How do you deal with your personal wants and desires? Do you go out and seek to accomplish them? Do you feel that you can’t do it or are unworthy and give up? Do you try to get someone else to do things for you? Do you expect God to do it make things happen for you? Do you try and deny your wants? Do you pray? Do you mainly use the Law of Attraction? There are many, many effective strategies for handling our numerous desires. Pause for a moment and reflect on which methods have you used in your own life and which ones have been most effective in the end.
Let’s take a look at wants and desires themselves and explore yet another way to respond to them.
Now, we all want things in life and when we finally get the shiny new things, we feel great.
We believe that we feel so good because we’ve satisfied the want and fulfilled an inner need. However, this is actually a mistaken understanding.
The reason we feel good after getting something we wanted is that we are now no longer wanting!
Have you noticed that? For a period of time after we get what we want, we rest in the state of being totally okay, of being fulfilled and not wanting anything.
It is this state of not wanting anything (which is our natural state) that is ACTUALLY what feels really good. Our true nature is amazing!
In a sense, the ego is like our emotional gatekeeper. The feelings that we get upon satisfying our wants become consciously present within our awareness. In the same way that the silence does not exist only in the space between two thoughts and that silence always present, the good feelings that we experience by getting what we want are also always available. They already exist within us. In fact, they only lie within us.
Happiness can never truly come from outside of us and the universe does a great job of teaching us this.
Think back to a time when you really really wanted something and eventually got it. Hooray!! Yippee!! How long did the good feelings last? A few minutes? A few hours? Days? Perhaps a whole week even? How long did they last in your personal experience?
If that thing is really what made you happy, then as long as you always hold onto that thing, you should always be happy, right? After all, it’s what makes you happy! You should be set for life!
It turns out though, that’s not the case. What happens is that after a little while the novelty wears off and the sense of wanting returns. Once the wanting arises again, then there’s the sense of wanting to get another external trigger to get the good feelings again. The reality of the situation was that the reason we felt good in the first place was that we stopped wanting altogether!
Alright, we can take this understanding and say, “Okay, I’m just going to just deny my desires altogether. Happiness is within and it is by ceasing the endless wanting that the inner happiness arises.”
However, we all know that’s a lie. If you’ve ever tried that, you know it just doesn’t feel good. It feels forced. We can try to delude ourselves into the idea that we don’t want anything, but that’s a real struggle. It doesn’t feel authentic. It may make us seem spiritual or pious or something, but it doesn’t create a lasting sense of happiness.
That doesn’t work. There’s a reason it doesn’t work. When you’re in alignment with the universe, when you’re in the flow, things work out magically. When you’re somehow out of alignment, things just don’t work so well. Denying desires doesn’t create the inner happiness we are looking for. Even the Buddha tried asceticism for many years before letting it go and adopting a different path.
Let’s take a closer look at wanting itself and see exactly what’s going on when we want something. Let’s see if we can let go of the craving feeling without actually denying our desires.
When we want something, chances are we don’t really want IT. Rather, we want some sort of emotional payoff from it, the experience of having it. We don’t want the thing itself. We want the experience and the feelings and emotions the experience brings us.
We want to feel a certain way. We want to see ourselves in a particular way.
Look within and see for yourself if the experience of obtaining the want is already here. See if the feeling of having it is already present. Can you find it? Just a little bit or completely? Find out for yourself.
[Time out for you to look within and see. This post will be much more effective for you if you make it interactive instead of simply intellectual.]
Okay, so if you were to get what you want, what then would that attainment satisfy in the first place? Do you want the feeling of security? Happiness? Excitement? Peace? Intimacy? Love?
What is it that you want on a deeper level? Not just intellectually, but emotionally. Are those emotions already present? Go ahead and look. Can you access them now?
[Time out #2 for you to close your eyes and experience the emotional state you desire deep down.]
Instead of trying to satisfy your wants by going out into the world and obtaining what you want, trace the want back and find the underlying wants, the desired emotions and state of being. Don’t try to create the emotions, but just find out if they’re already there before you even looked at all. Really find out if you already have within you the state of being you are desiring. (Hint: Everything is here and now.) Allow yourself to experience what you already have within.
Let’s look at the desire for freedom or liberation. It is the freedom within you that already exists and isn’t being recognized that gives you this gift called wantingness. The want that you experience for freedom is actually the sense of freedom within you calling awareness towards itself.
What’s interesting about this is that when you fully allow yourself to internally experience what you already have, to fully experience it, you very well may find that you no longer really want the original external thing at all. In a sense, you become okay if you get it and okay if you don’t. In the Sedona Method, they call this state the “hootless state” because you no longer give a hoot. You almost become indifferent, for the external thing could never create the real feelings anyways and you realize that the external trigger is no longer necessary. The desire starts to drop away on its own. The craving sensation starts to dissolve naturally.
Now what’s even more interesting is that what tends to manifest in your reality are the very things that you don’t need in the first place. It’s when you totally let go that your desires tend to manifest. You don’t get what you want because the very wantingness implies a lack and thus lack is what you will project upon your reality and subsequently experience. Our external world has a wonderful tendency to reflect back to us our own internal state of being.
Now, some people may read this and say to themselves, “Aha! Here’s a trick to manifesting what I want! I can ‘work the system’ by doing this emotional visualization process Ariel described and then manifest my desires!”
No no no. That’s not the point. This is the ego sneaking back in, a little “me” wanting to “get something” by doing some sort of external activity. It is again going outside itself for its pleasures. Do you see the subtle trick happening here? The idea is to recognize that nothing outside yourself will make you happy, not really.
Certainly if someone asks you if you want chocolate or vanilla ice cream, you can tell them which one you want. Of course we all have preferences. I’m not talking about letting go of those wants. I’m simply suggesting that we let go of the idea that something outside of us determines whether or not we are happy.
Go within and find out if the peace you are looking for, the happiness, the sense of well-being, the feeling of security, abundance, love, freedom, and anything else… find out if those feelings already exist within you and go ahead and experience them. See what happens.
To wrap things up, tonight’s daily Abraham-Hicks email provides us with a perfect conclusion.
Tell everyone you know: “My happiness depends on me, so you’re off the hook.” And then demonstrate it. Be happy, no matter what they’re doing. Practice feeling good, no matter what. And before you know it, you will not give anyone else responsibility for the way you feel—and then, you’ll love them all. Because the only reason you don’t love them, is because you’re using them as your excuse to not feel good.