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Ten Ways to be Your Own Guru

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Gurus are a dime a dozen. There is always someone selling something that's going to fix everything. A lot of people will line up to buy the magic pill or quick fix, even if we know, we'll probably never take it or use it.

Sure, we all can benefit from a guide who can shine the light on a path we want to hike. However, most of us have more self-help and spiritual books on our shelves than we will ever read, let alone implement.

Not to mention, the flavor of the day is always changing. The next great thought leader is always emerging. The newest process or product might just do the trick.

But here's the thing: You are the expert on you.

No one knows better about what's best for you. No one knows your story and your experiences better than you do. There is no one size fits all guru that has all your answers. When you're looking for the light, you're usually the only person who's got the flashlight in hand.

The good news is, regarding experts, you're the only one available who's probably not going to charge you a bunch of money for the time. The key to making that work is keeping you on your schedule.

I'm not saying you should never reach out for help. You absolutely should make that call if you're stuck. I earn a living helping courageous people find and connect to their genius. I am saying though, even with the best expert on board, you're still going to have to be your savior.

Here are the top ten ways to be your own guru.

1. Take risks regularly.

Risk taking isn't really about the reward. When you are doing the same thing day in and day out, you have very little opportunity to learn new things about yourself.

Taking a risk gives you an opportunity to observe yourself stretching. What you can learn in that observation is priceless.

Your life will be defined by the risks you take, not the ones you avoid. Those definitions aren't about what you get for taking the risk. It's about who you become while doing it.

2. Ditch being right and replace it with being curious.

I like being right as much as the next girl. Maybe even more. However, I know the high of being right is about as healthy for my soul as junk food is for my body. Being right is mostly useless. It doesn't create any opportunity for more insight.

Curiosity is where the real power is. Curiosity compels you to ask the important questions. It challenges you to observe rather than label. Curiosity invites inquiry over judgment.

Curiosity will show you what you don't know, and that's why more important than what you do know. The first thing you might realize is you don't know as much about yourself as you think you do.

3. Get really good at being alone.

If the only thing you ever understand is yourself, you've already won. And yet very few people invest any time in cultivating a relationship with themselves.

If you are afraid of being alone, you run a massive risk of settling for people in your life that don't nourish your soul. Settling is an absolute path to dissatisfaction.

Being alone is a sacred state. Being alone is a way to develop a sacred relationship with yourself. It's worth doing.

4. Learn to stop thinking.

I remind myself a hundred times a day to stop thinking. Not so much to stop thinking about any one particular thing, but to stop thinking about anything. You see I am a multitasker. I'm usually thinking about four things at once. Quiet isn't my mind's natural state. I know I'm not alone.

There is a relief in the quiet blank spaces between your thoughts that is so powerful it's almost addicting. And yet, as lovely as it is in the quiet it is not a natural state for most of us.

Most of us know the key to happiness is learning to control our thoughts. We spend a lot of time trying to redirect our thoughts to greener pastures thinking that's the way to gain mastery over our minds. It's not. The first step in learning to control them is learning not to thinking them at all.

5. Quit believing everything you think.

I for one know I think a lot of thoughts that are total and complete bullshit. If I'm not mindful, I don't even question it. We all think in our own voices and tend to believe our thoughts as if they are absolutely true. Most of them aren't.

For most people, their thoughts run with the reason and rationale of a cranky, overtired toddler. We tend to be critical, most of ourselves, but also of others. Our minds tend to naturally drift to the worst case scenario. We have a propensity for worry that defies practical explanation. We make things up about ourselves, other people, the past and the future, that just aren't true. And then we believe them.

As a general rule, you just can't trust your thoughts without a practice of careful examination and inquiry. Learning to back yourself up to question what you're thinking will give you a perspective on reality that's much more clear and much more pleasant.

6. Practice honoring your intuition absolutely.

Humans come from the animal kingdom. We all run on instinct. Everyone has intuition. However, it's a lot like a muscle. It tends to get stronger the more we exercise it or rather listen to it.

A lot of people will get guidance from their intuition and then try to parse it apart with their logical thinking. Intuition is rarely logical. When you start thinking your gut instinct to death, you can kill the magic pretty quickly.

Life works more smoothly when you listen to your intuition without needing to justify it. You may never know why it was in your best interest to zig rather than zag. However, if your gut is telling you to zig - do that.

You are a sensing being. You are picking up a lot more information from your environment than your rational mind can process. Ignoring your intuition is like putting the least intelligent part of yourself at the helm and setting course across the ocean.

7. Stop making things right or wrong.

Life is not that simple. What's right for you isn't right for everyone. What's wrong for you today, might be right for you next week. Right and wrong are easy, but it's lazy.

Life happens in the gray margins that live between black and white. We judge ourselves first, and then we judge everyone else. We use right and wrong to shame ourselves and others, to create distance, and to make us feel superior to other people.

A much smarter compass point is effectiveness. If you can judge things by how well they work, rather than if they are right or wrong, you get a lot more latitude to be creative and grow in your life. Effectiveness is the measure of truth, it's fluid, it's individual, and it's never as black and white and right or wrong.

8. Suspend all of your victim identity.

Anytime you're making someone else wrong or blaming someone for what's happening in your life, you're positioning yourself as a victim. There is no power there.

Blame is the quickest way to put your personal power on a platter and serve it to someone else. Nothing is happening to you. That's a hard pill to swallow when you don't like the game you're playing.

You can't always control everything that's happening in your life. However, you can always control how you feel about it and the story you tell about it. The product of those stories will define your life. Not to mention, anytime you're making yourself the victim of your story, you are creating a villain.

Redefine your role in any story where you've been the victim. Look for all the ways everything unfolds for you instead of to you.

9. Stop banking on a savior.

No one is coming to save you.
Enough said about that one.

10. Make your self-care a spiritual practice and move it to the top on your to-do list.

Creating a life takes energy. Deliberate creation takes energy. If you don't have enough energy on board, you will always be treading water in the same pool.

It helps to look at energy like money. You shouldn't spend more than you have. You can't go into energy debt for too long without really uncomfortable consequences. Energy works the same way, and most of us are spending more energy than we have all the time.

Self-care is the only way to build energy and keep a working energy reserve. If you want to create a life you love, you will need an energy reserve to draw from to build it. The bottom line is, you can't sustain the growth it requires to change if you don't have the energy on board to do it.

If the only spiritual practice you have is devoted self-care, that will be enough.

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Lisa Hayes, The Love Whisperer, is an LOA Relationship Coach. She helps clients leverage Law of Attraction to get the relationships they dream about and build the lives they want. Lisa is the author of the newly released hit book, Score Your Soulmate and How to Escape from Relationship Hell and The Passion Plan.

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