I’ve noticed a couple things recently about inspired action versus striving action.
- How easily we slip into striving action when we perceive things aren’t going our way.
- How easily we lose sight of what should always come before action.
I’m realizing it’s like an onion. You peel back a layer of striving, efforting action and you think, I get it. And then weeks or months later you realize there’s a whole other layer to peel back. At least that’s what has happened for me personally and what often happens for my clients.
In other words, we think we’ve got this inspired action thing figured out.
We’re no longer pushing like we used to in order to make things happen. We’ve stopped hustling and grinding to get what we want. We’re much more tapped into the flow of the Universe and following our intuition.
We experience the exhilaration of inspired action. And we think we’re hooked on this new way of showing up. We are all in for inspired action.
Then something happens.
- Perhaps we don’t get the outcome we wanted or expected with all that inspired action. So we slip back into our old ways of efforting and striving.
- Perhaps we don’t get what we want according to our timeline. The Universe doesn’t meet our deadlines. And so, again, we slip back into our old ways of efforting and striving.
It’s two steps forward into inspired action and then a step back into striving and efforting.
The dictionary defines striving as making great efforts to achieve or obtain something. It’s that part “making great efforts”—that is where the friction gets introduced into your vibration.
When you are making great efforts to achieve your goal or acquire the shiny penny, you are not taking inspired action. You are not headed downstream with the flow. You are headed upstream trying hard to make something happen.
What I’m realizing is taking inspired action is not a choice you make once and you’re done. It’s a way of being in the world, a way of showing up in your life that you choose over and over.
We live in a culture that presents many opportunities to ditch inspired action for striving action.
You may be surrounded at work by others who are only taking striving action. Your circle of friends may be efforting their way to try to get what they want.
But let’s be clear: It doesn’t matter what our culture or your colleagues or friends are doing.
It matters the choice you make for you. It matters the vibration you offer to which the Law of Attraction responds. It matters the belief you hold about the role of action in manifesting.
So what do you believe? Do you believe inspired action—and only inspired action—is the pathway to manifest what you want?
- Or have you been believing inspired action works, but then at some point or for some things you need to put your nose to the grindstone?
- Do you like the idea of inspired action, but deep down believe you have to hustle to make things happen?
- Do you believe in the theory of inspired action, but then feel so uncomfortable waiting for the dots to connect that you jump into action, any action, to feel like you’re doing something and making progress?
I really encourage you to give thought to what you believe about inspired action. Maybe you’ve never really thought about it. What do you believe about inspired action and what do you want to believe? What role do you think action has in manifesting?
“Action that is inspired from aligned thought is joyful action. Action that is offered from a place of contradicted thought is hard work that is not satisfying and does not yield good results.” —Abraham
What examples do you have from your own life of times you took joyful action? And then what about the times you took action from a place of contradicted thought?
My relationship to action is night and day compared to what it used to be.
In the past, it was all forced action and massive action. It was all hustle and grind. Efforting was my go-to way of showing up in my life. Striving action was the only way I knew to get things done, to accomplish goals, to try to get what I wanted.
These days, of course, I have a very different perspective on action and the role it plays in manifesting. I am all about inspired action…until I’m not.
I laugh when I say that because I’m not going to beat myself up for straying from the path of inspired action. By my intention is certainly to stray less and less. My intention is if it’s not inspired action, then it’s no action.
I’m wide awake to those moments when I’m at the crossroads of inspired action versus striving action. For instance, when what I want hasn’t yet manifested, I know that’s the time to be really mindful about the temptation of striving action.
In those moments, I ask myself: Am I going to co-create with the Universe or am I going to hustle and hard work my way to what I want? When I’m mindful, when I choose consciously, my answer is always a resounding I want to co-create with the Universe!
Another time I want to be especially mindful is at the beginning of something new I want to manifest. When I’ve launched what Abraham calls a rocket of desire.
That’s also a time to be really conscious of choosing the path of inspired action. Which often means waiting to act. Even holding myself back from taking any action unless it is truly inspired.
“Find the feeling place, and then find the inspired action. Don’t offer action in order to try to make something happen.” —Abraham
You’ll recall at the outset I said I’ve noticed a couple things about inspired action versus striving action. We’ve just talked about the first one—slipping into striving action when things aren’t manifesting as you want or on your schedule.
The second thing I’ve noticed is how easily we lose sight of what should always come before action.
“The rule of thumb is, you never take action where there is negative emotion within you because it will always be counterproductive. Always talk to yourself until you feel better and then follow the inspired action that comes from that open valve.” —Abraham
Now, at first glance, you may not think you’re taking action when there is negative emotion within you.
- Negative emotion includes frustration, irritation, impatience. Are you taking action when you feel those emotions?
- Negative emotion includes overwhelment? Some of us are definitely taking a bunch of action when we feel overwhelmed trying to get it all done so we don’t feel overwhelmed anymore.
- What about doubt? Do you take action when you feel the negative emotion of doubt? I doubt what I want will happen, but I’m going to do X, Y, and Z to try to make it happen anyway.
Many of us experience negative emotion, and rather than take Abraham’s advice to feel better first and then follow with inspired action, we’re taking action first and hoping that gets us what we want.
But Abraham says taking action when you are feeling negative emotion will always be counterproductive. Really that sink in. How different would your life be in terms of the action you take and don’t take if you really believed that taking action when you feel negative emotion is counterproductive?
“It’s not about action…it’s about vibrational alignment.” —Abraham
Let’s look more closely at this idea that action taken when you feel negative emotion is counterproductive.
I’ll give you a couple examples of striving action that doesn’t yield good results.
Let’s say you want to be in a relationship. You want a romantic partner. However, you’re often not in alignment on this subject because you’re more focused on the lack of a romantic relationship in your life. Your thoughts and feelings go to the absence of a partner. You feel discouraged. Because you’re not in alignment, inspiration is blocked. But you are taking lots of action—spending lots of time on dating apps and even going on first dates. But it is the action of striving. Of efforting your way to make what you want happen. The dating apps aren’t the problem, your energy is. Your striving action is what’s blocking what you want.
Here’s another example. One of my clients was hiring for a key role in her company, and she wasn’t feeling good about how things were going. There had been hiccups in the recruiting process, disappointments about getting far along with two different candidates, but ultimately it not being a good fit. My client was frustrated and impatient. She worried about how much longer the position would be vacant. She was feeling a lot of negative emotion. And what did she do? She doubled down on action. Meaning she took more and more action to try to make what she wanted happen, to try to fill the role. My client admitted, None of it was aligned action. None of it was inspired action. Her striving action was blocking what she wants.
That’s why Abraham says: “I get it now that to try to take action and make something happen before I’ve really gotten myself into a better feeling place is counterproductive.”
Of course, Abraham isn’t saying don’t ever take action. But talk to yourself until you feel better first. Reach for better-feeling thoughts and move up the emotional scale before you take action. Get in alignment first.
Because then you are taking aligned action. Then you can tap into the power and flow and magic of inspired action.
I think we can keep it very simple when it comes to the difference between inspired action and striving action.
- Are you in alignment when you take action? If so, that’s inspired action.
- Are you making great efforts to get what you want? If so, that’s striving action.
“Your work is to go forth into this physical environment looking for things that are a vibrational match to joy, connecting to Source Energy, and then following with the inspired action.” —Abraham
I’ll give you a little formula to make it easy to put what Abraham says into practice.
Here’s the formula: Alignment —> Inspiration —> Action.
Alignment leads to inspiration leads to action. Notice it’s not action leading to alignment or action leading to inspiration.
The inspiration comes once you are in alignment. And once you are in alignment and feeling inspired, then comes action.
And, oh my, is it ever satisfying action! It’s not hustle and grind. It’s not action that is frantic and frenzied. It’s not begrudging action you really don’t want to take, that you’re making yourself do.
When you follow this formula, which is simplicity itself, alignment-inspiration-action, the action feels good. The action feels right.
Aligned, inspired action is action you want to take. It’s satisfying and enjoyable. Aligned, inspired action is downstream and truly allows the Universe to co-create with you.
“Action that comes from the feeling of inspiration is action that will produce good results, for you are allowing the Laws of the Attraction of the Universe to carry you.” —Abraham