Do you ever wish you could control your mind by flicking a switch?
For much of my life, I've wanted to improve the way I think, or better still, switch thoughts off that are not helpful.
I'm often weary from endless day-dreams of situations, that never happen. Admittedly, I am improving.
Writing is my approach to self-improvement; not only is writing a way of coping but of learning; allowing the proverbial penny to drop. And I've dropped a good number.
Using the public journal you are reading is my way of helping others deal with the same challenges.
Trust me. Life isn't always what you think. Whatever you see in your head, the reality will be different.
Sometimes, a writer comes along and challenges the way you think.
Jen Sincero, author of You Are A Badass — How To Stop Doubting Your Greatness And Start Living An Awesome Life, claims life is what you think.
Better than that. You can live the life your heart desires by changing how you think.
Is our mind so powerful?
Meditation in Desperation
One day my Dad's brain tumour made itself known to the world. The disease changed Dad's personality, and it turned our family's lives upside-down. Desperate to cope, I chose to change my thinking, not through drugs or alcohol but by meditation.
I would awaken in the middle of the night to cry, and as my Dad became weaker, I became angry. If I could master my mind, could I avoid pain? Could the power of thought deliver a miracle cure for Dad?
With nothing to lose, I dabbled in the Law of Attraction.
I wanted to believe.
Old Light Through New Windows
The Law of Attraction (The Law) is like the TV series, Lost. It shrouds you with mystery and tantalises you with secrets. In the end, it disappoints and leaves questions unanswered.
Despite a lack of evidence, some authors never fail to attract wealth by repackaging old theories in new covers.
In the early 20th century, a group of writers promoted the New Thought Movement. Examples include:
- Wallace D. Wattles: in the Science of Getting Rich (1910), advocated a way of thinking to achieve health and prosperity.
- Charles Haanel: published his Master Key System (1912) containing exercises for concentration, attraction and harmonious thinking.
- Napoleon Hill's Think and Grow Rich (1937) focused on methods for achieving goals (mainly money) through the power of your subconscious mind.
Advocates of The Law of Attraction mainly focus on wealth and money.
Today's writers borrow from older books, but that didn't stop me falling for Rhonda Byrne's The Secret (2006).
The Law's religious overtones intrigue me. Like prayer, The Law depends on focus, belief and communication with a creative spirit.
I didn't dare try to use my subconscious mind to cure Dad. In my heart of hearts, I knew it wouldn't work.
Was I wrong not to try?
For a job interview, I used visualisation, a technique focusing on the desired outcome. I visualised driving to the venue, waiting outside the room, and the panel asking questions. It worked, I got the job but was it disciplined interview preparation or The Law at work?
My interest in the Law of Attraction ended until now.
I want to believe.
The Yellow Book
In the self-improvement section of Audible's bookstore, I discovered a bright yellow book.
I love yellow. My hallway is yellow, the kitchen and bedroom too, all different shades and no, you don't need sunglasses.
Based on its attention-grabbing cover and high customer rating, I made the purchase, not realising the book centred on that damn stupid Law of Attraction.
Author, Jen Sincero, offers to help you achieve all you desire in life.
What more could you ask from a sexy, I mean yellow, self-help book?
- plenty of practical self-help advice ✔︎
- how to improve your life ✔︎
- bite-sized chapters for slow readers ✔︎
- how to rid yourself of self-sabotaging beliefs ✔︎
- funny ✔︎
In the audio version, Sincero read her book, and her personality and wit shone through. Something about her, the sassy American go-getter perhaps, reminded me of Margot Kidder's Lois Lane.
(Sassy; means smart and stylish by the way).
I liked Sincero from the beginning. One downside with audio, it's damn impossible to make notes. So, I bought the book again but in old fashioned paper.
Badass is still old theory repackaged but with Sincero finesse. The Secret did it, with old world maps and wax seals. But Sincero's book has an air of freshness and zest about it, rooted in modern living instead of ancient mystic legends and stone tablets.
From the beginning, you get a sense of practical steps to come.
”You need to go from wanting to change your life to deciding to change your life." - Jen Sincero
In the introduction, my heart sank at the first sign of the Law of Attraction. Once an author mentions the universe, unless they are an astronomer, you know what's coming.
Yet, life, the universe and creation are mysterious. But if The Law is real, would Jerry Hicks have died of cancer or Wayne Dyer from a heart attack?
There's one thing Sincero, and I agree. The sights and sounds of creation are magnificent, and the universe holds secrets beyond human imagination.
”If you want to live the life you've never lived, you have to do things you've never done." - Jen Sincero
There's a tension in the book—a tension between spirituality and self-improvement tips. Badass covers mindfulness, visualising the future and the value of being YOU.
Never Mind the Colour, Feel the Depth
Sincero has a skill combining light and breezy stories with life lessons.
Once God gets a mention, we're into Law of Attraction at full throttle.
Like the New Thought Movement, Sincero claims we all vibrate. Whereas I had thought my vibrations arose when called to the boss's office or if 100 people read my blog.
When we're happy, we give off a high frequency and attract positive energies. These energies enable us to manifest our desires.
Sincero promotes the use of Vision Boards, a scrapbook, to help you manifest your ideal lifestyle. When you see what you want, the source energy (AKA Universe, God, Mother Lode, Vortex) will bring it to you.
Thoughts, the author claims, are the most powerful tool you've got.
If you're negative all the time, you'll end up a sad case, and nobody will hang out with you.
Mixing common sense advice with The Law, Sincero keeps her writing authentic. There are real-life stories recounted by Sincero offering a glimpse inside her life.
Jen Sincero is a believable writer, and I like her, aided by the audio version. There's something intimate about the author speaking in your ear.
I still want to believe.
One minute I'm nodding in agreement, the next, I'm shaking my head. The book combines practical advice from personal development, with the meta-physical.
With echoes of Wayne Dyer, in how we punish ourselves with the recurring "I should have done this, or should have done that", Jen Sincero covers all areas of self-doubt.
One of my favourite quotes of all time also gets a mention.
”I have had many troubles, most of which never happened" — Mark Twain
Your mind is key to unlocking your happiness, success and future. However, your consciousness can be the prison that keeps you trapped in the past, feeling negative and fearful of change. Deal with it; i.e. deal with your mind and what it repeats to you.
You have many techniques at your disposal to shape your mind, how you think, and the life you live.
- Your thoughts are a powerful influence on your life.
- Daily meditation can transform how you think.
- Celebrate the limited time you have in your body.
- When you value the art of giving and gratitude, you unlock something extraordinary in your life.
- With forgiveness comes freedom from the past, from failures and low self-esteem.
But above all, you must ❤️ LOVE YOURSELF ❤️.
None of the above are unique to or rely on, the Law of Attraction.
I Want To Believe
If there was ever a book that made me look again at the Law of Attraction, it's Jen Sincero's Badass.
I don't want to have money raining down or become surrounded by hordes of attractive people. More visitors to Say It With The Light On would be sweet.
But I do want to believe in something more powerful within us. A spirit that will evolve us from the murderous, anti-earth beings some have become.
Badass made me laugh and buy it twice. The book makes me want to believe in The Law, not as some force that uses mind control over physical matter, but as a force that creates new ways for me and you to think.
And yes, you can love yourself without feeling a jerk.
Still want to be a badass? Then follow Jen.