—Neale Donald Walsch
Just because we “get” something intellectually doesn’t mean we truly believe it or think it’s possible for us.
And even if we get it intellectually, AND believe it—sometimes we forget to practice it or implement into our lives.
Can you relate?
I was reminded of this very glaringly this weekend when I returned from a life changing trip to San Diego.
This trip was a reunion with some very powerful women. Women who are movers and shakers in their careers, families, communities and spiritual lives.
We laughed, cried, journaled, set powerful intentions and generally fit about 2 years of deep personal work in 4 days.
In a nutshell—we moved some mountains.
But I didn’t realize how truly transformational it was until I got home and started seeing the power of intention already working miracles in my life.
And not just my life—but those closest to me as well.
I won’t get into the nitty- gritty of the miracles that unfolded, but suffice to say that it was a massive, miraculous shift : )
The powerful intentions I set while in San Diego had already begun shifting things in a matter of days.
So what the heck is an intention and how can you get moving on it so YOU can move a few mountains yourself (or at the very least create change)?
A standard, text book definition of an intention is this—
- A thing intended; an aim or plan.
But a more fitting definition from a manifesting perspective would be—
- An intention is a desire, dream or goal that you passionately envision creating in your life. It’s something that you may not physically see evidence of right now, but through creating a detailed vision about what you want—you create an energy which open doors to making it real. It’s the process of turning a dream into reality.
For example—it’s creating a “day-dream” or written statment about what your soul mate is like—right down to every last detail. What color is his hair? What clothes is he wearing when you first meet him? Color of his eyes? The tone of his voice. The way you feel when he looks at you.
It can be a written story or internal vision you create about all the wealth you have—even though your checking account says otherwise.
It’s confidence in knowing what you want is on it’s way—even though you may not see evidence of it.
But how do you get yourself to feel something or envision something so clearly when it feels forced, faked or fabricated?
Here are a few things that you can implement right away that can help you with this—
- First off—change the perspective on it being fake, forced or fabricated. Have fun with it and approach it with a youthful, curious mindset. Do young kids feel bad about daydreaming? Be a kid about it. Dream away.
- See it as a gift—you have creative control in your life and can have a HUGE impact on what happens by choosing to focus on what you want, rather than seeing what you don’t want (advanced manifesting topic which I will cover in an upcoming mini course)
- Place the focus on what it feels like to ALREADY HAVE that thing in your life. Stay with that feeling.
Intentionsetting also has an element of letting go which is critical to getting the results you want.
Many people are actually better at this than they think, but they have unconscious, self sabotaging energy and beliefs that chase away the dream that showed up for them (more on this in the next broadcast : )
Intention setting—when done right—is another powerful tool in your arsenal for living a good life.
And who doesn’t want to have a life where you actually get to live your dreams, rather than just dreaming them?
It’s even better than moving mountains.
Your turn now. What’s your relationship with intention setting? Is it something you’re doing? A little, a lot, not at all? I’d love to know.
I recently dropped out of a 30-day program, called Whole 30.
It’s like the caveman diet on steroids.
I made it 9 days. Nine days of no dairy, sugar, alcohol or white carbs, plus about a million other things that were on the naughty list (including hummus and legumes……WTH?)
So, by day 8 I was cranky. No, I was bitchy.
It wasn’t a big deal to eliminate a few of those things, namely sugar, alcohol and dairy. But no quinoa, hummus or brown rice?
No thanks, food police.
It started out feeling like a good way to reset after an enjoyably indulgent holiday season— but slowly morphed into feeling like a walk down deprivation lane.
There is a BIG difference between a feeling of deprivation versus a healthy choice to self regulate something in your life (except for the super bad things, but I will assume if you are here, reading this, you are already healthy enough to know you can’t regulate a healthy amount of crack, cigs or mountain dew ; )
In the world of psychology, self-regulation refers to the ability to self manage potentially disruptive emotions and behaviors.
Ideally, we all learn to self regulate (consciously choose) things in our life—food, time, people, our own energy and our overall life choices.
This is where most people end up (hopefully).
We know what we love, know when to say no and when to say yes. It’s common sense for most us, unless we are dealing with addictions and more serious problems than an occasional sugar binge.
We are grown ups about our choices (most days anyway).
And that doesn’t mean we don’t slip. Of course we do.
But it probably doesn’t mean we go as far as drinking a couple bottles of wine on our own, or eating a whole cake in one sitting.
And even then, if we do—we get right back in there and fix it if we are on the path to being conscious.
We own the mistake and aim to not go down that road again.
We get back in the game and choose things that FEED our alignment in life (feeling good, healthy, connected, loved, happy).
Whereas self-regulation is a conscious choice to create a healthy boundary or limit with something (with the main focus on gaining something positive from that)—deprivation has an energy of feeling forced, like we must—or else. It feels restrictive, lacks freedom and doesn’t feel like the main focus is on a gain, but on a loss.
Deprivation isn’t an energy of allowing (and we want to be in an energy of allowing in order to manifest what we want).
Also—when you venture into the “I feel deprived” zone—it can trigger the desire to go the OTHER way, and overindulge in the very thing you are depriving yourself of.
I noticed this with Whole 30. It didn’t feel like a healthy self- regulating—it felt like deprivation and I actually felt unusually hungry all the time, even though I was eating plenty.
Maybe some would say I wasn’t strong enough, didn’t push through the discomfort. That maybe I needed to tough it out.
No thanks. I don’t play in that world. I play in the world where I stay aligned with my truth, feel what feels right and follow that.
I’ve pushed enough.
I’ve paddled my canoe upstream enough.
I like the downstream flow better.
It’s easier, more peaceful and way more scenic.
Trusting our inner guidance is where it’s at.
Otherwise, we are living a lie—and we know right where that leads us—to 2 bottles of wine and a pint of Ben and Jerry’s : )
There is no point in denying yourself pleasurable things…just because someone else says it’s the new best thing!
The new, best thing changes all the time, doesn’t it?
So I have a better idea—do your best thing.
Self regulate where you need to. You know where that is.
If you don’t, then get help from someone who can show you how to find your healthy, conscious boundaries and limits.
But if you’re really committed to living a life that’s more of a flame than a flicker—don’t dim that fire by disallowing things that you know make you happy and bring pleasure.
The real kind. Not the transitory, quick fix pleasure. Or addictions that masquerade as healthy pleasures.
As always, this is about you getting very clear about YOU—your desires, your dreams, your challenges and your truth in life.
This isn’t about some silly diet, following what everyone else does, or a rigid way of being in the world.
It’s simply about being you. And listening what feels right for you.
It matters because you’re robbing yourself of your truth if you adhere to things that don’t truly align with who you are.
It’s super dorky, but it’s true—you gotta be true to you.
Choose you. Choose to say YES to what feeds you (in more ways than just food).
And be ok with saying NO to what doesn’t nourish your soul.
Now I am off to have some cheese : )
p.s I am not anti-Whole 30. It just didn’t work for me. But I have seen it work for many people who need a reset, from a dietary perspective. I know in some situations, it really is a great program. I have been athletic and super healthy all my life, so I didn’t need to lose weight, nor do I have bad eating habits. So for me, this just wasn’t my thang. I also am a recovered bulimic and this started kicking in negative ideas about some foods being “bad.” From an energetic standpoint, it wasn’t in my best interest to force myself to continue. But I do think the program has value for certain people.
I know some self help books can get sort of (yawn) BORING. But I do have a list of favorites that have helped me personally to achieve greater wealth, health + happiness.
My Top 10—
- Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead by Brene Brown. I love this book because it deals with two things that are very close to home for me—courage and vulnerability. All of Brenes books are amazing, but this one really spoke to me. If you are ready to ditch feeling small and incapable and ready to recognize your true potential—give it a read!
- The Game of Life and How to Play it (Prosperity Classic) by Florence Scovel Shinn. This book is super old school, but well worth a look. The author show you how to increase your results in your life with the power of the spoken word. It’s basically manifesting 101 using the power of words. There is a strong Christian slant to it, but I consider myself to be more spiritual than religious and I still go back to this book again and again.
- Fire Starter Sessions by Danielle LaPorte. What’s not to love about Danielle? I also love her most recent book The Desire Map, but Fire Starter Sessions in my favorite! This book got me totally fired up and ready to create.
- Carry on Warrior: The Power of Embracing Your Messy, Beautiful Life by Glennon Doyle Melton. This is part self-help and part memoir. Glennon’s book was one of those that I couldn’t put down—from start to finish. I could relate so much to her (funny and frightening) stories about addiction and downward spiral. The book is really worth the read if you’ve ever struggled with self worth issues, addiction or shame/guilt in your life. She also has an incredible online community called Momastery.
- 7 Habits of Highly Successful People by Stephen Covey I love this book because it has a lot to do with my topic of CHOICE! I think I first scanned this book on my dads book shelf way back when. It’s old school and highly worth the read. This book consistently makes it on many “best books” lists.
- The Science of Getting Rich by Wallace T. Wattles This book is somewhat of a cult classic and is along the vein of Think and Grow Rich and The Richest Man in Babylon (also great reads . . .) This book gets into the psychology and mindset of creating abundance. If I notice myself slipping into old patterns, I pick this one up again and get back on track.
- The Law Of Attraction: The Basics of the Teachings of Abraham by Esther and Jerry Hicks. I first learned about manifesting and law of attraction through the Abraham-Hicks material and it has changed my life. They were really the pioneers of LOA and manifesting (even though The Secret would claim otherwise). All their book are great and truly helpful if you believe in LOA and manifesting (try it, it just may change your life!)
- Boundaries: When To Say Yes, How to Say No by Henry Cloud. I added this book to my kindle awhile ago and forgot about it (hmmm, interesting how sometimes we block out the things that would be the most helpful) This book is CRITICAL for anyone who struggles with healthy boundaries.
- Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert. What’s not to love about Elizabeth Gilbert? Her book, Eat, Pray, Love was such an inspiration and Big Magic is another great read by this author. I had a chance to see her recently on her book tour for Big Magic and I love her take on living a creative life.
- The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle. This is just a must. When you can get to the place when you are operating your life from the “right here, right now” place—you win.
I have about 50 more I could add to this list, but I chose these as my top 10 because I feel each one of them has had a significant impact on at least one area of my life. The key with any sort of self help or personal development tools—is to make the choice to actually USE them.
They can’t work if we don’t work them.
What are some of your top self-help or non-fiction books? I would love to know!
Sometimes life just gets messy (as in red-hot mess, messy)
- Why are we even here if it’s such a struggle?
- Why do we get on such a great life high— only to have shitty things happen?
- Why cant it just be easier?
- Why are people so insensitive (or worse)?
- Why can’t we all just be born with lasting heath, endless supplies of money and unquestionable values, morals and common sense?
- You can see every problem a gift. You can see perceived problems as beautiful opportunities for an even deeper sense of acceptance, love and faith. You can see your health issues, your money issue, and your relationship issues—as a great big chance to get super honest and real about what you are truly feeling and thinking in life. It’s a chance to be 100% accountable for your energy.
- Or there’s always choice two. Choice two is to stay stuck, give into the problem, believe it and go down the rabbit hole of despair, disease, distrust and fear. Choice two is the one that perpetuates the lie that we are powerless. Choice two, if we don’t learn from it and turn it from foe to friend—is the one that can wreak havoc on your otherwise incredible life. This choice moves you further away from the life you want. It’s simply the choice to survive (or nose dive) get by, exist and feel more as a victim in life.
“The essence of all beautiful art, all great art, is gratitude.”
– Friedrich Nietzsche
So I’m not really going to write about the art of being a whiner, in the sense that I really think it’s an art—and to be appreciated or revered like the Mona Lisa.
Rather, I want to whine about the whiners.
And if you don’t know what the official definition of a whiner is, see below and thank you to the almighty Merriam Webster—
- a person who makes frequent complaints usually about little things
I think we could expand that definition to include big things as well. There are plenty of people who make a habit out of whining about the big things—taxes, politics, environmental and social issues, etc.
But the MAJOR difference I see between whining and constructively bringing awareness to “big” topics —is that whining generally doesn’t involve any sort of solution and it tends to be a repetitive pattern–sort of like a broken record.
I mean, most of us don’t LOVE taxes, but is whining about it 24/7 really doing anything? No it isn’t.
Yes, we can bring awareness to important topics, but in order to fix a perceived problem—we have to quickly switch our predominant focus (vibration) to solution based thinking.
The truth is—we’ve become a society of chronic whiners. And why is that? We have more “stuff,” more supposed freedom and more choices than ever before—yet we whine, we whine and we whine a little more.
We complain about little things like our iPhone reception, the horrible wifi connection, the traffic, how much we don’t like our ______our_______and our________. And we complain about the larger, much more pressing issues—but it seems few actually get out in the trenches and do something about it.
We like to complain A LOT for a society that supposedly has A LOT. So . . . .maybe it’s not the stuff that makes us happy (big hint).
Or maybe it’s that the complaining is actually a pretty big clue that our lives are—
- out of balance
- not appreciated enough
- or a big combination of both
The point is—if you care anything about living a life that is energetically awesome, joy filled and full of things you love—whining won’t be instrumental in getting (or keeping) you there.
Whining ruins things. Whining makes you feel icky. It is an insidious little jerk that winds up sucking the sparkle and light from your soul.
So, what this article is really about isn’t the art of whining—it’s about the art of appreciating.
Because appreciating is really the opposite energy of whining. And appreciation is what gets you happy, healthy, abundant and just basically like a puppy frolicking in a spring meadow full of flowers (I know, it’s dorky, but isn’t it a cute visual?)
Here are 4 simple tips to turn a bad case of the whines into a better case of appreciation and gratitude (because this is what gets you the goods)—
- Pay attention. Most people are super detached from who they really are and how they are showing up in life. Choose to pay attention to the overall vibes you are putting out into the universe. Committing to becoming more aware of what you are offering is critical.
- Notice patterns and major “themes” that you tend to repeat. Do you manage to feel a great deal of gratitude in certain situation or at certain times? And in other situations, notice it heads south into the deep, dark abyss of whiner-land? Note those times that you feel deep gratitude and appreciation and—DO THAT MORE. And note those times you head towards the dark side and—DO THAT LESS.
- Appreciation journal. Create an appreciation journal and before you go to bed every night and write down what you appreciate in your life. If you’re too tired or lazy to do this—go back to step one and start over. The more you find to appreciate, the more to appreciate will find you.
- Practice, commit and repeat. Turn these simple few steps into a new habit. It only takes about 30 days to change a behavior and the same amount of time to create a better habit.
You can’t fix a problem by putting the majority of your energy and focus on what’s wrong. You fix a problem, big or small (world hunger or a hangnail)—by focusing on the solution and then bringing action and appreciation into the mix.
Is it idealistic (or nearly impossible) to try to find something to appreciate in the face of something painful or horrible? Yes, it can be. But it’s the key to being able to change it. Plus, it just feels way better than staying stuck in feeling bad, powerless, frustrated, angry or resentful.
Let’s choose to create habits and ways of being that support living beautiful lives—lives that we find more to appreciate and be grateful for than we do to complain about.
Lives that our dear grandmas would be proud of.
Here’s to you! I know you will choose wisely.