Here’s the link to the previous post in this series: http://coal2diamond.com/getting-what-you-want/
Let’s continue with our exploration of the other two ways of thinking. We will also go through some major points of comparison between the three thinking ways.
2 . Attraction
While the school of acquisition has been in full session for the past 2,500 years or so, the school of attraction has been quietly holding classes in hidden caves and ‘new thought’ churches, its teachings disseminated through secret texts, biblical parables and new-age gurus. The school of attraction teaches:
Like attracts like.
Thoughts become things.
You become what you think about.
These ‘secret’ teachings and principles of attraction were often suppressed by the ruling elite, or so the story goes, because they placed the power within each individual, although the true source of that power is often attributed to God or a benevolent vibratory universe. Many of the great men and women throughout history, from ancient religious icons to renaissance men like Leonardo
da Vinci and Sir Isaac Newton, are known to have studied the ancient texts of the school of attraction. So now that this ‘secret’ teaching is no longer a secret, why isn’t everybody living the life of their dreams? One of my mentors shared this personal anecdote which seems to indicate the answer to the question: A woman who wanted to hire me as her coach told me that she had been deeply inspired by what she had been reading about the law of attraction. She had already applied these teachings to attract herself a new job, a great apartment and a boyfriend who, in her words, ‘actually seems to really like me’. When I asked her what she hoped to get out of our work
together, she went quiet for a few moments before somewhat shyly telling me, ‘I’m terrified that it will stop working and I’ll go back to being miserable and alone.’
Here’s the problem with The Secret:
People are attempting to use the principles of attraction as a new set of tools for acquisition.
Instead of actually shifting the basis of their approach to life to one of planting seeds of kindness, beauty and love and reaping the harvest of a bountiful life, people are attempting to get a better parking space (or indeed a better car, girlfriend, boyfriend or bank balance) by ‘thinking the right thoughts’.
The source of the problem lies in the reason people want the car, girlfriend or bank balance in the first place – because they believe having what they want will ‘make’ them happy. But a closer look at the teachings of the school of attraction reveals that it works the other way round: it is the energy of
happiness that attracts the good things into our lives. Do the principles of attraction really work? In my experience, absolutely. But if you use them to try and manipulate the universe into giving you what you think you need to be happy, you are as likely to manifest frustration and self-doubt as that shiny new husband or loving automobile. This leads us to a third way of thinking about getting what we want in our lives…
When I first ask people what they want, they generally go up into their heads to order off an invisible menu of possibilities that have been programmed and conditioned into their brains throughout their lives. For many of us, that menu is so limited that ‘nothing seems to inspire me’ is a common complaint. We don’t know what we really want so we go for the best thing we can find, assuming that something will be better than nothing but ultimately feeling uncreative, unsatisfied and unfulfilled by what we get. This is one of the reasons that even a traditional coach can be such a huge help in moving forward – the coach generally has access to a larger menu with more choices available, consequently opening up new possibilities in the minds of their clients. But while asking ‘what do you want?’ with intention and awareness can certainly get at the real desires lurking underneath the straitjacket of societal acceptability, an even more powerful question is this:
What would you love to create?
When we come to the table as a creator, we are no longer limited by whatever happens to be on the menu, because we know we can always go into the kitchen and cook up something wonderful of our own. And what if, instead of seeing ourselves at a cosmic restaurant, we viewed our life as a blank canvas, or a musical score waiting to be written, or even a raw, unformed lump of clay? We would then be free to create absolutely anything - and if we don’t like what we’ve created up until this point, we can always throw it away and start again. Then the natural artistry you were born with as a child has the space to come out and play, and circumstances stop being ‘good’ or ‘bad’ or ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ but are simply the raw materials for your next creation.
The reality is, you are infinitely creative – and when you take the best of what’s inside you and use it to create from, things like success, abundance, loving relationships and a meaningful legacy stop being goals to be pursued but rather become the natural fruits of your creation. And therein lies the fundamental differences between these three models of success:
Acquisition-based thinking places the power outside us in the visible physical world. If we want some of that power for ourselves, we need to go out and get it. When we don’t get what we want, it’s either because the world is rigged against people like us or we just aren’t trying hard enough.
Attraction-based thinking places the power outside us in the invisible metaphysical world. If we want to tap into that power, we need to align our thoughts, feelings, intentions and desires. When we don’t get what we want, it’s either because God/the Universe has a higher plan for us or we just aren’t thinking positively enough.
Creation-based thinking recognizes that the power is (and always has been) inside ourselves. We access that power through the choices we make about how to be (our ‘ground of being’), how to see (our attitude, or ‘angle of approach’) and what to do (the words we speak and the actions we take). When we don’t get what we want, it’s either because we haven’t yet found a way or it’s just taking more time than we want it to. No blame, no fault, no shame. And when getting what you want stops being about you and becomes more simply about what you want, it also gets a whole lot easier.