by Cynthia M. Braden, MFT
Do we see a bee flitting around a beautiful plant without flowers? No… the bee is wise and knows he will not find what he is looking for unless there is a blossom.
Do we see a butterfly landing on a cactus? Probably not, the butterfly is looking for water and minerals. Do these creatures exhaust themselves trying to get what they need in wrong places, or to force a plant to change its essential nature so that they can be satisfied?
Humans can imitate these humble creatures and look for what we want in a places where it can actually be found, and then be direct about getting what we want without injuring anyone else in the process. Grab a pen and paper if you want; here are a few steps to think about (this post contains the first two of four steps):
Exercise #1: Decide What You Really Want
Think about what you want in terms of the positive feelings you would experience when it is happening....
I want to feel secure; that is more true when...
I want to be happier than I am now… that is happening when...
I feel more secure in my relationship when …. is happening.
I want to be treated with respect in this way...
I want my children to be happy and healthy for example when … happens.
I feel …… when my loved ones are happy with me.
I want to be energized; I feel energized when …. happens.
I feel at peace when….
I need more freedom - that happens when...
Now you try it, think about what you really want - in terms of how it makes you feel.
"What I would really like is (fill in the blank)"
Because it makes me feel…
(Optional: share this with a friend)
Exercise #2: Notice Limiting Beliefs
Before this sentence is out of your mouth, you may already be saying:
But I can't have that because…
That's not going to work because…
I can't do that because…
That will never happen because...
I want you to notice and write down the reasons you believe you cannot have what you want and look at them. Hard. Realize that you are making powerful arguments in favor of your limitations. That's okay if you're saying I need to face reality, I get it, but I want you to realize that you are exerting powerful energy in favor of the opposite of what you actually desire.
As long as you are giving strong emotional energy and belief to these reasons (or Limiting Beliefs), you will not be able to get what you want. In the next post we will consider how to suspend Limiting Beliefs and allow more of what we want to flow into our lives.
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