If you’ve done the Future Self Now visualisation, (and if you haven’t, don’t worry, you can download it from the Home page), you’ll now have a sense of your Future Self – of Who You Really Are. So now what?
Whether you simply have a feeling, a snap-shot of a moment in time, or a full blown set of ‘Future Memories’, it doesn’t matter, as long as you have a felt-sense of yourself in essence. I’ve had clients who, initially, only see themselves on a hill looking out at a view or in their kitchen. Some only experience a sensation of ease and confidence. This is enough for you to start aligning to today.
Why Alignment is important
The Future Self Now work is all about the NOW. I cannot stress this enough. Even though we use the future to get a clear sense of ourselves, it’s important not to live there. If you see your Future Self and then start chasing her/him – wondering how to ‘get there’ – then you are turning your back on the most juicy part: this present moment and the journey. If your Future Self were with you now he/she would say: “Oh, savour this time – it’ll never come again and it’s so important that you do all this groundwork in order to get to where I am.”
I’d almost like to say ‘Forget your Future Self’, even! It’s enough to know that your true self is confident, at ease, abundant and generous. If you can relax into the absolute knowing of this and let your journey unfold in every way that it wants to unfold, then, really, that’s all there is to do.
So, start making your daily happiness your number one prioriy. This is where true communion with your Future Self lies – in the present day – relishing every step along the way.
I know, I know. Just telling you to relax and enjoy is not always enough! So here’s where this list comes in – to help you heighten your experience of the everyday through your alignment with who you truly are. So let’s get the show on the road:
An oldie but a goodie. It ‘s impossible to be appreciative and disconnected at the same time. Practice these everywhere you go.
2. Super-charged appreciations
Here’s a tip for feeling your appreciations at 300% : feel your Future Self come into your body. Invite him/her in to have a look at your world through their eyes. What does your Future Self have to say about that old coffee mug you’re using right now? What does he/she feel when they see your children/partner/friends? Experience first hand your Future Self’s delight at having a chance to experience all this again! I was sitting in our garden the other day in the shade of our enormous beech tree. My Future Self looked out through my eyes and said wistfully, “I loved that tree”.
It’s always a great thing to allow yourself to write out what you’re experiencing in the moment. Just let it rip and allow it to all pour out. It’s much better on the page than in your head. The best time of day to do this is first thing in the morning as you tend to be closer to your heart then and it’s easier to get in touch with what’s really bugging you. If this outpouring is all you do, then that’s great, because it helps get rid of the gunk and leaves you much clearer. However, if you’re in the mood, see if you can also talk to your Future Self. Picture, or sense, a ‘Future Memory’ and see if you can sit with your Future Self there and have a conversation. I use this technique a LOT and it’s amazing what we’ve come up with. I’ve got some real wisdom from my Future Self that I wouldn’t have otherwise had access to if I’d just tried to figure things out for myself.
This is a big subject – one that deserves several articles – but in a nutshell this is where you ask yourself “What would my Future Self do now?”, and then bring that into your every day.
One of the most powerful ways of doing this is in the physical:
What does s/he wear?
What’s his/her favourite hot drink?
What style of food does s/he like?
What kind of help does s/he have?
Basically this is anything in your physical world that you can line up with. The only caveat with this one is to not put pressure on yourself to have it all. Just match up with the things you feel inspired to – even if it’s to make sure you have the same brand of soap. In other words, don’t make this into work – have fun with it.
Of course you can embody your Future Self on a ‘being’ level too. Look back at some of the keywords you came up with about your Future Self in your first session. Say you wrote – ‘confident, adventuresome, fun-loving, curious’ – how can you be one or all of those things today?
5. Clearing the channel
Any time you get your head out of the way it’s a very good thing! How can you allow Who You Really Are to shine through if you’re clogging up the path with worry, self-doubt and fear? So in the spirit of keeping the channel clear between you and your Future Self, practice any kind of mind-emptying activity as often as possible. These might include:
Music and Dance
Etc. etc….Bottom line: Get out of your own way by getting out of your head!
6. Ask yourself: ‘What do I REALLY want to do now?’
So often we find ourselves going through our everyday routine on automatic pilot. We’re not quite sure why we do the things we do, in the way that we do them – it just happens. And then, because we lose sight of why we’re doing things in this way, we become resentful – as if someone is making us act this way. They’re not! Stop. Listen. Ask yourself, whenever you can, “What do I REALLY want to do now?” It might be the very thing you’re doing (in which case, great, you’ve now fully chosen it!), it might be the same thing but in a different way or it might be something completely different. The important thing to do is to really listen to yourself and give yourself permission to do what feels right for you in this moment – no matter what you believe other people might think of it. Sod those imaginary people! Your way is best.
There’s all sorts of research out there (see this video) about the power of a smile to lift our own, and others’, moods. Try smiling right now – it doesn’t matter how cheesy and fake it feels – give it a go! Feel it? That energetic lift? It’s amazing but our brains don’t know the difference between us feeling something and it actually happening. If we get in touch with the smiling sensation by putting on a smile, then our mood lifts in accordance. Also, I find, the more we smile, the more our body expects to smile. So, bring out your smile as often as possible – after all, your Future Self will be using it a LOT! Get used to it and feel the magic.
8. Learn to say “I want, I want, I want”!
It might sound as if I’m encouraging you to be a toddler here but I’m not of course. When we list what we want each day (morning is a good time to do this exercise to set yourself up for the day) then we are basically sending a very clear message to the Universe. To often we walk around being ‘split’ about what we want. (“I want it but it’s too hard,” or “I want it but I can’t afford it”, for instance). Remember, ‘Like attracts Like’ so if we’re split in our energy the Universe will only deliver more of that split energy. But by stating “I want” and then just letting it go, and trusting that the Universe will do the rest, you’re clear and you can attract that very thing. I promise you this works – it’s like magic!
9. Be gentle on yourself
If in doubt, leave it out. Your default position towards yourself must always be compassion and understanding. If you repress your emotions one day soon there will be a revolt inside of you. This will look like little ‘accidents’, (dropping things, bumping into bollards in the car park (speaking from experience here!), etc.), forgetting things, unexpected outbursts of rage, illness and so on. Don’t get to this stage. Stop every now and then throughout your day and check in: ‘Am I pushing myself too hard?‘ ‘Can I give myself more space and time?’
Equally, if things go wrong – forgive yourself. You are only human and the only person that you have to be great for is yourself. (Those invisible ‘other people’ we always seem to want to perform for, can be a real bugger!). The kinder you are towards yourself, the more you feel listened to. The more you feel listened to, the more productive you become. It’s a paradox, but you really have to allow yourself to take it easy, light and gently, in order to gain momentum. Pushing only leads to falling-over and then you have to spend all that time picking yourself up again.
10. Review your alignments
Each night, before you go to sleep, look back at the day and ask yourself, “where was I aligned to my True Self today?” Make a mental list (or better still, write it down):
I went to the gym
I gave myself a 15 minute break to sit with a cup of tea and stare into space
I cleared out the junk drawer
I treated myself to a fab new pen
I had a great interaction with my colleague
I played cards with the kids
Basically, whatever felt good – whatever you’re proud of yourself for – that goes on your list of alignments for the day. Congratulations – you have been embodying Who You Really Are and are, therefore, ever-closer to your Future Self!
(Featured image by Chad Madden)