“Beware of what you set your heart upon…for it shall surely be yours.”~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
Beware is the key word. Because you will likely get what you think you want, only you might be overwhelmed by unexpected consequences. The greatest thing will show up and you won’t have a clue how to keep it. The most challenging yet important lesson will show up and you’ll stumble around much longer than needed because you will resist navigating it.
I always remember the night I asked the universe for what I needed, thinking it’s the same thing as what I wanted: happiness, peace, a smooth ride. It was such a powerful intention made with mind, body and soul. Fully, completely. A surrender with total conviction and trust.
And my life radically changed shortly thereafter. I mean total change. So the manifestation worked, only not in the way I thought.
Long story short, I should have been more specific. And most of all, careful to distinguish between what I needed for my highest good and growth, and what I wanted, which was certainly not upheaval, struggle and a crash course in painful lessons.
As you can imagine, for a long time when I stumbled across any reference to the law of attraction or manifesting, I tensed up. In prayer and meditation, I chose my words very carefully. And whenever I’ve been invited to submit a list of wishes for special blessing ceremonies, I provided a two page essay with specifics.
Imagining that we’re clear on what we want, we can definitely manifest that. Only we may end up in a bit of a hellish situation, holding our prize and running from fire. Because more often than not, we don’t understand what we want. Just check out the 90’s film Bedazzled: a perfect, funny illustration of how simple wish granting often works.
Clearly, if we’re to attract and manifest something that’s actually beneficial and a keeper, we must also consider what we might need – our highest good.
If what we want doesn’t fit with our highest good, nothing is going to work. And if we’re not ready for it, there’s no point in anything showing up.
Let’s be real, when people look to the law of attraction and manifest, it’s all about rainbows and unicorns. Nobody wants to manifest necessary or painful life lessons we actually need for our emotional maturity and overall wisdom, to prepare us to recognize and nurture the things we want once they show up.
While there is much synchronicity in life, there’s also much randomness. There’s no way I’m ever going to accept blaming people for negative thinking that attracts natural disasters or a host of other tragedies that are just horrible.
However, thoughts, feelings and imagination do have power. As do words.
So what’s the hack? How do we get the cake, in the most pleasant flavor, and eat it too?
The answer is: when we start becoming self-aware, engaged in our healing, authentic and intentional about how we think and act.
Because manifesting is about good things. But to get to them, and be able to keep them, we need to do some work on ourselves first.
And while it’s all nice to make vision boards and live “as if” all you’ve ever wanted is already yours, before you get all focused on that car, job, million dollars or whatever, your own self needs to come first.
If we’re working on our best version of ourselves, there’s no need to worry about manifesting the right thing, at the right time. The right thing and the right time will align naturally.
But, many of us try to manifest other things first so as to soothe the restless, unhappy and inauthentic self that lies unhealed within us. And naturally, we are unwilling or unprepared for what we end up with. We then run toward the wrong things, run from the right things, and nothing seems to work well while we stagnate in self-doubt and overall confusion.
Once again, the answer is simple but not easy. And there are no shortcuts.
In my case, the law of attraction totally worked and the universe gave me exactly what I needed. I grew up. I wish I understood the whole process better, so as to avoid all the trauma and needless resistance.
Now I know better. Positive change doesn’t always start with something that we’d choose as an example of positive change. Or pleasant. Or easy. Or comfortable.
So then, let’s put ourselves first on our vision boards. And feel what it’s like for us to be more authentic, intentional, and engaged in our own healing. Imagine ourselves kinder, more generous, grateful, vulnerable, stronger, open to change.
The lessons are softer for the willing student. And then, the rewards start pouring in.