FIRST PROVOCATION: List 8 reasons why you want what you want.
Why do you want the new job? the relationship? the sweater?
Is it because you want to earn more? because you want to start a family? because it looks so good on you? Or, is it because you hate your boss? because being on your own isn’t cutting it anymore? because your sister bought one and you have to have one too? Maybe it’s both. And maybe also, so much more.
Thinking about and articulating why we want what we want serves two purposes. It gives us clarity and insight into what it is exactly that is missing in our life. And, at the same time, it delivers insight and awareness about the value of the object or experience we desire. Doing this exercise exposes the object’s (e.g. the job, relationship, sweater) real value to you – what it really means to, and for, you.
For Example. Let’s say my desire is to be in a committed relationship with the love of my life. Here are some examples of why I might want this: (Note, you don’t have to be really intense and thoughtful about this! 8 sounds like a lot, but if you let yourself go you can rattle off at least 5 in under a minute. This took me about two minutes, and it’s not even my desire.)
1. because I am lonely
2. because I am bored of doing everything on my own
3. because I am tired of taking care of myself
4. because I am tired of going to events alone
5. because I want to share my life with someone
6. because I want to know there will always be someone I can count on
7. because I want emotional intimacy
8. because I want sexual intimacy. regularly.
(You can write it down, or you can just say it out loud, either way is fine. Of course there is more or less you can get out of the exercise as you are kicking up a lot of (really good) food for thought; writing is always a good way to get more.)
This list shows me two things. First, it paints a picture of what, exactly, I find dissatisfying about, or missing in, my life. In doing so, it also gives me a clearer image of what I think getting what I want will give me or remedy. In this example: my disenchantment, loneliness, and lack of intimacy. These are the wounds that are calling for the ‘relationship of my dreams balm’.
We want to think about whether this (the desire I originally articulated) is the only balm that could be effectively applied to our wound (lack, or discontent). In my example, I’d want to think about whether there was some other way besides ‘the relationship of my dreams’ to increase my feeling of connection, intimacy and passion with my life and the people around me. You want to be really wary of answers that contend that the original desire is the only thing that could work on what’s missing. Really wary.
SECOND PROVOCATION: Describe how getting what you want will feel.
Here we go a level deeper into gaining insight about what we are actually craving. Continuing the example above, I might say:
‘It will feel wonderful. It will feel freeing and expansive. It will feel like home. I’ll feel loved. Someone will see me for who I truly am. Our love will make me feel invincible.’
Find the Gold. Starting Now. It is not the thing itself we want so much as the way (we think) it will make us feel. It is the feelings, not the object, that we really want. The object or goal is simply the vehicle we think will evoke these feelings. So we should take time to contemplate the feelings we are trying to induce in and for ourselves. This is the next part of your Manifesting Friendly’s answer: “List 8 other ways you could inspire or evoke these feelings in yourself.”
I might respond, for example: (I’ve put the feelings the action induces in parentheses)
1. I could show be my authentic self more in the relationships I already have. (seen and loved)
2. I could let someone I love know how much/why/that they are loved. (connection, intimacy)
3. I could take a dance class. (freeing, high on life)
4. I could go on a vacation/adventure. (freeing, high on life)
5. I could put my finances in order. (stability and security)
6. I could clean my home. (stability and security)
7. I could throw a party. (creating the fun, instead of waiting for it; creative control over one’s life)
8. I could fix my own shelves. (capable)
Your Manifesting Friendly then tells you to choose one of the actions from your list and do it now. The point is to start filling the wells now. We need not wait for the fulfillment of our desire (the relationship, the job, the thing) – we can start filling the wells that are empty now, in some way. Do it.
Choose another tomorrow.
Extra credit: keep going. There’s a watershed moment, and the flood gates will fly open. Just start now instead of waiting for the monsoon, and soon your empty buckets will be overflowing. That’s the way it works. Certainly more likely to work anyway. ;)