All of us have aspirations for our future. Self-help books and gurus tell us to dream big – if you can dream it, you can do it. But how exactly do we get to where we want to be?
We all know about the Law of Attraction. It suggests that positive thinking and affirmation help our dreams and desires manifest as real and tangible things. I’m betting that you’ve embarked on at least one attempt at positive affirmation, or made at least one vision board containing all the things you want for your life.
Perhaps those things have worked for you?
If they have, it means that you have overcome (or never had an issue with) the two biggest blocks in the human psyche when it comes to attaining what we want:
Fear of success and feeling deserving!
I recently sat with a client who couldn’t figure out why she kept falling at the last post when she tried achieving her desire to create her own business. She is a bright, vivacious, intelligent girl with a great business idea, and she seems to be doing all the right things to get where she wants to be.
We sat and talked about the steps she had taken in her career. All the boxes were ticked regarding her training, experience and attitude. Then we went a little bit deeper. I suggested to her that something she felt about herself, her self-worth, self-esteem or ideas about what she deserved, was what was sabotaging her dream.
She looked at me blankly, trying to figure out what I meant. “I know I can do this,” she said. I told her I had no doubt that she could achieve anything she wanted to. But I also said that knowing something, and having that knowledge align with our true feelings about ourselves, is where the biggest obstacle is.
Then we had a breakthrough. Something inside her clicked and she made the connection. She told me about her life growing up in a home where scarcity prevailed. There was never enough money for even the basic necessities, which in turn stressed her parents, later manifesting as substance abuse.
She was bullied in school because of her perceived social status, and even the teachers treated her differently than the children who came from more affluent homes. She described how all her adult life, she had fought vigorously to do better and be better. “Really, who am I to be successful or wealthy?” she said, looking at the floor, shaking her head.
“My family think I’m wasting my time,” she said tearfully. “I’m in limbo, too afraid to succeed and too afraid not to.”
Right at that moment, she took the biggest step in her career and personal development so far.
She immediately understood the point I had made about thought and feeling being aligned. In turn, she understood exactly what she needed to do to succeed in all areas of her life. She needed to value herself as more than outside attributes or lack thereof, to value herself as the amazing person that she is right this minute.
This story will be relatable for many of us. I know I certainly spent many years devaluing myself because of what I hadn’t achieved, or for what I didn’t own. And believe me when I tell you, there will be many people who will judge you because of those things.
Thankfully, what other people think of you is entirely irrelevant. You absolutely do not need people around you who value material things more than love and compassion. You do not need to judge yourself that way either. Materialism means nothing. It is Illusion, Illusion, Illusion.
I had to take a very deep dive into my soul to understand what was holding me back. That way, I could be introduced to my own unique abilities and talents. These are the things that can never be taken from you! When I started to feel secure in these facts, and not where I was on the illusionary (there’s that word again) social ladder, I began to move forward at a fast and furious pace.
I ask you now: where did you learn that you were less than and not deserving?
Why did you stop trusting your own abilities and talents? Really, the who’s and why’s of these questions aren’t so important. What’s really important is that after acknowledging them, you take the time to reverse them.
I stopped comparing myself to others, made my own rules, valued my own thought process, acknowledged my true feelings on a deeper level, and hey presto – success on my terms.
Okay, so not so much hey presto. It took work, bravery and lots of practice to reverse the negative thinking and living patterns that I had deeply ingrained. It’s hard to overcome societal conditioning, but when you do, you’re on the path to freedom and to your own success.