Let’s get one thing straight: knowing the tools for transformation and actually using them are very different things. Many people are unable to bridge this gap. They “know everything and have read everything”, but in reality they can’t even get the ball rolling, never mind make major changes in their lives. This phenomenon has always surprised me and encouraged me to investigate, both through examples from my own life and from friends with very different stories. You will find the results below.
The first thing you need to do is stop reproaching yourself. You have to understand, accept and forgive yourself in all scenarios. And gently let go of your past mistakes. By “gently” I mean simply stop clinging to the past. Let bygones be bygones.
Genuine transformation can only begin from a place of friendship with yourself.
Now, to the matter at hand.
Tools for transformation, or How to create new life experiences
We create our own experiences, and hence ourselves, simultaneously on four levels: thought, word, action and state.
Thoughts are tangible and have a direct relationship to the things that happen to us and the person we become. A single thought can have the power to attract new life experiences or to set up insurmountable barriers. These days there is much written on the subject. I won’t go into it too deeply. The way I see it, you don’t need a profound understanding of how a mobile phone works in order to use it. Thoughts are a tool that, in capable hands, becomes perhaps the most powerful of the four “weapons”. But they are not enough on their own. They have to be in tune with the other components.
Words are also tangible and powerful, especially repeated and/or written words. Hence the importance of mantra and prayer in all religions. Some researchers in this field, for example Anthony Robbins, claim that changing just a few common words in your lexicon can considerably influence your entire attitude to a certain subject. There’s much more to it than that, but more on this another time, today I want to focus attention on the tools themselves.
Everything we do directly and invest our energy in on the physical plane. The most banal:
Action – result. No action – no change
But actions alone are not enough to create dramatic changes in how we create our lives anew. It’s too long and too laborious, like walking barefoot around the world – on one hand it is technically possible (though not in reality), but it sure would hurt your feet. And what’s the point? There are plenty of more pleasant ways to see the world. In this context: creating yourself anew is not something you just do; it requires all four tools.
Our feelings. This does not just mean emotions, but our dominant innermost background feelings.
A crude example. If you were sad yesterday and sad today, then there’s a strong chance you’ll be sad tomorrow. Everything will unfold in a way that will make you sad. Today’s state is putting in an order for tomorrow’s.
To some extent this works in the same way as any habit, like how the body of a smoker “wants” to smoke. It demands a cigarette. Similarly, the body of a chronic pessimist demands its dose of problems and reasons to be blue. It is used to it; it has become its natural state. Incidentally, it works the same way for cheerful people who naturally laugh and smile a lot and get excited over silly things; they are used to joy (!) and it is a great gift. I repeat that we are talking about background states, which occur almost automatically, and not about the general flow of emotions.
Which background state was dominant in your life today?
As practice has shown, not everybody knows that:
a state (dominant inner background) is created alongside our thoughts or actions. It arises automatically, without conscious decision.
Scientifically speaking, this state is controlled by our unconscious thoughts, which also create our conscious thoughts. It’s a cycle. The state, in turn, also influences and shapes unconscious thoughts. But, honestly, it makes no difference which comes first; it’s a “chicken and egg” situation. Only two things matter: 1. The state is influential. 2. The state can be consciously changed. This is enough to turn your whole life around.
Judith DeLozier (American psychologist and ethnographer) once visited an African tribe as an anthropologist. A shaman asked her:
“How are civilised people different from the people of my tribe?”
Judith thought awhile and answered:
“The modern civilised person might feel one thing, think a second, and do a third.”
It took a long time for the shaman to understand what she meant.Suddenly the expression of bewilderment on his face gave way to terror:
“Judith, never do such a thing,” he said, “you will make yourself sick!”
Our task is to bring ourselves into a state of union – with the aim of achieving what we want – when thoughts, words, actions and state are synchronised.
It is impossible to attain your goals and create yourself anew if you say one thing (recording your goals, speaking them to yourself), but feel and act differently about it, while all your thoughts are revolving around your long-awaited vacation (which is still half a year away so why think about it now?). I hope that my analogies are simple enough to be easily grasped.
Let me repeat:
until we unite our thoughts, words, actions and state, while the majority of our thoughts, actions and feelings are out of sync, change is impossible.
Your life will become a discordant cacophony, with each instrument playing its own rhythm. It’s possible, of course, to blame this all on life or any of the writers telling you how to live it. It is technically possible to not mess with anything, live as it comes, and still become the conductor and play your favourite symphony. You only need to learn how to work hard and be unafraid of reaching a new plane, where your thoughts, words, actions and states obey and serve you, and not the other way around.