Hi All,

Needed some clarity on the Place-Mat process by Abraham as given in the book "Ask and it is Given"

I am clear that on the left side we need to write the list of things that we are very sure of doing and intend to do today.

But for the right side, should we be writing things that we want to experience today / things that we want the universe to give us today?

... Or ...

We should write the things that we ourselves intended to do but might not be able to because of paucity of time etc. or may be because we have too much to do.

Looking forward to your answers.

Thank you so much :)

asked 21 Mar '11, 06:53

Sourabh's gravatar image


edited 21 Mar '11, 07:23

Barry%20Allen's gravatar image

Barry Allen ♦♦


It's the second option...on the right-hand side, you write everything that you cannot do today, don't feel like doing today or just don't know how to do today.

The process works because, in delegating all this stuff to the universe, you feel relief (allowing) on that particular topic you are now letting go of...and so those things seem to get magically done by themselves...often more quickly and efficiently than you would do them consciously :)

It doesn't necessarily mean those things will get done today but they will get done at the most opportune moment.

I find that the process usually works better if, in the moment of "handing it over to the universe", you get clear for a moment exactly what it is you are handing over.

For example, if you want to get your car washed today but don't have time and you have "car wash" written on your side of the list then, in delegating, change the wording to "find somewhere to get my car washed".

It's a subtle change but I find that the moment of clarity about what you really want (as though you are handing over the task to someone else) is helpful...otherwise the vagueness of the original task can result in you not even realizing that the universe has answered your request when it really has.


It occurred to me that for the sake of completeness of this answer, I should explain how I personally use the Place Mat process.

I tried for a few years (yes, years!) to figure out a way to apply the Place Mat process systematically with lots of different electronic prototypes but none of the ideas worked out in the long run.

Eventually, when I finally decided that it was simply not possible to come up with something workable and gave up, an inspired idea came to me. (Of course, I now know that the giving up was only the giving up of resistance to the answer).

The idea was simply this...

Don't pick and choose what to delegate to the universe to do. Instead, delegate everything by default and then just pick and choose what you really want to do that day.

It seems like a subtle distinction but it is actually a huge difference vibrationally. It means just to create lists of everything you ever want to be, do or have in your life and just do nothing about them...until you feel you want to :)

And, not long after that insight, I stumbled across someone online who had come to a similar conclusion, though from a completely non-metaphysical point of view.

So that's why I am a fan of Mark Forster's free time management systems...they are a variation of the Place Mat process that is highly effective in daily life.

The one I recommend you try initially is SuperFocus. Do it using paper first until you really understand it.

I doubt that Mark himself realizes the cleverness or importance of his time management approach from a metaphysical point of view (because that's not what he appears to be interested in) but you only need to try out the system for a few days to discover the effectiveness of it for yourself, and how many things on your list seem to get done by themselves :)

EDIT - Dec 2, 2016 - Clarifications about the Placemat Process

I noticed I made the following statement in the comments below this answer in 2012 about the Placemat Process...

The important thing is that, to delegate to the universe, you must first clearly focus on what you want and then clearly have a feeling of relief as you hand it over

In the years since writing that comment, I understand it is now inaccurate :)

Here's how I would probably rewrite that comment today...

The important thing is that, to delegate to the universe, you must first clearly focus on what you want and then clearly have a feeling of relief as you hand it over about the things that you want to get done


What I'm saying now is that you don't need to specify clearly to the Universe what needs to be done...because all that specificity is already in your Vortex.

For example, you don't need to write on the Universe's task list that...

I want the tyres on my car to be replaced with {"blah, blah, blah"} kind of tyres because they are wearing out. I need a mechanic with {"blah, blah, blah"} qualifications to do it and I want him/her to take no more than {"blah, blah, blah"} amount of time to achieve the task in a workshop with light blue walls and a pink ceiling...and so on...

^^^ You don't need to do this! ^^^

You can write instead....

Replace car tyres

...and that's it :)

That means the same thing to the Universe (and much more).

It's a subtle point but I still wanted to make it clear because it can be confusing. I know I've been confused by it in the past :)

The natural corollary to this point is that you also don't need to specify any sub-steps or sub-tasks to the Universe, such as...

Replace car tyres:

  • Step 1 - Find out what kind of tyres I need
  • Step 2 - Find a garage that has the right kind of tyres
  • Step 3 - Find a suitably-qualified mechanic to replace my tyres
  • Step 4 - ...and so on...

^^^ You don't need to do this! ^^^

By simply stating "Replace Car Tyres" and knowing that the entire task is already fully-specified in the Vortex in an incremental, blended fashion, it automatically means all sub-steps and sub-tasks are also already specified to the Universe.

In fact, if you get too specific about the steps, you can start creating resistance towards what you want because the Universe (Law of Attraction) may choose a different set of steps to reach your end-result...and you may mistakenly think something is going wrong when everything is fine.


The feeling of relief from the limiting belief of "I have too many things to do and I don't have time to do them", which is what the Placemat Process soothes, comes from two main sources...

  • Source 1: Relief comes from knowing that the Universe is working on the other tasks for you. (This is the obvious source of relief)

  • Source 2: Relief comes from feeling great that you've completed all the tasks on your To Do list for today. So make sure your list of tasks to do today is easy to accomplish. At the end of the day, you want to feel that sense of satisfaction that you did all the tasks you committed to. Try to keep that Must-Do list to things that you either felt really had to be done today or you really wanted to do today. (This is the not-so-obvious source of relief)

Hope those clarifications are useful :)


answered 21 Mar '11, 07:33

Stingray's gravatar image


edited 02 Dec '16, 08:08

Thanks Stingray for the clarity, brilliant as always :)

(25 Mar '11, 08:48) Sourabh

@Stingray: I need to get more orgnized and I feel overwhelmed for all the things I'd like to do, but even though your post is fabulous, some doubs still remain. What do I do with thigs that I cannot possibly do? Where do I list them? And the list I can do can fit any place? For instance: -My friend P. to get cured of thyroid cancer. -My financial situation to improve. -To make some phone calls. -To achieve my intention to develop psychic powers. -To respond my friends emails. -My friend P. to lose her fear to surgery and go with a confident attitude. I have made a mix for you to tell me ...

(06 Jul '11, 15:00) BridgetJones09

...where and why I should place them. The things are not in my power to achieve are the nagging ones. And why I would delegate to the Universe phonecalls that I cando??? Thanks for your patience! BJ09.

(06 Jul '11, 15:03) BridgetJones09

@Bridget - If you have things that you can't take action on because you don't know how etc., I would write them out as requests and release them until you feel inspired to some action. See Manifesting Experiment 1: http://www.inwardquest.com/questions/2915/ The placemat process is only really a more casual version of that. You don't have to delegate anything to the universe that you want to do...physical action is the joyous way you reap the fruits of vibrational alignment, so if you want to make the phone calls go ahead and enjoy making them :)

(06 Jul '11, 16:10) Stingray

@Stingray, thank you for this. All your trying and testing makes things so much easier for the rest of us, you help so much. :)

This process was recently recommended to me, and I like the sound and feel of it. So, it is basically two lists of things to do today - one for me, and one that is just out of reach for me, that I'm asking the Universe to handle? Like insight or clarity about a certain situation, or encouragement - is that about right? Thank you.

(04 Oct '12, 10:03) Grace

@Grace - Yes, you can think of it as two lists if you want. The important thing is that, to delegate to the universe, you must first clearly focus on what you want and then clearly have a feeling of relief as you hand it over. It's basically the same idea that operates The Simplest Manifesting Method In The World, Ever

(05 Oct '12, 03:05) Stingray

@Stingray - Oh now you're messing with my mind, man. Or are you testing me to see if I still listen? I do, my wise friend and mentor, I do. LOL!!! Hahaha your link, Stingray! That messed me up for a minute. At least I'm awake now! :D

(05 Oct '12, 08:58) Grace

@Grace - Sorry, I posted the wrong link. Here is the right one: The Simplest Manifesting Method In The World, Ever

(05 Oct '12, 09:10) Stingray

@Stingray - I just came back to paste that here, I was just teasing, but thank you. Its strange, but looking at that post, I recognise the words, but I just could not hear you at that time. I'm seeing this often now. I look back, and I was here every day, reading everything I could, but there were entire blocks of time when I was not able to understand or take in anything...

(05 Oct '12, 09:26) Grace

...that was going on. I am afraid there are portions of time, some obviously helpful things, like this one, were shared that I read and I even commented on, but just couldn't internalise at the time. Its like seeing with a different Me, so they seem new to me now.

(05 Oct '12, 09:27) Grace

@Grace - "I just could not hear you at that time" - Indeed :) Abraham were once asked if they were holding back on any information, and they replied that they had told us everything that they knew but there was plenty we (as humans) just couldn't hear yet. Once someone "gets it", it is so obvious that they wonder why it was ever difficult to understand before. But until they "get it", you just have to keep repeating the same message in different ways until they are ready to hear it :)

(05 Oct '12, 09:33) Stingray

@Stingray - That is so true. It must take a lot of patience. I was just reading a conversation you had with another IQer who was really struggling, and saw that you were sharing the same things, though in terms that she could relate to, that you'd shared with me months ago, and it clearly reached her. I've seen that with myself - I mean, that we need to hear our own language, and at the right moment...

(05 Oct '12, 09:50) Grace

...I have asked questions here that have been basically discussed before, from the angle it applies to myself, because I can't relate to the people who were here 3 years ago as well as the ones here now, no matter how wise and eloquent they were. It's familiarity, or relationship, or something, I'm not really sure what that is. As you say, it's really all the same stuff, but we need the conversation, or the contact, or something.

(05 Oct '12, 09:50) Grace

@Grace - "It must take a lot of patience" - I generally only answer when I feel inspired to answer so it doesn't require any patience :) And in answering from a different perspective to the ones that have gone before, I usually learn something. Don't think for a moment that I know all there is to know about this stuff. The more I understand, the more I realize I don't know :) It's like playing a musical instrument. It might be easy to knock out a quick tune but mastery is a lifetime process

(05 Oct '12, 11:08) Stingray

"The more I understand, the more I realize I don't know :)" Me too - That may need to go on my tombstone ;). And I do get what you mean about answering people, because I think I learn a lot when I try to pass along some of the things I've learned. I've heard you say that before, but that is another thing that is only just now really sinking in.

(05 Oct '12, 11:18) Grace
showing 2 of 15 show 13 more comments

Since you acknowledge that you have this gift, take your time with it. Don't over complicate the process. Know that you are what you seek, and it will find you. No time table, you must be patient, it will come in time. You are planting the seed, and then digging it up before it has time to blossom my friend.


answered 21 Mar '11, 07:12

The%20Knights%20Alchemy's gravatar image

The Knights Alchemy

Good point.Spiritual things have a growing process just like physical things.

(21 Mar '11, 09:47) Monty Riviera

Thanks TKA, I truly understand and appreciate what you have mentioned here :)

(25 Mar '11, 08:46) Sourabh
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