It’s up to you. You can live in misery, sorrow and the ‘why me’ phase or you can change the way you think and live your dream. I am not a psychologist. I only had a primary school education. I finished school at 15, worked initially as a hairdresser, then at jobs that did not need much skill. At one point in my life, I was left with three children, a divorce and very little money. At the time my thoughts were: “This is your life! Deal with it!”
I was once a ‘poor me’ kind of person. I’d often ask ‘why is this happening to me?’ or ‘why aren’t my dreams coming true?’ There were a lot of ‘whys’. All that has changed now! Now I get up in the morning and say I am grateful for my wonderful life. I feel so much joy and gratitude; I just want to share it.
I’m sure there will be those who read this and roll their eyes, who say ‘here we go again’ with another of those self-esteem boosting posts. However, I was once a ‘poor me’ kind of person. I’d often ask ‘why is this happening to me?’ or ‘why aren’t my dreams coming true?’ There were a lot of ‘whys’.
About 10 years ago, I started looking into feng shui — the Chinese practise of using energy forces to harmonise individuals with their surrounding environment. I bought all the books, did all the right things and life was good, but not great. Something was missing.
My house was in good harmony, it had the right energy, but my thoughts were not. I was still playing the victim, I was still getting angry, I was still saying ‘why me?’, ‘poor me’. My subconscious was picking up on this and what did that do? It gave me all I didn’t want.
I read Rhonda Byrne’s The Secret and found it to be simply amazing. I made a vision board and asked the universe for what I wanted, then I sat back and waited. Nothing happened. I read more books by the likes of Louise Hay, Char Margolis, Deepak Chopra and more and then the penny dropped.
If I was always thinking of what frightens me, I would become more fearful. If I always think about how unfair life is, I would only see more around me that would support that view. If I believed my life was worthless, my choices and my behaviour would reflect that. I was shaping my life through the power of intention.
If that was true for the negative, then it could only be equally true for the positive. If I paid more attention to the positives in my life, the hopeful, the supportive and the uplifting then my life was bound to be more content and happy. I learned that we are what we think. Every thought we have is our life.
As an example, a couple of ladies I know went to Sydney for a holiday. I’ll call them Mrs Joy and Mrs Gloom. They went to the same hotel, the same shops, the same restaurant, and walked along the same streets. Mrs Joy loved her hotel room and thought the view was amazing. She looked in the shop windows and thought ‘this is wonderful, the clothes are beautiful’. She found everyone around her was smiling and so friendly, the food in the restaurant was delicious, and the lovely people who served her were so helpful. Mrs Joy had a great time.
But poor Mrs Gloom really did not want to go on holiday. She thought her hotel room was overpriced, and the staff were not helpful. She went to the shops and did not like all the people rushing past her, she held on to her purse tightly as she walked the streets for fear of being mugged. She found the prices of the clothes in the shops too expensive and her feet ached. She went to the restaurant and the staff took too long to serve her and they were not helpful either. Mrs Gloom had a terrible time, did not enjoy her holiday one bit, even though she and Mrs Joy had done the same things.
Have you been in this situation where people perceive things different? If you decide in your thoughts what is going to happen and then bingo, you’ll get exactly what you ask for.
Here are the tools I use for a wonderful life. The first is meditation. I try and find time for around 15 minutes of meditation every day. It helps me to feel good. It’s an opportunity to relax and to listen to my breathing. When I breathe out, I’m saying in my mind ‘relax’. When I’m ready a visualise somewhere I feel good — a beach, a lake, a shady spot under a tree… If my mind wanders, I listen and then let it go and come back to my place and feel a sense of joy and happiness. I try to do this every day, and I’d encourage you to do it too.
I also try to see what is happening to me. First I try to see my inner child. Up until the age of five, most of us experienced unconditional love, we had everything we needed and life was pretty wonderful. It’s often after the age of five that things can change. We’re told we have to be good (you know that old saying ‘children should be seen and not heard’).
In order to meet my inner child I sit in a quiet room and relax my body, starting at the top of my head and working my way down to the tips of my toes. I let my body go heavy. I look at the house in which I grew up in, going room by room in search of that child. When I find her I approach her and say ‘hello’. Sometimes she is sitting alone. I’ll always tell her that she is loved and that I will visit her again. I’ve learned that when we realise some of our problems stem from our childhood, we can make changes to help us become more confident.
Everyday I write down five things I am grateful for. Everyday I say a kind thing, or do a kind thing for someone. Everyday when I get up in the morning I say I’m glad to be alive.
As soon as I feel negative I try thinking of something good that has happened. I want the universe to know I am grateful for my prosperity even if I don’t feel prosperity. There is always someone worse off than I am and while I mightn’t be able to help them, being grateful for what I have can be helpful in its own way. I’m grateful for my health, my food, my home … There are so many things the universe gives us, and be thankful, and you will receive more in abundance.
I’ve grown comfortable with loving myself. I have stood in front of a mirror and proclaimed ‘I love you’ to the person staring back at me. No one can love you until you are comfortable loving yourself. The most important person to you, is you.
Negative emotion exists only when we are miscreating. When I recognise I am feeling negative emotion, no matter why, no matter how it got there, no matter what the situation is, I stop doing whatever it is and focus my thoughts on something that feels better.