How do you know how to invest and plan for your financial future now? Nearly everyone who’s invested in a “sure thing” has lost some or all of their funds or property, and financial investments can seem as shaky as the earth around Japan. What’s an investor to do?
Gary Douglas, founder of Access Consciousness and best-selling author, has some suggestions based on a tool that’s always with you and always has your own best interest at heart. That tool is your own awareness and consciousness.
If you feel that hasn’t served you so well in the past, Gary has some questions you could ask to create a new reality for you personally. He is no stranger to starting over, having started over three times in his adult life of 68 years. At one point after a divorce, he was living in a small closet with his three-year-old son and subsisting on a diet of cornflakes and milk.
Now he runs a multimillion dollar international business that offers seminars throughout the US and Canada, as well as Europe, Australia, New Zealand, and more. Facilitators trained in his methods are active in at least 25 countries worldwide.
If you doubt yourself because you have not invested so well in the past, Douglas has good news for you. At least 98% of your thoughts feelings and emotions are not yours, he notes. With these statistics, there’s a good chance your investments were not based on your own awareness and consciousness, but on the points of view you took one from someone else, without being aware of it. That someone else could be either of your parents, your spouse or partner, friends, or the investment adviser who had a vested interest in what you bought.
Would you like to avoid that mistake again? Douglas has a simple tool for this. Whenever you’re considering investing in something and it feels good or right, or you have some conclusion or belief about it, ask: “Who does that belong to?” If you feel a lightening up in your body or around you, that’s a good indication that that certainty is not yours. Furthermore, that belief or decision you bought from someone else is blocking your own awareness. All you have to do with that errant thought is to return it to sender. You do not need to know who you picked it up from.
What if you were actually much more conscious of what investments would work for you than you’d ever given yourself credit for? Would that boost both your confidence and your ability to trust what you and only you can know? Can anyone be more of an expert on you than you are? “You would trust anyone else more than yourself for what reason?” Douglas asks.
A second tool Douglas recommends is what he calls living in the question. “Answers dis-empower, questions empower,” he says. Almost anything that doesn’t end with a question mark is an answer–any statement is a conclusion or judgment. A question that has an underlying fixed point of view beneath it likewise loses its usefulness as a question.
Questions can be integrated into your life, as well as used to evaluate investments. “What can I add to my life today that would bring me lots of money today and in the future?” is a great one that Douglas recommends.
This question counters the “traditional wisdom” and common reflex to cut back when things are tough. The result of this cutting back is a contraction of one’s entire life, says Douglas. This contraction creates even smaller money flows, necessitating more cutting back as long as you’re functioning from this point of view.
Another danger of functioning from the cutbacks-are-necessary point of view is that anyone with any creativity risks creating boredom for themselves. When creative folks are faced with boredom, they tend to create grand and glorious messes where they can use their creativity to save themselves at the 11th hour. Following Douglas’s suggestion of ADDING more to your life even in difficult times can save you from creating these disasters for yourself.
If you are ready do something really different you could try another of Douglas’s techniques in evaluating your investments. When investing in anything (gold and precious metals, in bullion form or antique jewelry or silver, are among his favorites), Douglas says, “Ask the gold” if the price is going to go up or down. Every molecule in the universe has consciousness, he points out. If you’re willing to hear the answer (and it can take practice), you can get investment advice straight from the horse’s mouth, so to speak.
How would you ask gold if its price is going to go up or down? If you can touch the item, it’s great, but not required. Just to yourself say, “Gold: is the price going up?” “Gold: is the price going down?” One of those two will feel lighter to you somewhere in your body, and that’s the correct answer. It can take practice, and you can try it out without investing money if you’d like.
Another question Douglas recommends to everyone interested in creating more money in their lives is to ask everything you buy if it will make you money. This is not necessarily a linear process, he points out. The money doesn’t have to come by selling the object for more than you paid for it, although it can. It could come from the new shirt you buy making you feel like a million dollars which could increase your employ-ability, clients, or cash flow.
A willingness to hear the answer to this question will improve its effectiveness. While the process is not linear, buying clothing is not usually a great investment—if you’re a shopaholic and not willing to be honest with yourself about this, it may not work as well as you’d like.
On the other hand, wearing your wealth is certainly a possibility. If you educate yourself about antique jewelry, for example, you can certainly locate pieces that are great investments that also sparkle on your hand or neck!
Douglas does recommend investing in things that you know something about—so if your target is jewelry that also makes you money, you might hang out at antique stores and ask questions of everyone who works there until you become an expert yourself.
What else do you know about that could make you money? That’s another great question to ask yourself. It doesn’t have to look like the most common conventional investments. One woman Douglas worked with took her history of backpacking through Africa and her interest in cultures there to create an amazing collection of African masks. A carpenter could start a collection of antique tools. A jeweler is a natural to collect antique jewelry. You could also learn about any of these items that are of interest to you!