Your Future Is NOT Set

Tips-Illus-Movies2Reposting this entry as it covers such an important topic. Some folks on the spiritual path can start to believe that there’s nothing they can do to change their destiny, that it’s all fixed due to their karma, but that’s not the case. The future is not set! You can change your “destiny” through the use of your free will!

Many folks believe that their future is set—that they are destined to continue on the track they are currently on. But while most people don’t do much to change their karma (their state of mind), so their lives do follow the track they’re already on, it doesn’t have to be this way—you can absolutely change your karma through the use of your free will. It is entirely possible to change your state of mind, change the way you react to situations, and change “you”!

PreCogsThe concept of using your free will to change your karma is illustrated perfectly in the movie Minority Report. In the movie there is an experimental “Pre-crime” police unit, which apprehends criminals before they commit their crimes. The unit uses three gifted humans called “pre-cogs” who see crimes before they happen. By monitoring these pre-cogs’ brains, the police know the criminal’s name and when the crime will occur, so they arrive at the scene of the crime before the crime is committed and arrest the future criminal.

The benefit of this method is, of course, that the crime is prevented. The downside is that it doesn’t allow for the possibility that the criminal may change his or her mind and not commit the crime. In fact, one of the more gifted pre-cogs, Agatha, occasionally sees a different future in which the crime is not committed. This seeing, which is divergent from the other two pre-cogs, is called the “minority report.” It represents the criminal’s use of free will to make a different choice and change her destiny. The two pre-cogs who see the “majority report” are seeing the criminal’s karma or default state of mind. Most of the time, all three pre-cogs see the same outcome. This is because most people don’t diverge from their karma. But occasionally, Agatha sees a different future, the minority report, which is when a person uses their free will to break away from their karma.

We all have the ability to use our free will to change our karma, to change our state of mind, our choices, and thus, our future. If you’ve always been bad at finances, you can use your will to make different choices and get your finances in order. If in the past you’ve had calamitous relationships, you can change your state of mind to choose healthier relationships. If you’ve always had an unhappy state of mind, you can use your free will to take steps to change your mind state to a happy one. Your future is not set!

p.s. One of the ways you can strengthen your will is by meditating on your navel center, which is the center of willpower. For instruction on how to meditate, download the free eBook on How to Meditate.

Available on Amazon.com  or  Amazon UKCA, FR , IT, ES and DE.

Download the How to Be Happy NOW app

Download on the App Store

Recognize that you don’t have to follow your biological imperatives

Hawk on poleIt’s important to recognize and understand our biological impulses and then choose to follow them…or not! Our body has biological imperatives that were necessary for survival in earlier times but that are no longer useful. In fact, following these impulses can actually make us pretty unhappy. For instance, we are wired to gorge on food even when we are no longer hungry because when food was scarce it was beneficial to store as much fat as possible because it wasn’t known when we would eat again. These days in the West, where food is so readily available, this instinct no longer serves us and it certainly doesn’t lead to our happiness. Today we may want to eat an entire bag of chips but we won’t feel happy if we follow that impulse. Not only will we feel queasy from all the chips, we’ll also feel physically and psychically uncomfortable when we gain weight from overeating.

Our bodies are also very strongly programmed to ensure the survival of the species. To this end, men are biologically wired to want to have sex with a lot of women, while women are wired to compete with each other to win the “head man.” From a purely biological standpoint, the male of our species can ensure the survival of his lineage by impregnating as many women as possible. This maximizes the number of progeny he has and the statistical chance that some will survive and go on to produce children of their own. For the female, the way to maximize the survival of her children is to have a person who can provide food and protection for her children while she is partially incapacitated by pregnancy or taking care of small children. The more capable the man is at providing and protecting, the more likely her children are to survive, thus the incentive for women to get the most capable or “head man.”

Certainly, there is much more behind our decision making and actions than our biology. There is our mind and its will, as well as our soul and its longings. However, it is useful to recognize that there are hundreds of thousands of years of conditioning hardwired into our species to act out these imperatives. The biological impulses to overeat, for men to have sex unlimitedly and for women to compete with each other, can still arise in our default conditioned behavior. It’s important to know our bodies have these impulses so we understand where the drives are coming from and then we can choose to follow them or not. For many, simply the recognition of these drives begins the liberation from them. 

Excerpted from the book How to Be Happy NOW…Even if Things Aren’t Going Your Way. © 2013-2017 Sara Weston. A FREE excerpt of the book is available here.

Available on Amazon.com  or  Amazon UKCA, FR , IT, ES and DE.

Download the How to Be Happy NOW app

Download on the App Store

Become financially independent

dsc_0101People make incredibly bad decisions that lead to a lot of unhappiness when they aren’t financially independent. They’ll marry someone they don’t love or stay with a partner or spouse they don’t like solely because they don’t have the financial wherewithal to do what they really want to do. When you are financially independent and are not beholden to a parent, partner or spouse’s agenda or idea for your life, you are free to follow the choices that are appropriate for you, which is an amazingly freeing and happy feeling!

The foundation of financial independence is a good career, combined with the ability to budget and manage your money. You need to be able to support yourself in the style that keeps you from making a bad decision you wouldn’t make if money wasn’t an issue. So while some careers may be easier or more accessible, they may not provide the kind of income you need long-term and therefore won’t allow you to be as independent as when you choose a more lucrative career. However, having a solid income is not enough, you also need the ability to save and grow the money you make. If you don’t save any of your money, then you undermine your independence and quality of life in your retirement years.

I’m not pretending that if you aren’t already financially independent that you won’t have to make radical changes in your life, such as going back to school, starting your own company, living on a smaller budget or stop letting your partner or spouse handle all the finances, but the payoff of not being dependent on anyone else financially is huge!

Excerpted from the book How to Be Happy NOW…Even if Things Aren’t Going Your Way. © 2013-2017 Sara Weston. A FREE excerpt of the book is available here.

Available on Amazon.com  or  Amazon UKCA, FR , IT, ES and DE.

Download the How to Be Happy NOW app

Download on the App Store

Core Practice: Practice Mindfulness

Mindfulness is the process of watching what is passing through your mind and stopping the thoughts that are draining or unhealthy. Most things only need to be thought through once. The rest of the thinking, the mulling over and obsessing, is not only draining, it actually makes it harder to objectively see what is best. When you keep your mind quiet and don’t play your worries, schemes and dreams over and over again, you create space for inner knowledge to bubble up and be heard.

Mindfulness isn’t limited to stopping negative or repetitive thoughts, it also includes not holding conversations in your mind with people you know. A lot of people talk to other people in their minds, explaining their beliefs and defending their positions. Not only is this a waste of energy, again it prevents your mind from being still. When your mind is still you can more clearly see the pointers in the universe. The universe gives us all kinds of information, but you have to be still to see it. When your mind is going round and round defending your ego, you miss these pointers, not to mention the relaxation and brightness that comes from being still.

The good news is that after practicing mindfulness for a while it becomes automatic, so as negative or repetitive thoughts and inner conversations arise, you naturally stop them and redirect your mind to higher, calmer thoughts or no thoughts at all.

Excerpted from the book How to Be Happy NOW…Even if Things Aren’t Going Your Way available on Amazon.com and Amazon UKCAFR and DE or as an iPhone app. © 2013 Sara Weston. A FREE excerpt of the book is available here.

Download on the App Store

Small Happiness Tip & App Sale Tie-in

dsc_0101Keep on hand at all times great audio books, podcasts, music, books or magazines. It’s helpful to have something entertaining to do when you are waiting in line at the DMV or at the doctor’s office or when you’re caught in traffic or on the subway. There are so many draining situations that become the opposite when you have something interesting to occupy your mind. (Excerpted from the book How to Be Happy NOW…Even if Things Aren’t Going Your Way)

The How To Be Happy NOW app is a great aid for this tip. When you’re in some draining or boring situation, you can pull out your phone and read through the app. Each tip is imbued with light and will give you a refreshing burst of bright energy (for reals 🙂!), which is especially helpful in heavy environments.

Download on the App Store

Buy the print version of How to Be Happy NOW…Even if Things Aren’t Going Your Way on Amazon.com, Amazon UKCAFR or DE.

A FREE excerpt of the book is available here.

App Notifications as Oracle

One common method spiritual practitioners use to get insight into their life and practice is to use a spiritual book as an oracle. They’ll open a spiritual book at random and read what’s on the page, frequently finding information that provides insight into their current situation or state of mind.

Similarly, I’ve noticed that the How to Be Happy NOW app notifications (that are delivered to your iPhone/iPad home screen each morning) have the same ability to appear just when you need to hear a certain piece of information. While on many days the notifications will be interesting, on days when you really need to hear that particular info, the notification will have a slight jolt as you recognize that it is exactly what you needed to hear. How fun is that?!

Take advantage of this week’s app sale to get your own oracular notifications 🙂! The How to Be Happy NOW app is only 99¢ through this Friday!

On sale this week for 99¢!Download on the App Store

Buy the print version of How to Be Happy NOW…Even if Things Aren’t Going Your Way on Amazon.com, Amazon UKCAFR or DE.

A FREE excerpt of the book is available here.

Don’t Follow Your Heart?

Many people interpret the expression “Follow your heart” to mean “Do whatever you feel like doing.”  But what following your heart truly means is:

•  NOT following society’s ideas of what you should do (duh)

•  NOT following other people’s ideas for you—including parents, friends and colleagues (medium-duh)

•  NOT following what your mind tells you (wait, really?)

Yes, really. Your mind has a lot of ideas about what you should do to follow your heart, but the mind doesn’t necessarily know what’s best for you.

Instead, following your heart means following your soul, which is your true heart. The deepest part of yourself is enlightened, is enlightenment itself and is super-duper wise. If you follow what your soul wants you’ll always be happy. If you follow other people’s ideas or your mind’s ideas of what you should do with your life, you will always feel off, not quite right and not quite at ease, even if you are outwardly successful. You will feel an undertone of depression or angst when you are not following your dharma, i.e., that which is spiritually correct for you.

So the challenge is how do you know what your soul wants? It’s simple, you meditate. You take time out daily to stop thought so you can feel your true heart. That’s all you have to do—why make it more complicated? A free guide on how to meditate can be found here.

© 2016 Sara Weston. Sara is the author of the book How to Be Happy NOW…Even if Things Aren’t Going Your Way, available on Amazon.com and Amazon UKCAFR and DEA FREE excerpt of the book is available here.