We have all heard the expression, “What we focus on expands” but recently I had a kind of awakening to how true this expression is.
I spent the afternoon out in the forest, having a personal ceremony for a new chapter I’m entering in my life. I sat myself in a grove of trees, which my wife and I call “The Three Sisters” because there are three massive cedar trees in a trinity. I began with a prayer offering and sat down with my back against the trunk of one of these massive tree mamas. Almost instantly, I heard a snapping of branches high above me where a huge limb of the tree had snapped off, and was now falling directly towards me.
It’s funny, because I didn’t panic, I didn’t move, I just watched this branch sailing down and crash! It landed a foot to my left, blocking the entrance to this grove of trees. It felt like the nature spirits were saying to me, “Okay, you’re not leaving until we’re complete.”
I spent the next five hours breathing, praying, chanting, dancing and stretching. It was a very powerful afternoon. One of the major epiphanies I witnessed and experienced within myself was how powerful our minds are. When I entered into being a witness of my experience, I realized on a deeper level just how true Buddha’s statement is. I stared out into the forest with unfocused eyes, watching giant snowflakes fall from the sky. I then narrowed my vision and watched individual snowflakes fall from high up in the treetops, all the way to the ground. It was pure magic.
As I was sitting there observing this beautiful scene, I realized that our thoughts are the same. We can focus all of our energy onto a negative, disempowering thought that causes us to feel low, unworthy and incapable of much.
Or, we can focus our energy and intentions to cultivating thoughts that align with the energy of who we want to be, what we want to experience and how we want to feel. This takes more work because we have to take ourselves from being on autopilot to being conscious—but God, it’s worth it.
Next, I took my experiment to another level. I said to myself, “Okay, I am going to focus all my energy on feeling abundant right now.” As I focused on abundance I felt grateful, inspired; I saw images of the people I love, I felt connected and alive. After a while I said to myself, “Okay lets switch gears. I’m going to focus on lack and limitation.” As I dwelled on what was missing in my life, I could feel my insecurities, doubts and confusion surface. It was a like a veil of fog was descending over me. Fortunately, I knew this was just a game, (such as life) so I could reverse the damage and recreate the feelings of abundance quite quickly. But wow, was it powerful! Such autopilot negative thinking is what traps people in the experience of feeling horrible and disempowered in their lives. Truly, it’s our fearful, limiting thoughts that stop us from moving forward in the direction we want to go.
For several years, I am one who has practiced positive affirmations, presence and focus techniques to create what I want in my life. Many of my dreams have come to life, and with this deepened awareness of myself and the power of my thoughts, I feel incredibly confident that if we want something in life, we need to be disciplined with how we think. Letting our thoughts run rampant, and believing every
thought our mind generates is a death sentence to our dreams, because let’s face it: we all have inner voices that doubt our power to be the creator of our own reality.
When you stop searching, everything will come to you. Be present because that’s where your power is. Your faith is reflected in your belief in yourself. Practice being brave and building your confidence, because when you support yourself, life will show up to support you too. Focus your life force on becoming the vision of who you want to be now. Ask what it would be like and live from that vision. Feel the feelings in this moment. When you wake up in the morning, everyday decide what kind of life you’re going to live and then live it. Know that your path is set—all you need to do is enjoy the journey.
Breathe. Intend what you want. Focus. Celebrate the magic.
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Editorial Assistant: Ola Weber/Editor: Bryonie Wise
Photo: Flickr courtesy of Pawel Pacholec