I know you clicked on that title!
How do I know? Well, you’re reading, or listening to this, ain’tcha?
Don’t worry, I’m actually gonna give you the secret to all three of those things, and it’s pretty fuckin’ simple. Not EASY, but definitely simple.
In fact, I think it’s the simplicity that keeps people from seeing it, or believing it. You probably aren’t going to believe me either, but here it goes.
Want to know how to get rich, skinny, & happy?
You have to fall in love with where you are right now.
I said it, but let me rephrase it:
Love where you are, and where you are will change.
Don’t believe me, do you? I didn’t think so.
Most people–and I’ve always been one of them, but am beginning to understand it–think that if you are happy with where you are–poor, in a sucky relationship, stuck in a shitty job–that you’ll become complacent and never improve your situation, or it will get worse.
But I’m not arguing for complacency: not at all.
Pick a Real Target
I’m gonna relate this to golf, since I’ve done it already, and it’s a kick ass analogy.
In golf–as I argued in What’s Your Target: Life is Golf–if you pick a negative target, like “Don’t hit it in the lake,” it will invariably end up knocking the shit out of some luckless fish, because the subconscious doesn’t really hear the negation in the command; it just hears “lake.”
So, I argued that the only way to remain out of the lake, is to pick the positive target, a precise place where you want the ball to actually land: preferably in the fairway, or on the green.
This is just common sense; it requires no mystical, religio, mumbo jumbo to understand it. It’s perfectly logical, and most of us really know this to be true, down deep, if we take the time to think about it. Most of us, of course, don’t take that time. Instead we wander around telling ourselves what we don’t want, and getting precisely what we don’t want.
Forget the Target, and Swing!
Now I’m going to contradict myself, seemingly.
Once you’ve picked that target, somewhere out there on the fairway, or the amount of money you want to have, or the weight you want to weigh, or skinny jeans you want to fit into, or the relationship you want to have, or perfect work situation, or the biggest boob job, whatever, then put that thought aside.
Yes, I said to not focus on what you want, after you’ve articulated it.
Because there’s another strange thing about the subconscious that will really fuck you up, if you don’t understand how it works.
If you’re hyper-focused on what you want, are you really focused on that, or is your focus really on not having it? Until just recently, I had never considered this subtle trip up. Luckily, I was listening to a video by Esther Hicks the other day, and she explained this SNAFU situation, and the solution to it.
Let’s think about it in two ways. If you want to make X amount of money per year, or month, and you’re daily focused on that amount, what you’re most likely thinking about is that fact that you don’t have it already, right?
“When the fuck am I going to have that money?” is what really runs through my brain anyway. And so what I’m really focused on is a negative situation: not having money. But in order to hit a target, as in golf, you have to pick a positive target!
How do we get around this Catch 22?
If we can’t focus on what we don’t want–poverty–but at the same time we can’t focus on what we do want–riches–because to focus on it, is really to focus on the lack of it–what the hell do we DO?
The trick, as in golf, is to focus on the NOW.
We’re back to land of Zen and Dao, again, my friend. If you want your ball to land in the fairway, you can’t be thinking too much about the fairway when you’re swinging the club, or you’re not in the moment; you’re in the future, or your mind is anyway. And that means that your mind is struggling with an outcome that hasn’t happened, while trying to manifest that outcome in the present. Not a good combination.
The only way to get around this, I think, is to pick the target, line up your body over the ball, and then bring your focus back to the present: on the ball, and the feeling of the swing itself.
In life, this translates into picking a goal, then letting it go while you focus on what you’re going, RIGHT NOW: every single moment of every day, or at least as many moments as you can manage. The more you stay in the now, the present, the more likely you will reach your goal.
If you’re spending most of your time staring at your paltry bank account, worrying about how the bills will be paid, or dripping beads of sweat on your bathroom scale, gazing anxiously at the number, feeling like a beached whale, then you aren’t giving full attention to the very things that will allow money to flow into your life or the fat to disappear: the things you’re working on, the exercise you could be doing, and the great relationships you already have.
The only way to get what you want, is to be open to it, to focus on what matters, and nothing matters, EXCEPT the present. The past is over; the future never exists. [For more on that, see Past n Future, Rats n Roaches: the Nature of Reality.]
The secret to success, to reaching any goal, is to set the goal and then release it.
Then go back to what you were doing, and learn to love where you are. That doesn’t mean you have to love being broke. But if you were truly destitute, you probably wouldn’t be reading this article. Times might be very tough; trust me, I know how tough they can be. But find the positive things around you, and focus on those. This is simply practicing Gratitude for what you have, and where you are. [See my article on Gratitude]
You are where you are.
You can be no other place, right now. You might as well learn to love it. In fact, if you don’t, you’ll still be there, tomorrow, and next year. The only way to get positive results, is to have a positive mind, focused on the NOW, the task at HAND.
Good luck, and let me know how it works for ya!