Many of you will have heard of Jack Canfield, co-creator of Chicken Soup for the Soul, and self-improvement expert. Canfield is one of the featured experts on the DVD The Secret.
In this free audio replay Jack Canfield explains the Law of Attraction and how to put it into practice to create wealth and success.
What is The Law of Attraction?
If you think you've heard it all before, it's probably because you have. The Law of Attraction is not a new theory. The idea that your beliefs influence your success and that focusing on what you want in your life (and filtering out thoughts of what you don’t want) is the basis of many self-help books.
One of the earliest proponents of the Law of Attraction was Napolean Hill in his book Think and Grow Rich. This was followed up with the book Success Through a Positive Mental Attitude, which is co-written with W. Clement Stone. Before long the self-help industry had taken these ideas about having a positive mental attitude, a burning desire for success and employing visualisation and affirmations and spun them into a multi-billion dollar industry.
In addition, many self-help experts advocate the Biblical principles ‘You Reap What You Wow’ and ‘Ask and You Shall Receive’. One of the most popular books on the subject was Norman Vincent Peale’s The Power of Positive Thinking.
The same principles are expounded in the books of Catherine Ponder, a Minister in the Unity Church. Her book The Dynamic Laws of Prosperity is a monster of a tomb that takes several days to get through and if filled with anecdotes that leave you in little doubt that you will become wealthy if you follow her advice. In particular Ponder recommends tithing; the idea that you should give money away in order to get it back tenfold.
She suggests that nature abhors a vacuum, and by giving away money and material possessions you’re clearing space for new ones to come in and that you should freely pay your bills in expectation of money coming in from as yet unknown sources to replenish your bank account. However, she cautions that if you can not let the money go and instead remain attached to it that you will not receive the abundance you desire. In other words, if you donate your old furniture to the Salvation Army but spend the next week groaning and wishing you’d sold it or kept it for the bach, then you’re not a believer and you won’t receive.
Deepak Chopra expresses a similar sentiment in his book Creating Affluence where he says that money is like blood and needs to flow freely in order to grow. He posits that we must keep money circulating in order for it to come back to us.
About The Secret
In The Secret, producer Rhonda Byrnes is not providing new information so much as delivering the key tenets in an easily understandable form.
The three steps of the Law of Attraction are:
1. Ask for what you want
In essence you are encouraged to decide what is important to you and set this as a goal or goals. This can be likened to Napolean Hill’s principle that you must have a burning desire or a purpose. Hill advocated a single dominant purpose with sub-goals so you remain focused while Deepak Chopra suggests that you need a 'clear intention'
2. Believe that it will happen
You are told to have unshakable faith that your goals will be achieved and that abundance will be delivered, to visualise and affirm your desires on a regular basis using mental imagery as well as creating a dream board for your goals. You are further instructed to eliminate all doubt and to persist despite obstacles, and are told to use language that shows this positive expectancy by talking as if the goals have already been achieved or are a foregone conclusion.
3. Be ready to receive
Asking and believing is not enough. You have to show your willingness to receive by grabbing every opportunity that comes your way and taking action in accordance with your goals. This is a point that Jack Canfield emphasises in the free audio discussion. It’s not enough to think your way to wealth, you have to break the goals down into steps and take action in alignment with your dreams.
The critics say The Law of Attraction is a load of hogwash, and I agree that it has been overhyped. Too many people think they can sit back and wait for wonderful things to happen without taking action. If you want to achieve any goals setting clear goals and believing in yourself helps, but you also need to clear underlying blocks that may sabotage your goals (get your mindset right) and you need to take action to make things happen.
What if I can’t visualise?
Does it work?
My take on the Law of Attraction is that your mindset is part of the equation that creates wealth and success. Your beliefs influence your life. However belief and visualisation alone won't get you far - you also need to learn skills and strategies for success and to take action.