For years I could not fully accept any joy in my life because I didn’t feel like I deserved it. It seemed like all of the terrible things I had done to myself made me incapable of allowing for any goodness, any light to enter my life on a consistent basis. I would have these moments or flashes of joy, of what it could be like to be authentic with myself and others and to be honest I found it terrifying. Looking back I think it was terrifying because I was afraid it wouldn’t last and that made me sad. It’s like it was easier to imagine my life being super joyful or super depressing, there wasn’t much room for anything else. Finding the middle of those two opposites has been quite a journey of healing and self-discovery.
In recent months I’ve added the practice of manifesting to my morning ritual and to say it is changing my life in profound ways is an understatement. I can’t even begin to scratch the surface of how it is shifting and rearranging my inner world as the practice is so new to me. I will say that since starting, many of my core beliefs about myself are changing and it’s amazing and scary. Some of the things I believe about myself could not be further from the truth about who I really am, yet they have stuck with me for years and in the past it seemed impossible to change them – it’s just who I am. God, how many times have we heard people say that?! No, it’s not just who we are if we are willing to get in there and work towards something different.
Today I am willing to try new things and have new experiences. Part of my manifesting practice is to invoke the feeling that I have what it is I want in my life. Through steady attention and concentration on that feeling of having what I want, whatever that thing is manifests in my outer world. It is all about changing in the inside to change the outside. I know manifesting has gotten a bad rap thanks to movies like the Secret. I think our culture places way too much emphasis on the material so naturally that is what a lot of the movie addresses. For me it isn’t about that at at all. Ultimately, I want to be free from beliefs about myself that no longer serve me, and the manifesting practice has been a good tool for that.
Part of changing my beliefs is to acknowledge and accept what is actually happening in each moment. Instead of wishing for something cooler or prettier or easier or more exciting to just get into the here and now. When I am present there is no doubt that my life is meaningful, that I am here to love, to be of service and that I am totally taken care of. In these moments, keeping an open heart and letting in all of the joy that is mine to experience gives me so much hope and strength and reminds me what a magical time it is to be alive.
Let in the joy. Look at what is blocking you from experiencing the most joy possible and see what you are willing to let go of at this time. Like most things in life some work on your part is necessary but it’s doesn’t have to be dramatic or terrible, it can just be what you need to do in order to experience all that you deserve. It’s so easy to tune out and shut down and not share yourself with others. Sometimes running simple errands can feel like a tremendous amount of work. I get it. Some days are just like that but don’t let that be an excuse to close off your heart to all the beauty and goodness in your life. Even in very trying moments we choose how we are going to look at situations, how we are going to treat ourselves and the people around us. Even if you are afraid you cannot handle all of the joy— let it in anyway and trust that you have everything you need in those moments.
Photo: Marielle Chua