attraction can only obey us; it doesn’t decide for (or against) us. However, we don’t will the Law to do anything, but we do impress our subjective beliefs on it, like a cosmic memory foam mattress. This is why, as Holmes wrote, “The idea of a successful life will create success.”

Pause and really FEEL that for a moment. Now exchange the words “successful” and “success” for any words that fit an experience or result you desire. Let’s use abundant/abundance. If you don’t feel your life is abundant, do you really and truly have the idea inside you that life is or can be abundant . . . not “should” be, Can Be, for You? When you hold such a thought, or any thought, consistently, it becomes a habit to think that way. It always comes down to how and what we really think.

What causes us to think a certain way, and how can we change this, if needed or desired? All thoughts are choices and based on choices. We make choices using two of our three minds. Subjective Mind choices come from assessments and conclusions that stem from what we already believe or already practice. Our Objective Mind is the one that can choose whether to do what the Subjective Mind would suggest or something else, based on what we observe and know, not just believe by default. The Conscious Mind is the one we use to change thought patterns and thought habits of our Subjective Mind, which then changes our perspective and attitude.

This is where we return to the fact we impress our beliefs onto the Law of Attraction: our Subjective Mind is our Creative Power, and this is why what we really believe, the idea we actually have, has such influence on what we experience. Our Subjective Mind is where we put cause and effect into motion. This is also why we cannot align our beliefs with Effects to affect a desired change; we have to align beliefs and thoughts with what is possible, to Cause a desired effect. And, we have to consciously KNOW this is how it works, and deliberately put it into practice, while trusting that a Bigger Picture is always unfolding for us.

Paraphrasing Holmes, the subjective state of our thoughts is what comprises the totality of our beliefs, which is our “habitual attitude toward life and living.” Our attitude is our medium, medium meaning “an intervening thing through which a force acts or an effect is produced; a means of communication.” We can improve our experiences in direct proportion (Mental Equivalent) to how we improve what’s in our Subjective Mind (our Creative Power). But, “. . . the range of our possibilities at the present time does not extend far beyond the range of our present concepts.” The more we expand our concepts, the more we expand our possibilities, experiences, and results. This is more often than not a gradual process.

I wrote above, as I have in the past, that it’s important to Know the Truth. What does it mean to KNOW? Holmes says it well: “. . . it is a mental attitude against which there is no longer any contradiction in the mind . . . .” This means that, about any idea or concept or belief, no contradictory thoughts remain in our Subjective Mind about it. To Know is not to hope. True Knowing is tangible in our experience of reality. It is self-knowing in unity with the Principle of Law of Attraction AND the Creative Consciousness that put the Principle in place for our use. We feel it in every cell; and, Knowing is usually accompanied by a feeling of serenity or oneness (at least, that’s how it feels to me).

And this leads us back to: The idea of a successful (abundant, prosperous, healthy, etc.) life will create a like result. When we truly align with an idea, we feel oneness with it, absent of any contradictory thoughts; and this works in ways we desire and ways we don’t. We try all manner of techniques, master plans, actions or inactions, when the very first thing we should check is whether or not we embody the idea of what we desire. Opposite thoughts occupying the same space at the same time will not produce optimum desired results. The one you believe more is the one that will present experiences for you.

The next time you think about something you desire to be improved in your life, pause and ask yourself if you actually embody the idea of it as a genuine possibility for you or do you wish it but doubt it. Realizing that you can’t doubt it AND also get it, ask what it would take for you to be able to let go of any form of resistance so that you can allow the idea of your desire to live in your Subjective Mind, and in every cell of your Being.

Ask how you can align wholly with that idea. Keep in mind that your answer(s) need to be about you, not about anything or anyone changing first. Your Subjective Mind is your medium, your Creative Power Source; and no one is in there but you, even though it can sometimes feel otherwise. There are mechanics to manifestation, but You are the primary mechanic of your manifestations. You can create and you can revise.

Practice makes progress.

© Joyce Shafer

Friday, June 29, 2012

The Flaw in How We Pray or Affirm

Whether we pray or affirm doesn’t matter; they’re just paths to one center. However, what we understand about how they are meant to work does matter.

One thing we need to be clear about either praying or affirming is that they don’t, as such, affect or influence the Creator or the Universe; they ARE meant to affect or influence US, starting with how we think (there’s more to this, in the following paragraphs). Provision of some result is always ours. And, if we believe in measuring more for ourselves, or less, that is responded to accordingly.

There’s a phrase in the bible: “As ye believe, it shall be done unto you,” which is the premise of the Law of Attraction. Many of us have been taught to pray or affirm in particular ways, which led us to believe that if we just craft our words a certain way, that makes the difference. No. Although word-crafting is important, relying on it solely makes it too easy to bypass the fact that the Universal Principle we call Law of Attraction is in effect. And this Principle or Law responds to “As ye believe,” not “As ye speak but don’t believe.” When a prayer or affirmation is fulfilled, it isn’t because we were convincing with our words, it’s because we aligned with, moved into, right relationship with how the Principle works, in alignment with The Bigger Picture.

The reminder that every thought is a prayer or affirmation came to me as the answer to my request to know what it was that I needed to learn… let me repeat that… that I needed to learn… about myself as it related to a situation I found difficult. There are circumstances that can feel difficult, but what often makes them more difficult is how we relate to them.

Understandably, we want a difficult circumstance to go away; the sooner the better. And we don’t really wish to look at the part we play in that dynamic. For me, I needed the reminder that the words we hear and believe the most are the ones we tell ourselves. And whether 100% true or not, we believe them; and then they become part of our story. Then we repeat our story to ourselves, and others. If our repetitions are supportive or constructive, there’s no problem. If they’re not supportive or are destructive, I call this “playing the broken record.”

For those of you too young to know about vinyl records played on a turntable, if there was a snag in the vinyl, the needle got stuck and you’d hear the same brief segment of music or lyrics played over and over and over, until you lifted the needle. Sometimes our mental-emotional needles get stuck in the same way, and we find ourselves dealing with a case of “As ye believe, it shall be done unto you” about the same matter or issue for years. How can any of us expect different results if our needle is stuck playing the same emotionally-charged thoughts about something over and over? We DISDAIN, when we could ORDAIN differently.

I realized my needle has been stuck about one particular matter for a long time. So, I know it’s going to take deliberation and a deliberate change in thinking for me to move the needle so I hear the song or symphony that’s on the other side of the bump… or I should say rut. If I truly desire this, how I think about this matter has to change FIRST. I must commit to the song, not the snag. I also must not expect myself, after years of playing this broken record, to be transformed instantly. I’m not saying that can’t happen, but I don’t want to add self-judgmental expectation into the mix. I just want to move forward.

I’m going to share how the first several hours of this new practice went for me. You may be able to relate to the first part: I caught myself repeating the old story in my head. I stopped. A few minutes later (maybe it was seconds later) I caught myself doing it again. Crikey! After the fifth time, I realized…

1. It’s a long-practiced habit; it’s going to take more than just a decision for that “pendulum” to swing to the other side.

2. I realized I didn’t have the absolute solution or resolution yet. I didn’t know when that would happen, or if it would happen all at once or in parts over time. But, I wanted to Do Something Constructive Now.

3. I decided to say “Broken record” each time I caught myself playing this particular one, or any one, and then picture a perfect, peaceful lotus blossom on still water.

4. I knew I was going to be face-to-face with this particular challenge later that day, which was the trigger for the replay moments. Broken record… peaceful lotus.

5. Once in that face-to-face place, despite all my prep work, I noticed I had an attitude. Whoa! That led me to realize something I already know: that negative anticipation influences me in a way I don’t like, and that if I experience the same type of challenge repeatedly, there’s one thing consistently present: Me!

6. I mulled over the idea that even if I wasn’t the originator of the challenge, I’ve been engaged in keeping it alive. Broken record… peaceful lotus. (So you know, this inner attention resulted in a harmonious experience.)

Will lifting this “needle” eliminate the challenge completely from my life? I don’t know . . . it might; it depends on what I need to learn about myself through this. But that outer change is not the one that’s more significant; my inner change is. If I keep that foremost in mind, I’ll stay on track better and I’ll experience this process (and my progress) differently than if I focus solely on what my ego wishes would happen (everything and everyone involved, BUT ME, changes). I have enough experiences I can recall to mind that prove that when I get into right relationship with the Principle, things shift, but especially, I shift. That’s really what every dynamic in my life (and yours) is ultimately about, anyway.

How can we hear or sing our desired NOW and therefore our desired future if all we listen to or play are broken records? In the case of “broken record, peaceful lotus,” each is a prayer and affirmation of what we believe and is what is, or can be, reflected in our life. Please keep in mind that there’s a huge difference between contemplating an old story in order to see it in a new light or to glean something from it to help us improve or release it, and in repetition out of anger or sadness or frustration, which makes us angrier or sadder or more frustrated.

We are to also pay attention to what Ernest Holmes calls the Mental Equivalent: Our perspective about anything outside us comes from within; and, we get back what we send out. This applies to the perspective we hold about ourselves, others, and life. This means the range of our possible or potential manifestations cannot exceed the mental equivalents of our beliefs. To expand results, we have to expand what we believe. We cannot pray or affirm for improvement AND play a broken record about it. That’s like always turning left at the corner and being miserable or complaining because we never leave the block. To experience something else requires US to change our path, even a bit.

Holmes wrote, “To desert the Truth in the hour of need is to prove that we do not know the Truth.” He actually wrote this in all capital letters to demonstrate its significance. So, you can say that the flaw in how we pray or affirm stems from lack of proper relationship (alignment) with the Law of Attraction Principle, which stems from not understanding the Truth of the Principle as we might. Every challenge, and blessing, is an opportunity to explore and integrate more of this aligned relationship and the Truth that “As ye believe, it shall be done unto you,” and put these into practice.

Practice makes progress.

© Joyce Shafer

Friday, June 22, 2012

Do You Genuinely Appreciate Your Gifts?

How many gifts from the Universe and the Earth do you have in your life right now? How many of them do you genuinely appreciate, and why does this matter?

That first question isn’t meant to be a trick question, but in essence it is… because everything is a gift from the Universe and/or the Earth. We do ourselves a huge disservice by not recognizing or acknowledging this Truth.

Almost two decades ago, a friend sent me a garment unlike any I’d ever worn before. I told her that, and that I wasn’t sure how to use it. Her reply was, “If you can’t figure out what to do with THAT, send it back!” Her statement may seem strong, but it was important to hear. How many gifts do we receive from the Universe, and the Earth, that we don’t, initially (or ever), figure out how to use properly and, therefore, we don’t fully appreciate them? Imagine the Universe or the Earth making the same statement my friend did regarding anything that comes to you or that you currently have. Kind of amps up the message, doesn’t it?

We love our conveniences; and though we may appreciate them, our familiarity with them (as well as, perhaps, lack of proper guidance and training) may cause us to disconnect from deeper, true appreciation. Let’s look at a meal as an example, whether you prepare it or someone else does. Even if you say a blessing before you eat, do you really mean it or do you say it because it’s expected? And, is it a thorough blessing that allows you to merge your personal empowerment with your appreciation?

Here’s an example you might test for yourself. While you cook or before you take the first bite of a meal or snack, say silently or aloud: I give thanks to everything and everyone that contributed to this food being available for me. I give thanks to the Earth for providing everything used in the preparation and in the serving and eating of it. I give thanks to the molecules of this food for the nourishment they give to my body, mind, and spirit. I give thanks to every molecule of my body for using every molecule of this food to support my optimum health, well-being, and energy, while helping me maintain my ideal weight of (number). If you happen to forget until after you eat, say or think it then.

That last part about the weight maintenance may have surprised you; but how often do we eat something and rather than enjoy and appreciate the food, and state our truest intention about the nourishment, do we do the opposite? Far too often. There is so much, everything, really, to appreciate every day, every moment; but our own disconnect to genuine appreciation causes us to USE without grace or, worse, Abuse without conscience or awareness.

When we feel appreciated, we feel fulfillment and joy about giving. When we appreciate what we receive or have, we create ripples of fulfillment and joy outward, including to the Earth and the Universe. This is an expansive energy that is responded to in kind. We feel larger when we’re in a state of appreciation because, in spirit and expression, we are. Lack of appreciation contracts our energy, makes us smaller in spirit, self-absorbed, cut off from more. More awaits us. But appreciation is the language we must feel, as well as speak, in order to keep that line of communication and receptive exchange open and flowing.

The meal example is an easy one to follow; but what about everything else in your life, especially anything or anyone so familiar or routine in your life that you “forget” to appreciate its or their presence? If you think you’re too busy to appreciate in this way, maybe you’re too much about busyness because you don’t appreciate in this way.

Look around your home, office, life, relationships. If there’s anything (or anyone) there you have no true appreciation for, remove or exchange it as soon as it’s reasonable to do so. If your life, inner or material, is cluttered with what you really don’t want and therefore don’t appreciate, you may not be able to readily appreciate what you do have that you do want.

Please be cautions not to insert self-judgment (convincing/fooling yourself) by believing if you don’t feel appreciation all the time, you’re failing, so why bother. You’re building a skill and way of being, as you might a set of muscles. To reach full development takes time and practice. Know that any moment you feel the opposite of appreciation can become an opportunity (as soon as you’re ready) to ask right questions and to learn something that can assist you as you continue forward. Keep in mind that sometimes what you learn is what to let go of. Knowing this is something to appreciate. "Knowledge is learning something new every day. Wisdom is letting go of something every day." -Zen Proverb

As you take such assessment about anything and anyone in your life, which you can do in each moment, hear the Universe say to you, “If you can’t figure out how to put THIS into proper use and appreciate it, return it.” It’s an interesting thought and an interesting practice to follow.

Practice makes progress.

© Joyce Shafer

Friday, June 15, 2012

Does Your Attitude Have You Stuck?

Do one or more parts of your life make you feel like you’re wandering in a wilderness, and you can’t find the exit? Maybe it’s time to see this for what it really is.

Three definitions of wilderness in my dictionary are: barren, empty land; a large, confused mass or tangle; a wild condition or quality. Circumstances sometimes feel like a wilderness experience, that is, as one of the definitions offered here. But the most prevalent or consistent wilderness experience happens in our mind.

Your choice of thoughts and words are influenced by your attitude, and your attitude is influenced by your thoughts and words, a sort of yin/yang situation. Stay the same, and you travel in a circle or loop. Tweak this, and you leave the loop for the evolving spiral that can carry you forward.

Your words, which come from your thoughts, have power over you and what you attract. Your attitude not only attracts your experiences but perpetuates your circumstances. Ernest Holmes wrote: “You cannot heal anyone of his trouble, if it is the result of some mental attitude which he will not surrender.” Circumstances change over time, but our mind changes only when we decide to change it.

Most of us enter and exit wildernesses throughout life (wilderness happens to each of us), while others merge more than one wilderness into one big one and wander around in there for years or a lifetime. How long have you talked about, thought about, the same “old” things? How long will this continue? Do you really want things to change? Are you more committed to change or to talking about why nothing changes? That’s like complaining about your untidy home or office and never tidying it.

Those who look only at their circumstances and not their attitude complain often, because they don’t see (don’t look) beyond circumstances. Here are some popular wilderness-attitude statements: I can’t, because . . . (Different from “I won’t,” which is a choice); I know I shouldn’t, but . . .; It’s not my fault, it’s the fault of . . .; Nothing ever changes; I give up. People stuck in the wilderness, and that’s each of us at one time or another during our lifetime, tend to blame lack of progress on others or situations. Yes, stuff happens, and sometimes it can take a while to recover in whatever way is needed; but we can move ourselves out of and beyond such wilderness experiences sooner with an attitude adjustment. Stuff happens. Stuff will always happen.

Just as you may be proficient at looking at something negative and thinking it could happen to you, you can do the same for positive circumstances. Consider your thoughts. When you wake, what thoughts do you have? Or, do your thoughts have you? Are they thoughts of appreciation or of grievances? Your first thoughts of the day are akin to you choosing a healthy or an unhealthy breakfast, which influences how you perform for at least the first part of your day, if not the rest of it.
We have a spiritual power within us. We have the Law of Attraction. And, we have the God Force to assist us with anything and everything. What trips us up and keeps us stuck is that we want to see (insist on) a demonstration of improvement outside of us before we demonstrate improvement inside.

If your attitude doesn’t serve you, you have to decide whether you’ll surrender that attitude and take up a new one… or not. However, if you choose to keep an unsupportive attitude, also be willing to choose to own your choice and not blame others for how you choose to be. Tie this in to the fact that you prepare your future in the present.

How can you begin your exodus from a wilderness situation? Do what can, even if you think what you can do won’t be enough. Do this, and you’ll find the Creative Consciousness helps you with the rest, as is appropriate for you. Sometimes, what you can do is an action, but you can always do something about your thoughts, words, and attitude. Doing so is called your demonstration of your willingness to step out of your self-imposed wilderness or any wilderness you find yourself in. Such a demonstration is powerful; and the more you practice such demonstrations, the more your power grows.

Practice makes progress.

© Joyce Shafer

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

What Key Ingredient Is Needed for Joy?

You can choose joy as easily as you can choose any emotion. But you won’t enjoy your life as much as you could unless you include one key ingredient.

Do you enjoy what you have: your key relationships, material items, spiritual awareness and connection to Source, personal traits and characteristics? If you can’t enjoy who you are and what you have now, how will you enjoy even more? This may seem contradictory but it isn’t. It reminds me of two thought streams: “Wherever you go there you are” and “I’ll be happy when…”

You can choose to enjoy on purpose. What’s the key ingredient that helps you do this? Appreciation. If you genuinely appreciate something or someone, you’ll enjoy or find joy in it or them. Appreciation and joy are magnetic and attract more. If “more” seems elusive, check your level of appreciation for what you are and have. It’s likely a quart or more low. You can simplify your understanding of how Law of Attraction works by remembering appreciation attracts more to appreciate; lack of appreciation attracts less to appreciate.

Here are some common joy stealers we all come across:

*We may be good at saying Yes to please others when what we need to be good at is saying No to please or nurture peace in us.

*We may be controlling, manipulating, or workaholics, which is about trying to make life and others do what we want, whether what we want is aligned with the highest good of all involved or not.

*We may not be readily aware of what causes us to feel appreciation and therefore joy, so we don’t deliberately seek to experience more of those things.

*Our primary motivation is to get, with little to no motivation to give.

*We work for a paycheck only, with little to no thought of bringing our light into the workplace or to be a blessing to at least one person each day.

*We form relationships with others, maybe even marry someone, so they can “make” us happy, ignoring the fact we’re responsible for our own happiness.

*We forget that making others happy will bring us joy.

*We speak more negatives than positives; we don’t stop to think or choose better words before we speak.

*We believe being joyful contrasts with being caring; believing that with all that goes on in the world, we have no right or reason to be joyful.

The day I decided to write this article, “stuff” was hitting the fan, so to speak. Was I enjoying it or able to find joy? Did I even feel like looking for joy? No. But my own words were fresh in my mind. About two hours into the “stuff,” I heard chirping. On a shrub outside my window was a splendid cardinal. THAT brought me joy! I watched it for a few minutes then went back to what I was doing. The cardinal visited again; and again I got up to watch it and express appreciation. The cardinal’s visits reminded me that although some events are far from joyful, reasons to connect with appreciation and joy are all around us, even amid “stuff” happening.

We definitely have to pay attention to what we say to ourselves. This is crucial. We can convince ourselves that something is true: positive or negative. One brings us reasons to be appreciative; the other, to perceive there’s nothing to appreciate.

Lack of appreciation causes us to miss the good, the beautiful, the blessings. It causes us to shut off the stream of well-being we could enjoy. It causes us to give away our joy and, instead, live angry or upset with or about everyone and everything or something a majority of the time. And all the while, this is a choice.

Appreciation eases or displaces anger and other negative emotions and nurtures joy or, at least, peace. Appreciation is assisted by what we tell ourselves. Too few make the connection between what we tell ourselves, how we feel based on what we tell ourselves, and what we attract because of this.

We do not control all external circumstances, but we can manage our inner environment. What we do about this affects us most of all, but also affects those we interact with. When we lack appreciation, we steal our own joy; and inadvertent or not, we affect the joy of others.

Look at your key relationships, your material items, your spiritual awareness and connection to Source, and your personal traits and characteristics. Find what you appreciate and find what more you can appreciate about these.

If you want more joy, be more joyful. If you want more joy, be deliberate about your appreciation. State your appreciation. Choose a state of appreciation. And know that you will need to renew this commitment to yourself and your joy every day, and maybe several times a day. Put this into practice and you’ll begin to notice it not only gets easier to do, but more natural to do than not to.

Practice makes progress.

© Joyce Shafer

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Trained Thought Is More Powerful Than Untrained

Can you always practice right thinking? I don’t know. But you CAN always practice adjusting your thoughts to right thinking.

The thing to know – the “trick,” if you want to call it that – is to KNOW that you DO and CAN influence the Law of Attraction in your regard and in each moment… with right thinking. Law of Attraction is receptive, not reluctant. We imagine; and the Law creates in accord with what we imagine. Because of this we are wise to keep in mind these words of Ernest Holmes: “There is a great difference between conscious and unconscious thought for trained thought is far more powerful than untrained…. Even a small amount of right thought puts to rout that which is wrong.”

We sometimes – or often – practice what Holmes called “unconscious, or innocent, malpractice” in our life. “It is malpractice because it is the wrong use of thought; innocent because it is not intended to harm….” His example was of a mother’s thoughts and comments that her unwell child was a poor, little sick one. Such feelings are understandable, but we’re often unaware of the result of that kind of mental action, and how it imprints our energy field and the energy field(s) of those it’s directed toward.

There are other ways the mother could use right thinking about this, starting with the realization and affirmation that the child is a spiritual being first and foremost, not “just” an unwell one. This doesn’t mean to ignore the health condition. Treat it! Do what needs doing about any condition. But know it’s a condition. “Disease is a fact but not a truth; it is an experience but not a spiritual reality,” Holmes wrote. Try this: replace the word “disease” with any word that describes what you consider a negative condition, and see the truth of his statement.

We could say we do this form of malpractice over one or more areas of our life, even after we’re informed about it. We do this about present-time matters; but each time we repeat thoughts silently or aloud about the past, we re-imprint those experiences into our energy field. We re-experience the past, emotionally, once again, forgetting that this level of thought attracts similar – or more of the same – events to us. We CAN remember that we can CHOOSE to imprint positive, as well as negative memories into our energy field.

What is right thinking, and how can we practice it?

Consider this thought from a broader perspective: We experience from life what we think into it. So, it’s important to have a constructive foundation for your thinking about the “fact” of an experience, as well as the deeper spiritual truth about it. Right thinking provides answers, solutions, and resolutions. It provides the power to heal, whatever that healing may represent. Retrain yourself to think what you prefer to think. Do the same for how you prefer to feel and be – about any and every experience, with the intention to enhance your conscious awareness, not just your experiences.

It isn’t just about thinking right thoughts, though; it’s Knowing the Truth about this… its influence and effects. Know your mind. You see a reflection of your mind when you look at your experiences and when you look at your responses to your experiences. Your state of mind influences your external experience and determines your experience of the external. Your state of mind is the result of what you think, what you know, and what you think you know. And, this can always be enhanced. Observe, learn, and retrain thoughts as needed.
Don’t judge your experiences, because they are there to help you to awaken your mind and heart, to awaken conscious awareness, to awaken your knowing of the Law of Attraction and to use it for your good and the good of others… from this day on. Know that your word – thought, felt or spoken – becomes Law, don’t just intellectualize this. You attain KNOWING by observing, by linking your thoughts to what you experience. To judge any of this would be to shift your focus away from where it’s meant to be.

I’ve been programming my mind with the nightly thought that I have one or more dreams that cause me to have clarity, focus, enthusiasm, and joy about every endeavor I engage the next day. One morning while making coffee, and still in the alpha brainwave state where the mind is easily programmed, I found myself “entertaining” negative thoughts. I stopped myself and acknowledged that if I’m going to ask for assistance, then I have to follow through on my end of it. It just doesn’t work to request one thing and think, feel, or do the opposite, which negates my request. I also keep in mind that endeavors and events may require me to use only one or two of these at a time, rather than all four, depending on what’s going on. But for a general daily approach, I find it’s a good one for me.

Use right thinking not just when you’re in a good mood, but especially when you’re not. I’m not saying you’re to ignore or disregard your feelings and emotions, but if you understand what I’m saying here, you’ll understand why right thinking is important to YOU. Your feelings and emotions are messengers, but you have to choose what to do about the messages. Will you choose wrong (disempowered) thinking or right (empowered) thinking? Consider the results you desire.

The more untrained the thinking, the more inclined a person is to let emotions rule the behavior, instead of allowing conscious awareness to lead the way. You can feel - as you are designed and meant to - without letting emotions run amok or allow them to run your behaviors. Information provided through feelings, blended with right thinking is a powerful combination. It can lead you to experience peace with poise.

The more we connect with spiritual Reality, and not just the “fact” of an experience, the greater our opportunity is to shift – either the outcome based on the “facts,” or our deeper understanding; though, both may shift as a result. This helps us shift from wishing to Knowing, usually knowing a greater truth. It is the difference between mental force (which doesn’t work) and mental acceptance (which is based on deeper conscious awareness).

Are your responses to any matter yours or learned ones? Would thought retraining benefit you? Trained thought is more powerful – and more relaxed and relaxing – than untrained. Appreciate that you can choose to retrain yourself into right thinking, that you can adjust into right thinking as and when appropriate. Appreciate that trained thinking opens you to a different, improved experience of your life, no matter what it temporarily appears to be like.

Any knowledge that stays on the surface has not taken root. For it to take root, you have to put it into practice. You CAN think yourself into greater personal power and a better experience of life and “facts.” It’s a good practice.

Practice makes progress.

© Joyce Shafer

Friday, May 25, 2012

Which of Your Selves Is More Sacred to You?

You have a spiritual self and a material self that operates in the world. Which do you nurture first? How’s that working for you?

You have a “foot in two worlds.” One foot is in the spiritual world, which is where you come from, where you return to, though, that world stays with you through your human experience. The other foot is in the material world that is heavily influenced by society. Which world is more sacred to you? Are we meant to choose one or the other?

Society tells you that it is the authority about who you are and how you can define yourself. It tells you what you deserve based on its material-world view. It tells you what you can have and what you have to do to get it. Basically, society “allows” you to be, do, and have based on its viewpoint that changes with the wind. And that wind blows in a circumscribed area. This means society decides, describes, and defines limitation for you. It convinces you that validation comes from outside you; that it comes from society, which is comprised of far too many others to know whom to please and in what ways.

Your spiritual self recognizes there is a divine order at work at all times, and that the Divine is without limitations. It recognizes that this divine order means there is a divine purpose in and for all things. The more engaged with your spiritual self that you are, the more these aspects resonate within you and ripple outward into and through your life experience.

Your spiritual self is aware of and uses – to the degree you allow it – intuition. This means you can tap into, flow with, divine order and purpose, as often as you allow yourself to do this. In this state of Mind and Being, you don’t always need to understand what the Divine is doing, or why, when, or how – until you do.

In the spiritual world, you have experiences that are personal and valid – and validated by Spirit, experiences that many in society wouldn’t validate as “real” or worth pursuing. But, kindred others who follow a spiritual path would understand.

Each of us always has a choice as to whether the material or spiritual world is more sacred to us. This doesn’t mean we are to shun the material world. After all, we live in it. We use it and contribute (hopefully) to its existence. The material world is part of our sustenance just as we are part of its sustenance.

But, which world nurtures you first and most? Which one encourages you first and most to be, do, and have in the ways you desire? Which one encourages you first and most to be your authentic self? Which world is the source of your authority? Which one do you usually choose as your source of authority in and of all things?
Society is like your body. And though the body is an amazing compilation of cells performing specific tasks in order to support the “whole,” it is nothing – it cannot exist – without consciousness. It performs and functions even better with conscious awareness.

One of these worlds holds the frequency of love in greater, natural abundance and asks you often, What is sacred to you? The one that is more sacred to you is the one you will nurture first and most.

We too often hold onto what keeps us unhappy or discontent or unfulfilled, because we may have to really look at ourselves and change something. Society has predominantly taught us to value and rely on the known, according to its definitions of acceptable “knowns.” This is why the unknown frightens us so much – more than it needs to, more than it was meant to, especially when it comes to knowing ourselves.

When you’re clear that your spiritual self is more sacred to you, you can let go of some of that fear, or at least explore the unknown knowing you can rely on divine order, divine purpose, and on yourself as an integral part of that larger aspect you come from and return to. This also means the energetic frequency you transmit as a result of your expanded Knowing, to others and to Law of Attraction, will create more experiences you desire, as well as allow you to experience all of life and yourself more in the way you desire.

Albert B. Simpson said one of the signs of a spiritual life is enthusiasm. This makes sense. If you feel connected to and in flow with your spiritual self and the spiritual universe, how could you lack enthusiasm, at least a good deal of the time? Trying to appease society or even ego only, can drain or deplete enthusiasm. You can be enthusiastic about what you do in the world, but that feeling is amplified if inspired and supported by enthusiasm that springs naturally from spirituality.

Harmony is meant to exist between the two worlds, but this is to be a result of your spiritual development that allows you to contribute authentically to society, not by you or your spirituality being dictated to by society. Your spiritual self gives you your voice in your life and in the world. It encourages and inspires head-and-heart alignment in decision making. It leads you into integrity.

Through the sacredness revealed through spirituality, we can extend sacredness to the Earth and those we share it with. We open the doorway of the future we desire when we realize and take ownership of our spirituality in the now. Inner guidance is the most profound and effective tool, method, or system you could ever use, especially as the foundation of your Mind and Being. Spirituality is the keeper of these ways.

If you want your experience of both worlds to keep you in a state of appreciation, make your spirituality the world you nurture first, then bring the result of how this influences you into the world. This allows you to make both worlds a sacred experience, in the way this was always meant to be for us.

Practice makes progress.

© Joyce Shafer

Friday, May 11, 2012

Reduce the Drama in Your Life and Become Your Own Healer

Do you make a genuine effort to process through and beyond negative emotions? If you don’t, and these emotions get stuck in your energy field, life can become one drama after another.

You’re here to live and to learn from your day-to-day experiences. You can allow your experiences to be toxic to you energetically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and bodily, or you can transmute your experiences into opportunities, especially to expand conscious awareness and Knowing.

Ernest Holmes wrote: “Life is what consciousness makes it,” meaning our individual consciousness, followed by local and global consciousness, based on the individuals who comprise it. If you reinterpret or shift perspective about what happens – your experiences that is, on an ongoing basis, you become your own healer. Then you can become a healer-helper with others to assist them to become their own healers.

Just as with physical wounds, we are meant to heal our inner wounds, not cause them to linger or fester, and rob us of life force. Through this healing, we are meant to increase our understanding and compassion for wounds, the wounded, those who wound – even if we have to choose to no longer associate with them, and better understand and appreciate the dynamics and importance of healing.

Getting stuck in anger and resentment keeps us wounded and leads us to be stuck in drama mode. Our bodies get addicted to the chemicals released when we experience any emotion often, positive or negative. As a result of chemicals released often in response to negative emotions, we experience a predilection, or addiction, to trap anger and resentment in our energy field. We imprison ourselves with them, like cell bars on our psyche. We watch the fun side of living and creating from within our enclosure, too invested or embroiled in dramas to let them go.

Imagine that energy field around you. It’s with you everywhere you go. Picture all those angers and resentments like various sizes and shapes of debris – like debris and trash thrown into a stream – that snags and hangs up and blocks the flow. We are designed and entitled to feel unpleasant emotions because of the vital messages ALL of our feelings convey, but not to give negative emotions a permanent home in our energy field, which then becomes a field of dramas, past and attracted. Getting stuck in drama keeps you from perceiving, feeling, knowing - a Bigger Picture, a Larger Truth – best examined, processed, and integrated from a spiritual perspective.

An important part of what you’re here to do is to expand your conscious awareness, which includes changing inefficient thinking and emotions that keep you from living your best inner and outer life experience. The more you do this – make these changes – the more Law of Attraction can cease to create matching scenarios to what’s negative in your energy field. Think back over the last three to six months, or longer, and ask yourself how many unpleasant scenarios were either repetitions or variations on a theme.

If your dramas tend to repeat or drama seems to be how your life experience goes, you can pause and really look at this. You can remind yourself that your thoughts directly contribute to your manifestations, just as your perceptions and interpretations of happenings contribute to how you experience them. You can look at what needs to change. Start with your thoughts and emotions then move this change outward, into your life, based on what you learn about yourself.

You may have to release addictions to ways of thinking, perceiving, believing you need to or must feel a certain way, behaviors, and actions you take. You may have to flip what you believe about reality. You may have to see that you create and co-create unpleasantness to get your attention on something within your belief system that needs to change so that you can experience more of the unsullied you that you came here to be, and share what you came here to share rather than live holed up inside yourself… to choose wholeness instead of holed up in drama.

Some events and moments in your life will be dramatic (it isn’t about the false belief that if you just do something the right way, you’ll never have a problem ever again – it’s about practicing to the point of knowing you can manage yourself well – trust yourself to act from integrity - through any such times – and learn from them, whether just irritations or truly dramatic). Maybe your initial reaction will be to respond with more drama or from your conditioned drama response. However, if you practice pulling back to re-vision, re-perceive, and re-frame, you can then approach such experiences from a what-productive-thing-can-be-done-or-learned mode. This may be outward, but it will always be a seed at the inner level first.

The seed of who you are – your best self and best life – is inside you, possibly buried under a lifetime of beliefs that misdirect you, which in turn misdirects your energy causing you to “misdirect” Law of Attraction. Begin the practice of noticing this. Appreciate that you can choose to change what’s in your energy field, which will change your life, how you perceive drama, and how you respond to it.

Understand that what you feel – your feelings – are messengers and not to be controlled. Your emotions are what you do with or about what you feel, and can be managed. Though some people avoid it, processing negative emotions is necessary, but for the purpose of traveling through the process and arriving somewhere, not processing to the point where it becomes a way of life, with no progress made. People addicted to drama tend to allow identifying with and processing dramas – or not processing them at all - to replace healing and living.

Make an effort to cease anticipating future experiences based on any negativity from your past, or creating, by default, negative experiences that are within your control. Appreciate that every experience holds something for you to see and learn about you. Appreciate positive potentials and possibilities so they become probabilities. Believe in possibilities – without a need for drama, and your reality changes – starting at the most important, vital place – within you.

Practice makes progress.

© Joyce Shafer

Friday, May 4, 2012

How Important or Easy Is It to Choose Better Behavior?

It’s become too easy to forget or to ignore the Golden Rule. We can choose to follow the behavior examples we see on “reality” shows or we can be examples of better behavior.

A light rain - more like a drizzle - began to fall as I sat reading on my sofa. It was ideal: a good novel, a soft rain, and quiet. Then a young boy walked by my window and stopped. A second young boy joined him then a third and a fourth. The first boy saw the birdseed on my window sill, commented on it, and pretended to eat it. The first boy was also speaking loudly, as though his friends were down the street instead of near him. The third boy said, “Be quiet. Someone may live here.” The second boy rapped on my window. He and the first boy laughed. The fourth boy was leaning against my front door and kept thumping on it. They were in no hurry to go elsewhere. My quiet had been disturbed.

I opened the door and looked at each boy in turn and said to all, “Hi. How’re you doing?” They looked surprised, but they didn’t run. The third boy, the tallest, said, “We’re staying out of the rain.” I didn’t point out that he was the only one standing in it, I just said, “That’s a good idea.”

Most of the birdseed had been knocked off the sill when the first two boys had seated themselves on the brick, and I couldn’t see the water dish. “You saw the birdseed?” I asked. “Is the water dish still there?” The second boy said it had fallen, which really meant it had been put or knocked down. Without my asking, he picked it up and put it back on the sill.

I told them the birds sing to me and I feed them and make sure they have water. The second boy said, “There’s a bird’s nest in there.” He pointed to a gray mass draped on limbs and I told him it was moss that I’d placed there, that I would love if the birds used it for their nests. He asked what moss is and I asked if he knew what pineapple was. He did. I told him that although it didn’t look like it and you couldn’t eat it, moss was a member of the pineapple family.

The fourth boy, silent up to this point, said, “People used to use moss because they didn’t have toilet paper.” (I did mention they were young boys; and, I did tidy his actual statement.) I told him that moss had also been mixed with mud to make insulated walls for houses. He repeated his statement about moss, which he probably found more interesting and definitely more amusing than architecture, and I added that people once used corncobs, as well, which got their attention and them into animated conversation.

A woman’s voice called out. It was the mother of the first boy, poking her head out of their front door. She said something to him in Spanish. I smiled at each boy and said, “I’m going back to what I was doing. Stay dry.” They lingered for about a minute after I went inside then quietly went their separate ways.

I could have yelled at them to get away from my house, and for disturbing the birdseed and water – but I also recall being that age and believing any land with grass growing on it was public domain. I could have scolded them for discussing a nature’s-call matter, but instead gave them more info. I could have gritched about this to others, not to mention replayed it in my mind as a reason to be angry or upset. Instead, I have a much more pleasant memory to replay. They may never mention our several minutes together to others, but I could just as easily have given them a reason to talk unfavorably about me to their families and neighborhood friends. Instead, we engaged in a friendly and somewhat informative chat.

I’d shared with them about exchanging something (seed and water) with the birds for their songs, something unique about moss, and some pre-modern hygiene trivia. They’d reminded me that we really can choose how we engage with others, that courtesy doesn’t have to be a lost or forgotten or ignored art. And, that we more often than not find what we look for – in ourselves, others, and life.

They gave me the opportunity to practice the Golden Rule… to remember that each of us wants to be recognized as a member of the human family, whatever our age… to remember that children and adults benefit from positive examples, even if we never see the results. That in each and every moment we are an example of something for someone – or can be.

Interestingly, using courtesy is one way to simplify our lives a bit. It’s far too common for people to fly into fits of temper over matters that don’t really merit it, an act which usually creates an even bigger and unnecessary disturbance. It’s far too easy to forget courtesy can go a long way, with strangers, associates, and especially people we’re in our closest relationships with. Too easy to forget the Golden Rule is a facet of Law of Attraction: treat others as you wish to be treated… because you WILL be, if not by them, by others… because we wear our energetic vibrations like invisible clothing, which is “seen” and responded to by others and considered an instruction by Law of Attraction.

The boys gave me an opportunity to enter a state of appreciation that I can remember common courtesy should be used as often as possible and is rewarding on many levels. That use of it more often than not creates outward ripples. Courtesy costs nothing; and the significant returns can be great, starting with how we feel about ourselves, as well as the memories we create for us and others.

Practice makes progress.

© Joyce Shafer

Friday, April 27, 2012

Is Law of Attraction Just a Way to Get Stuff or a Way to Live?

The crux of Law of Attraction is that to get desired results, we have to be, not just behave, a certain way. However, we tend to focus on “the get” more than the BE aspect, and this creates contrasts for us and our lives.

Most Law of Attraction buzz is about how to use it to get more of whatever. But, wouldn’t we have a much better life experience and demonstration of the Law if we looked at it as a way to live? And if we live it, what might the results be?

Law of Attraction – Like Attracts Like – has been provided to assist us to identify desires and preferences then fulfill the ones that benefit us and others (in some way or, at least, “do no harm”) simultaneously. Brilliantly included in the principles is another level, the level that takes us beyond just acquiring desired tangibles and happenings to that of expanding our personal and spiritual development, so that we experience both sides of this “equation” rather than just one or the other.

We’re bombarded these days with what’s almost a mandate that our lives look a certain way more than be a certain way. Honestly, which one of these holds your attention more at this time or more often: have more to feel good or feel good to have more? The latter is how Law of Attraction is designed to work best in our favor. Source has a reason for everything, so there must be a good reason for this design.

Learning to use the Law as a way to live may require a nearly complete overhaul of how we think, speak, feel, and act. Understanding this, how much do we still really want this or feel willing to do what’s required? We’d have to retrain ourselves. We’d have to be deliberate and consistent in our practice. We’d have to shift from doing and being a whole lot of stuff that’s familiar and convenient, even though ineffective or even destructive.

Ernest Holmes wrote: “…the more completely the mind turns away from lack, the more completely the thought stops trying to figure out how the demonstration can be made, the more completely it refrains from will power, and, strange as it may seem, the less it tries to concentrate, THE MORE POWER IT HAS…. The gardener does not will potatoes and cabbages into being, but he has a willingness to comply with the law of nature, and provides the conditions which make it possible for this law to produce them.”

Let’s look at some shifts we’d have to make to prepare or condition our inner gardens so our outer gardens produce desired experiences and results:

*We’d have to actually choose to choose to feel better – to deliberately raise our energy vibration – more often than we might do now. We’d have to figure out when and how this is appropriate for us and do this, likely, each time we face it.

*Our addiction to staying with (staying with, not just having, which is natural) negative feelings like grouchy, self-righteous, judgmental, revengeful, and so on – all opinion-based, would have to be replaced with preferences, discernments, and REASONING (observe and gather enough information to consider all sides, aspects, and the bigger picture). Instead of being locked into struggle and limitation by our opinions, we’d have to expand our conscious awareness through reasoning.

*We’d have to believe Source always has our back, despite perceptions about appearances at times, so we stop believing and acting like we are a solo-act or that Source (the Universe) is ever against us. We CAN ask source to show us what to do, to connect us with its resources, instead of trying to figure everything out ourselves. We may have to make, “Source has my back,” the first thing we say when we wake each day. We’d definitely know it, once spiritually awakened.

*We’d have to allow joy and fulfillment to be our prime motivators, and understand all the other “stuff” is about exercising our choices for how to have and live these.

*We’d have to abandon the premise that we’re not good enough or are undeserving, and allow the same for others.

*We’d have to match our words to our higher intentions instead of inflict pain with them or try to be clever with criticisms to and about others. We’d have to become genuinely curious rather than accusatory, when contrasts in personality and beliefs arise. We’d have to seek to understand, as well as to be understood.

*We’d have to check in with whether we’re resisting or allowing our good; whether we hold our desired vision, or focus more on the perceived lack that prompted the vision or desire in the first place.

*We’d have to choose a vision or purpose (many, actually) instead of waiting for Source to send us a cosmic telegram that reads “Do this: XYZ.” We’d have to grasp the truth for ourselves, others, and our world that “Where there is no vision, the people perish,” to remind us to choose the direction we desire to go in then get going, and use reasoning to guide us. We’d have to watch for signs that we’re going in the right or true direction for us and adjust as needed.

*We’d have to stop wearing our emotional wounds as our identity and stop using them to control others. We’d have to appreciate and use our strengths and be creators and collaborators, for the good of ourselves and others.

*We’d have to pay attention to our feelings and energy vibrations instead of letting our emotions rip and rip apart, and do this in a way that still honors our emotions and feelings - our most valuable inner GPS.

*We’d have to allow our experiences to be mirrors so we could adjust our vibrations as needed – to use our vibrations to promote desired results, instead of trying to use will power or coercion or force regarding experiences, falsely believing such approaches will cause us to feel more of what we desire.

*We’d have to stop blaming others for what we are, do, and have and do what we are empowered to do, on our own behalf.

*We’d have to put stress and worry on a strict diet and nourish trust in Source and serenity. Research says that 87% of all illnesses are related to incorrect thinking. The symptoms are real because the body responds to the mind. We are not designed to do stress and worry 24/7; but we have to recognize how much of our stress and worry is self-imposed and what this can or will do to us and our lives and relationships.

*We’d have to realize that trust in Source is not about always having the answer immediately. Sometimes we get an answer and sometimes we get an opportunity or a result. Sometimes we get a right question to ask. Nor does trust mean we don’t take action; it’s that we take inspired or well-reasoned rather than frantic, premature, or thoughtless action.

*We’d have to accept that we control what we believe, and not absorb the beliefs of others that diminish us and our integrity and our innate ability and desire to contribute. We’d have to realize we’re here to create and contribute, not just accumulate.

*We’d have to allow experience to teach us and not take Everything so seriously or personally. We’d have to lighten up to be enlightened.

*We’d have to be deliberate about what we feed our minds, imaginations, and feelings instead of ingesting without regard for how what we ingest or allow in will affect us and the vibrations we transmit. This is not about censure; it’s about knowing and nurturing ourselves.

*We’d have to think, feel, and say good and accepting things about us to ourselves. We’d have to allow ourselves to stumble and get back up with supportive rather than unsupportive commentary; and do this with others.

*Just as we’d move away from a bad smell, we’d have to choose to allow ourselves to move away from situations, thoughts, beliefs, words, and actions that contrast or conflict with our well-being, inner truth, and the larger Truth – whether right away or after our efforts to help improve something shows it’s time to let go and move away.
Listed above are a number of situations we all contend with in our everyday lives. If we look at them individually or as a whole, it’s really about choosing to be deliberate about how we are, what we do, and what we have – and the Why. Be deliberate about living a Law of Attraction life, where like attracts like, and you can’t help but expand your state of appreciation in every area of your life, starting with how you appreciate you and what you really are capable of creating and accomplishing, for you and for others.

Practice makes progress.

© Joyce Shafer

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Are You Holding Grudges or Are They Holding You?

Holding grudges is a heavy burden to bear. If you’re holding them, are you aware of what this is really doing to you?

It’s probably correct to say that most of us have held one or more grudges at some point in life. Some are about significant events and some are petty. Sometimes we’re able to let grudges go either within a reasonable amount of time or eventually. Sometimes we hold onto grudges for a very, very long time. When this happens, resentment we carry can or does turn into bitterness.

Ernest Holmes wrote that the mouth speaks from the heart, and therefore it’s impossible for us to conceal who we are… rather than as we wish to appear to be; and that “…the mirror of life cannot help reflecting back to us that which we really are.” You can easily add: life reflects back what we really believe; and, we behave based on what we believe. Imagine what it means Law of Attraction-wise if we hold resentment or bitterness in the heart, especially if we believe they belong and should stay there.

It’s been rightly said that forgiveness is not about – is never about – saying what someone did is okay, but is instead a way for you to put the heavy burden of resentment down. This is so that you can enjoy life, including the abundance you already have in every area of your life, which then invites more in. This makes sense to do when you think about how Law of Attraction responds to and matches your energy vibration in every moment. Your emotions tell you what you’re attracting.

Something to keep in mind: if the person, or we, had had the consciousness to do better at any given time, he/she/we would have. This fact applies to all of us, and it’s something we meet in every moment. We all have the opportunity to raise our consciousness even one degree, to make better choices than ones we might make strictly from an ego perspective. This is not always as easy as we’d like, but it is doable.

Let’s look at what happens to us when we hold grudges against others, and even against ourselves.

*We keep “records,” our own mental list of every “wrong” we experienced or perceived that we experienced (or did). We not only visit these records repeatedly, but will include one or more past entries in the present, when triggered into frustration, anger, or fear. We do this either with a person we hold a grudge against (including us) or we tell others. We don’t do this as part of a process to heal ourselves, but to drive the nail or spike of our own perspective in deeper. If we talk about these things from a commitment to release them and free ourselves once and for all, that’s altogether different, and encouraged.

*In our retelling of these wrongs to whomever, we paint ourselves as in the right and the other(s) in the wrong. Any wrongdoing or inappropriateness of ours is usually left out of the story. If bitterness is in our heart, we act from a victim or martyr-like mindset, which means the majority of our conversations become ones of complaining and seldom ones of healing or about learned wisdom, or what we intend to create or contribute in a productive way going forward.

*We think of life as a serious business. We place “serious” emphasis on all that we perceive as needing to be done, including busywork. If anyone doesn’t share the same serious attitude, if they dare to be lighter-hearted or even to have fun or be calmer than we feel, we get angry.

*If anyone we hold a grudge against has good fortune, our resentment is amplified at them… maybe even at Source.

*While others enjoy life and serenity and abundance in greater measure than we do, we sit outside of these experiences, stewing or wallowing in resentment.

We feel we have every right to our grudges and to hold onto them; but who pays the greater price for holding onto them? We do – because our perspective cannot help but warp under so much tension and strain. Ernest Holmes wrote: “Man’s experience is the logical outcome of his inner vision; his horizon is limited to the confines of his own consciousness. Wherever this consciousness lacks a true perspective, its outward expression will lack proper harmony.” Stuff happens; but an affected perspective will take nearly everything personally or as a personal attack.

You cannot control what another individual does or thinks, but you can control how you choose to respond or behave. And, yes, even how you think about what others do. When we hold a grudge—large or petty, we restrict any expansion of perspective. This restricts what we can learn and how we can grow spiritually, mentally, and emotionally. We may complain that nothing and no one ever changes, while we stay exactly the same or worsen. We never punish others with our grudges, our resentments, and our resistance to a more reasoned perspective as much as we punish ourselves.

Effects of grudge-holding show up in our bodies, our behaviors, our finances, our relationships. This can cause us to be on alert for slights of any kind, as though everyone – and even Source – is against us. We may be too upset or distressed (or habituated) to even contemplate how we affect Law of Attraction, what kinds of “instructions” we send to it. We become a house divided against its Self, and hold others or Source responsible.

Our grudges cause us to focus on fragments instead of the whole, to be fragmented ourselves, instead of whole. We seek, even crave, wholeness. But grudge-holding keeps us from seeing that wholeness comes from and can only come from within.

How can you release a grudge? First, you have to sincerely desire to do this for Your Own Sake! You don’t ever have to like or approve or okay what happened, but you can choose to stop letting your grudges consume you and your life. You can choose to say: It happened. It’s over. I’m going to trust there was a reason, even if just to show me how not to be, or was an opportunity to raise my conscious awareness. My focus now is on how to feel, act, and be better and better. My choice is to now focus on the present, which is creating my future, as well, right now.

You can know that the more you put this into practice, the easier it is for you to enter a state of appreciation – for yourself, your life, and the Source of All That Is. You can free yourself from the bitter bile of resentment and its repetitive negative influences on you and your life. You can apply this to old grudges and potential new ones. You can watch how this shifts Law of Attraction to work in ways that fill you with joy and enjoyment… and allow you to more easily connect with the true blessings in your life, and inspire you to be a blessing in the lives of others.

Practice makes progress.

© Joyce Shafer

Friday, April 13, 2012

How Do You Really Feel About Yourself?

Self-confidence, self-esteem, and self-love and acceptance are about the level of belief you have in yourself, which comes from knowing yourself. If these are low, there’s a good reason: your true identify was messed with.

When anthropologist Margaret Mead gave birth to her daughter, she expressed eagerness to discover who her daughter was, rather than impose who she expected her daughter to be. That’s not how it usually goes. Usually, there are expectations – low, average or high – already in place of and for us, and from more than one person as we move through life.

What happens for a lot of us as a result is what we commonly call an Identity Crisis: we grow up uncertain about who WE really are or how to discover this in a way that isn’t punishing or disapproved of, either by others or ourselves, led by others’ examples about this. After such a start in life, it may feel scary to make the journey of Self discovery.

An Identity Crisis affects your general choices and decision-making. Amid expectations of those around you now and from the past, it can feel intimidating to get to know yourself authentically, and even to love and accept yourself, or trust yourself to act in a way that keeps your self-approval and self-integrity intact.

An Identity Crisis can lead to trying to be perfect, which is impossible, stressful, and pulls or keeps a person off track and out of joy. Or, it may cause a person to feel immobilized about going for more than the basics in life. Perhaps, even some of both. When you have an Identity Crisis in any degree, you feel out of harmony with yourself and with life and even with All That Is. But, that is a perception; and you can change this.

An Identity Crisis causes us to look at what others are doing and compare ourselves to them. It leads to jealousy because we feel intimidated by the gifts, talents, and results of others, and by those who express greater belief in themselves (and All That Is) than we currently feel or demonstrate. We may try to imitate others in order to fill this void. But, when we try to be like someone else, we can’t be ourselves.

You might be able to name one or more people who were involved in any theft or disruption of your true identity, but you reach a point in life when it’s time to realize that if you have inappropriate expectations for yourself – or few appropriate expectations, you’ve become the thief or disruptor of your true identity. And this is where Law of Attraction needs to enter the picture, because this Law will match confusion and clarity equally. Law of Attraction responds to your thoughts of both what you want and don’t want – as though they are requests of equal measure.

Can you see how the effects of an Identity Crisis can affect how the Law of Attraction works in your life? Every thought, word, or action – supported by what you really feel – is a vibration you transmit that the Law of Attraction picks up as a request to be matched and fulfilled. Whatever you feel about yourself right now, you must pay attention to the vibrations of the feeling-based energy you transmit.

If you aren’t sure what it means to pay attention to the vibrations you transmit, think of it like this: what you attract is based on your perceptions, which cause you to feel a certain way. It’s about how you perceive yourself and others and life, and how you perceive your relationship or interactions with yourself, others, and life. You could say that if you want to adjust what you attract, monitor and adjust your perceptions so you monitor and adjust how you feel.

Other words for perceptions are beliefs, attitudes, expectations, anticipations, assumptions, presumptions, perspectives, and conclusions. Every attraction and therefore result in your life is set into motion by Your Perceptions, starting with how you perceive yourself. You must start with how you feel and think about you, if you want to influence any vibration you transmit to the Law of Attraction for a desired outcome.

Listen to your self-talk and what you say about anyone and anything – because there ultimately is no separation between your perceptions about yourself and perceptions about anyone or anything else. It’s all connected. We are all connected, all one energy, but many expressions of it. And though we may not like it, we cannot perceive something outside ourselves that doesn’t exist, in some measure, within us – negative or positive. We can either judge our “mirrors” or we can further hone our Self identity because of what we observe.

Who you really are is a unique, individualized expression of and participating contributor to All That Is. You’re not your body, your bank balance, your wardrobe, your car, your home, your job, or any other physical representation. And it isn’t how these “look” that represents you or attracts manifestations, but HOW YOU FEEL about how they look that does. This feeling is what Law of Attraction picks up as orders to fill, and is why a state of appreciation is so important.

Your identity is intimately linked to your experiences. You are ever unfolding, evolving – choosing! Your experiences play a significant role in assisting or allowing you to define and clarify your identity. And how you perceive your identity plays a significant role in the choices you make. Your identity is NOT based on outcomes, as society would tell you, but on what you do about and with your experiences, how you grow from them and what you learn about yourself and your relationship with All That Is through them. Outcomes are manifestations of your inner processes that can show you if you’re on target or need to take better aim with your energy.

When you clothes shop, you know what’s you and what isn’t. Approach anything and everything the same way. You don’t have to know all of your preferences or defined aspects by tomorrow; in fact, that’s not how this physical experience is set up. You’re meant to discover preferences and identity aspects, including through contrasts, and to do so until the moment you exit your physical form.

The greatest treasure you can have is feeling good, including, or especially, about yourself. This affects how you feel about everyone and everything else. This is why it’s important that the first thing to realize about your identity is that you are a beloved expression of Source. Everything that follows that is just a path of exploration, discovery, and expression. If you feel you only partially know who you really are, admit that, at least to yourself, and start where you are about this, in this moment.

Get excited about what an adventure this can be, what an adventure it was always meant to be. Your personalized adventure is a main reason you came to this physical experience. Maybe it’s time to make the most of it. Maybe it’s time to let go of worrying about how others will see you and focus on how you choose to be in partnership with who you know yourself and discover yourself to be. Practice appreciating or honoring every facet of this adventure because there’s a treasure hidden inside each facet, flat surface, gap, twist, and curve.

Practice makes progress.
© Joyce Shafer

Monday, April 9, 2012

How in Control Are You?

Control is something we tend to battle with, whether it’s self-control or control of others or circumstances. Maybe if we better understand what we are meant to be in control of, we can shift from battle to more harmony.

A good question to start with is, What are you supposed to be in control of? “You are here to CREATE the world around you that YOU choose, while you ALLOW the world – as others choose it to be – to exist, also. But while THEIR choices in no way hinder YOUR choices, your attention to their choices does affect your vibration, and therefore your point of attraction.” (Abraham-Hicks. The capitalized words should be in italics. The changes are mine for publishing reasons.)

You could take the first part of the above statement to mean we are meant to be in this world, but not OF it, which has been said before. We are meant to understand we are more than we tend to believe we are. That we are spiritual in nature and therefore empowered in ways we’ve forgotten and now desire to re-Mind ourselves of, even if we don’t know to identify what we feel as being this.

But what about this: We are here to create the world around us as we choose AND allow the world as others choose it to be? Seems like a complicated contrast, at least to our ego self. Well, what if we are meant to create and control our INNER world in relationship with how we experience others and the outer world? This circles back to being in the world but not of it, to remember we are eternally spiritual beings and only temporarily physical.

To further this awareness and your desired results, it is VITAL that you become aware of the connection or relationship between YOUR thoughts and feelings with YOUR experiences. Until you do this – pay attention in this way – you and your life will feel out of your control. Can you look back and readily find examples of this? I certainly can. And, once you can look back in this way, you can also direct your thoughts forward with more awareness.

Then, there’s the last part of that quote about putting our attention on the choices of others and how this affects our own attracting vibrations. This is a matter of control on more than one level. I discuss a few aspects of how we tend to focus this way in the next paragraphs.

We tend, more often than not, to think and feel in response to what we PERCEIVE about what we see or hear from others, since others are usually involved in the circumstances we experience. If we perceive something as good, we feel good – and it’s the same for the opposite. When we perceive something as negative, we can believe we have little to no control over how we feel at that time – because we feel we are not in control of events or others. Our desired inner world contrasts with our experience of the outer world created by one or more others or us. At such times, we make our desire to feel we control what’s external to us more important than controlling what’s going on at the inner level.

What often happens when we feel out of control about events is we then try to control as much of the world, our environment, and others and their choices as we can or can get away with. We do this to RELIEVE the unpleasant or even painful feelings we experience, rather than looking at and learning something about ourselves by looking at our feelings and what they transmit as our energetic vibrations (and their effects), and then doing something about this - first.

Trying to control circumstances (instead of collaborating with life, starting at the inner level) leaves us perpetually frustrated because there will always be another circumstance and another and another. We are meant to be in control of our inner world, not the outer, which is a shared creation and experience; though, control of the inner influences the outer. We, and only we, can always and are always in control of our inner world. We just tend to forget or ignore this, especially in the heat of a moment that stirs our emotions in response to any resistance we feel. This happens, and we can shift it.

We are gifted with the ability and the right to influence our own lives and experiences, not the lives and experiences of others. Our egos find this especially painful when contrasts happen in our closest relationships, or what feels close to us about our desired experiences and results. This is because we also tend to forget that just as we are here to create and have our own experiences, so are others. If we make what they choose and do ours emotionally (though, we can be empathetic and provide assistance), we abandon pure focus (vibration) on what we desire. We can look for ways that what we desire for us and for another or others overlap, without infringing on their right to their (or our) personal evolution.

In any relationship – intimate, professional, or social – you are always in control of how you participate. Your ego may not like events at times, but when you choose, with conscious awareness, how you participate, you will experience the self-control you desire. And, you will feel better about yourself and your participation in this physical experience that is always unfolding, always shifting, in response to your vibrations and the vibrations of those you share this physical experience with.

It is also important to look beyond what-is. What-is is only the result of past vibrations. What-is-possible is always available to match your improved vibrations. We’re told to face facts, but “facts” are only the results just mentioned, as well as perceptions. There are as many perceptions as there are people perceiving. But, something, whether inner or outer – but especially inner – can always be shifted about what-is.

Our need to feel in control relates to a desire to feel successful in any moment and area of our lives. Success can be tricky because – what does it really mean? It has as many meanings as there are individuals to think those meanings. But, why do we, ultimately, want success of any kind? To feel joy!

We’ve been swayed in our perception about what success is because of how success and worth have been linked. Is a miserable person of wealth really more successful than a truly happy person of modest means? Isn’t the ideal to FEEL abundant and joyful at the same time, whatever this looks like? Yet, how often is success presented to us in this way? The world’s interpretation of success has caused us to feel not in control of ourselves and our lives, unless we match some ambiguous image of what success in any area of our life “should” look like, instead of what it means to us individually.

Feeling out of control about circumstances is a flashing signal that lets us know we have “unplugged” from Source’s stream of well-being (as Abraham calls it), not that Source has unplugged us. We just need to plug ourselves back in. Abundance and joy are meant to be ours, not as a result of struggle or deserving, but as a result of harmony and flow that comes from understanding that Source always supplies and never denies, and how Law of Attraction works, and using it.

If you really want to feel and be in control, aim to be in control of your inner world first. Re-set your success standard to one of feeling as good as you can, as often as you can, and joyful and in a state of appreciation as often as possible. This, after all, is the transmitted vibration that you desire to have Law of Attraction match, in as many ways as it’s able to, which is more ways than you can imagine. This desired feeling is what motivates your every thought, word, and action. Feel this way by choice first so that your preferences can connect with you with less or no “static interference” between you and what matches your vibration.

If your primary mode of operation has been resistance, this new mode will take practice. But, it’s a practice that will result in you feeling and having more conscious control over your choices and therefore your experiences and outcomes.

Practice makes progress.
© Joyce Shafer

Friday, March 30, 2012

Using Your Imagination and Law of Attraction

Does it feel easy or comfortable to imagine what you desire, and to see it as yours? If not, maybe there’s a very good reason this feels not as right as it might – one you’ll readily recognize.

Every time you think a thought, you use your imagination. And, whether you’re aware of it or not, you use your mental screen. You literally run a movie in your mind that gets your energy vibration “juices” flowing in one direction or the other. It doesn’t matter if you’re reviewing a situation, talking, or daydreaming. The “technical” aspects are the same.

We’re quite skilled at imagining in reverse. We do this each time we revisit something that happened before the present moment we’re in. It’s imagining forward – in a consistently positive, productive way – that’s a challenge for many of us. It’s a challenge for a number of reasons, including that we put more practice time in on mentally reliving unpleasant moments, which makes it all too easy to imagine future moments as unpleasant ones to anticipate.

Imagining in reverse is remembering. Imagining forward is daydreaming, no matter what other label you might use. And, as any young child discovers in school (and maybe from family members), daydreaming is a “punishable offense.”

We’re told daydreaming is unproductive and a waste of time. We’re told there’s something wrong with doing it or wrong with us if we do it. But, what is daydreaming, really – or, at least, the way it starts out for us as children? It’s envisioning something we desire, with positive, even delicious, anticipation. Is it any wonder that, after being conditioned in a negative way about daydreaming as children, we feel out of practice, or resistant or even hesitate to trust it as adults? Yet, it’s so important because its role is MAJOR in the Law of Attraction manifestation process.

We’re also discouraged from daydreaming because we aren’t supposed to get our hopes up about some of our desires being fulfilled. We’re told it’s a way to avoid disappointment; though, no one explains the disappointment we’ll feel as a result of suppressing our dreams and desires. We’re told this by others who had use of their imagination punished, ridiculed, or even whipped out of them. This leaves us feeling it’s safer, or at least more acceptable, to focus on “what is” than on What Is Possible. Nor or we encouraged to realize how many once-thought impossibilities are now realities.

Yet, “what is” and What Is Possible operate the same way as the Yin/Yang symbol: each becomes the other. Each feeds the other. The mavericks that make a positive and creative difference in this world, in any era, are the ones who use their imagination the way it’s meant to be used: To envision, dream, solve, resolve, and create. But, you don’t have to be a maverick to enjoy the benefits of daydreaming. You just have to be human.

We face a quandary when we don’t daydream deliberately, because Law of Attraction matches our energy vibration – comprised of a blend of thoughts, feelings, beliefs, mindset, and attitude. It matches the set-point of what we are willing to allow, first, freely in our imagination, and then freely as our experience. Our set-point is like our thermostat setting for allowing us to picture what we desire and for allowing ourselves to receive what we picture or something even better. We’re the ones who ultimately control the settings; which means we can raise them. But, we have to pay attention to how we use our imaginations.

Abraham-Hicks said, “The Universe makes no distinction between the vibration you offer in response to what you are living and the vibration you offer in response to what you are imagining…” It makes NO distinction. Law of Attraction doesn’t know if you’re experiencing something or imagining that you are; it only reads and acts on your inward responses to the movies you run in your mind as requests for more of what your energy vibration is. As above (your energy vibration), so below (the experience that matches your vibration).

You might use your imagination about how a call or meeting or whatever might go. Some call this setting your intention. You might imagine how you’d prefer to feel or behave, and call this setting your intention for how to be. You might write out a list of what you’d like, or cut pictures out and put them on a dream board, or in a box you call your manifestation box. Some might call each of these methods forms of visualization, which is daydreaming. If you use any of these methods, be sure to include some things and experiences that you know or trust are possible sooner than later. This is good practice, and affirming when they happen for you. It raises your set-point about what’s possible.

Notice that none of the ways to use your imagination listed above include picturing the negative that’s happened or could. It’s all about imagining forward in a positive “it’s possible” way. It’s about using your imagination to practice Allowing and Appreciation, to use your imagination to Appreciate what IS possible. Appreciation for what has been and is – of anything or anyone you genuinely appreciate – is excellent practice, especially to gradually raise your set-point ability to imagine and expect and receive more.

Be serious about daydreaming, but do not feel seriousness when you do it. When you deliberately daydream, first, get into a state of appreciation about anything so that your energy vibration is a good one and not one of worry about fixing or changing something, which would match the vibration of lack. Then, either in your mind alone or on paper, create the daydream as you might a scene in a movie, play, or novel. Allow yourself to have all the good feelings you can about this, as you would have when you were a child who had no resistance to this natural process.

When you’re done, instead of attaching your mental energy to the image, capture and keep the good feeling. Replay this scene in your mind or re-read what you wrote to get your feeling vibration in harmony with what you desire, and with allowing what you desire. Do you need to tell the Universe what you want more than once? No. The repetition is for your benefit only.

Start noticing what types of “movies” play on your mental screen, including the dialogue that accompanies them. Notice if you use your imagination in reverse or forward, negative or positive. Check in with how you feel about deliberately daydreaming some each day, with no penalty for doing so.

Daydream the right way, as you did before someone discouraged you and as many inventors, artists, and authors did and do. This brings rewards that include improved productivity, creativity, and all manner of desired experiences Law of Attraction then repeats for you and expands, as you expand what you choose to imagine for you and your life.

Practice makes progress.
© Joyce Shafer