A teenager on Prince Edward Island decided she wanted to be an artist, so she got the paints and brushes and easel...and sat down beside them to await inspiration.
After a while she realized that, if she wanted a spot of red, 'just there', she had to PUT a spot of red, 'just there'. ...And so she began to learn her craft.
With practice, she became a fine artist, painting pictures never thought of by anyone else in the history of the world. (I'll describe some of her work if you ask me to.)
We put out wishes to the universe, and bam! we are challenged to perform them.
What we fail to realize, at first, is that this is 'how'!
All our lives we are going to have wishes, and we automatically then need to see 'how'...and, since we haven't yet been there, we don't yet know all the details of how to do it.
It is a whole 'nother life we want to create, with endless details to it. ...And life doesn't hold still long enough for us to study it closely.
What I have found helpful is to realize that we live in the now...that all the possibilities exist all the time...and that we learn by imagining what those possibilities are, and doing the most important of them.
Say you want to be a fine singer.
A singer notices music, so the first step is to be where music is, and notice what other singers do to cultivate the talent.
Then you put in the time practicing until you get better and better at it.
Each step of the way you make choices. If you wake up one morning and don't feel like going to practice, you choose whether or not to go. You may decide to spend the day cleaning the house...or riding your motorcycle. Or you may decide to go to singing practice first, and do the other things afterward.
Or, you may decide to give the house a lick and a promise, go to singing practice, and ride your bike tomorrow.
Or, you may decide to stay in bed all day, worrying. You also get to choose what to worry about.
Or, you may decide to play your favorite aria, to get yourself in the mood to sing.
It all depends on your priorities. You are in charge.
We get more of what we think about...because we choose our thoughts. We notice more opportunities to repeat our thoughts.
"I will NOT think about a blue cow."
What do you immediately think of?
"I will think about sunrise."
You ARE in charge!
More than that, the mind, the actions, get stronger with practice.
When you are feeling down, give the feeling a name. When I did this with spectacular results, the feeling was 'disappointment'.
Just that, 'disappointment', with nothing about 'why' I was feeling disappointment, or how often I had felt it over the years.
My next thought was what I could do about it. I could phone Beth to go for coffee with me. I did.
Then I got up to dress and, as I did so, I put my arms around myself, hugging the hurt child within and patting/stroking my upper arms.
"There, there, little one. You'll be okay. I'll take care of you."
Tears came to my eyes, and then, the pain in my stomach stopped!
Forty-six years I had that pain, off and on...and it stopped! ...And it has never come back! That was in 1985.
That exercise, as wonderful as it was, wasn't the only thing I needed to do to accomplish my goals, but it helped enormously.
I call exercises like that, 'pulling corks'...removing blockages.
When I find myself somehow 'stopped' in my progress, I could 'pull the cork', and see what happens.
I think I will.
If it doesn't work the first time, I could repeat the exercise.
The book I got this exercise from suggested that we are three people inside...
...The 'child', with all the child's wants and needs
...The 'parent', who scolds and warns against 'failure'
...The 'adult' we are becoming.
It is the job of the 'adult' to soothe the 'child', and to calm and reassure the 'parent'.
And it doesn't matter WHO does the comforting! Just that it gets done!
You can do it for yourself.
So, the next time you are feeling bad about anything, give it a name, notice whether it is your 'child' or 'parent' who needs comforting, and do it.