“Everyday, God gives us the sun – and also one moment in which we have the ability to change everything.” ~ Paulo Coelho
from Kevin Dooley
I read a lot of books and blogs and often work with clients on deliberately creating what they want using spiritual laws like The Law of Attraction. It’s still a hot topic these days and many of my clients come to me because they have a big dream they want to turn into reality. Knowing I practice many of these principles myself, they ask me to check their sentences, help them dissolve their limiting beliefs and find peace in the present moment. This work requires an open mind and a willingness to continually pivot your thoughts and beliefs -there’s a learning curve for sure.
One of the tenets of this belief system is that what you really focus on and desire for your life has already come about in your future. You just can’t see it and experience it quite yet. So the idea here is that you act “as if” and remember that it has already happened, which creates a sort of certainty that alleviates any current stress, desperation or worry about whether or not this is possible for you. Sounds a bit complex but I’ve been on the receiving end of some pretty amazing stuff as a result so I’m a believer and a fan.
But when things unexpectedly go wrong, or even just a little rougher than you’d expected, it’s easy to fall back into old patterns of behavior like crying, biting your fingernails, pacing…you get the idea. Today was one of those days where an ominous phone message led to a stressful phone call and suddenly I found myself in the middle of an impromptu, self-inflicted manicure. And it was starting to go downhill from there. I felt the need to change everything, stop the freight train to the abyss and get control again. So, I tried something new – I conjured up my future self and had a little chat with her.
“Hi future Laurie. I really need to ask you if I’m going to be able to convince this woman to waive these penalty fees for this nonprofit so we can go forward and save the world one woman at a time again. I don’t want to be anxious about this for days on end. I just want to know I’ll do this right and find a fair and equitable solution. “
“I can see you’re worried,” future Laurie says after noticing the ragged edges of my nails. “I seem to recall a conversation with the woman from the tax office. Did you call her yet?”
“No, I wanted to check with you first and see how you thought I should handle it. I could play dumb but that’s not really our style, is it? I’m thinking honesty. Understand her position. Leverage what we have going for us now.”
“ Hmmm. Yes. I remember,” future Laurie begins to smile. “ I explained what happened – a set of unbelievable circumstances, wasnt it? She wasn’t buying it but I remained calm, courageous yet knowledgeable and capable. She eventually caved and waived the fees. The world righted itself again pretty quickly. Feel better?”
“Much.” My breathing returns to normal and I experience an inner shift to calm. “Thank you so much.”
“Don’t mention it. I understand the appeal of staying present – it served me well a lot of the time. But every now and then, you have to really see a thing working before you can work it out in the moment.”
Anxiety and worry are generally a product of ruminating in the past or living in the future, not staying in the present where you have control. But every now and then, a trip to your successful future might be just what you need to create a successful now. Just like you can reclaim your inner child when you want to have a little fun or need to heal a broken piece, you can check in with and leverage your future, imagining how you could succeed in the present situation.
And maybe it will save you from diving in and munching on too much chocolate or ripping the nails down to the beds.
Let me know if you’ve tried this with success or if you think it’s too strange for words. Be nice – I don’t want to have to go back and buy little Laurie a banana split with double hot fudge…or do I?