I had a lovely teen client recently. Her skin was really red, flaky, and she had lots of blackheads and pimples. She told me she was using a really harsh cleanser (I won’t badmouth any companies!!), as well as witch hazel and a really thick moisturizer. I explained why her skin looked the way it did and to my delight and surprise, she actually bought the kit I recommended. She came back a month later and her skin improved so much. Then she came back two months after that, and her skin was pretty much in the same condition as it was when I first saw her. She said she ran out of the products she bought and she went back to what she was using before!
I couldn’t believe it. I wondered why she would go back to using products that produced obvious and detrimental results, especially after seeing such wonderful results with the new products. And why do so many of my clients continue to use harmful products, even when I explain their negative effects?
I know that everything is a reflection of what’s going on within me, and I realized that I am doing something similar in my own life: I often go back to old ways of thinking, even though I know better! I have so much knowledge and I have seen powerful results when I use the tools I’ve learned over the years. I know all about the power of cultivating gratitude, looking for the positive aspects of a situation, and reframing something negative in order to see its benefits. I know all this and more, and I know how powerful it is, yet I still find myself stressing out about trivial things, worrying about the future, and feeling regret about the past.
It’s so easy to revert back to our old ways. If you think about it, our patterns of thinking have been there for so many years. It’s not always easy to start a new pattern. It takes time and focus. I love the way Abraham has simplified this concept: instead of trying to work out all the details, bring your attention to the emotion. For example, if you’re under a lot of stress, you might not have access to the solution right now. Instead, bring yourself into a general place of well-being. Think about the stability of the mountains, the rising and setting of the sun, the magnificence of your beating heart…all these things are profoundly in place, and they elicit a strong and steady feeling of true well-being.
I feel more and more inspired lately to really live what I believe in. I have gained tremendous insights over the years, and I feel compelled to really apply what I’ve learned.
I know, and I’ve experienced, that life circumstances change when you first change your emotions and your mindset; it’s the inner work that produces the outer results. Yet if you’ve been under a lot of stress for a long time, it might be difficult to shift into a state of ease and well-being. It takes practice and it won’t feel natural at first. It might feel like a new pair of shoes or like you just put on someone else’s jacket. But if you wear the shoes and the jacket for a while, you’ll notice that they start to feel like your own, until you reach the point where you can’t see yourself without them.
You can start with a gentle moment of peace or a few seconds of bliss. Practice these new emotions and start getting used to these new states of being! Keep practicing until they start to feel natural, and soon you won’t even remember you ever lived life any other way…
Be gentle with the process and keep going!
"Do not go where the path may lead,
go instead where there is no path and leave a trail."
--Ralph Waldo Emerson