Please answer with the first thing that pops into your mind,
True or False: People can have whatever they want.
How did you answer? Can you guess how I answered? I answered TRUE and I’m choosing to believe I can have what I want and YOU can have what you want.
And if you’re not sure how, or what I mean, I want to give you some reasons why this can be true for you and some tips about how you can apply this belief in your own life so you can get what you want.
Here’s my Disclaimer
If you answered False, if you don’t think people can have whatever they want, and if you have strong examples and evidence that this statement is not true, I’m not trying to convince you in these paragraphs. This is just about giving you some reasons, some examples, and maybe just introducing the possibility that this might be true, in some cases.
Go After and Get What You Want
Throughout my life, People have told me they notice that I go after and get what I want. I do.
I wouldn’t have noticed that on my own- I wouldn’t have thought that about myself, but when friends or family members told me that they noticed that about me, first, it surprised me a little, then I thought about it and I noticed: I do. I am a person who goes after what she wants.
Why was that a surprise for me to notice? And why did they notice that about me?
It was a surprise to me because I didn’t think that the way I go after things is different than how other people go after things. I probably just assumed I’m doing it the way we all do it.
There was nothing for me to notice – until someone else noticed it and pointed it out to me.
Why did people notice this characteristic of mine? And then why did they tell me.. Probably because it IS a little different from how many other people do it. So, maybe my style stands out a little. Or, maybe the people who remarked on it also do it themselves and they recognized the pattern in me that they see in themselves.
Or, maybe, some people who notice that pattern in me, can’t imagine just going after what they want, just because they want it- so this characteristic seems a little unique and abnormal to them.
The important thing is not to understand why anyone brought up this pattern or characteristic to me. The important thing is to explore why I do go after what I want. If I know why, then maybe I can do it more often. And, if I know why, then maybe I can describe it to you, so you can go after what you want more often too.
Why Don’t You Go After What You Want?
First, I think it’s interesting to explore Why don’t people go after what they want?
I bet you can guess my answer to this question – it’s my favorite research topic: Resistance!
People let resistance hold them back from going after what they want.
they think they don’t deserve it
they think they’re taking away from someone else
they think it’s not for them
they think they’ll be rejected
they think it won’t work
they think they’ll fail at it
Do you hear how these reasons are all just optional, resistant thoughts? And.. if said on their own, in response to an idea, or a spark of inspiration, the individual reasons could sound very logical, and reasonable, and true.
What if these thoughts didn’t even cross your mind? What if these thoughts never entered into the picture?
Imagine what you would do, and try, and get for yourself if you never believed any reasons why you can’t have what you want!
2 Ways to Get What You Want
As I was thinking about what to include in this topic, how to get what you want, I really just thought of the 2 main ways I usually get what I want in my own life. I didn’t have to think about it for very long, maybe I use these 2 ways so frequently that they just popped into my head the minute I started thinking about the topic.
I’m going to share these 2 ways with you, then I want to cover some “What Ifs? That might be popping up for you as you hear me talking about this topic. And then, I will be SO curious if what I tell you has opened your mind at all, or further solidified your belief that you CAN have whatever you want.
The 2 ways I generally go after what I want are: I ask for it and I create it for myself. Let’s get specific with some stories and examples.
Ask for it
I love the expression: “you don’t get what you don’t ask for ” In fact, in thinking about it right now, I’m realizing that this is one of my favorite mantras (I’m surprised now that i didn’t include it in the episode about My Favorite Mantras. (That’s episode 13.. If you want to go back and listen to it)
I love this as a mantra because as soon as I think about it, I immediately drop (or downgrade) my own resistance about asking for what I want.
And it’s actually funny, because with the tiniest amount of consideration and questioning, I can actually see that the expression is not necessarily true. If pressed, I could probably think of lots of examples where I did get something without asking for it, and I could probably stretch the meaning and intention of the sentence to remind myself that you also sometimes don’t get what you do ask for- but I never entertain all those caveats.
I like the rhythm and meaning of the phrase “You don’t get what you don’t ask for” so I just use that simple phrase and I believe it.. And it makes me want to ask for what I want.
They All Mean the Same Thing
There are lots of expressions like this: “the worst thing they can say is no”, “the answer is no 100% of the time if you don’t ask”, “you can’t win if you don’t play”, and probably many more. It all boils down to – just ask!
What do you want? Ask for it! Do you see something you like? Ask for it!
The most direct approach is to just say: “can I have that?”
I want to point out here that your initial reaction might be to assume that this means asking someone else to give you what you want, and yes, that often works, but this also includes asking yourself for what you want (more on this)
Think About Something You Want
So, think about something in your life that you want right now. Have you asked yourself if you can have it?
I’m imagining a whole subconscious dialogue that you might not even be aware of – it might go something like this:
You: I want to lose 20 pounds- can I have that?
Your brain: No- you can’t lose 20 pounds. You don’t have the willpower (or, losing weight is hard, or you’ve tried before and it didn’t work).
The reason why I’m sharing this imaginary possible internal dialogue with you is to point out that those “reasons” your brain is giving you when you ask yourself for what you want are also just optional, resistant thoughts that you don’t have to believe.
The conversation could have have just as likely gone like this:
You: I want to lose 20 pounds- can I have that?
Your brain: Of course you can, you can have whatever you want, whatever you decide. Let’s go get that for you!
How empowering, right!
Different Internal Dialogues
And, maybe I’m not using the exact phrases and verbiage that you and your brain would use.. And I”m guessing your internal dialogues are less scripty and conversational and more just fleeting thoughts and impulses.. But think about what you already do have in your life that you just have effortlessly.. You probably has a version of that conversation in your brain and your brain didn’t give you any resistance to it.. So you just gave yourself what you wanted.
Less Direct Method
There’s also a less direct method to asking for what you want. It sounds more like: “I want that, how can I get it?”
This method is good for when you don’t personally know how or can’t personally ask directly. Asking for what you want works all the way up and down the scale. It works with asking yourself and asking someone else for what you want.
For example, on a small scale, you might ask someone else for a discount, a gift, a sample or some information. On a major scale, you might ask for a promotion, a raise, a relationship with someone.
This method also applies to the less tangible. So for example, you could ask yourself for a life, skill, for success, or for an opportunity.
Can You Think of Something You’ve Asked For?
Checking in with your right now, when you think about what you really enjoy about what you already have in your life- can you identify anything that you’ve asked for? That you’ve asked someone else for.. Or that you’ve asked yourself for?
Create it For Yourself
The 2nd method I want to share with you about how to get what you want is to create it for yourself. There are so many examples of things you can create for yourself:
A networking group
An audience for your classes & workshops
A beautiful home
The daily lifestyle you want
Access to daily Zumba classes
Here’s a little hint- those are all things I’ve created for myself.. Just because I wanted them.
Example of What I’ve Created
I love Zumba. I consider it my meditation time and my workout. And what do I want? To do Zumba every day with music and teachers I like at the time I want to do it.
A few years ago, I was going to 3 separate gyms so that I could go to Zumba with the teachers I liked, who played the music I liked and held classes at the times I liked.As gym schedules changed, or as teachers moved on, I would just keep stopping and starting new gyms to get what I wanted.
At one point, I couldn’t create the gym-music-teacher-schedule combination for myself to cover all 7 days of the week, so I decided to create the option for myself by becoming certified to teach Zumba – that’s literally the definition of just deciding to create what I wanted for myself. Zero Resistance!
But, even though I became certified, I never ended up starting to to teach because within a few months, 2 new gyms opened up by my house, and I found a 3rd gym that had a much more expanded Zumba schedule and included multiple locations- so there was another example of everything happening for me and me getting what I want because I was willing to ask for it and create it for myself.
Zumba During Corona
Then, in 2020 all the gyms shut down – so I was out of luck again.. But only temporarily.. Because, even though I *thought* doing Zumba at home didn’t and wouldn’t work for me, one day, I decided to make myself a Zumba playlist in Youtube choosing only my favorite songs and looking for teachers who reminded me of my favorite in-person teachers.. And I found SO many great Zumba videos- and I made myself a playlist and tried it out in my living room – and I LOVED it!
So, then I made myself 6 more playlists, and now, I do Zumba at home every day with my new favorite teachers, using only the songs I love and doing it at exactly the right time for me.
It’s perfect! I got exactly what I wanted by creating it for myself. If you want a copy of my Zumba Playlists, just click here to join the email list of my favorite people and I’ll email it to you!
What Do You Want for Yourself?
What do you want for yourself? Can you create it for yourself? Let’s say you want a higher-paying job. How could you create it for yourself?
You could literally create a job for yourself by starting your own business. But, if that’s not the direction you want to go, you could notice a gap in your current workplace and develop the skills to meet that gap and figure out who the decision maker is to decide to pay someone to fill that gap, then start making strategic moves towards pointing out the value created when that gap is filled and pointing out that you’re the perfect person to fill that gap.
Resistance Coming Up
Now I can already hear some of the resistance coming up for people reading this.
“That would never work in my company.’
“That’s not how my workplace operates.”
“That would take too long”
.. and probably so many more resistant reasons I’m not even imagining. But here’s the truth: it does happen and has happened.
And you get to choose the thoughts you believe and repeat to yourself – so you can choose to believe and repeat those resistant reasons – which definitely won’t help you get what you want – or, you can choose to think thoughts that WILL get you closer to getting what you want, like:
“You never know.”
“Let’s see what they say.”
“It’s worth a try.”
“I wonder what I can get away with.”
Resistance to the 2 Ways
I’ve just told you 2 ways you can get whatever you want, either by asking for it or by creating it for yourself – and right now, you may have some general resistance.
And maybe also frustration, because you may be thinking I’m glossing over some very obvious and serious reasons why people can’t justs get what they want.
What if you literally can not have what you want? What if you want your ex to come back. What if you want to be able to walk, when you can’t walk
What if what you want is for that person not to have died. For the accident not to have happened. What if you want the corona virus and quarantine to be over immediately. What if you want the trip to be un-cancelled?
I’m not trying to make light of any situation. But, I’m also not trying to assume there’s one correct way to think about any situation.
And for the examples I just gave, I want to point out that some of the “example wants” that aren’t possible are assuming things in the future – assuming someone won’t come back, assuming someone won’t have an ability they don’t currently and will never have in the future.
Deciding on What Will Happen
I call this deciding on what will happen in the future- as if you get to decide on the future.
I like to think of it this way, kind of joking with myself a little, to remind myself in a playful way that sometimes my brain tells me it knows what will happen, what’s about to happen, what the outcome will definitely be – and I always have the option to remember that I don’t control the future that I don’t know what’s about to happen, that I really can’t know the outcome for sure.
And that little tiny slice of awareness, sometimes, helps me to readjust my thinking and my options. It makes me feel more open instead of closed.
Wanting Different Outcomes from What’s Already Happened
Another thing to notice about some of those wants that aren’t possible are wanting a different outcome to things that have already happened.
For this one, I want to point out that the past is a circumstance. It’s neutral. It’s also already been decided and its done and you have no control to change it. And you do have complete control over your thoughts about that circumstance that happened in the past.
So, if what you want is to change the past, then I concede, that’s probably something you can not have (and I say probably because how do I know if in the future we’ll figure out a way to change the past – see how I just applied what I said a minute ago about not controlling the future?)
You Can’t Change the Past
But, yes, let’s concede that you can’t (currently) change the past but you can ALWAYS change your thoughts about what happened, or what it means for you now, or what it will mean for you in the future.
Maybe changing your thoughts changes what you want.. And then we’re back in business, and then I still believe you can have whatever you want!
Revisiting the Pop Quiz
So, back to our pop quiz from the beginning.. True or False: People can have whatever they want.
Did your answer stay the same? Or change? Do you have any resistance to getting whatever you want – either by asking for it.. Or creating it for yourself?
Get the Companion Workbook
Want to get my collection of Daily Zumba playlists? It’s included in the companion workbook, along with many of the exercises and worksheets that go along with each of the other posts on this site – so no matter when you joined me, and no matter what you’re currently working on, if you download the companion workbook you should be able to follow along with most of the worksheets and exercises that I mention. Go get that pdf right now.