I'm new here and this is my first post. I've tried searching the forums here and although it's quite possible I missed a posting that seemed to answer my specific questions, I apologize if this topic has been discussed ad-nauseum already; as I did come across several threads concerning a similar theme.
I've enjoyed reading "The Secret", "The Power", "How the Secret Changed my life", and am currently reading "Hero" by Rhonda Byrne.
I'm relatively new to LoA concepts, and in some cases am not sure how to apply these principles in practicality.
One thing I struggle with, is a statement that Rhonda made in "The Power"; that you shouldn't try to take action to solve a problem yourself, as that tells the Universe that you don't already have in your life, what you want... yet, in "The Secret" she gives examples of people sleeping on one side of their bed or clearing out their garage to prepare for their future partner to come into their life. I can see the subtle difference; as the latter is taking some action as though you've already got your objective in your life.
However, take something like getting into shape physically. Would working out in a gym be a way of trying to solve the problem yourself--thus signalling the Universe you don't have the body you wish you had? For me, working out in a gym stresses me out a LOT. I hate to admit it; as I feel pathetic about it, but to me, working out is like a punishment that doesn't accomplish anything good to me personally. I even hired a personal trainer for several months and made no improvements after the first two weeks (which were minor). It's hard for me now to stick to an exercise regime when after months of working out regularly, I see no real results. I also don't feel good after a work out, but exhausted and unable to do much of anything else the rest of the day; plus over time, (as disciplined as I am in most other areas of my life) it becomes more stressful each time I face another session where I have to work out; as I never feel good afterwards (like most people report--this rush of endorphins), and my body remains its flabby overweight self.
I have lost weight a couple times in the past. The last time I dropped from 245lbs to 170lbs through sticking to an 800 calorie per day low-carb diet every day (never slipping up or cheating and thus not attending parties, or eating out with friends) over a period of 8 months; where I finally managed to wear pants smaller than I wore since I was 12... I tried eating differently when I got down to my goal weight, but missed the social events that often revolve food--eating out with coworkers, friends, family... or birthday parties. I tried moderating my diet, but sure enough I've blown up once again. I realize the best health is from a combination of a good diet and good exercise program; especially if I hope to have any kind of social life... however, couldn't that just be a result of what I've been told to believe all my life; that if I just have enough faith and BELIEVE that I have the body I wish I had, that my desired physique would manifest, regardless? I know Rhonda has suggested that you can imagine and thank the Universe that all the food you eat, is GOOD for your body, regardless of what it is.
I realize that until I've actually built up enough REAL faith, some kind of action needs to be taken (if for no other reason than the placebo effect of ritual); but that seems to violate Rhonda's warning about trying to solve problems yourself... and (as pathetic as this sounds); when the action you take makes you VERY unhappy; that's got to backfire anyway, correct? Meanwhile I've pre-paid once again for an 18-month gym membership yet have only been twice; as I'm always making excuses with my time priorities; because I honestly hate going. I pre-paid in hopes that my deep desire to not waste money would help motivate me to go, but instead it makes me resent the gym even more.
Anyway, anyone have any suggestions as to how to balance action with faith--especially when the only action you know to do, brings a lot of long term stress and unhappiness?
I recommend you read “Ask and It Is Given” by Esther and Jerry Hicks. They help you understand how your emotions are your guidance system and how to feel better and feel good apart from the conditions.
The Universe cares less about what you do, and more about how you feel while you do it. So if it feels better to do something, do it. If it doesn’t help you feel better, don’t do it. Or, shift your thoughts to be able to feel better about it before you do it.
“It's hard for me now to stick to an exercise regime when after months of working out regularly, I see no real results.”
Because you’re working out for a certain outcome, instead of working out because you don’t care about the results you just care about how you feel and doing it because it feels good. Typically when you do something for the outcome, you don’t care about the process and so it won’t be fun or enjoyable. You end up resenting the process when the end result is all you really care about.
Everything you’re talking about is the action journey. When working with the Law of Attraction is about taking the vibrational journey. The emotional journey. That you shift how you think and feel about something first, before you take action. You feel better, and then you take an action.
“. . . when the action you take makes you VERY unhappy; that's got to backfire anyway, correct?”
If you’re taking an action that doesn’t feel good, you’re pre-paving your energy to attract manifestations that won’t feel good.
“. . . that if I just have enough faith and BELIEVE that I have the body I wish I had, that my desired physique would manifest, regardless?”
Yes. But if you’re trying to manifest your healthy body so then you can feel better and love and accept yourself, then you will offer resistance and not attract the body you want.
When you focus on making peace with your body and appreciating yourself because it feels better and not to make anything happen, not to change your body, then you allow the natural unfolding to attract the body you want in a way that is fun, comfortable and easy for you.
Thanks Brian for taking the time to respond thoughtfully. I'll check out "Ask and it is Given".
I struggle with your last paragraph a lot though--and it's not the first time I've heard it either --that you need to appreciate and make peace with your current body as is... but how do you go about that without living in complete denial? I've been disappointed with my body since my earliest memory. I have a hard time admiring the jabba-the-hutt that stares back from the mirror.
I'm not trying to be difficult; but I'm just curious if you (or anyone else) has advice on how you can accept yourself when you feel so flawed; and every time you fail; you feel even more helpless and hopeless.
You don’t need to appreciate it, but you at least want to do your best not to judge the living hell out of it. Because when you practice thoughts of what you don’t like about yourself, then you don’t feel good and don’t allow yourself to attract the body you want.
When you judge your body the way it is, you keep it the way it is.
When you make peace with your body, you allow it to change to the be the way you want.
That’s how Law of Attraction works. You can’t push against what you don’t want and change it. You have to feel better with where you are and you allow yourself to have what you want.
There are aspects of your body you have no practiced resistance on. For example, your elbows. I bet you have some sexy elbows. Or your duodenum. That’s very helpful for your body. Your lungs. Breathing oxygen is fun. You have so many organs in your body that you never think about, that is easier for you to see the value in them and that your body is helping keeping you alive.
“I have a hard time admiring the jabba-the-hutt that stares back from the mirror.”
Jabba the Hutt is a very iconic and popular character in the Star Wars series. So that’s a compliment.
I understand what you mean, I’m just being playful.
If it is really hard for you to appreciate your body, that’s alright. You want to take the path of least resistance and focus on other subjects that are easier for you to feel better when you think about them. There are subjects in your life that are easy for you to appreciate. You want to spend more time focusing on those easy areas for alignment and focus less on subjects, like your body, that make it not as easy for you to get into alignment.
Appreciation is not something that we are taught as kids and its no wonder that we grow up not knowing how to do it. Don't worry. Well first thing is to recognize that your body hasn't kicked you out yet (i.e. your not dead). That in itself is something to be grateful for. Second thing is to look at the many wonderful things your body does and start to thank it for that, you know breathing, pumping blood, etc. These small things it does every day, 24/7 without fail.
Now the focus is the other thing. You say you have a hard time admiring the "jabba-the-hut" well that's because your focus is on that. I have worked with a lot of people who are amazingly gorgeous yet when they look in the mirror they hone in on what they consider to be wrong with them. Even models, will point out wrinkles, furrows etc which they will describe as though they are so visible - but in reality they are hard to even see. So my advice to them is always to look for one thing you are grateful for about your body and/or face. Just one thing. For some, they will struggle with doing it, but there is always one thing that most people can identify about themselves that they like.
The second thing is to realize that you are judging the hell out of your body. Believe it or not, there are people in the world who want to look like "Jabba-the-hut". Seriously. Even if you compare yourself to the "beauty" standard terms, when you look back in history you will often find that there was times when beauty was the opposite of what it is nowadays. For example in Rubenseque periods, overweight women were worshiped and thought of as Goddesses. Skinny women were ignored and thought of as unhealthy. Seriously.
Now the other thing is to look at your body as being changeable. I've found that the more I've appreciated my body the more it has the ability to shape shift at times. I can appear young or old at different circumstances and it always works to my advantage. Likewise, wearing clothes that flatter your body and shape has an automatic effect of shifting the energy of a person, even down to the way they move or walk too. Just some suggestions for you.
Thanks Laura. I'll read the book Brian suggested once I'm finished with "Hero".
I"m not sure if I understood your last sentence. You're saying that you know people who eat anything they want (including high amounts of sugar) and don't exercise but are still in excellent shape?
I realize that's got to be possible based on Rhonda's brave assertions (including living long life spans)... however, I know it would help my "belief" system a lot; if I knew of people like that myself.
Thanks Sir Neil. That makes sense that first you must believe. I guess the method for believing is to keep telling yourself--keep bringing to mind repeatedly that what you desire is possible? Repetition is the key to eventually "soak" into your subconscious? I've been reading Hicks' book, and they point out that you can't necessarily expect to make yourself jump many levels of vibration from feeling bad to feeling good; but should at least be able to gradually move up the scale.
However, one thing they suggest that confuses me about their book (and I digress a little off topic), is that they say that having positive emotions is a sign that you're more in alignment with the source / universe. However, I know for myself (and others) that feeling positive about a choice doesn't necessarily mean it's a good decision or action--especially in the long run. Consider a drug addict or alcoholic who has positive feelings about drinking or using drugs... Plus, there's many times when getting out of your comfort zone is necessary in order improve one's life--which means (at the time of exiting your comfort zone) not having very positive emotions--like doubt and fear. I realize that these observations I have may in fact be the source of why I've got the struggles in life that I do, however I am not sure how to really view my emotions. I do understand how powerful they are--they are what drive us, but should we let them steer us too? Once again, I refer back to my comment that many people do very destructive things to each other and themselves while (at least in the moment) feeling very good about themselves.
I guess the method for believing is to keep telling yourself--keep bringing to mind repeatedly that what you desire is possible? Repetition is the key to eventually "soak" into your subconscious?
That's right. All of the negative beliefs we have received and bought into were once just thoughts as well. Words from other peoples' mouths, which were repeated often enough for them to soak in to our deeper minds, and become beliefs and realities. If we want to be clear of these, we have to repeat and imprint new beliefs, and keep on doing this until our minds soak these up instead. This doesn't have to be all that difficult either. If you are consistent with the repeating of your new belief, you will start to see the first vestiges in your life within a few days. Keep on doing this, and the vestiges will get bigger and more significant. I always advise 1000 repetitions of a new belief, for 100 days.
feeling positive about a choice doesn't necessarily mean it's a good decision or action--especially in the long run. Consider a drug addict or alcoholic who has positive feelings about drinking or using drugs...
They may feel good whilst they are actually doing the drugs or drinking the drink, but they don't feel good all of the other time. Their actions are usually accompanied with very deeply guilty feelings that they shouldn't be doing this, and that they are harming themselves and their families, but they don't know how to stop. Alcoholics and drug addicts may seem to have good self-esteem on the outside, but generally, inside they despise themselves. Quite often, an addiction covers up this deep lack of self-esteem.
A feeling of alignment is a pure, positive feeling. It feels good to do the action, and there are no underlying contrary emotions like guilt present.
Plus, there's many times when getting out of your comfort zone is necessary in order improve one's life--which means (at the time of exiting your comfort zone) not having very positive emotions--like doubt and fear.
At the start there is fear, but that is fear of the unknown, and that doesn't feel too good. Stepping out of your comfort zone is usually always accompanied by this fear, until you actually have the experience you fear, and find that it isn't all that much to be afraid of. This is especially true if you do it in small(ish) steps rather than trying to do everything all in one go. You then go beyond this fear, and the emotion becomes more positive.
I do understand how powerful they are--they are what drive us, but should we let them steer us?
Only if they feel really. If there are any underlying doubts or negative feelings, these could be a sign that the action won't have the result you desire. But if they feel really good and exciting, then go for it.
Thanks for the detailed responses, Sir Neil. Sorry for late response; I was overseas for awhile with little to zero internet access.
When you say, 1000 repetitions--is that PER day for 100 days?
Wow... I'm not sure how I could practically do that--that's thinking about your new belief once per minute for over 16 hours per day. I get the point that repetition is important; but other than resigning oneself to a monastery; how does one do this?