Part I: Background
Do you wish you had a better job, bigger house, more friends, better health, less worries, and greater happiness? We all engage in wishing, but should we? Should we wish for more or be satisfied with what we have? Why can’t we do both? Just because we are satisfied with what we have doesn’t mean we can’t or shouldn’t wish for more. After all, isn’t self-improvement or personal-development about wishing for more?
No, there isn’t anything wrong with wishing. A wish is merely the voice of our Higher Self reminding us that we have boundless potential and urging us to take advantage of it. If anything, we should wish to have, be, and do more because that’s how we help to create a better world. It is only when we have more than we need that we can share what we have with those who have less than they need. It is only when we are healthy that we can help the sick. And it is only when we are strong that we can help the weak. As you can see, wishing plays an important role, for we either allow ourselves to become what others will make of us, or we wish to become something better.
Did you ever toss a coin into a wishing well and make a wish? Wouldn’t it be wonderful if you had your own wishing well, one that would grant your every wish? Aware of it or not, that’s precisely what we have. We have a personal genie within us. It is our subconscious. Its sole purpose is to serve us. It serves us by regulating our heart and breathing rate, body temperature, and the flow of hormones, just to name a few of its many functions. But another major function of the subconscious is to grant our every wish! And it works tirelessly, 24/7, granting us what it believes we want.
Our subconscious is programmed to give us what we think about most of the time. As far as it is concerned, if we’re constantly thinking about something, it must be what we want, so that is what it gives us.
After hearing me say the above, Mary interrupted and said, “Hey, wait a minute! That can’t be true. For the last eight years all I have been thinking about is money, and money is what I have the least of. So, I don’t buy that garbage about getting what we think about.”
“Well, Mary,” I explained, “if you carefully analyze your thoughts, I think you will find that it wasn’t money, but the lack of money that you were thinking about. In other words, your thoughts were similar to these: ‘I never have enough money. Why is life so unfair? Others have money, but I never have enough to pay my bills on time. It frustrates and angers me that I don’t have enough money.’
“Since you are always thinking about not having enough money, your subconscious makes sure that becomes your reality because it is programmed to give you what you think about. Compare your thoughts to Tom. He is positive, optimistic, and cheerful. During most of his day he has thoughts like these: ‘I’m so lucky! I have many friends, a good job, enough money, good health, and many opportunities!’
“Can you see why Tom is in a much better position than you, Mary? His inner genie is granting his every wish by delivering what he thinks about. Look at how grateful Tom is for all he has. Living with gratitude will give you more to be grateful for. But if we choose to live with complaints, we will surely find more to complain about.”
Most of the time we are not aware of our thoughts, so, if we are not careful, we may slip into the wrong kind of thinking and like Mary end up getting the opposite of what we want. To prevent this from happening, it is best to actively pursue what we want. In other words, we should change our wish to an intention, the intention to a plan, and the plan to action. For as long as we are working our plan, our thoughts will be aligned with what we really want.
If we wish our inner wishing well to grant our wishes, we have to engage in wishing well, rather than wishing poorly. By wishing well, I mean active wishing or adding a plan of action to our wish. Many people, however, engage in wishing poorly. That is, their wishes are passive. They sit around, doing nothing, waiting for good luck to fall into their laps. Such people need to develop a backbone instead of a wishbone. Or as Frank Tyger said, “Wishing without work is like fishing without bait.” Summing up, does wishing work? Yes, as long as we do!
Part II: Wishing Strategy
The best way to attain our wishes is by combining the power of our conscious and subconscious minds. We use our conscious mind to become aware of our wishes and formulate plans to achieve them. And as long as we remain focused on our plans, we will have the right thoughts, which will act as instructions to our inner genie. Here is a strategic roadmap to help you achieve every wish.
1. Decide what you wish to do, be, or have. Be still and listen to your heart’s desire. Allow your Higher Self to speak to you.
2. Be specific. This is the first rule of goal-setting. In order to assist you, your inner genie needs to know exactly what you wish for. Wishing for more money or better health isn’t very helpful. How much more money to you wish to have? One penny? One hundred dollars? Or $50,000? How much healthier do you wish to be? Healthy enough to catch one less cold a year or healthy enough to climb to the top of the tallest mountain? Be specific.
3. Focus on what you want, not on what you don’t want. Don’t make the same mistake that Mary did.
4. State you wish as, “I want to do, be, or have this or something better.” Sometimes life has better plans than your own, but if your eyes are locked onto your personal target, you may not see the better opportunity life is offering. So remind yourself to remain flexible, not only looking for what you are wishing for, but looking for something better as well, for that’s the only way you will notice it if it appears.
5. Stretch, but don’t overreach. Every wish implies that we have to stretch ourselves, but if we constantly overreach, we may meet with constant failure, which may cause us to believe we are a failure, which in turn may cause us to give up our dreams. Yet, if we remain timid, only pursuing the smallest wishes, we will not get very far in life. So, a balanced approach is necessary. First make reasonable wishes, and as your confidence grows, reach for bigger and bigger prizes. And if you fail at a particular goal, use it as a learning moment. Discover what you did wrong and apply what you learned to make future attempts more certain.
6. Make your wish measurable. You need a way to gage your success. For example, if you wish to lose two pounds a week for the next three months, that is easily measured and you will easily know how successful you are. Keep track of your results and adjust your actions when needed.
7. As a sign of your commitment, make a declaration. A declaration is a specific, clear, and descriptive affirmation of your wish. State it in the present tense and begin by stating “I am…”
For example, if your wish is to move into a bigger house, write down “I am now living in a bigger house.” Next, to make it more emotional, add an attractive description, such as, “I am now living in a large red brick house with ivy on the outside walls and black ceramic shingles covering the roof. I have a large flower garden with gazebo. Inside my four bedroom house I have hardwood floors, a fireplace, etc…” The description makes your wish more desirable, firing up the emotions so you work harder. The clearer and more vivid your description, the harder your subconscious will work to bring your wish into reality. Keep your declaration on a small index card that you always have with you and refer to it several times a day. This will keep both your conscious and subconscious minds focused on your wish.
8. Now that you know what you want, make a plan. What steps do you need to take to achieve your wish? Make a list. What resources do you need? On what dates will you carry out each step? Use the power of your conscious mind by employing goal-setting to create your plan. And as long as you remain focused on it, your subconscious will also get to work on it.
9. Make an alternative plan to deal with the unexpected. As we cannot predict the future, we should have a “Plan B” ready just in case. For example, a planned business partner may change their mind at the last minute and drop out, or the city may change the zoning laws, prohibiting your type of business, so be prepared.
10. Save yourself a lot of needless extra work by thinking about possible problems before they occur. What obstacles are you likely to meet and how will you overcome them? Now is the time to think about them. At times a problem may appear that absolutely stumps you. You may have no idea how to proceed. This is the area in which the subconscious is superior to the conscious mind. If you don’t know how to solve the problem, just do whatever you can think of, and as you remain focused on your wish, your subconscious will work 24 hours a day searching for a solution. And it will not cease until it finds one, which it will reveal to you.
11. What is the price you will have to pay to get your wish? How much time, effort, and sacrifice will be necessary? Are you willing to pay the price? If you are successful, what are the ramifications? How will it affect your family? Think this step through carefully.
12. The one thing that will get you from where you are to where you want to be is action. No other step is as important as this one. Now that you have a plan, implement it by taking action every day. Daily action is critical as often the path we must follow is not revealed until further along on our journey.
13. Have faith in the process. Believe your wish will be granted. Look forward to it and expect it. Once you deeply believe you will receive your wish you are already halfway there. But what shall you do if you find it too difficult to believe your wish will be granted? Here are some steps you can take:
With weak faith you will probably get weak results, but acknowledge those results when they come and try again. Build up your faith one step at a time. As your faith grows, you’ll be able to handle bigger wishes.
14. Practice visualization. You have already made a declaration (Step 7), now spend ten minutes a day, longer if you wish, seeing yourself living your dream. You already practice visualization every day, but you do so unconsciously and call it by another name. You call it daydreaming. When we daydream about all the things that can go wrong in our lives, we are using the power of imagination in a destructive way. Daydreaming about your worries is programming yourself for failure. Practicing visualization is the opposite, for visualization is consciously using our imagination to program ourselves to achieve our dreams. Visualization simply takes advantage of the subconscious’ nature to bring into our lives more of what we think about.
15. Now that you are visualizing and expecting results, look for them. Look for results, opportunities, and signs that your wish has either arrived or is on its way. If you’re not alert, you may fail to see the opportunity that is right around the corner.
16. Enjoy the game and adventure of life. Do not wait for your wish to be granted before being happy. The journey to your dream should be just as exciting as the dream itself. So, enjoy every step of the way.
17. Practice gratefulness. Be grateful for everything you already have that is aligned with your wishes. The more you are grateful for what you have, the more you will have to be grateful for.
18. Keep a Wishing Works journal. Jot down your wishes, clarify and amplify them. Write down your experiences and record your successes. The journal will help you remain focused and thereby help you achieve a higher level of success.
19. Celebrate your victory and thank life for its gifts. Look forward to receiving a new wish and start the process again.
20. From time to time, consider the potential power of your wishes and decide how you best want to use this power. For instance, should I wish for another car or to make the world a better place by treating all I meet with kindness? Should I wish to travel abroad or to alleviate the suffering of others by spreading joy? Why not wish for both?
Part III: The Correct Mindset Is Your Foundation for Success
Larry believes life is a struggle, his career a rat race, the world a hostile place, and people cannot be trusted. He is a cynic, a pessimist, and a negative thinker.
Harry, on the other hand, believes life is a glorious adventure, his career a marvelous opportunity, the world a pleasant place, and people are basically good (all trying to do the best they can with what they have at the moment). He believes in the goodness of life, is an optimist, and a positive thinker.
Which of the two men is more likely to become successful? Which is more likely to have their wishes granted, dreams realized, and goals reached? Isn’t it clear that our mindset, or the way we view the world, is of critical importance?
What is the mindset of master wish achievers? Although their thoughts and mindset will vary slightly from person to person, if your mindset contains the following beliefs, you will be a master wish achiever. So study them well, embrace them, make them a part of you and you will achieve your dreams.
Returning to my original question, will wishing work? Absolutely, if you do. What kind of work is necessary? All you have to do is follow the 20-step Wishing Strategy, adopt the mindset of wish achievers, and study the principles outlined in one or more of the following books. Although all of the books are good, they approach the subject differently. So learn about the books and read their reviews at Amazon.com, and pick one or more that resonate with you.
WISHING WELL: Making Your Every Wish Come True by Paul Pearsal
WISHES FULFILLED: Mastering the Art of Manifesting by Dr. Wayne W. Dyer