Today is Day 3 of Deepak Chopra and Oprah’s 21 day Meditation Challenge. Go to www.chopracentermeditation.com to create an account so you can be part of their next FREE challenge or purchase the mediation challenge I’m currently doing, “Destiny and Desire.”
I want to tell you that I’ve gotten the hang of this whole meditation thing after practicing on and off for five years but then I’d be lying to you. And we’re trying to establish a whole honest give and take, safe kind of place here. (Or at least I am… I could just be talking to myself again.) I sat down to meditate this morning ready to be all zen and inspired. And here’s the gist of what happened:
Me: “Sat Chit Ananda.” (That happens to be the mantra today and means existence, consciousness, bliss. It also happens to be my FAVORITE mantra so I was extra excited.)
Three seconds pass.
Me: “I wonder what kind of things I’ll write in my blog today. I definitely want to check out a sound bath. Damn. OK concentrate. Sat Chit Ananda.”
Two more seconds.
ME: “Should I go to the 711 on the corner or the one on Cherokee on my way to work? The one on the corner always has hotter coffee but the one on Cherokee has better power bars.” (For the record I went to the one on the corner because they do have better coffee, more selection of flavorings, and actually know how to use the 711 app, which was important because I had earned a free cup of coffee. But I later regretted not getting my peanut butter center filled Cliff Bar I could have had on Cherokee. #FirstWorldProblems) WTF?!? Deep breathe. Sat Chit Ananda.
I did manage to get a couple solid 20 second intervals in with a completely clear head, and reminded myself that Deepak himself once said that you should never judge the thoughts that pop into your head. You should merely observe and let them pass through your mind like clouds in the sky. I decided it was a very cloudy day.
Regardless I DID feel more centered and calm at the end of the 20 minute mediation and the messages taught by Oprah and Deepak were really inspiring. The centering thought of the day is “abundance flows easily and freely to me!” (I added the exclamation point there cuz I really like this one!) The teaching centers around the concept that, especially in Western culture, we buy into the idea that achieving success equals hard work, struggle, and sacrifice. We think that the more we do, the more we’ll get back in terms of money, power, and maybe a hot side piece. But this is your EGO talking. Apparently, and this is news to me too, the universe works in the OPPOSITE way. Life unfolds with effortless ease. Oprah and Deepak back this up with some pretty strong examples that were hard for my cynic brain to argue. Your lungs don’t have to train 40 hours a week in the gym in order to breathe. They just do. A rose doesn’t have to tell itself that maybe if it goes to one, or five, more acting classes it’ll finally be able to bloom. It just blooms. The fact is a lot of our ideas about success, like “no pain, no gain,” actually limit our success instead of furthering it. A lot of people develop limiting beliefs like “life is a struggle” or “comfortable abundance is out of reach, or only for others.” This results in us doing crazy things like working 70 hours a week, neglecting our own health, or choosing to write a TPS report over having sex with our partner. (Hello. In Europe they’re appalled we’d even consider working that many hours and think couples having “date night” is a joke. Damn Parisians probably have more passion drinking their morning coffee than we do trying to cram dinner and a movie into a three hour time period.)
But I get it. The idea that abundance flows EASILY and EFFORTLESSLY to me has always been a sticky concept for me to grasp, too. I was raised with everyone, family, friends, teachers, even the random guy I wait on, telling me that “it’s hard to make it in the acting or writing business.” So I started wondering… if I’m buying into this limiting belief, have I been blocking my own abundance? Is it because acting and writing is THE most important thing to me that I’m grasping and clutching until I suck all the life out of it?
Let’s look at a completely different example. About two years ago I started affirming to myself every day “I am financially abundant” instead of constantly telling myself “I’m broke.” I didn’t consciously do or change anything. I just said that to myself every morning and whenever that limiting belief tried to creep in. I make really good money at my serving job and, instead of spending it all Willy Nilly, I very slowly paid off all my credit card debt. I easily started to save. And all of a sudden… holy shit. Today I’m financially abundant. And I did this without agonizing. I dropped an old belief and set a new intention. Once that intention became ingrained in me, I just naturally acted in a way to support it. So now my challenge is to shift this to acting and writing. If I really look at it I’m already a writer. I’m writing this to you right now. And every Wednesday I act in class at the very least, so I am an actress. I must start affirming “I bring financial abundance through acting and writing.” Then relax and keep doing what I’m doing (but maybe subconsciously also start making better choices. Let’s hope.)
So what are your limiting beliefs? Is there one you can pick and let go? Can you correct it and start affirming what you actually want instead of affirming what you DON’T? Remember whatever you focus on expands! Maybe start with your very first reaction when I told you that abundance flows easily to you. That’s probably the main culprit. And slowly over time I bet you can change your mind. But have patience! It’s not gonna take 3 weeks to change what you’ve programmed into yourself for 30 years. And until then meditate with me. Maybe tomorrow we can make it one whole minute before thinking about that joke our co-worker told, or how very badly we need therapy.
And so it is.