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Determining to achieve a goal has its place, and nothing is more gratifying than having a breakthrough. But overcoming barriers must be an inside job.

Most people tend to be happy when things are going their way. When we get what we want, it feels like life is working with us. When things don’t happen as desired or planned, we might think life is against us. But there’s no reason for life to sabotage anyone’s plans. No one is important enough for the world to conspire against them. Often, we do that all by ourselves when listening to the voice of failure and defeat instead of the voice of love.

It’s only natural to have expectations, but there’s no guarantee that things will happen as planned. Feeling frustration, disappointment, and resentment is normal when suffering loss or unfulfilled dreams. But there’s another way of looking at the difficult times in life. And how you perceive those moments can bring you happiness or misery.

Things are working in your favor, even if it seems otherwise.

Just because life isn’t happening as planned doesn’t mean it’s not working in your favor. Life is not a fast-order restaurant. You can choose many things, but some work out, and others don’t. And when something isn’t working, it’s most likely because there’s something better in store for you instead.

It’s painful when you invest yourself in a person or a venture, and then it fails. Many of us will repeatedly try to make something work despite obvious contradictions. We think if we try this or that, things will change. Not so. Life has a flow, and you only exhaust yourself when you swim against the current.

When we learn to trust that there’s a divine intelligence operating in our lives, we can let go of untenable situations and get back in the flow. When things are meant to be, you don’t have to swim upstream to get them. Instead, you collaborate with the flow and move swiftly with the forces that connect you to success. So next time you feel you’re in an impossible situation, try letting go and see what happens. Chances are, ultimately, you’ll be grateful you didn’t get what you wanted.

Turn your dislikes into likes.

I remember attending one of Michael Singer’s (author of the Untethered Soul) workshops when he lectured on how absurd it is to decide to like or dislike something. “Here we are a little spec on the planet, and we think we have control over it.” He suggested that instead of saying, “I don’t like something,” learn to say, “I like this.” Learn to say it no matter what’s going on.

Since I’ve practiced this exercise, my reactions to situations have drastically changed. No matter what personal challenges are happening – bad traffic, relationship conflict, lousy weather, disappointments, even bad news – I say, “I like this.” Then, suddenly, I feel empowered and no

longer upset or worried. I find myself empowered or even laughing at myself, seeing humor instead of drama, and experiencing a joyful day instead of being angry at the world.

Don’t fight the pain.

We like to ignore our pain. That’s never a good idea. Instead, we should pay attention and take care of it. Emotional pain is no different from physical pain. If you ignore an appendicitis attack, it will eventually burst. Your emotional pain also is a warning that something is wrong. If you deny it, you’ll likely be consumed by toxic emotions.

When you face your pain and experience it, two things happen. First, you purge the toxic emotions you’ve held in, weighing you down. Second, that pain will turn into anxiety and depression, ultimately consuming and controlling you.

When you’re hurt, stop what you’re doing, and allow yourself to feel it. Allow it to move its way through you. You will feel lighter. It will be like letting go of buckets of water you’ve carried without purpose. Even more importantly, you will recognize that things aren’t nearly as difficult as you once thought. Eventually, the pain will no longer control you and keep you stuck. You’ll be free to make the best decisions for everyone concerned.

Next time you think you’re having a bad day, try saying, “Oh, what a beautiful morning, oh, what a beautiful day. No matter what seems to be happening, everything’s going my way.” Practice this enough, and you will see that going with the flow will take you gently down the stream to success.


Dr. Donna Marks has been an author, consultant, public speaker, and psychotherapist for over thirty years. She was licensed as a Mental Health Counselor in 1987 and then certified in Addiction, Gestalt Therapy, Hypnosis, Sex Therapy, and Psychoanalysis. She currently has a concierge psychotherapy practice in Palm Beach, Florida.
She has appeared on numerous podcasts and local television. She is the author of two books, Learn Grow Forgive – A Path to Spiritual Success, and Exit the Maze: One Addiction, One Cause, One Solution (revised), and winner of multiple book awards. Her next book, The Healing Moment: Seven Keys to Turn Messes into Miracles, will be released in 2023.

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