We’ve all been there. You start out in the right direction, but then somehow, something gets in your way, and then you’re back to square one. That something is you.

Why does this keep happening?

We all have belief systems that we have acquired throughout our lives. By belief system I mean a set of beliefs that govern the way that we see the world. These are stories that define our realities.

These take root in early childhood development when our minds are most impressionable. Our experience in childhood nourishes these stories and beliefs until they become fully ingrained in us.

Some examples of these beliefs could be:

I am loved unconditionally.
I must do something good to earn love.
I am unlovable.
I am great just as I am.
I have to prove my worth.
I am not enough.
People will abandon me.
There will always be someone to help when I need them.
The world is kind and loving.
The world is cruel and harsh.

The first step to getting out of your own way is discovering what beliefs you have about the world and about yourself. This can be done through meditation or with a trained therapist.

In meditation, watch your thoughts as they arise. Label each thought, and then let it pass. What patterns do you see? What patterns can you find in your past? Keep a journal close by and write down what keeps coming up for you. After your meditation, ask yourself where each thought came from. A place of love? A place of fear? What kind of emotions can you attach to each thought?

Take your negative thoughts, and turn them into positive affirmations. For example, if your thoughts are centered on all of the things that you need to do, or the people that are further ahead in their careers than you – you may find that as a child your parents often compared you to your siblings and so you may have an ingrained belief that you need to prove yourself to them. For this thought pattern, a positive affirmation such as “I am enough” would work for you.

Meditate with your affirmations daily, write them on sticky notes and put them places you will see them every day, repeat them out loud to yourself each morning. Make them a part of your daily habits. Over time, you can release your old belief systems and replace them with healthier ones.

Set goals for yourself.

One huge piece of getting what you want is knowing what you want.

“If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will take you there.”

Make sure that you know exactly what you want. Dream big. Don’t be afraid to dream big or feel that you may not deserve it. There is enough success, wealth, love, and happiness to go around for everyone. Why shouldn’t you get to enjoy some too?

Write down your goals for this week, this month, this year, five years from now, ten years from now, etc. Don’t worry if they sound grandiose – you never know what opportunities will come your way if you are open to them.

Create a vision board with photos of all of the things you want. Having a visual reminder of what you are working towards is helpful to stay focused! Visualize what your life will look like once you have achieved your goals and create the board based on that.

And finally, use the mantra for abundance to help you call in a little help from the divine! A simple mantra for Lakshmi, the Goddess of Abundance, is Om Shreem Maha Laksmiyei Namaha. Chant this daily for 40 days. You can use your mala beads or just chant for a specified amount of time each day.