I must admit I was skeptical when reading the Law of Attraction related book, ‘Ask and It Is Given‘ by Esther and Jerry Hicks. There is much about it that screams mystical mumbo-jumbo, or ‘woo woo’. The fact that the authors claim to receive the words from the ether, the mystical ‘Abraham’ for example…hmm. Nah. However, here are some of the ideas I found most valuable to help you get more of what you want and, most importantly, feel good.
Find your joy
‘Ask and It Is Given’ shares the yoga philosophy that the primary and most natural emotion for all humans is joy. They believe that being able to recognise and live at peace with this idea is fundamental to living a successful, happy and abundant life. However, after years of advertising brainwashing and Hollywood movies this concept feels alien. Of course we need external things to feel joy, otherwise what do we do with our time? What do we buy? Who do we idolise? Hicks encourages us to question this philosophy and realise it is something we can feel all by ourselves.
Get ready to ask
The Law of Attraction, as presented in this book, decrees that we ask for what we want through the giving of our attention. Notably, we also ask for what we don’t want just by focusing on it. The way to tell whether we are attracting something positive or negative is based on our feelings; if you feel good, you’re on to a winner!
Until we reach a joyous state of being, we will not feel more joy. The same applies to wealth or adventure. We must feel adventurous before adventure will come our way. For example, I would never have gone to India to study yoga if I hadn’t spent months reading and preparing myself to become an adventurer. I had a far off scary daydream but slowly and purposefully convinced myself that I did have what it takes to make it a reality. I was slowly climbing a ladder, strengthening the emotion I wanted to feel with each rung.
Raise your spirits
I don’t know about you, but when I’m worrying about something, it’s hard to turn it around to a positive emotion. For this purpose, Hicks has provided exercises to increase our happiness, enthusiasm and interestingly, creativity. Each exercise corresponds to a different emotional state, from no will to live to jumping for joy, and you are encouraged to choose the range that suits you at the time. I appreciated that we aren’t shoe-horned into a one exercise fits all situation here, and did find many of the exercises inspiring.
For example, the first exercise is called ‘The Rampage of Appreciation’. To try it, look around your immediate environment and let your eyes rest on something that pleases you. Take in everything you like about the object and really feel glad to be beholding it and enjoying it. Now notice how good you feel and be appreciative of that. Look for something else and repeat the process. Hopefully you will feel your whole mood lift, climbing up that ladder, to a place where you are buzzing with gratitude. Imagine how much happier we could feel in life if we took this mindset wherever we went!
Let the good times grow
Once we feel better, Hicks believes we invite a better life to us. They call this ‘allowing’, highlighting that it is not something we must struggle towards.
“Success is about a happy life, and a happy life is just a string of happy moments, but most people do not allow the happy moments because they are so busy trying to get a happy life.”
For many (well me anyway!) this is a big reminder to enjoy the journey. According to Hicks, the best thing you can do when feeling stressed or hopeless is to daydream and play. I haven’t quite got this down pat yet, but I am trying to step back from a stressful situation and look for the positives around me. This is a new take for someone who would typically work and work at a problem until it goes away – either through conquering or dismissing it.
“Success is not about getting it done. It is about still dreaming and feeling positive in the unfolding. The standard of success in life is not the money or the stuff – the standard of success is absolutely the amount of joy you feel.”
Let yourself flourish
The importance of not feeling guilt in prioritising your own joy also aligns with yogic values and is at odds with popular sentiment. Hicks emphasises that there is enough joy, wealth and wellness to go around and it is up to you to embrace yours.
“It is only in your thriving that you have anything to offer anyone. If you want to be of help to others, be as tapped in, tuned in and turned on as you can possibly be.”
So take care of yourself, have fun and daydream about all the good things coming your way. And if you’ve read the book, let me know your thoughts!