Where self-improvement and "manifestation" practices go awry

Have you noticed the deeper into self-improvement (i.e. self-help, path to enlightenment, “manifestation”) one gets, the further away the desired results seem to be?

What if white-knuckling your way through mindset shifts and reprogramming is just…keeping you stuck? And creating even more resistance, frustration, and confusion?

What if all the work to become aware of and excavate your limiting beliefs is actually what is limiting you?

We are human, and that means we come with human brains and human conditioning. We cannot escape our humanity with spirituality…but we can embrace our spirituality AND humanity.

I’ve had the greatest successes in my life when I get clear on what I want, focus on what I want and then, simply move toward what I want with action + analyzation + adjustments. The energy pull is very forward-moving.

The problem arises when I get impatient. Instead of continuing on the forward-moving path with mature energy (patience), I deem myself a failure and start looking for a path to quicker results. Annnnd here come the self-help “tools”!

From there, it doesn’t take long to stumble upon all the reasons why I’m not getting results, according to other people. Hardly anyone mentions the power of patience. Instead, it’s all process, strategies, and models to overcome the “broken” parts of me so I can finally manifest all my dreams.

Here’s why this approach doesn’t work: when I focus on what is blocking me from getting what I want (aka the reasons why I’m not capable of getting what I want), I don’t move toward anything. The energy feels very tug-of-war; I’m pulled toward what I want, but then pulled back by what I think I must “overcome” to get it.

What you place your attention on grows. Focus on what's supposedly holding you back, and that is exactly what you'll get more of.

We are constantly being sold on the idea that we cannot move forward or get what we want until we “fix” parts of ourselves (usually with the help of an outside source). Be wary of this type of messaging and notice the energy in which you start heeding others’ advice.

IMPORTANT: It’s okay to hire a therapist. It’s okay to hire a coach. It’s okay to ask for help from a mentor. It’s okay to seek guidance when making changes. It’s okay to meditate. It’s okay to read books, listen to podcasts, and attend talks. It’s okay to adopt practices that help you feel and get better.

But can we let go of our happiness and success being dependent on these practices? Can we do these things without attaching to the idea they are the magic bullet that will finally “save” us? Can we do these things with patience, maturity, and willingness to do the work over time?

Can we let go of the “THIS is the thing that will fix me! I gotta have it NOW or else I’m a broken, lousy piece of sh*t!” energy?

If you’re working toward a desire or a self-designated goal and you feel far away from it, maybe you don’t need more “manifestation” tools…

maybe what you need is some self-acceptance and a little patience.

I prefer the phrase 'personal development' over 'self-improvement.' It's a subtle difference, but for me, it emphasizes that I simply want to become more of Who I Really Am, rather than the thought I need to improve myself.

I believe Personal Development can be a thrilling adventure. As you learn new things and desire to level up in different areas of your life, how can you make it a fun journey, instead of a miserable slog through the mud of self-loathing?

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