My awakening in my 20s was harsh and clear: No self-esteem, no money, no education, no supportive circle of friends. Amid smashed dreams and coming out of marriage to an alcoholic with a child in tow, my only assets were an old green Studebaker and my baby and me being invited home until I could get on my feet. As the hard weight of my aloneness and the full responsibility for a child impacted, I knew I’d hit some kind of bottom. Yet I felt strangely free and hopeful. My future was in my own hands. I vowed then to get out of my powerless position and to create a life I desired.
Thus began my journey to financial independence, a path transformed over time into this guide for women. Now financially independent (though still learning, still refining) I live these principles every day. You can create the life you desire. Spiritual Gold shows you how one woman did it – and how you can also.
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From Chapter Three: Accumulation
My Spiritual Journey: Three Road Blocks
“What holds me back?” I almost screamed one frustrated morning. Calming down, I listed three driving-me-crazy items:
1. No progress on return of publishing rights I’d been seeking for 5 years. As a latest ploy I’d even paid a New York lawyer. I was furious as my lawyer’s latest $200 communication said the publisher hadn’t responded and we’d have to do something different (for more money, of course). After all this time and money, I still had my original problem. Without the return of rights, I was stuck and unable to reprint my still popular book.
2. Cutting off the view, looming across my back yard, there was a tangle of dead tree limbs left over from a storm ten months earlier. The tree limbs were inaccessible to easy removal. From Feng Shui I was convinced these tree limbs were a symbol of, and contributing to, my road blocks.
3. My third problem I could blame entirely on myself! I’d bought a new Mac computer from an untrustworthy person. Not only could I not use my new state-of-the art machine, I also could not translate my old files (approximately 2,000) into readable information for my new computer. I’d spent a lot of money, time, energy, made little to no progress and was fit to be tied!
Ask and It Is Given: Learning to Manifest Your Desires by Esther and Jerry Hicks (The Teachings of Abraham) arrived in my life via a spiritual friend’s high recommendation. “I don’t read channeled stuff,” I told her. She said, “Read this one.”
Manifesting (how to bring into being what you want) is a long time interest; I bought the book. On this morning I pulled out my well-marked copy and began refreshing myself. The Hicks (through Abraham) clearly state that dwelling on what you don’t want, fighting against your troubles, means you absolutely guarantee you’ll get even more of what you don’t want! Exactly what I’d been doing. I was a textbook case. I could write a book on how unfair life was and how ratty all these people were who wouldn’t do the right and fair thing (what I wanted!).
“Where,” I asked, “is my spiritual practice in all of this?” Where is asking – my tried and true method of the past – “What are the lessons I need to learn?”
“Get off this negativity,” I told myself. “The only thing it’s doing so far is sending your blood pressure to the sky, making you angry and feel put-upon.”
“Okay,” I told whatever Gods were listening (I’m happy to address mine as Divine Essence). “I’m willing to look at this differently.”
Here are the steps I followed:
1. List the road blocks/problems in a simple one, two, three form.
a. Return of rights.
b. Dead limbs removed.
c. Major computer problems solved.
2. Write an affirmation of how you want your life to feel. (Notice I said feel, not be.)
I am free to be joyous.
My life is free-flowing and clear.
All the help and support I need flows easily into my life.
3. Make the decision that you’ll quickly change every negative thought to a positive one. (I found it helpful to make affirmations of them.)
As these three blocks tumbled like clothes in a washing machine, my mind shifted to ‘What can I do now?’ As I remembered what I’d tried in the past that hadn’t worked – ideas begin to germinate, disparate thoughts. Maybe it wasn’t yet the right time for me to have those rights; after all I’d been incredibly busy with other writing and projects. Maybe things were happening as they should and I was just pushing the river. Or perhaps the lesson of the computers is that I need to pay attention. I got in the computer mess because I didn’t pay attention. I would get out of my computer situation by paying attention. I needed to honor my work and the tools of my craft. Instead of begrudging time for maintenance and clean up (as I always had), I could see maintenance and clean up as part of the process.
Positive and negative thoughts begin settling into equilibrium. When I said my affirmations – I am free to be joyous. My life is free flowing and clear – I felt great. When I bogged in negativity, I felt terrible. And did nothing to help myself. I also noticed I felt a whole lot better when I, actively, helped myself.
As I continued my affirmations – and took action – fate stepped in to help. Astoundingly, removing all blocks was completed in less than two weeks.
A first fate was a neighbor inviting me for sunrise coffee at his campsite at a local favorite beach. Somehow, the beautiful sunrise, the enveloping quiet and cool breezes settled my mind. When he asked why I wanted the dead limbs cleared away I said that in addition to being ugly and shutting off my view, the limbs had become a symbol of barriers, blockage in general. And I felt (in my bones, but I didn’t say that) that when the limbs were cleared away so would my other road blocks fall away.
He said, “I’m an engineer; explain, exactly, how you see your computer problem.”
I rambled a bit, raved quite a lot and came down to exactly what was wrong. And named what was needed to fix it.
In the meantime I did things like run an ad in the newspaper asking for a computer guru (that I would trade skills with; I’ve done this before and it worked.) I also called an old computer friend (he has PC’s) and asked his help. He raved over aid he was getting with his web pages and said his friend Paul also knew Mac’s. I called Paul, talked with (ranted over my problems) and made an immediate appointment to dash to see him.
Also, in the meantime I’d continued with a current project of examining, pitching and ordering every possession I owned including all of my writing collection. A success letter surfaced (I’d earlier gotten rights back from another publisher). Everything I needed was there: The exact letter, procedure and source. I sat right down, reproduced the letter to the publisher holding the rights in question and mailed it.
A few days later my camping neighbor got into conversation. “You really impressed me,” he said, “with your reasons for wanting those dead tree limbs cleared away. Why don’t I take a look and see what I can do? How are the other road blocks coming? You know,” he added, “I’m praying for you.”
There was a time I turned up my nose at prayer. No longer. I sincerely thanked him, said I’d really appreciate what he could do with the dead limbs, and kept on repeating my affirmations – I am free to be joyous. My life is free flowing and clear. All the help and support I need flows easily into my life.
A few days later the dead limbs were beautifully gone. And a letter containing only the signed return of rights arrived in the mail. Wow, was I surprised and pleased! Two down, one to go.
Computer expert Paul had me leave my old and new computers. When I picked up the computers I now had, unexpectedly, double systems on my new computer (neither of which I could use). Paul estimated I was looking at a week’s work and sent me on my way. Following his data transfer instructions was tough; even when he did it I knew I’d still have much more than a week of clean-up work. Not my dream solution by far!
Yet the odd thing was I somehow “got it.” I had not yet invested enough of myself or paid enough attention to my computer concerns. More was required of me. What? Simple things as it developed: Really reading an email an old computer friend had sent telling of a product that would solve my translation problem. I studied the email and ordered the product.
Also a friend I’d asked for help in using my new Mac made the brilliant suggestion that I get a book from the library. (Now why didn’t I think of that?) When I phoned, they had two books for my exact system. I flew to get them.
So, I hear you ask, What is the moral to this story?
- Focus on what you want, not what you don’t want.
- Learn how to be positive.
- Define your concerns clearly.
- Write affirmations supporting how you wish to feel and your desired outcomes.
- Be willing to learn your lessons and do your work.
Will I use this system again? You better believe it! Sharon Rose, friend.
Dear Jo Ann, It’s 4:40 am and I’ve just finished your Spiritual Gold manuscript. I love it! Thank you. Once again you amaze me with your openness and honesty – almost rash – certainly bold. And again, it’s like being in conversation with you. Love and keep on writing! Linnea
I love the idea that it’s your life in the making. I loved the affirmation about “pain and negativity from each cell in my body, from each past life and past lives is now released into the white light of infinity.” My favorite. Thanks again for the opportunity to read this. I enjoyed it very much. Karen
Dear Jo Ann,
I took time out today to read your memoir, Spiritual Gold, and enjoyed the read immensely. I think it is a good companion piece to your Money Meditations for Women and seems to integrate all your life training and experiences into one excellent instruction. You move us “from lack and scarcity to abundance and gratefulness for all we have,” to quote from your book. I felt much better about my own life after reading it and hope that it will bring women out of the cellar of low esteem,” as you call it, to a state in which they “achieve Spiritual Gold.” It’s a good book for planning for psycho-spiritual wealth and health. Thanks for giving us permission to “take our rightful place and change the world …and to look forward to having a good time doing it.”
I put in my eternal commas where I thought needed, questioned a few word choices, and asked about the inclusion of so many references in Chapter Two, but, essentially, you sent me some good clean copy and I was able to read it fairly quickly. I liked that you put in an appendix of Action Steps because that’s what a lot of women will look for. The last chapter was quite eloquent and is worthy of a verbal delivery!!
All in all, I think you did a great job and I am returning manuscript to you tomorrow. Thank you for allowing the reading. Keep on putting your books out there — you are doing a just service for women everywhere. Diane Marquart Moore, author of In A Convent Garden, The Mystical Forest, and Everything is Blue.