Something we have learned well, and we can see this clearly when we look at the media, is to put our attention on what is topical. What big thing is garnering all of our attention today, this week, this month? I have never seen the Nightly News come right out and say, “People all over the world are still loving each other the best way they know how, today” or “98.5% of children under 3 learned half a dozen useful skills this morning and can be expected to do it again tomorrow”. The media would tell us that is not ‘news’. That is commonplace.
Politicians are corrupt, corporations are soulless, life is unfair to the common man, disease is rampant, etc. Sorry, but none of this is new. Also, none of this is or ever has been universal: not all politicians are corrupt, not all corporations are soulless, each and every one of us, common or uncommon has choices, and health is also rampant. So why, after millenia are we still considering this viewpoint as worthy of our attention? Simple. It is a practiced habit.
We tend to pay attention to topical issues, both as a population and as individuals. However, the ability to go back over your assumptions and those choices that were made before is a very important tool in changing a habit! Ask yourself what benefit you get from paying attention to the negatives. I can think of 2 offhand:
1) It points out the positive direction by contrast (if I don’t want pain, I do want comfort).
2) It feels so good when you stop (paying attention to the negatives).
It is a basic LoA principle that what you pay attention to grows larger, and that you can’t magnetize what you DO want by focusing on what you DON’T want. To attract it, you must already see yourself having it. Since this is kinda tough, especially in the beginning, I have a suggestion. Train yourself out of the habit of focusing on what you don’t want by training yourself to disregard topical issues, social and private. Start with the ones that are outside your direct control, for example what you see in the media. Replace those thoughts with the ways you have what you want. Despite what the media says, I have a job, a house, a car, etc. HINT: Allow yourself to speak from this very moment! Do not predict that you may not have it next week, next week is not here! Match yourself NOW to what you want any time in the future.
The next suggestion is really the meat of this post: celebrate those commonplace things that are so easy to disregard because they are ‘not good enough’ to actually celebrate. One of my daughters was miserable at one point in her teens because no one loved her. I told her I loved her and thought she was special. She replied, “That doesn’t count, you have to love me, you’re my mother”. This just goes to show our ability to disregard what could be a source of comfort or celebration. Once I had a migraine and searched my entire body for a spot that didn’t hurt, so I could put my attention on it. It was the arches of my feet. As I focused my attention on them, not only did the pain recede from my awareness, the arches of my feet rubbing against one another became more and more deliciously comfortable.
I did this today and I felt so much better, I began to giggle. “I love the way these jeans fit, I really look forward to having all my jeans fit this well. I love having lots of clothes to choose from to stay warm. I love the warmth and the massage of the water in the shower, and the way I feel refreshed and renewed when I get out. I love the smell of this dill I am harvesting and this soup I am making. I love the feeling of release I get from taking a big breath. I love the fact that I can feel better whenever I want by breathing deeply. I love the fact that once I get started doing this, I attract more ideas of what I love….”
Give credit to your commonplace abundance, allow it to help you feel better for as long as you do it, and practice this habit. You will find the harder issues will, little by little, get easier.