By Dianne Witte
It’s that time of year when we are challenged to come up with our New Year’s resolutions. Or perhaps you are one who ignores the pressure to do so, knowing you will fail, so why bother? It’s part of human nature to seek to improve and grow, but failure is crushing to our self-esteem. Have you tried and failed with Tony Robbins or Rhonda Byrne’s “Secret.”? Some achieve their goals, others don’t. Why?
Rosicrucian Principle says, “…there is considerable difference between concentrating upon a dream or a hope and concentrating upon the fulfillment thereof.” So, what is the “magic” hidden piece here? Maybe by looking at a situation in which we have accomplished a goal, we can discover how it was different from those we fail to achieve.
Here’s an example from my life. After 15 years of delivering milk in my small ND community, I was ready for a change. I longed for something different, but didn’t know what. I considered going to college, but was held back by that perennial issue, money. How could I quit working and pay for college? Gradually, I began to work with the numbers and explore the possibilities. Finally, I realized that if I took a leap, it could work. “Nothing ventured, nothing gained” kind of thing. Amazingly, once that “dam” of negative thought broke loose, I not only went to college, but our two sons and I all ended up going at the same time. No, we hadn’t “saved” for college. We took out loans, did work study and lived on less. Now, my loans are paid off and I’ve retired from a career as a librarian. Being a professional wasn’t even part of the “plan,” it just evolved.
So, how could any advice from Robbins or Byrne or the Rosicrucians be applied to my experience? The law of attraction is the basic principle here, but the devil is in the details. I wanted the change, but didn’t really believe it, until I took action. That is how “concentrating upon the fulfillment thereof” looks to me. The real key to belief is DOING something that corresponds to your belief. Starting with just a wee little something confirms to your consciousness that a change of mind has taken place.
In addition, I’m told, it takes time to manifest in the physical plane. Sometimes we are too impatient for results and give up, before they have time to manifest. Going to college didn’t materialize overnight. It was probably a year between the time I first thought of the change, and when I actually did so. Remember, the bigger the goal, the longer it takes to achieve. Someone said, “Quitting is the only way to fail. Failure never prevents success.” Have patience.
One caveat to the whole idea of goals is to remember the definition of insanity: “Doing the same things over and over and expecting a different result.” If you are DOING what you think needs to be done to achieve a goal and continually come up empty, perhaps you need to change what you’re doing or reconsider the entire goal. Is the goal really for you? Is there something that needs to come first? Like exploring why you quit and how to remedy that? How about improving a personality trait? For instance, being more accepting, kind, cheerful, orderly, or patient are goals worth considering, too. Using the principle above and concentrating on the “fulfillment thereof,” you would need to find a way to DO something to achieve the goal. Take gratitude, for instance. I can set the goal to be more grateful, and believe I can do it, but how will that manifest, unless I DO something that solidifies my intention. It’s a doing (an experience) that creates a feeling (gratitude).
To cultivate gratitude, you might concentrate on starting a journal listing five things each day that you are grateful for. This suggestion came to me from Sarah Ban Breathnach’s book, Simple Abundance a Daybook of Comfort and Joy. The goal to develop an attitude of gratitude is accomplished one day at a time. Breathnach encourages you to have a dedicated, special journal. Think of unique things each day. If you’re having a “bad day,” go back and review things you’ve already written and use them to stimulate new thoughts or reuse the old. As time goes on, you’ll be thinking of things that happen during the day as something you can add to your “Gratitude Journal.” At the end of a year, you’ll look back and discover you are grateful and have established a habit with many fringe benefits.
Take another example: Simplify your life. I took this as a goal once, and decided to “release” one “thing” every day of the year. I tracked that in a journal too. Although I sometimes didn’t do it daily, if a week or so went by, I’d catch up and Goodwill was the beneficiary. It was an amazing experience – clean files, cleaner basement, more organization and by the end of the year, I had enough done to start a month into the next year!
Now you’ve got the idea. To fulfill those goals, the key is to act and to persist. Go for it! Good Luck and Happy New Year!