Do You Ever Feel Restricted or Limited?

Joyce L.  Shafer

Joyce L. Shafer

How easy is it, really, for you to manage your thoughts when negativity sneaks up on you and bites you on the bum? Maybe this will help.

You’re going along just fine then wham! Something or someone throws you off kilter, and you feel restricted in some way. This feeling of restriction causes some level of fear to pop up—even anger is fear-based—and suddenly you feel as though you’re treading water, perhaps in a storm, especially emotion-wise. Not a good feeling. And if you usually do any inner work at all, you then tend to go into self-judgment: “I know better; so why don’t I do better?” That restricted feeling that surfaced as a result of the event seems to double, because you’re now dealing with two issues, not just one.

Ernest Holmes wrote this in his book, The Science of Mind: A sense of separation from good causes us to feel restricted; while a sense of our Unity with GOOD changes the currents of Causation and brings a happier condition into the experience. Everything in the physical universe is an effect, and exists only by virtue of some invisible cause. Man’s individuality enables him to make such use of the Law as he desires. He is bound, not by limitation but by limited thought. The same power which binds him will free him when he understands the Law to be one of liberty and not of bondage. The power within man can free him from all distasteful conditions if the Law governing this power is properly understood and utilized.

What we attract, whether it’s welcomed, not welcomed, or a period of what seems like stagnation, is a result of limited or restricted thinking—our mental attitudes, which can either connect or disconnect us from feeling and trusting our unity with Good and therefore Source, as well as what we are actually capable of. Since these thoughts and attitudes are a result of a mental process, we’re the only ones who can shift them in our favor.

Holmes stated that “The conscious thought controls the subconscious and, in its turn, the subconscious controls conditions.” Law of Attraction always works according to our subconscious thoughts, and our subconscious thoughts can be shifted with our conscious thoughts. “We plant the seed and the Law produces the plant.” Our thoughts are always at work for us, showing us our personal cause-and-effect power. Easy to know; easy to forget; easy to feel “Say it isn’t so.”

Why do we bind ourselves and our lives with limited thought? We know we do this, we know what to do about it; so why is it such a challenge to shift this in our favor? This is a challenge because we learned, by example and or statements during childhood, things like “We don’t have enough money because someone or something outside (or even inside) the family unit prevents this.” This limited thought process is not restricted to money; it can include education, health, common sense, endurance, success, confidence, and so on, which tends to always reflect effects via money in the long run, because society has promoted the belief that money is the way we and our worth or worthiness are to be graded. We practice this, without realizing what we’re doing. And, we make it worse by comparing ourselves and our lives to others and letting others tell us what makes us and our lives a success and or worthy. Bah! Humbug!

Holmes wrote, “There is One Infinite Law; and every time man thinks, he sets this Law in motion. . . . There is One Limitless Life, which returns to the thinker exactly what he thinks into It.” We are always thinking something into motion and possibly into our experience of it. The only way to use this in our favor is to seek and reveal and remind ourselves about the Truth of how Source set up the Universe, the Law of Attraction, to work and then put it into practice, especially when we feel challenged. Easy to say, isn’t it; not so easy to remember to practice.

I ride the same rollercoaster many of you do. I feel good, in the flow, and then something makes my ego-aspect quake a little or a lot, and I’m into that treading-water feeling. And, yes, reminding myself of the Truth does get me back into balance and flow, but only after I do something specific: Calm myself down, request then trust that my highest good is always and in all ways provided, and then LET IT GO. What I let go of is the frantic, panicky energy my ego-aspect unleashes and the backward thinking process that goes with that.

There are times when you just have to push pause and catch your breath, when you just must stop all the thinking that takes you nowhere but in circles that wear a rut into the ground beneath you. Letting go feels completely counterintuitive, yet it’s the only thing that has ever truly shifted the energy, experiences, and results for me at such times, and or led me to right action. Initially, it freaks me out somewhat, but I just remind myself of all the times I did this and the positive shift this dynamic created—and fast, not to mention how good it felt to let go and be serene instead of stressed. This method is not for the timid. Most of us were taught to emulate Chicken Little. However, you might not recognize how strong you really are and the Truth of your unity with Source, until you take this route.

The fact of the matter, of life, is this: Stuff is going to happen, shift is going to happen. We’re not here to experience a life with no challenges or changes. There isn’t one animate or inanimate thing on Earth that does not experience challenges and change. Ultimately, it’s not about the challenges, it’s about how we manage ourselves in relation to them. That saying, “Don’t sweat the small stuff,” is a good one to keep in mind. Big stuff shows up at times for all of us, but how we react to stuff can cause us to act as though even the small stuff is big stuff. We wear ourselves out. We practice the wrong things; and when stuff happens, we go into default behaviors, because that’s what we practice more often.

In Elizabeth Gilbert’s book, The Signature of All Things, the main character reaches a point in her life and her mental attitude where certain truths about mosses become apparent to her, and she sees how these truths relate to people as well. The character writes that mosses endure challenging times through a process of adaptive change. What’s the first thing most of us do when faced with a challenge or change? We resist, rather than adapt; though, if we’re to survive challenges, we eventually have to adapt in some way. You wouldn’t be where you are today, if you hadn’t done this with a measure of success throughout your life. Please take a moment to appreciate this fact.

The character also writes the following, and you can see how it relates to us: That moss was almost certainly a different entity before it was moss; that moss—as the world continues to transform—may itself eventually become a different entity; that whatever is true for mosses must be true for all living things. The strong find a way to survive and the weak retreat and give up. I’ll bet you’re a lot stronger than you ever imagined or allowed yourself to imagine.

Train yourself to shift restrictive thoughts to ones based in Truth, truth about how the Universe and the Law of Attraction, the Law of the Universe, works. Do this so you allow the Truth of your personal power to inspire you into strength and right-for-you actions and solutions. Celebrate your strength and ability to adapt. The Truth truly does set you free. It’s a good practice, one you’ll appreciate.

Practice makes progress.

© Joyce L. Shafer


You are welcome to use this article in your newsletter or on your blog/website as long as you use my complete bio with it.

Joyce L. Shafer is a Life Empowerment Coach dedicated to helping people feel, be, and live their true inner power. She’s author of “I Don’t Want to be Your Guru, But I Have Something to Say” and other books/e-books, and publishes a free weekly online newsletter that offers empowering articles. See all that’s offered by Joyce and on her site at


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