I used to think that when I didn't get what I wanted in life it was because I hadn't earned it yet or I didn't deserve it. Now I think that the Universe has a greater plan for me than I can even imagine. It is also clear to me now that the things that I hope for are far less important than what I gain from NOT getting them.
For example, when I was in my 20s I went through a phase of writing children's stories and poems. I sent a couple out to a few publishing houses and... nothing. I could have done more, but I don't think it would have made a difference because I don't think it was my time. I was desperate to be published and not for the right reasons. It's not that I was dying to share my stories with the world; I was desperate for recognition and success. I had a hole deep inside me that I wanted to fill with the respect and admiration of others. Now that I am older I realize that if my wishes had been fulfilled and I had been successful then, I would never have learned to fill that hole with a true sense of self that only comes (at least in my experience) from years of soul-searching. Maybe some people do a lot of soul-searching when they're successful, but not me. That's why I started my blog The Lazy Motivator; I'm kind of lazy.
Another hidden blessing in my life was not finding the right partner right away. I had a lot of relationships before I settled down with my husband of almost 12 years. When I was young I thought the right guy for me had to look and dress a certain way. (But, I'm deep and spiritual so I didn't admit that to myself.) When I first met my husband I didn't think he was my type. But my type had let me down so many times that I thought maybe I should give someone who was not my type a chance. And so we got to be friends and then love grew from there.
Another example? My husband's love is a quiet, steady supportive love, not a flowery, romantic one. He is my rock and I know that he is always there for me and our family, but I really wanted a husband who would tell me I was beautiful all the time! When he didn't I moped for a while and then I realized that I had to learn to feel beautiful on my own. Co-dependent no more!
So, where have I been successful in my life? I have a successful healing practice with many loyal clients, lots of friends, a happy family and a good marriage, but most importantly I have that sense of self that only came after many years of not getting what I want. So now when I don't get what I want, I know the Universe has something even better waiting for me.
And the best part of not getting what I want is knowing that I already have all that I need.