What does your ideal, dream future look like? And how does that compare to your present? It’s probably the case that you have a number of wishes, dreams, and goals–and that those things are currently not in your present. (Otherwise, it wouldn’t be wishes or dreams). Having aspirations for the future, desires of the heart, mind, and soul–these are the things that make us stretch our limits, compel us to grow, and make us human. But in order to get there, we must first acknowledge our present, first by accepting ourselves, then by finding our gratitude, and finally by attracting our destiny.
If you think this is just hokey New Age self-help talk, consider this metaphor: if you were lost on your way to your destination, you could bemoan the fact that you don’t know where you are. You might even despair and wonder if you’ll never get there–when all you need to do is acknowledge your current location, orient yourself, and head in the right direction. Likewise, Acceptance, Gratitude, and Attraction are ways to orient yourself in life so you can live fully. Here is how you can put this into practice.
As you are reading this, where are you? On your couch in your living room? At a desk in your office? Take a moment to survey your surroundings and notice as much as you can. The objects in the room, the people, the sounds and smells. How do you feel in this environment? Comfortable? At peace? Sad? Happy? Distressed? Notice all of it and take it in. Can you accept what is right now, acknowledge that you are exactly where you are meant to be? You can’t move forward until you do.
We’ve all heard about living in the “now,” but what does that really mean? Acceptance is not about denying our histories, but being wholly in the present moment, surrendering to what is. That is not to say that you give in or give up hoping for better. Surrender just means saying yes to Now. The past is unchangeable and the future is yet to come, so Now is all we really have. Can you accept who you are at this moment? Where you are on your life’s path? Can you love all that you are and all that is? Can you look around and in the mirror and say, “This is okay!”? This is what acceptance is–an awareness, an acknowledgement, a recognition, and being okay with it. You cannot realize your dreams if you can’t accept what is Now. Acceptance is a stepping stone which you cannot jump over if you are to move on and create your future.
When you can take stock of your life, the good and the bad, and say “Thank You” to the Universe or your higher power–whatever you understand that to mean — you are not only accepting what is, but also being grateful for all you have, for who you are, for the love that surrounds you. Some say that being grateful is the most necessary ingredient in the recipe for your best, abundant, most authentic existence. I say gratitude makes you feel that your life is abundant now, and that you already have all you need for this moment.
Gratitude is that hot-air balloon that takes you beyond the mundane and into higher realms; it is a feeling of being full as opposed to empty, joyous as opposed to sad. It is a knowing that all is as it should be, and being thankful for it. Gratitude save us from self-pity and self-deprecation and lifts us to a level of appreciation for what we have been given. Being grateful frees us to imagine and dream, and helps us to understand that being able to wash the dishes is as much a gift as eating a delicious meal. Gratitude does not discriminate, and we need it to live our best life.
The “law of attraction” has been given a lot of press, but what exactly does it say and mean? The Law of Attraction says that whatever we give the energy of our attention to is what we will bring into our lives. So, if you focus on how much money you don’t have, you will perpetuate lack in your life. If you think about and feel the abundance already in your life, abundance is what you will receive. As thoughts are energy, it stands to reason that what you think will determine your reality.
Many people cannot deal with this type of thinking, because inherent in the Law of Attraction is the necessity to take responsibility for your thoughts and behaviors –in other words, owning your life. This kind of responsibility requires a great deal of courage, as the idea that you are in control is frightening to many. It is far easier to think that we are adrift in a sea of randomness. But that is a victim’s mentality, and cannot work with the Law of Attraction.
All these things take a consciousness and practice, practice, practice. Old habits and old ways of being and thinking are hard to release. The knowledge that you create the world you live in can stop you dead in your tracks. But if you have a desire to be truly alive, to know and be your best, most authentic self, you will find motivation enough to turn things around and take back your control. Stepping back into your power is an awesome thing and, by its very nature, requires some getting used to. But you will get used to it and find yourself living a full and rich life.
Also by Andie: Choices – What Defines You?
Photo: Justin Kern/Peaceful Dumpling