It's remarkable how much easier it seems to be for some of us to give attention to what we don't want than to what we do.
For example, I might ask a student what he wants, and the reply is: "I'd like to have a lot more money. I'm pretty tired of being behind in the bills, just struggling all the time, never getting ahead." Or a student, when asked what she wants, might answer, "It would be great to meet a really great partner. I have such a history of bad relationships, and I just don't want to get my heart broken again." You see, the "voltage" goes with what's not wanted rather than what is.
In fact, what is wanted barely gets a nod. Since Field practice begins with being clear about what we want, this turns out to be a big deal.
Of course, this isn't a matter of semantics. A student can learn that game pretty quickly: just stick with "positive" statements. But that's not the point.
We can't fool the Field, which is another way of saying that we can't fool our own consciousness. If the words are right, but the consciousness remains contradicted, given over to beliefs that are more in league with avoiding something unwanted than actually experiencing and resting in fulfillment, then what we want must continue to elude us, since our experience follows attention and intention.
You can try this for yourself. Think of something you really want. Now "get into" it. You know, take on the role, like a good method actor. Savor the part. Get into it. And see what comes up.
You may be surprised to see resistance to the very fulfillment you desire. That something in us that concluded at some point that life was dangerous, and better to hole up and sit this one out will rise up inwardly to protect us like an anxious parent defending her brood.
This something isn't a bad guy. It's trying to serve us, really—to keep us safe, parry the expected blows, spare us further and worse losses.
The problem is that there's a fundamental contradiction between this sort of "playing safe" and the naturally expressive, curious, adventurous, evolving self that each of us embodies uniquely.
Fear-based beliefs set us against ourselves, and although they certainly serve us, they render their service at the cost of our very being.
The fellow who wanted more money had wanted it for a long time, but he didn't believe that he could have it. He had made money a stranger, so money stayed away. The woman who wanted to meet a great romantic partner had done a hundred things to try to make that happen, but she had never—not once in ten years—tried on the role. She was a past master of what she didn't want, unaware that there is no negation in the Field, which means that the Field doesn't hear our "not," only what follows it, and as this has our attention and credence, this is what the Field brings.
One of the first things to do in assuming our birthright as conscious creators is to be willing to BE who we wish to be, even before the facts justify it.
It isn't enough to want something. We have to be willing to agree with it, befriend it, become it, BE it.
Then we see that the same power we were using to perpetuate our suffering can reverse, like the poles of a magnet, and the current—the same current—flows the other way.
This point alone, taken to heart and practiced, could lift one above all the New Age nonsense about visualizing and parroting affirmations, and provide a direct experience of the elegantly impersonal power of aligned consciousness.