Why the Law of Attraction is more than just a self-help fad
Do you remember the last time you had a really good, or bad, day? Perhaps it was one of those days where just about everything seemed to go wrong no matter what you did, or alternatively, it was a so-called ‘lucky’ day where one good thing just seemed to lead to another.
In our previous post about responsibility, we mentioned that so-called good days and bad days are entirely up to us; in other words, we get to choose how good or bad our days really are. For many of us, this can seem a bit confusing – if you believe in luck, coincidence and happenstance, this may be a little tricky to grasp. But in this post, I’d like to explain a little more about what exactly is meant by this, focusing in on the key element – the power of our awareness.
Our awareness is incredibly powerful, powerful enough that we can actually harness it to turn dreams into reality. Powerful enough that we can transform negative emotional states into positive ones. Powerful enough to choose how any given day goes. Yet very few of us are even present to this power, let alone consciously use it.
You see, we all have the conscious power to control our minds, and more specifically, where we are directing our mental focus. The word focus is incredibly important here, because it really is the key to harnessing the power of your own awareness and accessing the law of attraction. Whatever we direct our focus onto, grows. Wherever we place our conscious attention, changes.
Try this out for a second – place all of your conscious attention into the big toe on your right foot for at least a few seconds. What do you notice? Are you experiencing any different sensations there than you normally would? Have you discovered something you hadn’t noticed or seen before? Nothing has changed about the big toe on your right foot, but now you’re likely present to it in a way you weren’t before. This may even feel strange! This is the power of focus and conscious use of the attention.
The very same is true of more abstract things. Take any problem you may have, for example. For many of us (myself definitely included!) problems are things to be mulled over, to be resolved, fixed. The bigger and seemingly more difficult the problem, the more of our conscious focus and attention we give to it in an attempt to solve it. Yet, the more we focus on the problem, the more difficult and irritating it can seem to get. The more we try and try to resolve it, the further away we feel from a solution. This isn’t to say we shouldn’t try to solve problems, just that the more we fixate on them, the bigger they seem to grow.
Constant fixation on problems also has other knock-on effects outside of the problem itself. It’s likely to lower our mood, and it’s also likely to draw to our attention to other things that we haven’t sorted out yet, other problems, for example, or other things we haven’t done yet that only add to our anxiety. All this from mulling over one problem!
The opposite is true of gratitude, of course. If we truly harness the power of gratitude, allowing ourselves to truly be and feel grateful for the blessings in our lives, you may notice that your mind will, almost as if on autopilot, present you with more things to be grateful for. This is the basic premise of the law of attraction that so many gurus and self-help authors have written and spoken about.
Think of your mind as something like a radio transmitter, which is constantly emitting a frequency of some kind. If you’re mulling on problems and negativity, you could consider that is your current frequency. If you’re feeling grateful or imagining uplifting events, this is another, rather different frequency. Whatever frequency you’re on is a match for other thoughts or things of the same frequency, which is why your mind will automatically, almost as if by magic when you get present to it, come up with more stuff of a similar nature to what you’ve been thinking about. This isn’t some mere chance or coincidence, but the very nature of the human mind.
This doesn’t only relate to thoughts, but the real, outside world too. Many times I’ve noticed that if I’ve been in a bad mood for some reason or other, circumstances around me seem to conspire to make it worse. People get in my way on the street, I trip or bump into things, plans get cancelled or re-arranged. Things just don’t flow like they normally do.
The best thing about this information is that it’s largely within our own control. The problem is, the majority of us are so unaware of our own minds and checked out from ourselves that we’re unlikely to be aware of our current frequency. As someone who has dealt extensively with anxiety, however, I’ve become pretty skilled at knowing roughly where I’m at on a given day, and just how much influence I have over that state by letting go of worries and altering my thinking.
The keys to harnessing the power of our own awareness lie in those two things – letting go of the endless chatter and rumination in our own minds by becoming more present, and consciously choosing different thoughts that help us to align more naturally with peace, happiness and joy. A lot of letting go means simply surrendering into the present moment – getting really present to ourselves, our bodies and what’s around us. Getting out of our heads and into the real world. It’s only then that we can consciously begin to create a new mental picture for ourselves that empowers us and sets us free.
Books such as The Secret are great insomuch as they promote the power of positive thinking, but nobody seems to mention the fact that you can’t paint a beautiful picture on top of a dirty canvas. If your mind is filled with worry, it won’t do to simply try and think about more ‘positive’ things to replace them with – trust me, this is a battle I’ve fought many times and lost. Even if you ‘win,’ the end result is often feeling very tired and burnt out at the end of the day. We need to empty our minds of negativity and return to neutrality first, before we can build a brighter mental picture for ourselves. Often, with this more peaceful, balanced, neutral perspective on life, we tend to think more positively naturally as a result.
There is a lot of unhelpful information out there about the law of attraction that can easily scare you into thinking that all your negative thoughts are going to come true if you don’t quickly replace them with more positive ones. This can feed into the idea of ‘I have to think perfect thoughts, or else,’ and cause a great deal of anxiety. In my own experience, the vast majority of negative things I have thought about – even consistently – haven’t come to pass. Where I’ve noticed the law of attraction is more from the mental side of things – negative thoughts can easily snowball into more negative thoughts and feelings if we’re not careful. This is where our personal responsibility for our own minds comes in.
The power of your awareness is key to the law of attraction, and a useful tool to carry around and be present to as often as possible. It can help you to think and feel better, as already mentioned. It can help you to communicate better with everyone in your life as well, as being more consciously aware means you’re more likely to be really listening to what the other person is saying, as well as how they’re feeling. You may also find yourself noticing things about the world that you hadn’t noticed before. Isn’t it nicer to live life fully aware and switched on, rather than as an autopilot zombie? I certainly think so.
For further reading on the power of awareness, I highly recommend Eckhart Tolle’s The Power of Now, which you can buy via our books page. Happy reading!