Module 6: Creating Beliefs That Line Up With What You Want When I was first exposed to the radical idea that our beliefs create our reality, the focus was almost exclusively on recognizing and letting go of limiting beliefs. As you learned in the last module, being able to let go of limiting beliefs is essential and tremendously liberating. Just as important as letting go of limiting beliefs is the ability to create empowering beliefs that line up with what you want. This shift in orientation—to focus persistently on what you want—is the direct route to where you want to go. Creating new beliefs helps you avoid falling into the trap of trying to analyze and “fix” yourself. Your focus is a powerful, creative force. What you focus on is what expands in your life. If you focus your energy on excavating and analyzing your limiting beliefs, you’re focused on limitation. You remain stuck. If you focus your energy and attention on how you can support yourself in creating what you want, you move forward. I’ll be honest: Creating a new belief is really the same thing as creating a new experience. Through your persistently focused attention on what you want, you will begin to experience momentum toward creating it. And as that momentum increases, you gain confidence in your ability to keep going. You now believe that you can create whatever it is that you want, and the belief itself will help sustain positive momentum. The focus of this module, then, is an extension of the focus of Module 4, which was about learning to support rather than diminish you desires. One module simply wasn’t enough! Learning to focus on, and align with, what you want is really the essence of creating that desire. And like anything new you want to learn, it requires a bit of practice. That’s why this module exists. Supporting your desires by creating beliefs is that important, and I want to give you as many fun and effective ways to practice as I can. So this module is all about practices, which means there isn’t a separate section for Activities & Practices at the end. Here are three practices, in addition to the ones I outlined in Module 4, that I recommend to support you in honing your ability to remain focused on what you want, even though it hasn’t yet fully manifested in your experience. Tell a New Story In Module 5 we learned about the interpretations—the stories—we create about our lives that disempower us. The practice of telling a new story addresses that self-diminishing tendency clearly and directly. Learning to tell the story of who you are and what you’re creating in a loving, supportive way shifts your self-identity from someone who can’t create what you want to someone who can. Here are some elements to include in your new story: What you want and why you want it How good you’ll feel as this begins to manifest All the resources, inner and outer, you already have available to support you Different ways you might experience what you want Beliefs you already hold that support your vision Skills and talents you already have that will help you manifest what you want Things you’ve observed that help you remember this is possible Steps you’ve already taken, progress you’ve already made I suggest actually writing out this story in your journal, and revising and updating it often. Let the whole exercise be fun! Intend to pump yourself up, to advocate for yourself and your dreams, to remind yourself of your many amazing talents and qualities. Read what you write and take the time to let it sink in. Feel the truth of it as deeply as you can. Here is an example of someone who wants to find or create work she really loves, and the story she typically tells herself about it: “I can’t believe I’m still stuck in this job I hate after all this time. I have wasted years of my life! I just can’t seem to figure out what I want. There are a few things I’m interested in but I don’t want to make the mistake of choosing the wrong career again. I keep trying different jobs in this company but none of them seem to be a good fit. Maybe there’s something wrong with me. Other people have figured this out but I keep going around in circles.” Here is her new story, created lovingly and intentionally to help move her toward what she wants: “The longer I stay in this job, the clearer I become about what kind of work I really want. I want more flexibility in my schedule, I want to work on creative teams, I want to feel appreciated and know that I’m making a difference. And I’d love to use more of my writing skills. I really appreciate that I’ve explored so many different jobs in this company, because each one has shown me more about what I do and do not like, and the skills I most enjoy using. I just realized something—I’m already in the process of creating work I love! I’ve been exploring and gaining clarity. Now I just need to keep moving forward. There are so many people who are doing work they love, clearly it’s possible! I’m going to call Fran and learn more about her transition from corporate work to being an entrepreneur. I really like what I read the other day about people creating lives they love: their desire is the creative force behind their success. And my desire is pretty powerful!” The key to creating an effective new story is for it to be uplifting and believable to you right now. This isn’t about imagining something so outrageous that you end up considering it nothing more than a fairy tale. Creating a new story is not a visioning exercise, it is an exercise in shifting your present-moment awareness toward what you want in a way that invites you to dwell in it, rather than to dismiss it. Remember, what you focus on is what you create. Creating and revising and repeating your new story helps you focus powerfully on what you want, so that you’re building inner credibility rather than inner resistance. Anchor Statements Anchor statements are clear, loving, and powerful reminders of what I call the deeper truth about your ability to move forward on this journey and manifest what you truly want. They’re especially helpful during times of fear, discouragement, or confusion, which is why I call them anchor statements: when you feel unmoored, you can anchor into these truths to feel centered, grounded, and hopeful again. Like the new story you created, anchor statements are believable to you right now. In fact, you can often lift really effective anchor statements right from your new story. In the above example of the new story about creating work you love, an anchor statement could be adapted from the following sentence: I really like what I read the other day about people creating lives they love: their desire is the creative force behind their success. This might become: My desire is the creative force behind my success. Anchor statements are clear, brief and memorable. They’re not the same thing as affirmations, which we’ll address in the “But What About…?” section at the end of this module, but affirmations can become anchor statements if they reflect something you are absolutely willing to believe is true. One of the greatest times to create anchor statements is when you are feeling clear, grounded, and inspired. What you know in those moments is your deeper truth, and later—when you call on them to anchor you—you’re remembering or reminding yourself of what you already know. You’re not trying to convince yourself of something you don’t believe. Once, during a particularly expansive and peaceful meditation a singular, inspired thought came to me: “I am meant to succeed!” It felt absolutely true and real to me, and I adopted it as an anchor statement right away. I reminded myself that I was meant to succeed whenever I felt overwhelmed or frustrated by current circumstances. It helped me remember that those circumstances were temporary, and that a loving Universe wanted to thrive through me. (That is another anchor statement I’ve used: “The Universe wants to thrive through me!”) Interestingly, powerful anchor statements can also be created in moments when we recognize limiting words or themes—beliefs—in our usual stories. For example, many people have beliefs that reflect an underlying sense of what I call “not-enoughness.” The words “not enough” (or related ones such as “don’t have enough”) will be thought or spoken frequently. Once “not enough” is seen as a belief, a powerful anchor statement such as, “I am always and already enough” can serve as that loving reminder of a deeper truth. Here are some examples of anchor statements—reminders—to stimulate your own creative thinking. Remember, the idea is to choose inspired, comforting statements that feel real and true to you right now. You can call on them to help you get grounded and clear whenever you’re feeling scared, frustrated, or resigned. They’re instant vibration-lifters! I am meant to succeed. No situation is more powerful than my desire to create what I want. Every experience I have is part of the creative process. The universe wants to thrive through me. My job right now is to relax. The more relaxed I am, the better everything gets. Look for Evidence This is a great thing to do regularly in your Good Vibrations notebook. Because what you focus on is what expands in your life, this is a simple and direct practice to train yourself to focus in a loving, empowering way. Consider what you are intending to create or experience, and consider also how you want to feel as you manifest it. Think about the various nuances of the experience that might show up. For example, if you’re intending to create a greater flow of financial prosperity in your life, an experience that would be quite common to you would be having more than enough money to cover what you need in any given moment. So right now, in your life, look for and acknowledge every instance where you have more than enough money to pay for something. It could be that you get change back from a cup of coffee you bought on your way to work, or you notice that you still have a balance in your checking account after paying this month’s mortgage. Nothing is too big or too small to acknowledge. Decide to strengthen the “more than enough money” vibration by consciously looking for evidence that it already exists in your life, right now. Here is another example to stimulate your thinking about evidence to look for. Let’s say you want to find or create work you love. You imagine that you will use your creative talents, that you will feel respected and appreciated, and that you’ll feel you’re making a positive difference in the world. Keep these things in mind as you move through your day. If a coworker thanks you for submitting something on time, pause and acknowledge that you are appreciated. If you write an email to someone that gets a positive response, acknowledge your creative use of writing skills. Make a point to consider how what you do makes someone else’s life easier, and acknowledge yourself for making a difference. Have fun with this! Play with ideas about how what you’re intending to manifest will look and feel, and decide to look for evidence of those experiences right now. If your mind tries to convince you that these things are small and inconsequential, remind yourself that it is through your focus that they will expand. (That is a good anchor statement to use, by the way!) Your very attention to them is what will invite more of them into your life. You can also use Effective Questions with this activity. Once you’ve identified a few experiences or feelings you wish to create, ask, “How might I cultivate this right now?” Write about it in your Good Vibrations notebook, identify one small step, take that step and keep going! Read a light-hearted article about looking for evidence of ease in your life! (PDF: Let the Livin’ Be Easy). But what about…? What is the difference between anchor statements and affirmations? Affirmations begin with a powerful, “I Am…” and they clearly affirm a quality of being that you wish to experience, as in the following examples: “I am financially prosperous.” “I am vibrantly healthy.” “I am healthy, wealthy and wise.” “I am loved and loving.” “I am wildly successful.” According to many esteemed and successful teachers and spiritual leaders, the very words “I AM” are the name of God, as indicated in several passages of the Bible. The phrase “I AM THAT I AM” is a statement of how creation occurs: The I AM Presence – God – affirms awareness of Itself, then names what it wishes to experience – THAT – and then acknowledges victory in creating it (Yes, I AM!). Understanding and harnessing the power of using “I AM” is a profound mystical process that is beyond the scope of this course. Stepping it down a few levels, using affirmations is a way to recognize and leverage the tremendous creative power of your thoughts and language. Their purpose is to help you literally think in ways that align with what you want. They can be very uplifting if, as you say them, you actually feel them to be true. But if you’re like many people, simply affirming what you want can easily become either a mechanical exercise with no real creative power, or a trigger for the contradictory feeling of “Yeah, right…” As you state that you are – prosperous, healthy, etc. – you may be acutely aware of not having that experience right now, so claiming you do makes you feel like a liar (or a failure). You’re now experiencing inner conflict, which creates mixed vibratory signals and diminishes your capacity to manifest what you want. Anchor statements, by definition, are statements that are already true for you right now. You’re not using them to convince yourself of something you wish were true but isn’t. You’re using them to remind yourself of a deeper truth, one that can serve as an anchor for your attention when your mind is swirling with confused or doubting thoughts. Anchor statements, like affirmations, can be in the form of “I am…” (although they don’t have to be). For example, let’s say you’re starting a new business and you experience success and satisfaction with your first client project. That would be the perfect time to pause and really feel how it feels to be successful, and you might affirm, “I am good at what I do” or “I am already succeeding” or something along those lines. Later, if you go through a rough patch of self-doubt, you can use your anchor statement to remind you of the deeper truth of your talent and capability. The distinction between anchor statements and affirmations is less important than the way any given statement makes you feel. If you feel empowered, comforted or inspired by a statement, use it. You’ll benefit enormously from creating several affirmations or anchor statements you can easily remember to help you call a “time-out” to fearful or unproductive thoughts and refocus your attention in a direction you want to go. For a further exploration, read the article about affirmations included as an addendum to this course (PDF: The Art of Affirmation). Activities & Practices As noted in the introduction to this module, the module content itself is a detailed description of three recommended practices: Tell a New Story Anchor Statements Look for evidence If you haven’t already…do them! Love Yourself to Success and Fulfillment Homepage Join my List for Regular Doses of Inspiration SUBMIT You have Successfully Subscribed!