It’s quite common for people to experience the same types of problems over and over. At times, it can even seem like you’re cursed.
When the same things keep happening to you, it’s really easy to assume that you just have bad luck or that certain problems are drawn to you.
Either way, the tendency is to think that it’s something happening to you, rather than something you’re creating yourself.
It seems like once you notice the same things repeatedly happening in your life, then you begin to notice these things everywhere you look. At times, it can seem like it’s completely taking over your life.
And the reason for this is actually quite simple: energy flows where your attention goes. This is a basic fact of life.
Yet people still tend to focus on the problem instead of the solution.
We think that if we could only spend enough time on the problem, that it will eventually fix itself.
So we obsess over it.
We complain about it.
We reinforce it.
And then we’re defeated by it. It’s only a matter of time before we give in and just label the problem as part of our destiny…our karmic cycle…our fate…our design…or just our bad luck.
We start pointing to the problem as if it’s something outside of ourselves…as if it “happened to us.”
This not only sets you up to become a victim, but it therefore disempowers you to do anything about the problem at all.
This type of thinking is why some people struggle to attract a good relationship. It’s also why others can’t seem to be able to pay the bills and be financially comfortable.
Sometimes things happen in life that are beyond our control. But there is always a way to turn bad circumstances into good results.
It revolves around the trust that everything that happens to you, is happening for a reason.
And it doesn’t matter if it’s a good reason or a bad reason. It doesn’t matter if you fully understand all of the reasons why it happened.
These things can be helpful, sure, but they can also lead you further down the path of focusing on the problem.
It’s a slippery slope.
But the next time something happens to you and you’re trying to make sense of it, try instead to just trust that the things you need to learn will be present and obvious…there’s no need to search for the answers and toil over why it happened.
All you have to do is overcome it.
What is the solution?
If you don’t know, keep thinking about it.
The more of your focus you divert from “why did this happen” to a more productive “what can I do,” the better results you will get.
But we so often make the excuse that we don’t know what to do. And this is almost always bullshit.
I have people all the time write to me and claim that they don’t know what to do. Yet in their actual message they say the answer as plain as day…
It’s amazing how we can over-complicate things in our lives.
Almost always, you already know the answer.
And if you don’t then it’s because you either haven’t figured it out yet or you don’t have enough information to arrive at an answer.
But even in the latter two scenarios, you already have an answer.
And that answer is to be patient, gather more information, think about it more, and continue to search for the answer.
My go-to advice for when I find myself unable to find the answer is to start by asking myself, “Well, what do you want to have happen?”
It’s amazing to me how many times people won’t even consider this very basic precept before they start jumping to conclusions about their situation.
Asking this question will almost always get you closer to the answer you need. So many times people set out to find an answer without even taking a moment to ask themselves what they truly want to have happen.
Another hack for finding the answer, is to ask yourself aloud, “What is the answer?”
Then you’ll probably respond with something like, “I don’t know.”
From there, ask yourself honestly, “If I did know the answer, what would it be?” Answer fast. Don’t think.
It’s a weird hack that tricks your brain into clarity by dissolving all of the emotional resistance in your way.
Again, you almost always know the answer.
If you think you don’t then it’s likely because you’re experiencing an emotional reaction that’s keeping you from the clarity.
But if you can find a way to cut through all of that noise, you will find that the correct answer is simple and clear as day.
There are so many ways that you can come to terms with your situation and then be able to change it in order for more desirable things to start happening.
The first and most obvious of these things is to take a good, hard, honest look at where your attention is. Are you focusing on the problem? Be honest with yourself.
What would it be like if you started focusing on the solution? Seriously, imagine it. Create in your mind an alter ego for yourself…a superhero…and then ask yourself what that superhero version of yourself would do.
Imagine that you’re in an action movie and everyone is depending on your superhero to solve the problem…that should go a long way in helping you to shift your focus from the problem to the solution.
And if you don’t know the solution, then ask yourself what it is that you want the outcome to be.
If you don’t know what you want to have happen, then keep getting broader and broader until you arrive at the answer.
Here’s an example self-talk dialogue that you might have go through your head in one form or another:
“How come I can’t find a partner? Is it because I’m not attractive enough? Am I not successful enough? Am I too nice? Why does it seem like everyone’s already taken?”
Obviously these questions can take on many different forms…but the same basic idea is the same. You start questioning why you’re having the problem and then attributing it to things you cannot control, often in ways that are injurious to yourself or others.
Now here’s what happens when you shift your thinking from the problem to possible solutions:
“I haven’t been able to find a partner yet. What kinds of things can I do, or do differently, in order to find a partner?”
Notice the subtle, but extremely important difference: switching your thinking from “Why can’t I…” to “How come I haven’t been able to yet?” It’s a way for you to recognize the issue without feeling so hopelessly trapped by it.
If you cannot find the answer, then you need to start asking yourself what you want:
“What is it that I even want?”
“Well, what kind of partner?”
“I want someone who is smart, loves to hang around the house, enjoys cooking together, plays video games, and likes to engage in stimulating discussions.”
“What have you been doing to meet this person?”
“I go out to the bars and clubs almost every single weekend.”
“Are you absolutely sure that you’ll find this type of person there?”
“No…obviously not, otherwise I would have found them by now.”
“What can you do differently in order to attract the person you’re looking for?”
“Hmm…maybe I can try online dating, going out to book stores or libraries, or hanging out at farmers’ markets or health-conscious places, or just starting up conversation and making friends with other people. Who knows, maybe someone will introduce me to one of their friends…”
As you can see, there are a million different things this person could do in order to begin working toward solving their problem. And if none of those things work, there will always be a million more things. This is the power of persistence.
Nevertheless, people frequently find themselves in the position where their problems literally become bigger than life itself. Their problems consume their focus and they’ll become so preoccupied with their problems that they literally associate them as part of their identity…as part of their fate.
I’ve heard it so many times…people see the patterns in their life and then write it off as “bad luck.” I mean how much more of a cop out can you get?
And when you suggest to them that it might be a pattern that they’re playing out, they get defensive and combative.
However, people who are a bit more reasonable will tell you that they’ve thought about that already.
They’ll tell you that they’ve tried all of these different things but they keep getting the same results regardless of what they do.
Typically when a person is conscious enough to even reflect on their life at this level, solving their problem easily becomes within reach. But there is actually a very simple reason why some people can see a problem, understand their role in its creation, and yet still feel trapped and hopeless by their situation.
The reason might be hard for you to accept, or even understand.
But it’s because they have been conditioned by their brain patterning to become addicted to the negative feelings associated with not having what they want in life.
People have ongoing stories about their lives. And when these stories elicit strong emotions (negative or positive) in a person, it makes for the perfect environment in which addictions are born.
This is why people can become addicted to the news. It’s why they can become addicted to video games. Sex. Drugs. Alcohol. Fear. Anger…
You name it.
Few people will understand or admit that you can also be addicted to a story, just the same as anything else.
The brain is designed to favor familiarity. It evolved this way because that’s precisely the type of thinking that has allowed the species to survive and pass on its genes to the next generation.
The unknown breeds fear and potential danger, which is why people tend to gravitate to things that are comfortable and familiar.
And when an archaic-designed brain is transplanted in an ever-changing, hyper-complex, and technologically advanced society, we begin to see this same behavior play out in ways that aren’t actually tied to survival. We continue to exhibit the same learned behaviors over and over again. The brain is just doing its job. And it will continue to do its job until you make a conscious and concerted effort to reprogram the way it functions.
Which is actually quite difficult. And it’s a whole lot harder than just changing the things you do in order to get what you want. Sadly, this is where most people’s efforts both begin and end.
This is the true dilemma that keeps people stuck.
They focus on changing their actions. But just like there are million ways to get unstuck, there are also a million ways to stay stuck. Of course this means that a person who is addicted to a particular emotional outcome will invariably choose one of the million paths that will give them their fix of the particular emotional-chemical concoction that they’re deeply familiar with.
And I can’t stress that enough…
These things are deep!
Quite often these stem from childhood. There is even evidence that certain pre-natal environments have been linked with behavioral issues. And, being someone crazy and imaginative, I personally believe that there may even be an element of karmic standing that carries over from former lifetimes.
Seriously, it won’t be long before humans start learning more about how the brain works, and how it’s linked to both our physical and “spiritual” development as human beings.
And when we do, we’ll finally start understanding the basic tenants of what the world’s religions throughout history were trying to convey…this time through an entirely different lens: science. I can’t wait for this to start happening and I hope I’m still alive to see it.
But for now, there is one thing that I have found that can actually drill down to the core of these very deep, psychological addiction patterns that keep us stuck in the same do-loop of problems.
And I struggle to write this here, I really do.
Because I know how it sounds.
I know what happens in most people’s minds when they hear the word “forgiveness.”
I know because I used to think the same thing.
When most people think about forgiveness, they think of it as an action.
This couldn’t be further from the truth. And here’s why…
When you “forgive” something (in this case, your life situation and patterning of problems), you are ultimately admitting that the situation was wrong and that you are choosing to have that be okay.
If someone is mean to me and I forgive them, it implies that I first had to recognize that they were mean before I can even get to the point of forgiving them.
You can’t “forgive” something unless you first recognize the error in the first place.
You can’t turn a light off in a room until someone first turns it on. It’s a natural prerequisite.
My only hope is that these words help to turn a light on in your own mind.
Because the true nature of forgiveness is not an action at all…
Rather, it is a state of being.
It took me over 10 years to learn this very simple distinction. And I had a spiritual mentor who taught me nothing but forgiveness for 10 years.
I’ve asked him so many times what forgiveness is and also how to do it.
Every time I got the same answer: you just do it.
How could anyone not associate it as an action…as something you do?
Well, true forgiveness is something that happens naturally. In other words, there’s nothing to do.
Forgiveness is not something you do. It is a way of being.
But it is a way of being that must be cultivated consciously before you can truly start reaping its effects.
Forgiveness, I’ve found, is the most powerful creative force on the entire planet that a human being is capable of wielding…yet so few understand what it really means.
I didn’t find out until after my mentor died. As part of his dying will, he arranged to have sent to me a passage from A Course in Miracles that tied everything together for me. And it was in that very instance that everything clicked all at once.
It was the most bizarre feeling to see everything play out…to remember the hundreds of questions about forgiveness and why it was so important. I remembered all of the times I “just did it” and didn’t see anything.
But he kept telling me the same thing: “You don’t even have to mean it, you just do it.”
YES!!!! BUT WHAT IS IT!?
WHAT IS FORGIVENESS!?
I could never figure it out.
I never knew.
Until one day, I knew exactly.
Maybe I grew to understand it through trial and error…through the immense amount of practice.
Maybe the moment that I would understand it was already set in stone, just waiting for my arrival.
I can’t say for sure.
But I do know now that true forgiveness…
…are you ready for this…?
True forgiveness is a state of being that recognizes that no error has actually occurred in the first place.
Nothing actually happened.
It was your own mind that was tricking you into injuring itself.
The only ‘error’ was simply a mistake in judgement.
True forgiveness realizes that no error actually occurred and that it is you who refuses to let go of the situation. You keep playing it out in order to injure yourself. You keep reciting it word for word…you obsess over it…you declare it…you add an enormous amount of energy to observing and solidifying the error to the point where it can’t help but to manifest in your experience.
In other words, you become hyper obsessed on the problem. And when it manifests you say to yourself, “See!?”
The vicious cycle rages on.
And the only way to break the cycle is to forgive.
Whenever the problem comes up, just shrug it off and say, “Yeah I see that there. But I refuse to acknowledge this as something that’s happening outside of me. I am choosing now to stop believing in this reality and I am going to reserve my judgement as I am not entirely sure that things are happening the way that I see them.”
That’s all it really takes.
Feel free to put your own words to it.
When you first start out, all forgiveness really entails is a suspension of judgement about your situation.
And it’s super hard. You’re likely going to feel like you’re lying to yourself. That you’re not being realistic. That you’re being foolish and that you’re never going to break free of your problems.
Your mind will throw everything it’s got in order to keep you stuck.
But that’s when you just forgive that too.
You are an amazing being and you can do anything with the greatest gift that’s ever been bestowed upon you: your free will.
Or lose it.
I’ve used this forgiveness strategy with great success. And I am glad that I’m here writing about it, because that only strengthens my resolve in continuing to employ the technique of forgiveness.
Through forgiveness, I have made problems disappear, bills vanish, and bad situations completely reverse themselves. I managed to overcome anger, difficult emotions, and transmute fear and uncertainty into courage and confidence.
Have someone (or multiple someones) in your life that’s causing you problems? Forgive them.
Forgive them and watch the magic that happens as a result.
Forgiveness is seriously the most powerful magical ability that humans have, primarily because it affects virtually anything. You can forgive anything.
Just remember that forgiveness is not something you do, but rather something you be.
Are you scared about paying rent? Forgive it.
Are you worried you’ll die alone? Forgive it.
Do you suffer from health problems? Forgive it.
Do you wish desperately that you could be more? Forgive it.
Have you struggled with your goals? Forgive it.
Has someone been an asshole to you? Forgive it.
The list goes on and on and on.
When you forgive, the world has a strange and mysterious way of changing on its own. Things transform right before your very eyes, many times in ways that you could never anticipate.
That’s the coolest thing about forgiveness, I think…
When you use it, you’re basically giving yourself a Christmas present. Forgiveness is sorta like a box of chocolates: you never know what you’re gonna get.
Forgiveness is one of the most powerful states of mind available to a human being.
It serves as the conjunction between lightheartedness, laughter, joy, faith, and complete and utter detachment.
When you forgive something in an attempt to control a situation, it often backfires due to over-attachment to an outcome. But when you forgive just to forgive…aka when you just do it…then you wield the greatest power of all.
Remember that forgiveness is a state of being in which you assert that there was actually no problem to begin with. The “problem” was something you made up to hurt yourself.
Once you recognize that, then the problem goes away on its own.
And I just think it’s so funny imagining all of the people who hear shit like that and want to burn me alive.
That’s how powerful someone’s story can be.
If you in any way invalidate someone’s personal story of themselves, they can become murderously enraged.
It’s pretty crazy.
It’s really crazy.
Actually, it’s freakin’ insanely crazy…
…the extend people will go to in order to defend their (incorrect) stories.
It’s amazing man.
I can’t believe it.
People would rather die to defend their story than to live a better life letting it go.
And I’m sure that I’m doing the same thing in ways that I currently have yet to identify.
And so the world goes round, I guess.
I’ll just continue to practice my forgiveness lessons.
Thank you, comrade, for affording me the inspiration to write these words of wisdom. They serve as a powerful refresher for me to continue to get better and better at casting the forgiveness spell.
They say the best way to learn something is to teach it.
So if that’s true, then I have greatly benefited by writing this article. I’m pretty grateful for that.