You may have noticed that in circles where people are interested in learning about their intuition they are also often talking about tapping into the creative potential of our brains. There’s a reason for that.

Once we begin to get more comfortable with our intuition, we begin to observe that it has a lot to say about improving our lives. It’s a natural next step to want to become a badass in the art of manifesting positive outcomes in our lives, by harnessing the capacity of our minds (KAPOW) and using our intuition in partnership with our aspirations (BOOM). Those first few experiences when we discover the power of our thoughts and the belief systems that run them is dizzying. When we learn how much we can shift in our lives simply by paying attention, the change in how we understand ourselves and the purpose of our lives is often dramatic.

I’ve been teaching workshops about what I call Radical Spiritual Creativity for almost as long as I’ve been teaching about intuition. Spiritual growth and intuition intersect in ways that are unique, especially when we learn what a magnificent piece of machinery our minds are and how we can create anything we focus on.

However, one of the issues I have with the wider metaphysical community is its emphasis on manifestation in a way that is very simplistic and materialistic. Quite honestly, I’ve struggled with the shallowness of how the power of positive thinking and creative visualization have been packaged. Over the years I’ve watched so many people who believe they are thinking really big unknowingly sell themselves short.

Here’s the problem: constructing our lives from the outside-in rarely works. Manifesting the stuff we want in our lives as if it’s–well, as if it’s stuff is a gigantic set-up. Creating and consuming are two entirely different ways of living, and when they are conflated it is a recipe for mischief.

If for example, we believe that a “soulmate” relationship is simply a matter of finding that one right person, or that “attracting” a vacation home or luxury car is evidence of our financial security, we’re going to run the risk of seeing the construct of our circumstances as the solution to being happy. The buzz words “abundance” and “prosperity” end up symbolizing what’s supposed to make us happy but rarely does. This process also ends up objectifying ourselves and others. And it reflects values that are largely ignorant of the real issues we all struggle with.

Your spirit’s journey here is about process, not about control or ownership. Every single situation you find yourself in has a learning curve. Focusing solely on mastering the outer environment will never transform you into the person you want to be. Think of people like Kate Spade, Anthony Bourdain, and Robin Williams. These were charismatic people who had achieved a tremendous amount of success. But they killed themselves. It’s shocking and tragic, and it also blasts through the illusion that if we look good, we’ll feel good. The right house, the right person to marry, the right job, and the right body–we call it living our best life, but is it?

One question I hear from my clients all the time is “Am I on the right path?” It’s really worrying to feel like we’re not doing what we’re supposed to in life. But that question often belies a deeper, inner worry that the difficult lessons we’re going through with the people and situations in our lives are somehow the wrong set of lessons. So we’re inclined to think that if the law of attraction can change what’s happening around us, we’ll feel happy. We’ll find solutions. But what we forget is that the seeds of our transformation are planted in the actual details of our lives exactly as they are in any given moment.


A meaningful life requires that we look at the part we’re playing in it. It demands that we develop the compassion to accept our struggles and suffering and failures, as well as others’. In order to truly create our lives, we’re going to need to become conscious of the patterns of thinking and behavior we participate in and why. And changing those patterns involves learning to ask for help, be vulnerable, receive kindness, show tenderness.

It’s so much more complex than attracting a Mercedes and killer abs.
Real-life is deliberate and requires a level of honesty and introspection that we must have a passion for if it’s going to translate into growth. It’s true that the outer environment will shift and change in response to our awareness but ultimately real success is utterly dependent on a well done inside job.


Part of the human story is about learning how to live in harmony with each other, our planet, and all its creatures. Our most current chapter is characterized by our great distress. Comparatively, I don’t know if now is substantially different from any other period in history, but the big picture is a lot bigger right now simply because there are so many of us here: we currently live on a planet where 1 million plant and animal species are now threatened with extinction. Nearly 1/2 of the world’s population —more than 3 billion people — live on less than $2.50 a day. 80% of the world’s population lives on less than $10. 750 million people lack access to clean drinking water. 2.5 billion people do not have access to improved sanitation. One in five girls of primary school age is not in school.

Have our spirits really traveled here just to look good?

Each of us experiences being part of our civilization in a self that’s a unique intersection of gender, sex, race, class, sexuality, and nationality. But no matter what kind of life your spirit has chosen to experience on our planet, each human story is connected to everyone else’s. So while the work we do here is hard, hard work, it is sacred work simply because the movement through the lessons of our lives, both personally and globally, isn’t isolated. No one is meant to suffer here needlessly, but there’s a catch to that as well. If you’re only concerned with the avoidance of your own suffering, you’re essentially turning your back on the suffering of others. If you don’t experience your journey fully, including the hardship, you are depriving someone else of the same opportunity to transcend their lessons too.


“Well, that’s just great, Susan. You’re saying that until the world is healed, it’s not okay to focus on ourselves and our dreams?”

Absolutely not. Keeping yourself small and miserable benefits no one. Part of how we heal the world is by healing ourselves. There is value in looking up, in realizing that instead of a life spent battling damaged self-esteem and always giving up on ourselves, we can decide something different for ourselves. There is value in learning we are the only ones who can give ourselves permission to succeed.

There is also value in safety, security, pleasure, and joy. We must strive for those as well.

We are also allowed to enjoy and embrace the material, physical side of life.

But before you begin your creative visualizations and your manifestation construction projects, understand that there is a balance between desire and acceptance. Both bring us strength. If you only focus on creating what you think you want, you will miss out on so much of the richness we can experience here. You are not a victim simply because you have experienced your life as it has actually unfolded. Nothing needs to be different in order for you to learn from your experiences. And if you want to change, you can change. Just remember:

~Accomplishments, success, and possessions mean nothing if they are just used to fill a void.

~Sculpted bodies that fit an ideal and look good from the outside may be pleasing to look at, but they aren’t indications of health or morality or character. Loving ourselves conditionally based on what we look like can lead to a lifetime of addictions, never feeling comfortable being exactly who we are, and missing out on tremendous fun and pleasure.

~Relationships that look good from the outside can be traps for hollowness and loneliness. A soulmate is not an acquisition. Relationships can only reflect each person’s capacity for happiness, willingness to learn, and desire to heal. We are the only right person we can find, and all the work we do to learn self-acceptance, to be kind to ourselves no matter what we look like, do, or feel–all of that is the most powerful tool we have for the relationships we long for with others.

~Privilege is real. Until you unpack the systems you have personally benefitted by (or suffered within), you will never prioritize anything other than your own accomplishments.

Which brings us to the most important thing you should consider: your intuition’s long game.


Your intuition always operates with a number of priorities. It must help you stay on the best path for your healing. It must attract you to some situations and avoid others because it knows that the circumstances of your life contain the seeds of your transformation. It does not reject any part of them, even if they are difficult, because you must consciously grapple with them in order to learn down to your cells that you are good and worthy just the way you are.

Your intuition knows that the more you heal, the more comfortable you’ll feel in your own skin. The more you become a person you respect, the more generous you’ll become, the more naturally interested in helping others you’ll be.

And that’s your intuition’s biggest secret. The magic of your intuition is that it works well if it’s just working for you, but it works even better if you allow it to work through you towards the highest good for the greatest number.

Attaching yourself to the highest good for the greatest number is a truly prosperous way to live. If intuition is our greatest natural resource, and it’s available to everyone, can you imagine what it can do joined with the same force in others? Despite our reluctance and the state of the world, your intuition is mandated to meet its priorities in you and in everyone else. So watch what it does. It continually guides you to the situations that demonstrate how truly kind we humans are capable of being, how resilient our hearts are, and how strong our passion is for creating lasting good. And it does this so we will be inspired to work together.


We humans may only have two choices on earth right now: live unhealed and afraid, or jump in and try to help. Our intuition is our guide every step of the way not only to help us become the grandest expression of ourselves but to assist as many others as we can in that endeavor.

You are encouraged to create whatever you believe you need to assist you in that work. But ask yourself, is getting everything you’ve always wanted really why you’re here? What if, by attaching your dreams to the highest good for the greatest number you’ll not only harness the creative power of your mind but also actualize your heart?

It could mean the difference between experiencing what we already think we know about what it means to be fully human, or rolling the dice on what is perhaps our truest potential. What if our deepest capacity is our (untapped) ability to be humane?

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