3 Ways To Start Attracting Your Dreams—Instead Of Chasing Them

When you attract what you desire instead of chasing, your whole life will transform. Here's how.

Mark Travers, Ph.D.

By Mark Travers, Ph.D. | July 08, 2024

In the pursuit of our dreams and desires, we often find ourselves in a relentless chase. Whether it's career success, meaningful relationships or personal happiness, the act of chasing can leave us feeling exhausted, frustrated and perpetually unfulfilled.

Chasing implies a sense of urgency and desperation, as if we are trying to snatch something that is not ours. In contrast, attraction involves a state of being where our goals and desires naturally come to us through a combination of positive mindset, personal growth and self-assurance.

Why, then, do some people choose to chase? This behavior often stems from deeply ingrained beliefs and societal pressures. We are conditioned to believe that non-stop, back-breaking effort is the only way to achieve "well-deserved" success. Additionally, a lack of self-worth and confidence can drive us to seek external validation, pushing us to chase after what we think will make us feel complete.

Here are three ways you can shift your focus from "chasing" to "attracting" and create a more balanced and fulfilling life.

1. Change Your Mindset

The first step in transitioning from chasing to attracting is cultivating the right mindset. When we operate from a mindset of scarcity and lack, we often feel compelled to chase after things, believing they are limited and difficult to attain.

Conversely, a mindset of abundance is rooted in the belief that there is plenty to go around and that we are inherently deserving of good things. This perspective allows us to feel more relaxed and confident, knowing that what we seek can come to us naturally and effortlessly. An abundance mindset shifts our focus from what we lack to what we already possess, opening the door to greater possibilities.

To develop an abundance mindset:

  • Start by practicing gratitude. According to psychologist Xijing Wang from the City University of Hong Kong, engaging in simple practices such as spending a few minutes each day reflecting on the positive, like spending time with our loved ones or nature's beauty, fosters thankfulness. Expressing appreciation to others, such as writing thank-you notes, also strengthens interpersonal connections. Wang advises, "For those who find it difficult to express gratitude verbally, remember that acknowledging others can bring them joy and costs nothing. Just make an effort to express it."
  • Visualization is also a powerful tool in cultivating an abundance mindset. Visualization involves imagining yourself already in possession of your desires, creating a mental picture of your goals as if they have already been achieved. This practice helps reinforce the belief that your aspirations are attainable and within reach. For example, a study found that visualization improved athletic performance even without physical effort, indicating that rehearsing movements using the power of imagination can positively affect actual performance.
  • Affirmations, on the other hand, are positive statements that affirm your worthiness and potential. By consistently affirming your abilities and the abundance in your life, you reprogram your subconscious mind to align with these beliefs. This mental shift sets the stage for attracting rather than chasing, allowing opportunities and relationships to flow more naturally into your life.

2. Pursue Personal Growth

When we focus on becoming the best version of ourselves, we naturally attract the things we desire. This involves investing time and effort in developing our skills, knowledge and emotional well-being—enhancing our overall attractiveness to opportunities and people.

Research indicates that individuals with a growth mindset—believing in their ability to develop skills over time—are more motivated to improve their strengths than those who simply perceive themselves as competent. Specifically, having a growth mindset about a particular strength boosts motivation to enhance that area, highlighting the role of mindset in targeted personal development.

To start your self-improvement journey:

  • Set personal development goals that align with your aspirations. If you aim to attract a fulfilling career, focus on acquiring relevant skills and knowledge in your field. This not only boosts your competence but also increases your confidence, making you more appealing to potential employers or clients. Engaging in continuous learning, such as taking courses or attending workshops, keeps you updated and sharp.
  • Work on understanding yourself and improving your emotional intelligence if you seek a healthy relationship. Recognize and manage your emotions effectively and be empathetic towards others. Developing good communication skills and the ability to resolve conflicts positively can greatly enhance your interpersonal relationships.

3. Cultivate Inner Confidence

Confidence is a crucial factor in the attraction process. When we are confident, we project a sense of self-assuredness and competence that naturally draws others towards us. This self-assuredness allows us to trust our abilities and the natural flow of life, reducing the need to chase after external validation and success.

  • Building confidence starts with self-awareness and self-acceptance. Understanding your strengths and weaknesses and embracing them without judgment is essential.
  • Acknowledging your achievements, no matter how small, reinforces your sense of accomplishment and helps build a positive self-image. Learning from your failures without letting them define you fosters resilience and growth.
  • Stepping out of your comfort zone and facing your fears can significantly boost your confidence. In fact, researcher Dr. Pninit Russo-Netzer suggests that "pushing out of comfort zone gives people agency and fosters the intrinsic motivation that comes with personal choice and it stretches them psychologically while protecting their feelings of comfort and safety." By challenging yourself and succeeding in new experiences, you reinforce your belief in your capabilities. Each success, no matter the scale, builds on the foundation of trust in yourself, which radiates outward and attracts others.

In essence, by adopting the right mindset, committing to self-improvement and cultivating confidence, you embody a state of being that is attractive to others and conducive to achieving your goals.

Wondering if you have the emotional apparatus to make major perceptions shifts? Take the Emotional Quotient Inventory to know where you could improve.

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