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Written and narrated by Marie T Russell.

Watch video version of this article on YouTube.

A lot of the "success lore", at least in the USA, leans towards "pulling yourself up by your bootstraps". We hear of "self-made men" (and women). It's as if each person is a completely independent being and all their successes are due to only their own strivings and they are beholden to no one for their attainments. 

Of course, we are all unique and we are in charge of our actions, at least to the extent that we haven't been brainwashed or influenced by all the programming around us. Yet, even the most independent person does not stand alone. First of all, every human has a mother and a father without whom they would not even exist. So, "self-made" is an erroneous term right from the beginning.

Accepting the help that comes our way

Throughout our life, we have had people in our lives who have assisted us, either through positive or negative role modeling, in becoming who we are now. And then, there are the unseen helpers that come through a book we read, or something we heard or saw, or even a dream that we had.

We are never alone on this journey of life. There is help available at every turn. And it is our task, and our honor, to accept the help that comes to us, in whatever form - human, animal, or nature and spirit. Love is shown to us by life itself in its many aspects. And for this blessing, we can be grateful. 

Focus on what you really desire

Humans have a tendency to focus on what they don't desire. We say things like: I can't find my keys. In this example, we're not asking for a solution, we're making a statement. Since there is power in words, the end result if that we continue to "not find our keys" 

The solution is to focus on what we desire, and say instead: Where are my keys? or Where did I leave my keys?

Once we ask a question or focus on the desired end result, then the Universe, often through our intuition, can supply the answer or the solution. 

Taking charge of the situation

In an ironic twist of life, as my article this week is entitled "Heal In Your Own Way", I fell and broke my wrist yesterday. So I'm discovering the challenges of typing with one hand as my left arm is in a rigid splint and my fingers can't reach the keyboard.

The subject which had been chosen for today's section of my article, and for the Daily Inspiration, is take charge of the situation -- which led me to the discovery of a program of dictation which I'm using to write this article.

It also led me to realize that the attitude with which I face this challenge is of utmost importance. I can say this sucks or I can say I'm doing much better than I think I am. The second attitude, of course, leads to a better result, not to mention a better state of mind.

My conclusion? When we refuse to be stopped or stymied by the events in our life, and when we insist on looking for alternative solutions, they are there. The first step is to refuse to be blocked by the events around you, and then take charge of the situation.

Love and Respect

One of our tendencies as humans is to look outside ourselves for solutions. When we don't feel well, we go to the doctor, or we take a pill, or we deal with something that's external to us to fix what's internal. If we're unhappy, we may take a drink or two, or go online for distraction, or go out with friends. Basically we're looking for something on the outside to fix something that's on the inside.

A lot of the things that were taught also deal with the external. We're taught to dress nice and look good, we're taught to be polite and kind, to play nice. We're told to love and respect our elders. But were we ever told to be polite and kind to ourselves, to love and respect ourselves?

Anything that we do, we must first make sure that it starts within us and for us as well as for others. And while some may see that as selfish, you can't give water to others if your bucket is empty, you can't provide food to others if you're starved and dying. So first, we learn to love and respect ourselves, and then we can turn that around and love and respect others.

New possibilities for your future

You're probably familiar with the expression "when one door closes, another door opens". This holds the essence of the beauty of life. There is always another way, another path, another gift. There is no such thing as a dead end -- sometimes you just have to backtrack a bit.

I'm sure like most people, some doors have closed along the scope of your life. However, if you look back upon it, you'll see that after discovering a closed door, another avenue always opened up. And a lot of times, the new pathway was something that we had no idea was there -- until the moment that we needed it. 

The trick is to stay aware, to keep our eyes and ears open, our mind and heart receptive, so that we discover -- at the right time and at the right place -- the new possibilities for our future.

Using Love to help

Keeping our heart open and receptive is such an important part of our growth and healing. Even in those cases where we feel empathy for someone, we often feel anger at the cause of the hurt that was done -- thus even in the midst of feeling empathy, our heart might be closed.

In order to create heaven on Earth, our heart must remain open. Even with those who have harmed us, even with the people who aggravate us, even with the people who are hurting others, our heart must remain open.

This doesn't mean to give them permission to do whatever they want. On the contrary! Sometimes loving others requires tough love, it requires being willing to speak our truth, being willing to stand up and stick your neck out for what you feel is right, yet to do so without judgment or aggression.

We always have choices: hatred or love, anger or seeking understanding, attacking or striving for balance.  The choice that will create harmony is always the loving one, the one that comes from our heart, the one that comes from choosing to heal, not hurt.

In the midst of anger, frustration, and impatience, it can be difficult to choose love. But it is not impossible. Once we set our intention, to be a loving person and live a loving life, we may be challenged on our decision, As long as we are willing to continue making the loving choice, both for ourselves and for others, things will come together to support our decision.

Give yourself time, be kind, and heal in your own way

Unfortunately many of us have become victims of instant gratification. We want to succeed and we want it now. We want to heal and we want it now. Whatever it is we want, we want it now.

This attitude leads us to fight the natural flow of life rather than let things evolve in their proper timing. It also puts pressure on us, or rather we put pressure on ourselves, to attain whatever it is we're looking for --  whether it's in the realm of relationships, career. health. financial success, or even enlightenment.

So when you find yourself pushing against a wall, or banging your head against the wall, or struggling in some form or an other, take a few minutes and ask yourself if there's another way,  a gentler way, a more balanced way.

Give yourself time to discover the harmonious solution. Be kind to yourself and others by practicing patience. Let life guide you to heal yourself, and your life, in your own way.

Article inspired by:

Messages from Heaven Communication Cards
by Jacky Newcomb

cover art: Messages from Heaven Communication Cards by Jacky NewcombMessages from Heaven cards fills a gap between the hugely popular ‘Angel Cards’ and the new fascination for ‘Afterlife Communication’. This distinctive 44 color card deck helps people to reach out to the other side of life in a familiar way. The deck can be used in numerous ways to connect with direction from loved-ones in heaven and for continued, positive and uplifting guidance and support.

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About The Author

Marie T. Russell is the founder of InnerSelf Magazine (founded 1985). She also produced and hosted a weekly South Florida radio broadcast, Inner Power, from 1992-1995 which focused on themes such as self-esteem, personal growth, and well-being. Her articles focus on transformation and reconnecting with our own inner source of joy and creativity.

Creative Commons 3.0: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 License. Attribute the author: Marie T. Russell, InnerSelf.com. Link back to the article: This article originally appeared on InnerSelf.com