Lessons from a Recovering Doormat

This is my twelfth post in my Monday series on the Law of Attraction, inspired by watching Louise Hay’s You Can Heal Your Life, the movie, expanded version.

I want to talk about using the Law of Attraction to attract miracles to you. I first learned about the power we have to manifest miracles when I read the Prayer of Jabez by Bruce Wilkinson (Multnomah Publishers). It’s a teeny book explaining the meaning of a 4 part prayer attributed to a little known man named Jabez. Yet his prayer is included in the bible. It’s simple but profound:

Oh, that You would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory, that Your hand would be with me, and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain.

When Jabez said that prayer, it was answered. I read the book’s 93 pages in one sitting. I had the benefit of being in Vermont for the weekend to relax, so I sat down in a pretty place in a park and just read it. I didn’t expect to finish it but there aren’t that many words on a page so it went quickly. A quick explanation of the prayer that Wilkinson elaborates on so well in the book is:

“Oh, that you would bless me indeed” This means God wants you to ask for miracles. Lot of them! He wants you to have them! This was emphasized in the book.

“and enlarge my territory” This means you should ask how can you serve God by helping others. I do love to help people so this felt good to read about!

“that Your hand would be with me” This was a fantastic reminder that if God brings you something you must do, He’ll be there with you to help you get through it.

“and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain.” This means protect me from being tempted to commit a sin.

This prayer blew me away and got me thinking. When I read the second line, I wondered how I could help someone. There was a couple a few feet away taking pictures of each other against the scenery. So I asked if they’d like me to take one of them together. They were thrilled and explained they’d wanted to ask but didn’t want to disturb me since I seemed so engrossed in my book. So I found a way to help right away!

I was most intrigued by “Oh, that you would bless me indeed” Indeed! Wilkinson explains that God wants us to ask for miracles. Lots of them! After all, if you don’t ask, how can God know what you want? I’ve always expected good things but never thought about it in terms of miracles before. What a lovely thought, that God wants us to have miracles! Since then I realized it’s true, because I’ve had many! Since reading the book I’ve been more focused on asking for and expecting miracles.

It doesn’t matter how unlikely it seems. When you expect miracles, they happen!

One incident continues to remind me that miracles come to those who expect them. I did a 3-month book tour for my last music business book and drove around the US, 10,500 miles, by myself. My New Orleans and Mississippi appearances were canceled due to Katrina, which meant I had a week free before my next events in Atlanta, so I booked a flight to NY to take a break. I had to drive from Mississippi to Atlanta for my 9:30 PM flight. I thought I had plenty of time as I had a late lunch in Mississippi until the waitress reminded me that I’d lose an hour in Georgia, and I’d go through Birmingham during rush hour.

I looked at my AAA triptik and realized they’d left out 2 pages. Birmingham and getting to it were missing so I’d really misjudged the timing! The waitress was sure I wouldn’t make my flight. I hurried back on the road. I did have bad traffic near Birmingham and also many pockets of construction. Driving, I began to panic. I knew I needed to get to the hotel I was staying in when I returned to Atlanta (they were letting me leave the car there) by 8, in order to pre-check in and then have time to wait for their bus to the airport. It was 6:30 and it looked like I had at least 2 more hours to drive. Then I saw more construction delays. I began to think that it would be impossible to make my flight.

As the thought came to me, I shouted, “NO! I HAVE TO make the flight!” I asked God for a miracle, promising I wouldn’t look at my watch until I get there, and put myself and my drive in His hands.

I didn’t check the time again as I drove and drove. I was curious to know how much time I had but kept my promise. I talked to God and explained that I knew if I didn’t see the time, He could do the miracle work without my seeing how it happened. The rest of my trip, I continued affirming that I had to make my flight, and would. There was more construction. Most people would have accepted missing the flight. Not me! As I pulled into a spot at the hotel parking lot, I screamed to see it was 8:05.

I don’t know how it happened. It really was impossible to go the distance I did, in the traffic I had, in an hour and a half. But there I was at the hotel on time.

They checked me in fast. The airport bus was waiting for me. With a little rushing, I made my flight! I have no idea how I got there on a logical level. There hadn’t been enough time. But miracles aren’t logical. You have to ask for them in strong faith, like I did. I was excited as I expected my miracle. Others would have been skeptical. Skeptical attracts negative results. The Law of Attraction reads skeptical as not expecting the miracle. But when you open your heart to a miracle in good faith, it can happen.

Start asking for miracles. If you can’t bring yourself to ask in total faith, ask for support in believing that it can happen.

It’s normal to have doubts. Instead of fighting them, acknowledge them and also acknowledge that you’d like help with getting past them since you want miracles. Start with small ones. As miracles occur, your faith will grow. Life with miracles is lovelier than life without them! Ask and ye shall receive.

Next week I’ll do another post about the Prayer of Jabez and miracles. Read it here.

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Have you ever watched someone who seemed to possess second-rate skills or talent have a first-rate success? Did it make you wonder why, since so many people who are more gifted or smarter go nowhere? The latter ones may have a key component to success in common—a determination to rise to the top of their game and their careers and they go the distance to achieve it.

Actress Sophia Loren said, “Getting ahead in a difficult profession requires avid faith in yourself. That is why some people with mediocre talent but with great inner drive go much further than people with vastly superior talent.”

All the talent in the world won’t help if you don’t use it. Being the most delicious cookie in the box won’t get you eaten if no one picks you. Being the smartest person in your office won’t help if you don’t open your mouth and show your smarts. Many people waste their natural abilities by not putting them to the test and proving what they’re capable of.

This Recovering DoorMat has learned she can do anything she chooses too. YOU can too!

Think about what you could accomplish if you develop the ability and the inner drive to advance in whatever you want to do. How can you prepare yourself to take the steps to pursue what you say you want? The keys to making progress are:

* Learn what you don’t know. Take a class, get a tutor or mentor, read books, or whatever it takes to teach you what you need before going forward.

* Practice your skills until you improve them and then keep practicing to be as good as possible. Practice may not make you perfect but it will make you better. And the better you get, the stronger your confidence becomes.

* Ask yourself, “How badly do I want [whatever it is you’re pursuing]?” If it’s just a whim, let it go. But if it’s something you want from your soul, acknowledge that. Focus on it. Write it down. Keep in on your mind so you can build a mental momentum.

* Stop making excuses about why you’re not ready or can’t do it. Excuses are self-inflicted road blocks. They say you’ve made a a conscious decision not to go after what you say you want. “I can’t learn to ski since I’m not fit enough.” Give it up or eat healthier, hit the gym and improve your fitness. “I don’t know enough to run the office.” Give it up or educate yourself. Ask lots of questions. Write down what you think you don’t know and find out how to learn it. It’s your choice, not your sentence, to let excuses stop you.

* Decide if achieving your goal is worth the effort. Literally make yourself choose if you prefer to complain or make excuses or do what you’ve gotta do to make it happen. Consciously make the choice. And if the choice is to go for it, start doing the work.

* Affirm your intentions. “I trust myself to do____.” “I want___ enough to do what it takes.” “I can do it!” “I’m good enough!” Make up your own affirmations to fit your situation.

* Focus on doing what you have to. Start with one baby step at a time. Do something to move forward, even if it seems trivial. One step closer is one step closer! Then take another. Even if reaching your goal takes time, keep moving forward.

* Push through the doubts or fears or pain if you want to get to the other side. It will be worth it when you get what you want.

This morning I saw gymnast Kerri Strug on a TV morning show. I remembered watching the gymnastics finals in the 1996 Olympics. The US team was in contention for a gold medal and Kerri was last to do her vault. It was all up to her. Everyone thought it was over when Kerri fell and injured her ankle on her first try. She was in pain but needed to stick her landing on the second vault. Most athletes would have mourned their bad luck and allowed themselves to be carried off. Not Kerri!

I held my breath as she focused on her second vault with determination. She did it perfectly, landed on both feet and held it long enough to secure gold for the American team. Then she collapsed from the pain. Some have it, some don’t. It’s hard to stay in the game and not get discouraged or give up because of difficulties. Advancing in any career takes work. Some goals add extra elements of difficulty. You need a strong soul, and strong faith, in both you and in knowing you have spiritual support. Kerri Strug wanted to win badly enough to endure the pain and focus on what she needed to do. Do you?

Kerri is now working with ING to encourage young people to get out and run through a program called Orange Laces. Check it out and donate if you can! She’s now determined to help kids become more fit.

If you enjoyed my post, please leave a comment and/or click on the bookmark and write a short review at some of the sites, especially Stumbleupon and Digg. Thanks!

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This is my eleventh post in my Monday series on the Law of Attraction, inspired by watching Louise Hay’s You Can Heal Your Life, the movie, expanded version.

I’ve encountered some interesting views of the concept of RESPECT. Some people tend to use the concept without really knowing what respect means. I’ve heard complaints about a boss, romantic partner, friend, service person, client, etc. saying or doing inappropriate things and called them not being respectful. Yet they never addressed what they complained about. That tells the person it’s OK to keep doing it. People complain about their opinions or input not being respected. Yet their actions attract it.

Years ago, I was on the board of an organization. During board meetings, other members would call out and often refused to follow the rules of order. Sometimes it became a free-for-all. I was the chairwoman, but when someone wanted to speak out of turn, she ignored me. I’d encourage respecting the way board meetings are supposed to be run. They scoffed. I encouraged respecting each other, and themselves as board members. One day, one said in disgust:

“You and that respect word! Don’t you get tired of it?”

No, I don’t. I try to respect others while respecting myself. Yet so many folks don’t get this concept or what a lack of respect attracts to you. When you don’t respect yourself, the Law of Attraction supports your not being treated with respect. When you don’t respect others, the Law of Attraction brings negative behavior back to you. The woman who asked that questions was normally a people pleaser. She didn’t get much respect, which may be why she bristled so much at the word.

When I was on Oprah, audience members discussed how much they please to be liked. But RESPECT? Not important!

Many equated being respected with alienating people, which is far from the truth! I understand, and felt that way when I was a DoorMat. If I didn’t jump to do someone’s bidding, that person might not like me anymore, which back then was tantamount to death. The more I gave no matter how they behaved, the less respect I got. But I didn’t care! DoorMats usually don’t like themselves anyway and feel undeserving of respect. I hated me back then and couldn’t imagine why anyone would want to respect me. Needless to say, I didn’t respect me!

When you make pleasing others most important, the Law of Attraction supports that belief and you don’t attract respect.

When you don’t respect yourself, you send the message that you’re not worthy of respect and therefore, don’t expect it, so RESPECT continues to allude you.

Oprah’s audience talked about all they did for others. One person after another sheepishly stood up to share the great lengths they took to give or do for others. Was it often reciprocated? Not really. They tried to justify it by explaining how good it felt to give and make others happy. Yet there was an underlying unhappiness in their defense of people pleasing ways. Fear drove them to give and sacrifice respect. They were scared of losing friends or just not being liked. Insecurity does that to people who were brought up to be nice, without learning to set boundaries.

Most of Oprah’s audience thought you couldn’t be liked and respected at the same time. But you can, by earning respect first.

Add RESPECT to your vocabulary! Doing that was the ticket to my first destination out of DoorMatville. As I began to respect myself and my right to have my needs too, it became easier to turn down favors I didn’t want to do. Yes, some people didn’t like not getting everything they wanted from me. And yes, a few friends disappeared. But by then I accepted that the ones who turned on me for not doing favors weren’t real friends anyway. Now I value respect and get it from most people. And since I’m still a kind and considerate person, most people still like me!

A nice person whose behavior commands respect is more sincerely liked than one who keeps friends by being agreeable.

Do you associate respect with alienating people? Au contraire, respected people get more! Respect must be earned but many of us weren’t taught how. I was taught to please, not to expect good treatment from others. And, people must be taught to treat you with respect. That begins with respecting yourself. After all, if you don’t, why should people give it to you!

Respect yourself enough to stop letting people play on your kindness! As I said, respect must be the priority. As you learn to respect yourself—which to me means expecting courteous and polite treatment from everyone—AND treating yourself with similar consideration—the Law of Attraction will bring more respect to you.

If you want to attract respect, pay attention to your behavior:

* Do you let people put you down without speaking up? Insults or unasked for input (usually criticism under the guise of “helping” you) make you feel bad, which is disrespectful. Recognize it for what it is and put a stop to it. You don’t have to be confrontational. Respectfully tell the person it’s unacceptable to say those things as it makes you feel bad and thank them for their consideration. If it happens again, remind them of what you said before and if necessary, leave.

* Do you put yourself down to make people laugh or to try to make others feel better? That’s so disrespectful to YOU. It also puts out the message that you don’t respect yourself or think you deserve good treatment. The Law of Attraction will bring it back to you as more disrespect. Listen to yourself and become aware of when you do it. When I had major body image issues Try to catch yourself when you can. Reassure others without putting yourself down and entertain with less personal jokes.

* Do you jump to be accommodating, even for people who aren’t considerate to you? Ask yourself why? What are you afraid of? Losing someone who doesn’t care about you beyond what you do for him? Not being liked by someone who uses you? Having her get mad if you say no? Think before agreeing to something. Ask yourself if the person deserves it. If no, politely decline. Then consciously feel the self-respect it brings!

Fyodor Dostoyevsky said, “…only by self-respect will you compel others to respect you.”

As long as you’re still kind, considerate, and courteous to others, you’re still being nice, even if you stop being their fairy god-DoorMat. The ONLY person you owe more to is YOU! As you begin to show yourself the respect you DESERVE, the Law of Attraction will bring it back to you. When you earn respect first and continue to be nice to others, people who aren’t just there to use you will still like you. But it can’t come the other way around. Kissing up to everyone doesn’t attract respect.

Having enough self-respect to keep your well-being as your first priority will attract a lot of respect from those who are healthy to have in your life. That’s a good use of the Law of Attraction!

Practice showing respect to yourself and to others for the RIGHT reasons—to be a courteous person, not to gain approval. When you make RESPECT part of your working vocabulary and do nothing unfair to others, you’ll like yourself more and others will like you more too. When you begin with earning respect, you can be both respected and liked.

As I valued me more, tolerance for disrespectful behavior crumbled. Since I’m friendly, fair, and courteous, most people still like me. Those who don’t—hey, it’s their problem! If you don’t feel respected, examine how YOU treat you. You get respect by respecting yourself.

As yourself, what’s more important: being liked by others, or yourself? You can guess what this recovering DoorMat chooses now! ? Having RESPECT for yourself and for others attracts wonderful people a situations.

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I was at a diner I like recently and asked my usual waitress if she felt better, since the last time I was they said she went home sick. She whispered to me that she’d has a run-in with the manager and got so upset she felt physically ill for 2 days. What happened? Charlotte said the boss picked on her for unfair reasons. Really railed her. Not long ago, I witnessed this same guy lose his temper with a waiter, who quit on the spot. Yet he continues to verbally attack his staff.

Many people can’t control their anger or frustration. But, they NEVER have a right to take it out on you!

Charlotte said that she was ready to quit. I admired her because I know she needs this job. Yet so many people complain and accept being yelled at by a colleague or boss. Not saying anything gives them permission to continue it. Yelling back just sinks to that person’s level. The best way to address someone who speaks to or yells at you in a disrespectful manner is to calmly let him or her know it’s unacceptable. Period!

While it’s important to speak up, your choice of words and the tone you use determines the impact of your response.

When I was a DoorMat, I whined a lot. “Woe is me for being spoken to like that!” “I’m upset that my colleague often loses her temper and directs the venom at me.” But I was too busy being miserable and hurt and angry to say something that would stop it. Just saying you don’t like it, or getting angry back, doesn’t rectify the problem. You must make it clear to the person that it can’t happen again. Some of the things I’ve found helpful are:

* Don’t get bent out of shape. Losing your own temper gives the person control over you and won’t get you taken seriously. Force yourself to stay calm when you speak. That can rattle someone who’d prefer to rattle you. When you keep your cool, they know you mean business.

* Tell the person it’s inappropriate to take their frustrations out on you. Inappropriate is one of my operative words when dealing with behavior I don’t like. It gets a message across clearly in work situations, better than yelling back!

* If someone yells uncontrollably or irrationally like Charlotte’s boss did, immediate that it’s unacceptable. Unacceptable is another one of my favorite operative words. It makes clear that you won’t tolerate the behavior, under any circumstance.

* Don’t accept blame for being yelled at. The person might say that you provoked the response. You didn’t do the project fast enough so she lost her temper. You said something that annoyed him. That’s a cop-out! No one has the right to yell at you!

* Take professional action. If there’s someone with a higher position, ask for a meeting and request advice on how to deal with the unacceptable behavior. File a complaint. Keep a written record of the behavior so you have something to show later. Yelling at you is harassment if you’ve warned the person and it doesn’t stop.

* Be prepared to walk, if the yelling at you won’t stop. You shouldn’t accept it. Period.

Charlotte returned to work the next day and calmly told the assistant manager that she’d leave for good if it happened again. He spoke to the manager and made him see reason. So far he’s left her alone. She’s a good worker and he didn’t want to lose her.

Just because someone has a higher position that you at work does not give them the right to to talk to you in any way that’s not respectful. Accept that verbal attacks are unacceptable. Sometimes we don’t recognize the damage they cause. Being physically hit seems more like abuse. But verbal railing leaves mental scars, that can hurt you even more! Be very careful.

If you enjoyed my post, please leave a comment and/or click on the bookmark and write a short review at some of the sites, especially Stumbleupon and Digg. Thanks!

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