Bonni wrote a comment on the last post…
I’m feeling very, very “shrinky” lately. It’s money (as frequently is the case with so many people). I feel like penny-pinching and hoarding, and I know this isn’t a good attitude to have.
I’m still giving to charities and I’m still trying to keep myself open to spending money on things I want/need, but I just don’t feel it, you know? Once I give the money away or spend it, it’s okay, but when contemplating, “Should I spend this?” the answer is almost always, “Oh, better not!” and a big list of stuff we have to pay for starts scrolling past…. So HOW do you expand when you feel like this? How do I open myself up and say to the Universe, “I’m not worried, I know there is unlimited abundance, bring it on!” I mean, I can say it, but how do I actually PRACTICE it?
It’s interesting that she capitalized the word practice, because that is exactly what it takes sometimes. (Bonni also invented the word “shrinky” which all the other commentators seemed to love!)
I’m convinced that many people choose not to change their lives because they’re waiting to “feel it.” They’re waiting for that guarantee from the universe (or God, or their parents) that they won’t fail. That’s why I love the line, “Leap and the net will appear.” Faith often comes from first doing it – not necessarily knowing that everything will turn out great.
It’s the same thing with expanding when you feel shrinky. You often don’t feel like it. This is why practice can be so effective. It’s like working out. Most people don’t feel like working out. But they know they want to do it, and that they love how they feel because of it. If they waited til they felt like it, they might never go to the gym!
So, since Bonni is talking about money here, let’s look at the idea of Tithing…
Tithing is not about charity or giving to “need.” (Though giving to charity is fine, too. It’s just that tithing is a different thing altogether.) The reason I like tithing is that it requires trust.
My favorite interpretation of tithing is that it is giving 10% of your income to anywhere or anyone that “spiritually feeds you.” For some people, this is a religious institution. For many people – it can be anyone or anywhere because they believe spirit/God is in all things. The idea behind this is that you are “giving back” to source or to the universe or to the flow. (Use the word that works for you.) For me, it’s like I’m saying “yes” and “I know there’s an unlimited supply.” There’s a giant trust about it.
When I started tithing, I only tithed 10% of “unexpected income.” That way, Shrinky Self could relax a bit. After all, Shrinky Self thinks, “Oh. Okay. Fine. There’s no such thing as Unexpected Income. So if that’s how you want to do it, then fine by me.” So, I practiced on bits and pieces of unexpected income – rounding up the 10% at the end of the month, and giving it away. Then, after a few months, out of the blue, I received check for $6500. So, Shrinky Self all of the sudden had to realize that abundance was possible.
And what did she want to do with that? She wanted to hoard it of course! It was all fine and good to play my little tithing game when it was $25 here and there. But now the game had changed.
The point of this is that the very structure of Shrinky Self is that she will always be able to find a very rational logical reasons not to expand. Things can be going badly. The economy could suck. And Shrinky Self finds a million people who agree with her. OR, things could be going great. You’re making great money. And Shrinky Self can convince you that “hard times are just around the corner. Hold tight.”
This is why I love Intention. Intention is your guide. It’s not that you set the intention to expand, and then you instantly and forever more “feel like” expanding. It’s that “expansion” becomes your lighthouse – even when you’re only seeing dark everywhere. You get to at least know it’s out there and that you want to find it.
Also, expansion is not just limited to money.
For instance, last week, when I was in New York City, I was walking down a street one morning. There were very few people out. A man was walking towards me, and without even thinking, I looked up at him as we passed each other and I said, “Hi!”
He looked at me like I was something he had stepped in.
Shrinky Self shouted at me, “You dumb ass! This is the city! You don’t say HI to people!” (Luckily, I don’t take her all that seriously anymore so I continued to say hi to more people who leered back.)
The point is that there are MANY ways to practice expanding. If money doesn’t feel like a good practice point for you, find other areas to practice expanding.
And remember, you don’t have to bungee jump. You don’t have to give away all your money or do something that terrifies you. This is why I love the idea of “Practice.” You can still feel shrinky and practice expanding. Don’t wait until you “feel like” expanding. That will come from the practice. And after a while, you’ll spend more time in “expansion” than you will in shrinky.
p.s. I’m recording my next CD, and I have another blog! Visit BeMyRecordLabel to hear my songs as they get recorded and read about the creative process. You can also get a free song when you visit there – just look in the right sidebar! (And don’t forget to Pre-Order your very own copy of the CD!)