The thing that is really hard, and really amazing, is giving up on being perfect and beginning the work of becoming yourself. – Anna Quindlen
What is the goal of Thinking Magically? When I have this discussion with people, they inevitably and half-heartedly answer: to live the perfect life!
The Real Purpose of Thinking Magically
While Thinking Magically certainly involves being and staying motivated, its real purpose, when all is said and done, is to enable you to co-create with the world around you so that you clearly manifest your intentions. Thinking Magically, then, starts with a determined intention to achieve something, fulfill a dream, or complete a quest. Let’s be clear right up front, though: intention is not just another word for mere desire; if the strength of your desire, alone, was the measuring stick for success, everyone would have everything they wish for based solely on how badly they want something. (How often have you secretly said, I Want It, And I Want It Now, expecting someone else to get it for you? If so, take a look at the classic I Want it Now girl.)
Intention (in a Thinking Magically context) is your strength of character combined with the power of your deeds. Thinking Magically is about helping you to obtain greatness in what you do, to be brilliant in what you believe, and to show talent in what you demonstrate. Notice . . . I did not say it has anything to do with perfection.
How Seeking Perfection Gets in Your Way
Often, when I ask people to fantasize about the life of their dreams, they have immediately powerful and disabling obstacles; either they they can’t actually imagine what their perfect life would be (deep down inside they believe it’s unattainable), or they become ensnared in the tiniest of details that would make their life perfect (deep down inside they believe that their vision is not good enough until it’s flawless). Why do these challenges arise? Usually because people are afraid of not being fulfilled. They fear that – by not picturing the perfect life – they won’t be happy with what results. Or, they are afraid that – by taking a step in the direction of their dreams without every detail along the way first figured out – they will miss some important twist or turn along the way and, as such, they can’t achieve their desires.
So, what I see all the time are people who don’t move forward with their dreams because they have deluded themselves into thinking the perfect life does not exist or they won’t move forward with their dream because those dreams can’t be imagined in sufficient detail. Their tireless focus on an end-product they call perfection results in only one thing – missed opportunities, haphazard results, and eventually a wasted life. I understand that breaking free of these negative thoughts can be wearisome because you can’t imagine another way of thinking. But you can mend this less-than-powerful way of thinking with one simple trick – start focusing on excellence instead of perfection. In doing so, you move your attention away from an unrealistic end result to an achievable and enjoyable journey, instead.
Perfection, you see, is really so easily manipulated and pliant. Amazing, isn’t it? While you would like to see the concept of perfection as a fixed and dependable concept, it is really only something that is perfect when viewed within the confines of what you already know. As soon as you learn more information or discover new techniques or experience new feelings, your concept of perfection changes, too. Seeking perfection can certainly be the appropriate goal in some cases, but if such a search keeps you from taking any action, at all, it might be time to rethink your strategy.
Stop delaying your success because you are not done imagining. Start doing more while you dream! I think you will find that success has a habit of rewarding those who go on a quest for results.
How Seeking Excellence Shows You The Way
Excellence is the quality of what you do. It is something over which you have never-ending control.
Perfection, on the other hand, is the Ideal to which your excellence aspires. As I said, it is something that is ever-shifting and unpredictable.
When you seek perfection, you are looking for the only ideal way to achieving a goal, obtaining an answer, or letting someone into your life. The reality is: there are as many roads to success and triumph as there are individuals. And, to make things a little more complicated, your concept of what is the best way to achieve, obtain, and permit changes over time! Just look back over your life at the relationships you have had with others and start making a cold, hard assessment of the people you thought were perfect for your life back then as compared with where your heard and your heart are today. This isn’t an indictment of your prior choices. Rather, it’s just an easy example of how the search for perfection is actually nothing more than an avoidance of being wrong. In other words, the search for perfection is really fear based.
When you seek excellence, on the other hand you are not running from fear, you are running towards more. You are advancing with an achievable goal in mind – to be the best you can be at the time. When you follow a path of excellence, you do the hard work, you challenge yourself to be more than you currently are, and you live a life of integrity. Oh yes . . . you make mistakes. And, being excellent, you learn from them. Most importantly, by seeking excellence all the time, you learn to have faith in yourself, once more. Good enough is not good enough for you. And perfection is a thing of the past. You are dedicated to a life of self-examination and thoughtful triumphs.
The challenge with seeking perfection is that it keeps you from taking action. And, if you don’t take action, you don’t manifest your intention. Here are some things you can do right now to nurture your intentions so that they serve you powerfully:
1. Create an intention to be excellent in everything that you do. This means controlling your attention to quality, greatness, and talent. Intend to be the best you can be at any given time.
2. Take massive steps to fulfill your intention. No one knows how to be perfect. But you do know what it means to be excellent. Use all your energy to perform deeds that further your intention. Be the best that you can at any particular moment!
2. Be at peace with whatever is summoned. This means having the confident power and trust in what you are doing to accept that everything and everyone that appears in response to your intention and action is exactly what is supposed to be revealed at that time. When something manifests, start saying, Of Course! Those two little words, alone, will change your triumphs from optimistic wanting to acquired fulfillment.
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