Several years ago, a video was released promising to show viewers the key to having everything they ever wanted. That video was called, The Secret. The idea is based on something called The Law of Attraction which basically states that you can attract the things you want in your life by having that thought in your mind.
Here’s the trailer:
The video became quite popular with millions of people watching and believing in the power of The Secret. Even celebrities like Oprah Winfrey was endorsing it. Dozens of books, programs, and seminars were created around this idea, basically from people who wanted to cash in on its popularity.
The Basic Concept
From the original video, we learn that thoughts become things. It says you can attract what you want into your life by first declaring what it is you want, believing it will come true, then allow yourself to receive what you want. While doing these things, feel good so positive things can flow into your life.
Much of how this works is based on visualizing what you want and really believing it can come true for you. Why does it work? Apparently, the “Universe” has a consciousness and when you focus your thoughts on what you want, it will make it so those things will start being attracted into your life.
It’s important to focus on what you want rather than what you don’t want. Thinking about how you don’t want debt will apparently only bring you more debt. You should instead think about abundance if that’s what you want more of in your life.
Does It Really Work?
Some say it does and many say it doesn’t. If you really want the law of attraction to be real, you will find evidence that it’s real and you’ll believe it too even if you’re subconsciously deleting all of the times it doesn’t work for you.
Looking at this from a scientific stand point, no, it doesn’t exist and it certainly shouldn’t be called a “law” if it doesn’t work every single time even if that’s what’s being claimed. You can’t just want and visualize things into your life. Many people in 3rd world countries do nothing but think of food yet, day after day, they have to bare through hunger pangs.
On a side note, one of the “experts” of The Secret who was part of the video, James Arthur Ray, went to jail after 3 people died in 2009 during one of his sweat lodge events, which costs up to $10,000 to attend. Certainly, someone as knowledgeable as he is about this “law” could’ve avoided attracting such an unfortunate circumstance into his life right?
Whatever it is you want in life, you have to work for it. Visualize if you want in order to keep yourself focused and motivated but unless you put in the work, nothing will change for you.
Let’s say your goal is to run a mile. It doesn’t matter whether you tell yourself you can do it or not. As long as you continue to put one foot in front of the other, it’ll eventually happen. Will it be easier if you actually believe you can do it, visualize yourself doing it, and have a positive mentality about it? Of course it will but without the physical act of moving forward, no amount of positive thinking, visualization, asking, wishing, or attracting will get you to the finish line.
What the law of attraction really is, is good marketing. People are naturally lazy and want to take shortcuts. So when they discover something like, The Secret, they are drawn to it. Have everything you want without working hard? Who wouldn’t want that?
Of course, no matter how good the marketing is, if the results don’t come, the gimmick will eventually lose its ability to take money from people. So what happened when the hype surrounding the law of attraction started to die down? Well, people started to talk about how there are more steps one needs to take. Then there were other “laws” that were introduced so more books and programs can be sold.
Today, “The Secret” still has a cult following but the interest has gone down compared to a few years ago. People started to realize attracting success was nonsense and once authors of the law of attraction started talking about how action is needed to really make this law work, interest died down even more because again, people are looking for the easy path.
There are no “secrets” to success. Whatever it is you want, here’s how to accomplish it:
1. Figure out exactly what you want to accomplish.
2. Find out what to do in order to accomplish it.
3. Take action.
4. Measure results and adjust your plan of action accordingly.
5. Repeat steps 3-4 until you accomplish your goal.
There’s some value in visualizing and definitely some value in believing you can accomplish your goals but until you create a solid plan and act on that plan, all you’ll be attracting is frustration and a reputation for being gullible or a bit off in the head.
So the next time you hear about some quick and easy path toward success, be wary, someone somewhere is probably trying to make money off of you.