I’ve been thinking about it ever since I found my new place– and yes, I promise I will tell you the story– and people exclaimed with joy, “You manifested it!”
And I thought…. “Mmmm….nuh-unh.”
Now this is partly semantics, so I beg you, please do not write me explaining how I just don’t understand the Law of Attraction properly.
But I didn’t manifest this next big chapter of my life.
I planned for it. I schemed for it. I hunted relentlessly for it. I held out for what I really wanted, and I tried 18,000 different ways to make it happen. And when the unicorn finally rode into view, I POUNCED.
N.B. No unicorns were harmed in the making of this missive.
Then I rallied all my forces, will, charm, connections, and resources to make it happen.
It was not at all like receiving, even though I am deeply grateful.
It was not like attracting.
It was more like manual labor, like digging in the dirt, like running as hard as I can, arriving out of breath, exhilarated, winded.
I think this is so important for us to talk about, because I’m a little out in the cold here. The prevailing wisdom among almost all the teachers I respect is that we get what we want by resting, relaxing into it, detaching from outcome, staying open, releasing, meditating, and other very lovely and spiritual pursuits.
This is not how it works for me.
For me, it is important to make my bed.
To set a timer for five minutes every day and clean my house as fast as I can.
To make a plan ON PAPER with dates and deadlines.
To use budgets, lists, and other incredibly unsexy (but oh so powerful) tools.
To be relentless in a way that is not quite desperate but IS pig-headedly stubborn.
To be deliberate even about infusing beauty and bliss into my days.
To call on spiritual guidance and guardians who are loving and FIERCE.
I keep puzzling over this.
Why am I so different?
I’m not sure, but I know some of you are, too. It may be that most people are most comfortable in the physical land of DOING, of working hard and grinding it out– and we are most comfortable in the land of ideas, dreams, metaphor and magic.
If so, it makes sense that for almost everyone, the sweet spot would come from easing off, resting more, letting the universal flow in.
Me, flow is not my issue. I can flow all day long with the cosmic etheric sunbeams and the humming universal heartbeat of mystery.
For me, my sweet spot lies in going the opposite direction, toward sweat and discipline.
Magic comes from leaning in, getting my hands dirty, roughing out physical forms for my ideas, and grappling with my life with delight but also with MUSCLE.
I think this is why this year’s theme was such a game-changer for me. (My 2014 theme was Epic Fucking Badass.) In previous years I’ve had these beautiful lovely themes– bloom, dominion, prosper– and they didn’t have any muscle to them. They were passive. They required that things happen TO me in order for me to change and grow. And so then, boy howdy, things DID happen! Hard things, painful things, as well as beautiful and hilarious ones.
This year’s theme was scrappy. It required nothing of the universe, but much of me. It declared the energy *I* was bringing to the table, no matter what. It was white-knuckling it. It was taking risks and being braver and working harder and being more disciplined and tough than I thought I could be.
And so what happened was that I finally developed grit.
Not the grit of surviving hard things– I already had that down. (See above.)
But the grit of taking dirt and water and seeds and wood and paper and glue and MAKING THINGS out of scratch.
And this magic, the gritty magic of creating, is MY ABSOLUTE FAVORITE. I know you love it too.
So here is my charge to you, as you choose your theme and your symbol for 2015:
Don’t attract what you want. Don’t pine for it. Don’t detach from it. Don’t manifest it. Go CREATE it, with love and beauty and delight and GRIT.