Since the popular book and movie The Secret hit the shelves in 2006, the concept of The Law of Attraction (LOA) has spread like wildfire, attracting believers and critics alike. Believers—who call themselves “deliberate creators”—practice the processes of positive thought, affirmative thinking, and visualization, believing that whatever we think about (wealth or poverty, joy or suffering, love or loneliness) the Universe will deliver.
Critics of LOA usually acknowledge that positive thinking has benefits but argue that there is no scientific proof that the theory works as “sold.” They see LOA’s one-size-fits-all solution to life’s large and small problems as misleading because it oversimplifies the concept in a way that is “unfalsifiable,” which means you cannot prove it wrong and therefore cannot prove it right. If one does not “attract” what they want—perhaps he did not think about it enough, thought too many negative thoughts, or didn’t give the Universe enough time to execute.
Whether proven scientific “law of the universe” or not, your life can benefit from practicing LOA and deliberately creating your life. As explained below, elements of Psychology mirror the teachings of LOA, showing that:
Positive thinking will change your life for the better, whether you believe it is due to vibrational attraction or psychological function.
Law of Attraction in a Nutshell
Imagine that you are a human transmission tower, much like a radio tower. Like radio, humans emit waves of energy, or vibrations, that transcend from our minds into our bodies and beyond. If you tune a radio receiver to a certain station, or frequency, you will pick up the station which is emitting the same frequency. In the same way, if we tune into a certain frequency we will “receive” that which matches the frequency.
So, what creates the frequency we “tune into?” Our thoughts and especially our emotions. A great example of how this works is to remember a time when you started out your day with something going wrong that put you in a negative mood (a negative vibration)—such as stubbing your toe. Then for the rest of the day you continue to “attract” negative things to your experience—like popping a tire, having an irate customer, and overcooking your lunch. According to LOA believers, you are responsible for these things happening to you—they occurred because you were “sending out to the Universe” a negative vibration, just like the radio station, and you tuned into possibilities in your life that matched your vibration.
Some people loath the idea that they are responsible for everything that happens to them because there are some things that just seem too horrible to claim. Others delight in the idea that they have complete control over what happens. I, personally, take the middle path and do not believe we each have control of EVERYTHING, as I feel there is much more going on in the Universe than only the attraction vibrations of our individual thoughts. At the same time, I do believe that we each have more power than we realize (or want to realize) to influence the outcome of most aspects of our lives.
A key is that “like attracts like,” which means that everything that vibrates at the same frequency is “attracted” or pulled toward other things with matching frequency. (This is, by the way, proven by quantum physics.) This is why you feel drawn to certain people who feel “in alignment” with you, and repelled by others—just like a magnet (which, surprise, emits a frequency). This is also why, according to LOA, you attracted the burnt lunch or popped tire.
Now, they KEY is to figure out how to effectively emit the vibrational frequency of $1,000,000 or a soul mate!
So, whether you’re a LOA aficionado or one of its staunchest critics, consider the following three main processes of LOA and examine how they work in your own life. Why not follow Pascal’s famous rationale for believing in God:
If there is any chance that God is real, I have much more to gain by believing in him than I have to lose by not believing. This applies to LOA as well.
LOA: Visualization is a primary weapon of mass abundance. Teachers like Joe Vitale encourage “holographic visualization” in which you mentally and emotionally put yourself inside your vision of success and experience it as if it’s real. The belief is that visualizations send actual vibrations out into the Universe. With consistency and belief, the people, events, and inspired actions you need to have what you visualized will come into your life.
Psychology: Professional athletes and performers almost all use visualization because it works. The body does not know the difference between what is happening and what we imagine. When a runner visualizes a race, while attached to electrodes, the exact same sequence of brain activity is observed as when the runner is physically racing. If you imagine eating a juicy lime and tasting its sour juice, your mouth will salivate because your mind has tricked your body. The same is also true if your visualize yourself failing or losing.
LOA: We all have limiting beliefs that what we want is not possible and we often tend to focus on what we lack instead of what we want, creating a vibration that blocks what we desire. Affirmations are written or spoken positive statements that, when consistently practiced, change the vibration to one of confidence and belief, thus attracting the object of desire.
Psychology: Implicit memory is ingrained, automatic, and habituated and this is where our limiting beliefs have become lodged after years of repeated belief. If repeated over time, affirmations that what you want is not only possible but that you WILL or DO have it will become permanent residents in your implicit memory.
Like changing a habit, affirming for 30 days actually rewires the brain.
Another psychological component of affirmations is that they trigger your Reticular Activation System (RAS). We are exposed to a million bits of information at any moment and we are only consciously aware of 2,000 of them. Our RAS is what determines what bits to focus on and it chooses based on what we are thinking about or asking for. If you’re thinking negatively, you notice negative things. If you’re thinking about red cars, you’re going to see them everywhere. If you’re thinking about how to get new contracts for your photography business, you’re ears will pick up the conversation in the adjacent aisle in the store where someone is talking about their upcoming wedding.
Jesus tells us that if we ask we will receive. LOA says we’ll attract it. Psychology says our RAS will tune into it. In all of these cases, it behooves you to be careful what you ask for!
LOA: Ester “Abraham” Hick, famous LOA teacher says,
“It doesn’t matter how things appear. It only matters how things feel… as I feel good everything will acquiesce to that vibration that is accompanying that good feeling.”
Positive thinking and feeling good are key components of LOA. Our vibrational resonance is ultimately created by what we think and feel. Given that we all want to have and experience good things, we have to think and feel good, and therefore, how we feel is of the most importance.
Psychology: Famous holocaust survivor Victor E. Frankl says,
“Everything can be taken from a man but one thing; the last of the human freedoms-to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances.”
Our grandparents and parents told us to “look at the bright side,” “see the silver lining,” and keep our “chins up”. We have all heard that:
It is not what happens to us that matters; it’s how we react to it—and no matter what your beliefs, that’s the truth.
At a minimum, choosing to think of life from a positive perspective will make you feel better, and that is, after all, what we all want. If you feel good and see possibility instead of limitation, you are more likely to notice opportunities when they present themselves. Additionally, you will be in a healthier mental state, making you better able to take appropriate action toward your desired opportunities.
Perhaps the most important piece of positive wisdom contained in LOA is practicing gratitude. Focusing on what you’re grateful for in life, especially if you’re facing difficulty, will either attract more things to consider with gratitude or it will trigger your RAS to notice more things for which you are grateful. Either way, a feeling of gratitude is about as wonderful of an experience that you can ask for. The best part is that both the Law of Attraction and Psychology teach us that it is always your choice to feel it.
Natalie Amsden is a Transformation Coach, Author, Publisher, and Public Speaker who has worked with thousands of people seeking to live a life of purpose and genuine relationship with their true selves, others, and their world. Her background includes being the Director of the Adolescent Life Coaching Center, a counseling center for at risk teenagers and their parents. She is the Publisher of Transformation Magazine, an empowerment magazine that focuses on personal growth and spirituality. She is also a public speaker and leads workshops and retreats on Practical Spirituality, Finding Joy, Discovering Your Purpose, and Enlightened Relationships. www.SuncoastTransformation.com