Lately, I've been thinking a lot about how my relationship to wanting things in my life and creating them in the world has changed so radically. More and more I'm left open-mouthed at how ideas come from nowhere and emerge into physical form.
Repeatedly, when I trace the process back from something showing up in my life to the initial desire, I'm seeing the exact same process reveal itself.
If you're interested in creating what you want in the world with ease, joy and a sense of the miraculous, I hope what I have to share with you today will spark some insights for you.
When it comes to creating what you want, I've found that the first (and most crucial) step, is to be willing to completely re-evaluate the entire concept. So that's where we start.
1. Everything you want, you already have.
The separate self (or ego) always feels as though it's lacking something. There's a constant sensation of there being something missing. In its attempt to put an end to this feeling of emptiness, it looks continuously outside itself for something to fill the hole.
It looks to relationships, material possessions, food, entertainment, sex, work, or anything else in the objective world. Over time, it discovers that even as it obtains these things in the outside world, the sensation of emptiness remains. There's no lasting peace, happiness or fulfilment.
The thing we all long for - that sensation of there being nothing missing - otherwise known as complete peace and happiness - can never be found in anything 'out there' in the objective world. The peace and happiness we search for is who we are. It's our true nature. It's what we experience when we see through the illusion of the ego. It's the recognition that we already are everything.
From a perspective of 'creating what you want', we have to at least start with some sense of the truth of this. If not, all our wanting and creating is just delusional activity, grasping for the things that are already innate within us.
We have to create a willingness inside our hearts to step outside the dominant narratives of society at this time, which constantly encourage us to want more and more outside ourselves. I realise that what I'm saying can leave a feeling of profound discomfort. I've passed through this way. There seems to be a sense that in recognising that we already have (or are) everything we want, we'll somehow be required to give up all possibility of a good and exciting life, and that we'll wind up boring as hell, doing and achieving nothing.
In my experience, that's far from true. All it's meant for me is that creating things in the world is more fun and less stressful because they don't come along with the false belief that I need them to be successful.
So the first principle in creating what you want is always to recognise that at the deepest level, you already have everything.
2. Recognise that you don't know what you want and open yourself up to the infinite creative potential of the universe.
Desires arise from one of two places: the head or the heart. The world 'out there' is a constant bombardment of information, marketing and advertising, all designed to open up desires within us for things we never knew we wanted or needed. These could be material things - like the latest iphone, a new pair of yoga pants, or a house - or relatively intangible things like success, fame, or recognition.
We're so used to being manipulated into wanting things, that much of the time we're completely cut off from what it feels like to have a genuine desire or fresh idea flow to us through our hearts.
How many times have you sat at home, writing prescriptive lists of exactly what you want? Somehow, we have this idea that we know best. But what I've really come to see is that little old me has absolutely no idea at all about what I really want. Of course, I think I know, but all of that is just based on my limited ideas of what I've decided my life should look like and what I think would be best for me.
When we live from desires that come from our personal thinking based on information in the outside world, we limit ourselves to what we already know. But when we stop trying to control the show and tell the universe what we want, we open up space for the universe to show us what's possible.
Said another way, when we open up to the infinite creative potential of the universe, the ideas and desires that show up are better than anything we could have dreamed up ourselves. But in order for that to happen, we have to trust life enough to let go of the wheel and stop trying to decide and figure everything out from our personal minds.
The best way I know to open up to this creative potential is to make space and chill out. It's no mistake that beautiful ideas or solutions to problems come to us in the shower, whilst we're washing up, just about to drop off to sleep, or out for a walk. When the personal mind relaxes, the universe gets a look in.
Make. More. Space. The desires and ideas that are meant for you are trying to get your attention.
2. Notice the quality and energy of any desire that arises.
When a desire arises, check in with yourself about the quality of that desire. To me, desires that come from the head often have feelings of frustration, anxiety, stress, impatience and an over excited, ungrounded energy attached.
When a desire arises from my heart, the quality of it is so different. For starters, there's no sense that 'I' came up with the desire. It's as if it wafted in on the breeze, came from out of the blue, or was gifted to me by the universe. And second, the energy attached to it is excited yet grounded, full of possibility but steady and sure.
Be clear, there's no desire that's inherently 'good' or 'bad'. It's not spiritually 'right' to have a desire to help the homeless and spiritually 'wrong' to want an amazing relationship. Nor is it spiritually 'right' to want to reduce the use of single use plastics and spiritually 'wrong' to have a desire for money.
What's important isn't what the desire is, but where it's coming from and the energy behind it. To me, excited but grounded is a good sign.
3. Trust that it's already on its way and take the one next step.
When a true desire arises from my heart, it comes with an absolute sense of knowing inside that it's already in motion and on its way. I don't have to worry about it, strategise about it or get busy putting an elaborate plan in place about how to bring it into reality. I simply know it's coming.
Sometimes there's some really obvious next step for me to take. Sometimes there isn't. If there is, I do it. If there isn't, I get on with my life until there is, all the while keeping in mind that 'me getting on with my life' might include exactly the steps necessary to bring whatever it is into form, even if I don't know it.
4. Release the outcome.
In every area of my life where I'm able to live the principle of releasing the outcome, creation flows. In every area where I have sticky thinking, I struggle. This is how it looks when I'm living the principle:
I'm completely unattached to the outcome and I know it's going to happen and I know I'm totally ok if it doesn't.
A paradox? Yes. All the truest things are. And here's what it looks like when I'm not living the principle:
Subtle or blatant neediness around the outcome, therefore lots of stressing and striving, therefore never quite managing to create what I want.
In a nutshell: Release, release, release. There is nothing you need.
5. Forget about 'your' timeline.
The time by which you would like your desire to be created in the world is completely irrelevant. If we're putting a timeline on our desires, we're ultimately saying that we think there's a reason it needs to have shown up by that time. But if you already have everything you want and you're already perfectly ok in this moment and every moment, why would you care when it shows up?
Just wake up each day and do whatever it occurs to you to do.
Remember, you have no way of knowing the path the universe will take to creating what you want in the world. So if it looks like everything in your world is completely unrelated and not taking you any closer, resolve to keep trusting that somehow, in ways you can't know or imagine, the universe is at work.
6. Laugh out loud at the miraculous nature of life and then repeat the whole process.
Suddenly, one day, you'll notice that something miraculous happened. A chain of events from the past weeks or months will flash through your mind as you watch how all the dots were connecting up all along.
You might find yourself, like me, laughing out loud at the weird and wonderful path the universe took to bringing your desire into form. But are you really surprised? If the desire came from the universe in the first place, and not from your ego, why would the whole universe not move to bring it into being?
Now all you have to do is repeat. But remember, there's really nothing you have to do. You only have to stay open to the ideas and desires flowing through you, connect to their energy and let them make a home inside you. Then just keep getting up every day and doing whatever it is your heart leads you to do, moment by moment, knowing that somehow, all this activity is weaving itself into the next miracle in the tapestry of your life.
Love and courage,