- Mental Health
How to Make Your Wishes Come True
Postulating- A. Way to Design Your Perfect Life
Many people tell me they're not living the life try want to live, yet when I ask them what that life would be like, they become infuriatingly vague. Upon being pressed for specifics, many say that it would be impossible for them to get what they want anyway.
That, I am afraid, is not the right approach to take in life. I was once of that mind, and I ended up quite miserable, with a bland, unfulfilling life. Then I decided to try something different: postulating- something my parents proposed. I gave it a try and my life has been exploding into perfection ever since!
Below I'll take you through the process, and also do what I can to explain some reasoning behind it (so you know I'm not just spouting hot air!).
The Practice of Postulating
A postulate is, according to Princeton's WordNet, "a proposition that is accepted as true in order to provide a basis for logical reasoning." To postulate is to maintain or assert something.
As far as I am personally concerned, postulating involves maintain or asserting things about your own life. In other words, one postulates by writing down or otherwise proclaiming specific objectives. It is a process similar to the "dreamlining" proposed in Tim Ferris' Four Hour Workweek , but a bit less... er... gimmickey?
These things can be goals, like finding a fulfilling job, dreams, like meeting your soul mate, or ambitions, like starting your own successful business. Postulating can also involve listing certain physical possessions you desire, such as a house or motorcycle or expensive necklace, but these things are typically less fulfilling and therefore less worth your attention.
I typically postulate by writing things down in Google Docs (I choose Google Docs because I can access them via any computer with an internet connection), but you can utilize any form you like- some other word processing program, perhaps, or a journal, or a random piece of paper... heck, you can even etch your dreams into glass if you like. You can even skip the writing process altogether and simply state your postulate to a loved-one. My parents share their postulates with each other- it helps them work through their goals and also keep each other accountable.
I, personally, have several different "postulating" documents going- one is short term, another extends through my entire (hoped for) lifespan- through the 100s. Some have to do with more superficial wishes, like getting a certain type of apartment, but others are more spiritual in nature, like finding a more powerful way to give back to the world, and someday knowing what it is like to be in love. Just in the course of writing this article, I've met some of the goals I have written down. It's quite satisfying to revisit these postulates and see that they have indeed come to fruition!
In short, you can make whatever types of goals you like; the important thing is that you make them. Getting started is easy - just take the time to sit down and work through your drams in whatever form is best for you!
Why Does Postulating Work?
As I mentioned earlier, many people are surprisingly vague about what they want from life. This is one of the biggest barriers between us and happiness. It's ridiculous but true- we simply haven't taken the time to figure out what we really want.
This is possible in part because we live in societies where there are plenty of external sources telling us what we ought to want. If we so chose, we could live our entire lives "wanting" things that we never wanted in the first place.
This is why it is so important to postulate, and be very clear about what we want to get out of life. Postulating is effective because it forces us to stop and deeply contemplate our goals. As alarming as this may seem, most of us forget to do this.
There is one more huge reason why postulating makes a difference: by forcing us to articulate exactly what we want, postulating encourages us to consider the intermediate hurdles we have to jump. For example, if you realize that you want to become a processional underwater filmmaker, postulating such will call to attention the fact that you'll need to become certified as a diver, develop filming skills, get supplies, etc... Once you have a goal in mind, it is much easier to identify the smaller objectives that will help you get there.
Postulating has worked perfectly for me. I made goals and dreams for myself that continue to be achieved. That said, I have been lucky enough to live a privileged, comfortable life, and I am fully aware that not everyone has it as easy as I have.
Nevertheless, I truly believe that we all have control over our destinies. Even if your life is 90% locked by some limitation or another, you still have the power to take possession of and shape the remaining 10%. Being that you have that power, why not use it? You may find that 10% can make all the difference in the world with regard to your happiness.