Commusings: Guidance from Future-You by Marie ForleoFeb 03, 2023
Hello dearest Commune Community,
In a sense, we live two different lives: a narrative life and an experienced life.
The former is concerned with the contents of consciousness. It’s the little voice in your head with whom you incessantly engage. It prattles on and on, “Well, the last time you went to that sushi place in the mini-mall, you got food poisoning – so, you should definitely decline any future invitations because you don’t want to be stooped over the toilet all night. But perhaps if you didn’t order the spicy tuna then...” And this can go on and on. If this narration was amplified to the outside world, we all might end up in an insane asylum.
The experienced life is confined to the ever present. You’re tripping along in life’s stream. Phenomena – sounds, smells, feelings, thoughts – are arising and subsiding in awareness moment to moment. And you’re just waving at it all. Happiness resides here — in the experienced life, for the sensation of well-being can only be felt in the present.
In some manner, the narrative life exists as part of the experienced life, for this never-ending self-talk happens in the now. The constant fixation with events of the past and their projection into the future as anticipated memories often leads to dissatisfaction in the present.
Of course, as a logistical matter, we need to consider the future. Before embarking on a great journey, a captain sets his compass. And he must do so with care, for a few degrees east or south can drastically impact the destination across thousands of miles. As the captain of your life, setting the proper coordinates is crucial in finding your true north.
This is where meditating on the future has utility. You get clear on what you want to be doing moment to moment. What do you want to be working on and with whom? Manifesting from this end makes the chopping wood and carrying water of life a joy.
My friend and today’s essayist, Marie Forleo, has helped me find clarity in my work. And this lucidity has led to a much more fulfilling and creative life.
Always here (and now) at [email protected] and airing my deepest conversations with myself on IG @jeffkrasno.
In love, include (the real) me,
Guidance from Future-You
by Marie Forleo
Before you make any more life decisions, there’s someone you need to consult.
No, not your parents, friends, or neighbors. Not your boss, coworkers, mentors, or even your spouse. While everyone around you — in person and on your social feed — might happily share opinions about what you “should” or “shouldn’t” do, only ONE person can truly guide you.
The world has opinions. Future-You has answers.
See, all of us have another self who is coexisting with this one. I like to think of it as my kinder, more expansive, more experienced, wiser, and higher Future Self. Today, I’m sharing with you two exercises I use daily to connect with my higher self and get total clarity on just about anything. Yes, anything.
So next time you’re facing a decision and you don’t know what to do —
Should I move to Italy? Is it time to start my own business or take that promotion? Do I want to wear the blue shirt or the green one? What should I eat for lunch? Are they “the one”?
Try one of the exercises below for instant clarity so you’ll know — with confidence — your next right step.
Exercise: Don’t Know What to Do? Call on Your Highest & Wisest Self for Answers
- Put your hand over your heart.
- Close your eyes.
- Ask out loud or internally, “Alright higher, wiser, future self, what do you really know to be true about this situation? Is it a yes? Is it a no? What's the wisdom that you have to offer me right now?”
- Then wait, breathe, and listen for answers.
The most uncomfortable part is usually hanging out in silence, being still, and waiting. But I encourage you to give yourself enough time and space to feel what arises. If nothing comes, try these questions to get the inspiration flowing:
- What's the truth for me in this situation?
- What do I need to know?
- What do I need to understand?
- What's my best next move that'll support my growth?
- Who do I need to ultimately become?
- What does Future Me need right now?
There's so much noise from the external world, it’s easy to forget that this beautiful version of us exists. And that if we can pause long enough to hear her voice, the questions we’ve been wrestling with will have a clear answer.
How to Recognize the Voice of Your Higher Self
Here's what I've learned about the messages that come from our higher, wiser, future selves. Like my friend and renowned psychic medium MaryAnn DiMarco shares, “guidance comes in your own voice.”
Your higher self or inner guidance will NOT:
- Be harsh
- Speak in a critical tone
- Give confusing, convoluted, or unclear messages
Your higher self or inner guidance WILL:
- Whisper (especially in the beginning!)
- Communicate with simplicity and clarity
- Appear as words, images, hunches, or aha’s
- Come through body sensations like lightness, heaviness, heat, chills, dread, or joy
For me, my guidance comes as a sense of lightness about moving in a certain direction rather than another. Or, one choice will feel fun and easy, while the other fills me with dread.
Your wisdom will come to you in its own way. And the more often you ask, the sooner you’ll learn to recognize it. So use this Higher and Wiser Self exercise as much as you can. No conundrum is too trivial to do a quick check-in with Future You. Future You is here for you!
If you don't get the clarity you need from simply asking, this next guided writing practice takes it a step further.
Exercise: 3-Step Guided Writing Practice to Tap into Your Inner Knowing
This powerful journaling practice is called automatic or guided writing. It allows you to tap into that higher, wiser, more conscious part of yourself, and give it voice on the page.
When I was writing my book, Everything is Figureoutable, I used this practice constantly. Every time I hit a creative block, I’d turn to my journal. Which chapter should I write first? What information should I put where? What will serve my readers most? This practice saved my butt … and my book. And I still use it daily to stay clear on my highest and truest path.
Here’s how you can use guided writing to clarify your life decisions:
Step 1: Meditate for at least twenty minutes. You need time and space to let the chatter in your mind slow down. And twenty minutes of mindful breathing also slows your brain waves and promotes mind and heart coherence — which is essential for this exercise.
Step 2: Write this question at the top of a blank journal page: Dear higher self, what do I need to know about _________?
Fill in the blank with the issue you want guidance on. Maybe you want to know what this next chapter of your life should be about, or whether you should say yes to a particular job offer, or how to navigate a relationship challenge. Whatever it is, just ask.
Step 3: Allow your hand to start moving on the page. Once you write down that question, put your pen to paper and write, write, write! Don't worry about spelling. Don't worry about grammar. And definitely don’t judge your writing. Just let your pen move and the words come through.
Every single time I've done this, it's as though another energy is moving through me. And I promise you — if you ask with intention and allow yourself to let the words come through — you’ll be shocked at the wisdom that shows up.
How to Get the Most out of Your Guided Writing Practice
The most important rule to follow when you practice guided writing is this: DO NOT EDIT YOURSELF!
Don't worry about complete sentences, punctuation, or grammar. The moment you get into your analytical mind, you’re FUBAR—Fouled Up Beyond All Repair. So, don't go there. This journal is for your eyes only. Just get into the writing flow, and you'll be blown away by what comes through.
Second, if you hit a stopping point but don’t have your answer yet, keep going! Here’s a trick that can help. Use one of these sentence stems to get that internal guidance flowing again:
- What else do I need to know about _____?
- Is there anything else you can tell me about _____
Fill in the blank with your topic or question, then keep writing until you feel complete. When you’re done, you’ll have your answer.
Remember, you have an incredible well of internal wisdom that is always available to you. Your job is to pause, ask, and listen.
About Marie Forleo:
Marie Forleo has created a socially conscious digital empire that inspires millions across the globe. Named by Oprah as a thought leader for the next generation, she's the star of the award-winning show MarieTV, with over 66 million views, and host of The Marie Forleo Podcast, with over 22 million downloads. Marie has taught entrepreneurs, artists, and multipassionate go-getters from all walks of life how to dream big and back it up with daily action to create results. She runs the acclaimed business training program B-School.
2023 B-School Registration Opens Soon on February 9: When you sign up for Marie's BSchool through Commune, you’ll get a bonus from us: A Lifetime Membership, valued at $700. Visit onecommune.com/marie for more info.
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