Letting Go of the “HOW?”

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  • The email response to my recent blog postings has been humbling. The number one question I’ve been asked is “HOW? How do I focus on the positive when I can’t make payroll? How do I enjoy my day when I’m so miserable? How do I get rid of the fear that I feel inside?”

    HOW seems to be a big, scary word. In gathering my thoughts for this blog post I was wondering, “How do I help”? I was also stuck in the HOW of not knowing, yet wanting to be of service.

    And then something funny happened. I was talking with our web guys about creating a widget for our site. I know nothing about how a website is programmed or how it works, let alone a widget. I just know what I need and what I want to provide for our community.

    I explained exactly what I needed and told the web guy that I don’t care how they make it work, but stressed again what it had to do. We went back and forth with options to create what I wanted. I reiterated to them that I didn’t care HOW they do it, just make it work the way I need it to. And that’s when it hit me. I talk all the time about you don’t need to know the “HOW”, and here was a very tangible example of this right in front of me.

    For me to personally try to figure out HOW to create this widget would be as unlikely as me trying to personally figure out the intricacies of my life! So many times we think that we’re in charge and we have to know all the ways in which things will line up to bring us our heart’s desire. What we fail to recognize is that the very best thing we can do is to get out of the way by letting go of the HOW.

    If I sat with the programmers and designers and tried to show them how to do this, it would not only remain incomplete, but it would drive us all crazy. Yet how often do we do that in life? We know what we want and we try to program it to make it happen, rather than turning it over to the Universal programmer instead. No wonder we get frustrated, fearful and our options appear limited!

    Knowing that we don’t have to understand the HOW of life is a gift to us all. Knowing the WHY and the WHAT are much more important. Look at it this way- if you have only 24 in this day and only a finite amount of energy; why not invest that time and energy in the WHY and the WHAT rather than the HOW? Release your control of the HOW into the hands of the greater unknown.

    When I look at HOW am I going to make payroll, I’m only looking at the options that I can see- not those of the universe. I am limiting what I can do, the same as if I were going to attempt to design the widget myself with my limited information. These same limitations are what got me into this mess in the first place! But by staying true to the goal and letting go of the HOW, I open up to the world of possibility.

    Maybe a new, unexpected client will walk through the door so that you can make payroll. Maybe a friend will call and talk you out of the funk. Maybe by celebrating the emotional high of the passion, the fear will dissolve. Be open to possibility by letting go of the attachment as to HOW it has to happen.

    All I know is this… focusing on the HOW doesn’t work. Instead, put your time, energy and passion on the WHAT and the WHY and allow the HOW to show up. Allow the Universe to surprise you with wonders that you can’t even yet imagine. The more you do this, the better and faster it will work for you. And please, share your successes with me. I’m cheering for you! ☺

    Gail Lynne Goodwin

    Gail Lynne Goodwin is the founder of InspireMeToday.com, bringing the best inspiration to the world. InspireMeToday.com provides free inspiration, each day from a new Inspirational Luminary, to a global community of folks from over 150 countries. Gail has interviewed many well-known names including Sir Richard Branson, Guy Laliberte, Seth Godin, Tony Hseih, Gary Vaynerchuk, Michael Gerber, Marci Shimoff, Jack Canfield and hundreds more. According to Mashable, Gail was one of 2009's Top 25 Most Inspirational People on Twitter. Prior to InspireMeToday.com, Gail spent several years as manager for her recording artist daughter, Carly. As a result of the success of their co-penned song, "Baby Come Back Home", Gail accompanied her daughter to bases in the US and to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba where Carly performed for our troops. Gail and Carly created the 'World's Longest Letter' of love and support and delivered the 18-mile long scroll on a month-long tour of Iraq and the Persian Gulf in 2006. Gail is excited to present her latest course, Love in 21 Days, a step-by-step guide to finding love online. Love in 21 Days is founded on a logical process that has been tested - and proven! - by not only Gail, but also by students around the world who too have found love. Gail is a published author and a regular writer for the Huffington Post. She offers mentoring and mastermind services to clients worldwide from her home in Whitefish, Montana. Follow Gail on Twitter or Google+.

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    1. SugarJones
      SugarJones says:

      I don’t know why this just made me choke up… wait a minute… that was a lie. I certainly DO know why. Because I will let the how become my insurmountable wall. The HOW becomes my enemy. Maybe I need to shift that thinking to WHY? Why do I want something? Why do I feel a dream calling me? Why am I letting the HOW get in my way. Why do I let the HOW fan the flames of my silly fears when the WHY of my dreams is so much more important?

      Thanks, Gail. I appreciate you so much.

      Reply
    2. Gail
      Gail says:

      Well Sugar, we’re even. Reading your comment brought tears to my eyes too. 🙂

      I’m glad this hit home with you. I think it does for all of us. We have to remember- when the vision is bigger than the fear ANYTHING is possible. Push the HOW out of the way and take another step closer to the dream. I’ll be right here behind you, cheering you on.

      Hugs,

      Gail

      Reply
    3. Alex Sysoef
      Alex Sysoef says:

      As a very pragmatic person I wish I could share your optimism Gail. To me HOW is always part of What, as in What I have done to make that How happen. It is determining the What in a very specific terms and identifying the path to get to it.

      Thanks for the great post!
      Alex

      Reply
    4. LaDonna Coy
      LaDonna Coy says:

      Hi Gail – it is so true ..that the HOW gets in the way. Three years ago, after fifteen years working for the same organization, I knew it was time for me to move on. I knew I wanted to work with technology and had dreamed about being able to teach/train online from a home office. I had no idea HOW but I finally knew WHAT I wanted to do. Out of left field I had an offer of a contract so .. I took it. As the year went by more work seemed to come my way and now as year three comes to a close … good work and creative opportunities keep coming. The hardest part was to figure out WHAT I wanted and once I did that the HOW took care of itself – I couldn’t have planned anything this good! I’m learning to let go of the HOW and be present, attentive and open to opportunities … and they really do show up! Thanks for the great post to remind me :o)

      Reply
    5. Dr. Jenn
      Dr. Jenn says:

      Man, this is a hard one to learn.

      But boy it works!! By focusing my heartfelt desire, believing that it will indeed come, and then letting go of the how, because I had no idea about the how!, I was able to manifest several amazing horses, selling a house in a tight market, then buying not only a 5 acre horse property, but a 36 acre property of my dreams.

      And so true what you say about our limited imagination- the universe can do so much better when we let it go. Like, with the property, it went above and beyond all expectations, filled almost every criteria I was aware of, and then some I wasn’t even thinking about. I appreciated the humor- like a 2 person shower- for me and my husband! And all of the double rainbows that seem to live in our backyard!

      As humans, our egos want to be in control. Giving up that control is tough, but gritting your teeth and having to know the how- is even tougher.

      My suggestion: Have clear intent. Believe. Know. Trust. Expect. And it will come!

      Whenever a doubt surfaces, just let it float in one ear and right out the other. You can choose your focus. Therein lies your power.

      We are magnificent creators, all!

      Thanks for the nice analogy and reminder! Can’t hear it often enough!

      Reply
    6. nina
      nina says:

      .allow the HOW to show up.
      To get out of the way and let the amazing stuff happen; it seems so simple for me to have learned this by now 😉
      I get caught up with the world’s expectation of my “HOW” and I forget to hold onto to the point of it all.
      More than the amazing reminder you gave us here, what hit me most about your message is that we truly have the choice to determine our path back onto this. To remain focused enough to respond with this, and distinguish this in our voice and our focus rather than give in to worry. This is what shapes the inspiration for others… and the CHANGE all around us… and we can choose to be a part of it and to hold the focus.
      Thank you for your wisdom Gail!

      Reply

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