“Everybody is a magnet, attracting to themselves that which they are.” –David Hawkins


“Don’t worry. Be happy.”
–Bobby McFerrin

Okay, so you’ve made some goals, set some intentions. But, so far, nothing has shown up. Wanna know why?

You’re trying too hard. You’re trying to force things instead of just relaxing and connecting with the power and genius of the universe.

See this picture. It’s green bean seeds from Experiment No# 6 (The Superhero Principle) in my book, E-Squared.
awesomeness

The reader who sent me this picture made the intention that the back row of seeds would grow faster than the front row.

It worked like a charm, because she knew there was nothing she could personally do to make those green beans grow faster. Except be willing. She had to surrender and believe that her focus and attention was enough.

With most goals and intentions, the ones where there’s something we perceive we should do, we think surrender is not an option. We insist on trying to make our intentions happen. We use force, we manipulate. We get personally involved instead of letting go and letting the majesty of the universe do its glorious thing. The tactic of aggressiveness sometimes works, but it invariably employs “weak energy,” an energy that will always play second fiddle to the simple power of willingness.

Willingness brings openness and flexibility and new possibilities. It’s the prerequisite for changing anything in your life, the starting point for manifesting goodness.

I understand your desire to push, to go, go, go. It’s the cultural norm. We’ve all heard some version of these statements:

“You have to fight for what you want in this world.”

“You have to put your nose to the grindstone.”

“Nothing comes easy.”

“If it was easy, everybody would be doing it.”

But there is another way. And it’s simple willingness.

By cultivating a willing mind and being willing to approach things in a new way, you’ll come from a place of power. You’ll find an energy that unifies, that encourages wholeness.

Yes, this energy is invisible (making it a lot harder to trust for some folks), but, in reality, it’s more tangible and powerful than forcing and grunting and groaning will ever be.

To change your life for the better, you simply connect with the power of the universe and then step back and allow it all to unfold with ease and grace.

Pam Grout is the author of E-Squared: 9 Do-it-Yourself Energy Experiments that Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality.

“What is the most important thing we can think about in this most extraordinary moment?”–Buckminster Fuller

“Seek the highest that is in you.”
–Lundbergh

The quality of our life is in direct proportion to the questions we ask. If we ask important questions, we’ll get important answers. The universe will always match us question for question, answer whatever it is we ask.

So why not ask big questions, think big thoughts? Why not ask, “What if?” on a daily basis.

Instead of “How can I stretch this paycheck to the end of the month?’ we should ask, “What can I give that would make me sing with joy?”

Instead of wondering, “What’s the closing price on Janus worldwide?” or “How much is the shank loin at Safeway today?,” we should be asking, “How can I grow into the loving, wise, inspiring person I am meant to be?”

Everyday, I like to ask myself what I call “miracle questions.” I like to ponder big things.

Anything is possible, but we have to imagine it first. The more big questions we ask, the more we dare to say, “What would it look like if….?,” the bigger our lives will become. Putting your attention on something calls it into existence. We can literally reshape and redesign our lives by asking bigger questions.

Here are three big questions for starters:

1. What would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail?

2. What one thing can I do today to bring wonder and brilliance to my awareness?

3. How would I live my life if I were the only person on the planet?

Pam Grout is the author of E-Squared: 9 Do-it-Yourself Energy Experiments that Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality.

Your brain on gratitude: the perks of brazen thankfulness

“Gratitude is some seriously powerful stuff.”
–Emily Wenstrom

I just returned from the Cook Islands, a tiny nation of 15 spits of land, surrounded by millions of miles of ocean.

The 15,000 or so people who live in the Cooks rightfully believe they are blessed, that God has given them everything they could possibly need.

It’s an attitude that can’t help but provide. When someone shows up on this planet with a grateful heart and eyes seeking only things for which to be thankful, that’s exactly what they’ll find. Abundance aplenty.

Cook Islanders don’t need researchers to tell them that their feelings of thankfulness have a direct and beneficial effect on their brains, a finding scientists are reporting from labs all over Western universities.

By naturally focusing on positives, on how lucky and blessed they are living in these beautiful South Pacific islands, they’re rewarded with neurotransmitters like dopamine and other feel-good chemicals that form neural patterns of happiness. Their unending gratitude literally sculpts their brains which in turn increases their enthusiasm and energy and lowers their stress.

Consequently, their neural pathways are markedly different than those of us in the West that are conditioned to shine our spotlights on what we resent or regret or what we think is “wrong with the world.”

Renee Jain, a coach of positive psychology, says most Westerners have a negativity bias where “bad stuff” outweighs the good 3:1. Think of all the good drugs (dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin) we’re missing out on by our bitching.

That’s why my mission in life is to be like the Cook Islanders, to focus only on the supreme beneficence of the universe.

I consciously choose to believe such thoughts as:

Life is freaking awesome.
The universe is bounteous and forever generous.
Something amazing is bound to happen to me today.

Today, I say thank you for all the blessings that are barreling my way, all the abundance, the joy, the peace of mind that I count on day after day. To my way of thinking, responding to any other reality is simply irresponsible.

So tell me … what are you grateful for?

“Perception selects, and makes the world you see.”–Course in Miracles

“The world is only in the mind of its maker.”
–Course in Miracles

Who in their right mind would walk into a restaurant, take a look at the menu and then order the dish they least desire?

Likewise, who would go shopping at Nordstrom’s and opt to carry the rack’s ugliest outfit up to the sales counter?

Yet, that’s what most of us do in our thinking, in our conversations. We focus on things we don’t want to happen. We focus on the fear, on the negative, on the lack.

And those decisions have a much bigger impact on your life than one ugly dress or a dish you can’t stand. You literally draw out from the universe whatever you focus upon. In other words, you get what you order. It’s an unalterable law.

Some make the argument that they can’t help what they think, that they have no control over the thoughts that pop into their minds. If you want to continue to believe that, it’s your choice. But just so you know, that argument is a monster-sized bucket of bull.

At every moment, we make the choice where we focus our energy. Always. One hundred percent of the time.

I’m not denying that our minds habitually return to the worn-out groove of thoughts we’ve had in the past and that it takes some re-training to start a new habit of focusing only on what we want, but we have the capacity to do it.

And, I hope you’ll join me in focusing only on new possibilities, on love, on what our world could become. Yes, it’s a radical thought, but it sure as heck beats thinking about the same ole, same ole from yesterday.

I’d love to see comments from people. What are you choosing to focus on from here on out?

Pam Grout is the author of E-Squared: 9 Do-it-Yourself Energy Experiments that Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality.

What distinguishes the people who are living their dreams and those who are not? Thoughts, nothing but thoughts.

Here it is, 4:30 my time, and the day has gotten away from me. Like every day, miracles have lined up to greet me and blessings have called out my name. As I get ready for next week’s South Pacific adventure to the Cook Islands, I’d like to share this quote from Rhonda Byrne who was interviewed earlier this month by bookish.com, a new outing by USA Today and six U.S. publishers.

Daniel Lefferts, the interviewer, posed a question that many people ask.

What advice would you give to people who have a hard time believing in the law of attraction but want to?

Here’s what she said: “Our thoughts seem so insignificant but, in truth, they have created and continue to create our world and our individual lives. Try and find a single thing that has not been created by thought. The way we feel about other people and interact with other people comes from our own thoughts. We can’t speak without thought. Any action we take, even to lift our arm or to stand up, comes from thought. Cars, planes, railways, buildings, cities, ships, technology, music, art and all things created by human beings not only began with thought but were created and materialized through thought. We accomplish our work through thought, and live every moment of our day through our thoughts. If you really examine everything in the world, you will realize that it was thought that caused it and created it. And so then ask yourself, if human beings have built everything there is from thought, how can I say that thought is not powerful? What distinguishes the people who are living the life of their dreams and those who are not? The ones who are living the life of their dreams thought they could do it, and those who are not, didn’t think they could do it.

And here’s what I say in E-Squared: Okay, just say it: “How can something as simple as a thought influence the world?” Let me just point out that a hundred years ago nobody would have believed songs sung by a bunch of American Idol contestants could pass through brick, glass, wood, and steel to get from a transmitter tower to your television set, either. Nobody would have believed a cell phone no bigger than a deck of cards would allow you to talk to your sister 2,000 miles away.

Your thoughts, like the 289 TV channels and like your voice on the cell phone, are vibrational waves. When you hear Eminem rapping about his daughter Hailie, your eardrum is catching a vibrational sound wave. When you see Brad Pitt’s cane or Madonna’s single leather glove (accessories they wore to the 2012 Golden Globes), you’re seeing patterns of vibrational light waves.

And that’s what your thoughts are—vibrational energy waves that interact and influence the Field of Potentiality (FP). Every thought you have, have ever had, or ever will have creates a vibration that goes out into the FP, extending forever. These vibrations meet other vibrations, crisscrossing in an incredible maze of energy. Get enough energy together and it clumps into matter. Remember what Einstein said—matter is formed out of energy.

The field of potentiality simply follows the energy you send out. And your thought vibrations draw similar vibrations. Here’s one small example: A few years ago, I remember thinking I wanted a potato masher. I didn’t mention it to anyone. I just made a mental note: Next time you’re at Walmart, buy a potato masher. That very night, my friend Wendy, who was cleaning out her drawers, stopped by with a couple of no-longer-needed cooking utensils, including a potato masher.

Another time, I decided I needed more laughter in my life. Within a couple weeks, I began dating Todd, a funny co-worker who eventually became a comedian.

The coincidences we see in our lives are just energy and the FP at work. Most of the time, we employ energy inadvertently, totally oblivious to the fact that what we think, say, and do makes a difference. Consequently, we constantly activate this power to follow the patterns we already believe in.

People think Jesus is the be-all and end-all, because he was so good at manipulating energy and matter. But, as he so poignantly pointed out (although these aren’t his exact words), “You, too, are da’ man.”

Be crazy with love. Love when it makes no sense.

“We all long for love. Everything else is just killing time.”
–Kenny Loggins


Most people hear the word “love” and immediately think of long white dresses, tuxes and diamond rings. Our tendency to associate love with romance is a gaping blind spot. Not only are there millions of people to love (forget your quest to zero in on Mr. or Ms. Right), but there are million of ideas, millions of causes, million of quests to fall in love with.

Take Dale Price, for example. This stay-at-home dad from American Fork, Utah, has spent the past three years waving at his high school son’s bus dressed in weird costumes, a different one every day. It started the first day of his son’s sophomore year when he realized the bus, for the first time, would drive down their street. Price greeted the bus (and his embarrassed son) that first day wearing a football helmet. From there, his creativity grew. He has waved at the bus dressed as Elvis, Fred Flintstone, Santa Claus and, once, a lampshade. He and Rain, the red-faced son, ended up on Good Morning America and the resulting blog, Wave at the Bus, has received millions of hits and raised money for Rain’s college fund, although his dad is quick to admit it may also end up being used for therapy.

Or take Matt Harding who fell in love with traveling. In 2003, while in Hanoi, his traveling buddy videotaped him dancing, a rather kooky arm-flapping, march popular with adolescent boys at middle school dances. And then he videotaped Matt dancing in Tonga. And in the Philippines, Mali and the Panama Canal. The video on the resulting “Where the Hell is Matt?” website shows a grinning Matt bouncing up and down in 69 countries. What’s more, the underlying, if unplanned message of unbounded human joy and connection comes across loud and clear.

“There are no words on the video and I’m not trying to get anybody to doing anything,” Harding say, “It just makes people happy.”

The point is, there are lots of ways to make people happy, lots of ways to love. Don’t sit around waiting for your soul mate. Be crazy with love. Love when it makes no sense. Love in all it bewildering ways, shapes and styles.

Happy Valentine’s Day.

“We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures.” – Thornton Wilder

“Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.”

– Oprah Winfrey


My friends, relatives and anyone who follows my blog knows about A.A. 2.0. It’s a simple, two-step program for revolutionizing your life.

The name comes from my daily practice of getting up each morning and proclaiming, “Something amazingly awesome is going to happen to me today.”

The next step, just as easy, involves texting three miracles and/or blessings (A.K.A. awesomeness) to four friends who I refer to as my “power posse.” The only stipulation is the list has to be different every day. I like to say that my number one mission in life is scouting miracles. I’ve found that the more I look for them, the more plentiful they become.

Since I’m writing about travel today and looking over my itinerary for next week’s oh-so-exciting trip to the Cook Islands, I thought I’d demonstrate how this simple program works by sharing the awesomeness from last month’s adventure to Belize:

Thursday: Easy, on-time flights, staying on a 7200-acre rainforest preserve and drinking Argentinean wine with the resort’s South African manager.

Friday: Exploring a 3000-year-old Mayan site, howler monkeys who sound like Jurassic Park and rescuing my favorite hat before it plunged down an 800-foot waterfall.

Saturday: Swimming three-feet away from a three-foot loggerhead turtle, seeing lemon sharks, barracuda and a giant school of blue tang and being invited to watch the Caribbean cup soccer finals on an outdoor TV while eating just-caught barbecued lobster.

Sunday: Egrets and pelicans on my morning beach walk, mimosas and gelato before my 10 a.m. flight and getting home 30 minutes early.

If you want to join A.A. 2.0, tweet your daily blessings to #A.A. 2.0.

Pam Grout is the author of E-Squared: 9 Do-it-Yourself Energy Experiments that Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality.

From struggling single mom to multi-millionaire

“In dreams there are no impossibilities.”
–Janos Arany

Caryn Johnson always knew she wanted to be an actor. In fact, she says her first coherent thought was, “Man, I’d love to act.”

Even though she grew up in the New York projects, theater and what she called “pretending to be somebody else” was a big part of her life. This was back in the days when Joe Papp brought free Shakespeare on trucks to her neighborhood in Chelsea. She also watched lots of movies with her brother, Clyde, and her mom, Emma, who was raising the two kids on a single salary.

“When I saw Carole Lombard coming down some stairs in a long satin thingy, I thought, I can do that,” she says. “I wanted to come down those stairs and say those words and live that life. You could be anything, up there in the movies. You could fly. You could meet alien life forms. You could be a queen. You could sleep in a great big bed, with satin sheets in your own room.”

By the time she was 8, she was acting for the Hudson Guild Community Center, a children’s daycare/theater/arts program, also near her neighborhood.

Her life took a detour in high school when her dyslexia caused her to get mistakenly classified as “slow, possibly retarded.” She dropped out of school, became a junkie and forgot all about her acting dream. By the time she was 19, she was a single mom herself.

The good news is she HAD kicked the drugs. In fact, her daughter’s father was the drug counselor who helped her get off the junk. But the bad news is he wasn’t cut out to be a father. He split a few months after Alexandrea was born.
Caryn was a high school dropout with no skills. In fact, the only thing she knew how to do was take care of kids. She took a job as a nanny and moved to Lubbock, Texas with the friend who hired her. Eventually, the friend moved to San Diego and Caryn and her daughter gladly followed.

When the relationship went south, she found herself stuck in California with no money and no skills. She didn’t even know how to drive, a major hindrance in freeway-happy California.

“I had no high school diploma,” she says. “All I had was me, and my kid.”

Oh, yeah, and that “Man, I’d love to act” dream. During the day, she learned to lay bricks, went to cosmetology school. At night, she played around with an experimental theater troupe. For a while, she did hair and makeup for a funeral home supplementing her income with a welfare check, “worrying about how to get my kid more than one pair of shoes, or how to make $165 worth of groceries last for a month.”

Through it all, she continued to believe that “anything is possible.” She continued to believe that she could be like Carole Lombard, floating down stairs in satin.

“Acting is the one thing I always knew I could do,” she says.

Her unwavering belief finally unlocked the door. In 1983, famed Hollywood director Mike Nichols happened to catch her performance in an Berkeley experimental troupe, the Black Street Hawkeyes. He was so blown away by the characters she played that he signed her immediately for a one-woman performance, the Spook Show, on Broadway. Steven Spielberg caught that show and cast her as Celie in The Color Purple. By then, she’d changed her name to Whoopi Goldberg.

“No one ever expressed this idea that I was limited to any one thing, and so I think it terms of what’s possible, not impossible,” Whoopi says in her memoir, Book. “I knew that if you come to a thing with no preconceived notions of what that thing is, the whole world can be your canvas.

“Just dream it and you can make it so. I believed a little girl could rise from a single-parent household in the Manhattan projects, start a single-parent household of her own, struggle though seven years of welfare and odd jobs and still wind up making movies.

“So, yea, I think anything is possible. I know it because I have lived it. I know it because I have seen it. I have witnessed things that ancients have called miracles, but they are not miracles. They are the products of someone’s dream. As human beings, we are capable of creating a paradise, and making each other’s lives better by our own hands. Yes, yes, yes…this is possible.

“If something hasn’t happened, it’s not because it can’t happen, or won’t: it just hasn’t happened yet.”

Pam Grout is the author of E-Squared: 9 Do-it-Yourself Energy Experiments that Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality.

Mean people don’t suck: The Rosetta Stone for “Knowing thy Enemy”

Once, in a three-bedroom pension in Austria, I got locked in a tiny bathroom. I hollered out to my hosts, “Help! I can’t open the lock.” They spoke no English so obviously they didn’t rush to my aid. Instead, they probably scratched their head, wondering what the crazy American girl was yammering about so early in the morning.

Not wanting to miss even an hour of my fabulous solo Eurail adventure, I got louder and louder in my attempts to arouse their assistance. Finally, they came to the door and started asking what I presumed were questions, but since I speak no German, I had no idea what they were asking.

This story (and, yes, for those who are wondering, I finally did get free from that tiny 3-foot by 4-foot lock-up) demonstrates what I think is going on in the world today, particularly American politics. People are speaking two different languages.

Since I’ve spent much of my life writing books about what I consider to be the biggest secret in the world (that we all really love each other), I’d like to offer some translation assistance:

1. What they say: Life Sucks
What they really mean: I’ve memorized an emotional state of suffering and have set up neural pathways that can see little else. Secretly, I know the world is beautiful.

2. What they say: You suck
What they really mean: I’ve picked up cues from my background that suggest you’re different from me. So I’m scared and prefer to keep my distance. In reality, I love you and know we are one.

3. What they say: Your politics suck.
What they mean: I’ve learned this unfortunate habit of jumping to conclusions and shutting out all evidence that differs from my safety zone. I’d really like to shut up long enough to hear what you have to say. I know we have more in common than we have differences.

Or if that fails, do what I do. Play the opposite game. When people start spouting unhappiness, inanities and misinformation, I know they’re simply replaying old tapes and need my love more than ever.

Pam Grout is the author of E-Squared: 9 Do-it-Yourself Energy Experiments that Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality.

We simply must get over the notion that there is reluctance on the part of Infinite Intelligence to provide our good.

Chris Michaels, a handsome and very wise Science of Mind minister, told a great story a few weeks ago.

He explained that when you make an intention (or pray or send out a ‘rocket of desire,’ as LOA students might call it), you must act with authority. You must KNOW that your words and consciousness are powerful.

Remember that bit in the Lord’s Prayer where we say, “Give us this day our daily bread?”

“Our daily bread,” say Chris, “is everything we need to live well and be happy. How bold. How absolutely courageous!!”

Notice that Jesus taught us to command.

He didn’t beg. He didn’t plead. He didn’t even ask. Or say, “Please, pretty, pretty please, God, send me a loaf of pumpernickel.”

Jesus knew his word had power. He knew that when he spoke, his word was activated by a law of energy that only knows how to deliver whatever is held in consciousness.

You don’t beg the soil to grow a plant. You simply put a seed in the ground and watch it grow. You don’t plead with your coffee pot to make your morning coffee. You don’t stand over it and say.“Please, God, I’ve been really good and I need some caffeine.”

No, you simply plug it in. You place a demand upon the law of electricity by plugging in your coffee pot. And you know with complete authority that within a few minutes you’ll have coffee.

We simply must give up this notion that there is a reluctance by God to provide our good.

There is no reluctance on the part of the universe to give you absolutely everything good you can possibly imagine. But nothing can be given until it is claimed.

Pam Grout is the author of E-Squared: 9 Do-it-Yourself Energy Experiments that Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality.