MAKING PEACE WITH NOW: How to be okay with where you are (and get where you want to be faster)
“All men should strive to learn before they die, what they are running from, and to, and why.” — James Thurber
Does any of this apply to you?
- You hate a current condition (eg what you do) but feel trapped in it because of obligations and responsibilities.
- Feel drained and can't explain it. Your energy is generally low as if the thing trapping you is painting every other area in your life in grey. You begin to resent it.
- Feel like you can't catch a break. You tried hard to create permanent change, but keep running around in circles, and repeating the same cycles over and over.
Fair warning, this post is LONG.
But you are not looking for shallow content.
And if any of these points apply to you, this will be well worth it. I promise.
This might be, dare I say it, life-changing.
If there was ever a “formula” to get what you want, faster, it would be this:
Be content and grateful for what is, while maintaining an unattached desire for what is yet to come.
Think of ANYTHING you want to change. You’ll never be able to do it without this formula.
And if you do it, it won’t be permanent. You’ll get back to your old condition before you know it.
And you will keep repeating the cycle of struggle again and again until you have learned this lesson.
But it’s hard to do that.
Whatever you dream of, there’s a good chance it’s two parts:
One part is chasing after a desire.
Another part is running away from some pain.
Often, the pain you’re running away from is your current situation.
In fact, it’s why you developed the desire in the first place.
For example, not having the money is what made you realize how much you want more of it.
Not enjoying what you do is what made you realize that you need more purpose-driven and fulfilling work.
And so on.
The longer you stay in not having what you desire, the more your pain seems to grow.
But what do you do when you know your goal is too far away?
How do you keep going when your current situation has become unbearable?
How do you keep the drive and motivation for a better tomorrow, while being grateful and at peace with where you are today?
Here are 5 steps that helped change my life:
1) Stop “pushing through”
Here’s why you can’t build a dream while feeling miserable:
- When all you can think about it is how to escape your current painful situation, you make decisions based on what will stop your pain the fastest, instead of what will stop it permanently.
- When you feel low, your thinking isn’t clear because it’s clouded by emotions that are misaligned with your highest expression.
- Making peace with your current situation is a necessary step before you can get anything you want. Because the more you resist something, the more it persists. That’s why things go more smoothly when you’re relaxed about the outcome.
It’s easier said than done, but that is how the process of co-creation works.
Our desires are not born in a vacuum. They are co-created with our higher consciousness. By the time you feel the desire, it’s already there, and you are ready to receive it.
But the more you resist not having it yet, the more of your energy is spent perpetuating the current condition and warping time instead of making the change.
That’s why the first step is to change your emotional signature.
2) Change your emotional signature, NOW
The goal in this next step is twofold:
- Identify how you want to feel about yourself and your life once you have achieved your goal.
- Make a commitment to start feeling the way you want, NOW, while you continue working towards your goals.
This idea used to frustrate me.
How could I possibly “choose” to feel better, when my reality hasn’t changed?
Doesn’t that make me delusional?
Wouldn’t it discourage me from working towards those goals?
The idea here is not to deny your reality.
If it sucks, it sucks.
The idea is to change how you feel about it so that your beliefs and thoughts become more helpful.
I don’t need to tell you that your thoughts and beliefs affect your outcome, you already know that.
But at the root of it all, is how you FEEL. The emotional tone you carry around your goal makes or breaks your result.
People often try to change their beliefs by repeating affirmations. But these often don’t work by themselves.
If you try to go from “this sucks” to “everything is totally perfect”, your mind will immediately refute and question whether the new belief is true.
That’s what cognitive dissonance really is. Not just contradictory thoughts, but a thought that doesn’t FEEL right.
So what we want to do is make the shift in your beliefs so subtle and gradual that it “feels right”, so your mind doesn’t fight it, and you seamlessly step into a different reality.
This is where “better-feeling thoughts” come in.
3) Use the “better-feeling thought” method
I don’t know who came up with this concept, but it’s brilliant.
A better-feeling thought is a thought that’s slightly better than you current one. So subtle that you have zero resistance to it.
Here’s an example:
Let’s say your dream is to have a business that generates x million dollars per year creating something meaningful and fulfilling.
You want to feel joyful, calm, clear, confident, excited, abundant, purposeful, etc.
But the reality is that right now, you’re struggling financially, your work is unfulfilling, and your dream seems so far away, that it’s daunting to even think about.
You feel worried, irritated, restricted, etc.
So you try and “think more positively”:
You: My life is perfect right now.
Your mind: No it’s not.
You: I will reach 8-figures this time next year.
Your mind: Who are you kidding?
Instead of denying your reality or telling yourself that everything is going great, reach for a slightly better-feeling thought.
- You: “What if things are about to get much better for me, and I just don’t know it yet?”
- Your mind: Hmm. Feels right. No objection.
“What if some of the marketing I did months ago is now being seen by my ideal clients/customers, and the results are about to start showing?"
"What if this time next year, I am blown away by how amazingly well everything turned out?”
You get the idea.
You’ll know it’s the right thought when you feel no resistance to it.
Your mind stops fighting. Your heart opens up to it. You begin to feel gradual relief, even if it means simply replacing your pain with neutrality.
From there, you reach for an even better-feeling thought.
You do this gradually until you go from one end of the spectrum to the other.
From fear, worry, and scarcity, to abundance, trust, and excitement — all without ever “lying” to yourself, or denying reality.
Your mind feels safe because you are still listening to it, as you should (don’t let any “spiritual guru” tell you otherwise)
Your heart is happy because you are not becoming complacent or giving up on your desires for expansion.
With your heart and mind in alignment, you are now ready to take external action.
4) LIVE as if you have already achieved it
Life is not a series of big moments of change.
Yes, quantum leaps can happen, but they’re rare.
And without the supporting beliefs and daily habits, any success will be short-lived, and you will go back to square one without even realizing it.
I remember the day I made the most money, and my life was great in every way.
Yet I was feeling scarce and miserable. I felt like it was only a matter of time before I go back to struggling.
This is because I hadn’t trained myself to FEEL nor ACT any differently as I was working towards my goals.
So by the time I got there, NOTHING changed except my bank account.
THIS is the same reason why a lot of people lose weight but don’t feel differently about their bodies and they don’t feel any more confidence, so they end up gaining it all back.
It’s why many people get a great relationship and a loving partner but haven’t gotten any more self-love as a result, they end up sabotaging it.
Sure it’s partially your self-image. But really in the end it’s our habits of thought, feeling, and action that sabotage our physical results.
So I’m not inviting you to “act as if” just because it will help you “manifest it” (although it does).
I’m inviting you to do it because I know that your self-image will NOT magically change when your results change.
And consequently, your behaviors, thoughts, habits, and feelings will be the same.
“But how could I possibly live as if when I don’t have the means yet?”
Of course, you can’t live exactly as if you already have it.
But you can definitely start making some choices from that direction.
When I ask people to imagine a perfect day in their life after they’ve made a trillion dollars, they say things like “I’ll be the type of person who wakes up at 5 am, goes to the gym first thing in the morning, meditates, and travels often.”
And I always ask what’s stopping them from doing those things right now.
Maybe you don’t have the resources to do it exactly the way you envision it.
But I’m willing to bet that you have enough to start going in that direction. To start being the person who has the thing, and doing the things they do.
But we get stuck in “all or nothing” thinking and chasing after quick fixes.
We want to go from $0 to 8-figures. From completely out of shape to a six-pack. From no audience to millions of raving fans.
And yet that “all or nothing” thinking is exactly what sets you up for failure.
You place such high expectations on yourself, but don’t truly believe you can pull them off, which becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Then when you don’t get the result, you blame yourself for a perceived failure, and that damages your belief in yourself even more.
The ego wants things to be bigger and faster.
But the heart needs to open up to and BELIEVE in the ego’s plan of action.
When you ignore that internal signal that questions whether you can pull it off, and you “just go for it”, you are out of alignment.
Your actions are big, you are splashing water and making noise, but you’re not really moving forward.
So for a moment, forget about all the big moves you’ll be making tomorrow, next week/month/later.
Instead, aim for the next best step today.
What can you do in the next 24 hours that can help you move towards your goal?
Better yet, what can you do right now?
If you can’t think of anything, then you’re still thinking big.
Break down your task to an even smaller bite, and get started.
This momentum is all you need right now to ignite the fire.
5) Accept that there is no end to this
Even if you achieved everything you ever wished for, I promise you this:
You will wake up with a new desire that feels like a stretch, and you will wonder how you’ll do it.
As long as you are alive, there is no final destination after which you will stop wanting things that seem out of reach.
And you will go through the 4 steps above again and again.
And it’s something you have to do every single day
So the key is to first develop the awareness necessary to catch yourself feeling resistance to the present moment.
And when you do, you have to make the choice and reach for a better-feeling thought.
Then, think of one action you can take in the next 24 hours that will move you closer to your goal.
Repeat again, and again, and again.
Remember the “formula”:
Be content and grateful for what is, while maintaining unattached excitement for what is yet to come.
I want to leave you with this quote by Viktor Frankl, from the book “Man’s Search for Meaning”.
“Don’t aim at success. The more you aim at it and make it a target, the more you are going to miss it. For success, like happiness, cannot be pursued; it must ensue, and it only does so as the unintended side effect of one’s personal dedication to a cause greater than oneself or as the by-product of one’s surrender to a person other than oneself.
Happiness must happen, and the same holds for success: you have to let it happen by not caring about it. I want you to listen to what your conscience commands you to do and go on to carry it out to the best of your knowledge. Then you will live to see that in the long-run — in the long-run, I say! — success will follow you precisely because you had forgotten to think about it.”
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