a new concept of myself


One of my favorite Neville Goddard quotes is:

“There is nothing to change but our concept of self….As soon as we succeed in transforming self, our world will dissolve and reshape itself in harmony with that which our change affirms.”*

One day as I was quietly repeating these words to myself, the thought came to me, “What are the concepts of myself that are keeping me from my heart’s desire?” I sat with that question for a while and the answer that came was this: I believed that if something good was going to happen in my life, then I must make it happen. I saw myself as a person who “got things done”. I’d think thoughts like, “Give me a project and I’ll see it through in an efficient and timely manner”…and god help anyone who gets in my way or doesn’t line up with my plan. I was sure that I knew the best way, the right way, that things should happen, and I enjoyed that concept of myself…sort of. I didn’t believe that anyone could or would do it as well as I could and I didn’t dare leave anything to chance.

So as I pondered the concepts of myself that I still held onto (that were no longer serving me) I saw how this concept of myself had run its course. It worked when I felt alone and this very competent, overly responsible, sense of self was all I had. But when I was ready to grow spiritually, it stopped working. It was no longer a thrill to achieve goals like it had once been. I grew very tired of seeing life as something to be overcome, endured, conquered, or planned out to the last detail, by me. One of the reasons that I felt like I needed to do so much was from a deep sense that I was not good enough…I was not enough. I’d believed this for most of my life and felt like I had to work hard to prove to others that it wasn’t true. I always felt like I had to prove something…

And then the most incredible thing began to happen. As I started to watch my life, to observe how it was presenting me with everything that I needed, and often what I wanted as well, I felt a new trust growing…a trust in the unknown goodness of Life. As long as I held onto the idea (concept of myself) that I was making things happen, I was actually blocking the essence of wonder, happy surprises, and delightful ideas from reaching me, and I was getting tired.

I used to hear slogans like, “Let Go and Let God” and I’d think, “What garbage!” What I didn’t realize was that my concept of God was too small, limited, and antiquated. I believed that God was some guy, existing somewhere outside of me, who decided the fate of little humans on a whim, and who was definitely not pleased with me. I had no idea that I was a part of this inconceivably large, loving, presence/spirit… that I was intimately connected to the power of Love…a power/presence that was beyond anyone’s ability to describe in words…and that I could trust this way more than I could trust my reasoning mind to figure out and plan my life.

What I didn’t know, when I began this journey of faith was how much fun it would be. You think it’s fun to plan something and have it turn out exactly like you imagined?…. it is such a wild and wonderful experience to have your plans ripped away, only to discover that the new plan is so much better than anything you could have imagined.

*page 94, Awakened Imagination, Neville Goddard

18 thoughts on “a new concept of myself”

  1. Powerful. I’m going to share this with a sister who is struggling to imagine her life after the passing of her spouse. Thank you.

  2. When I read your writings I feel as though you’re speaking to me !! Honest to God Mary I met you for a reason . Thank you my friend.. ❤️😘

  3. This is wonderful, as always, Mary. One of the things I truly learned during my 13 years in Cambridge was exactly that. Far more joy comes from learning how to surrender than always being the boss so that (you hope) nothing goes wrong. I have learned that it brings little joy, and often a bit of guilty feelings to always have to do everything your own way. It also cultivates a great deal of anxiety. I am slowly, slowly learning who I am in the eyes of my Creator and how much He has invested in me to help me learn what this mysterious business of living is all about. It is so hard to put away some of the twisted concepts of ourselves and Him we have adopted through the years. I look forward to learning how to love better….you help!

    1. learning to love and learning to forgive everything and everyone…these seem to be the “tasks” before me this year…I love it that we are on this journey together, Annie.

  4. Dear Mary, another powerful post! I realized when reading it that I am a complete control freak who wants everything planned out, scheduled and confirmed. Can you share with us how you go about letting go and allow things to unfold as they are meant to? Do you use a mantra, do you watch your thoughts……… or is it just a matter of letting go when things aren’t going the way we thought they should? I love hearing your wise and soulful blog posts. They are perhaps more powerful teachings than you may realize! Thank you for your always honest and beautiful wisdom.

    1. Thank you, Debra…one thing that has helped me is to notice the tone of my thoughts…when I am afraid, my words get hard, sharp, and urgent (even when I am just thinking them). I often say to people who work with animals, “Imagine how that tone of voice would feel to a frightened animal”. It is so easy to see how harsh words affect an animal (or other people) but we forget that our energy fields/bodies are reacting the same way when we do it to ourselves. Then, I imagine softer, more soothing words. Sometimes I’ll just repeat the word, “soften” to myself and within a few seconds (or sometimes longer) I can feel myself relax…then it is easier to trust!

      1. Dear Mary, what insightful and wonderful advice. The tone of my thoughts always reflects my inner moods and tells me if I’m being self critical or afraid. Thank you for taking the time to respond to me and to share your beautiful advice. I will pay much closer attention to the tone of my thoughts now, thanks to you.

  5. Mary, coming to this a few days later, can you explain how:
    “So as I pondered the concepts of myself that I still held onto (that were no longer serving me) I saw how this concept of myself had run its course”
    I never see any concept of myself that isn’t working until after I hit a brick wall it seems….how in the world did you do this?
    SandyP in Canada

  6. Great question, Sandy. I’m not sure I can articulate the “how” of this….when I’ve changed and dropped or let go of old ways of being, it seems to me that I am finally ready and open enough for the change to happen. It is as if I “agree” to it and then the way it happens seems to unfold or present itself to me and all I need to do is to say yes to it (usually the new way is very simple and clear…just not easy!)

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