Question, What do the ubiquitous Lavar Ball and Oprah Winfrey have in common?
Clue: Its not being black!!
They both believe in a mental concept called ‘Law of Attraction’ aka LOA, The Secret, “Speaking It Into existence”, Power of Positive Thinking…all slang for using the power of your subconscious mind to re-affirm and attain your goals.
Simple example: You decide you want to purchase a new car… a Blue Honda.. All of sudden you start noticing Blue Honda’s everywhere it’s like “Wow, I didn’t realize so many people had the car I desire.”
What has happened is you have planted a seed of intent into your mind and the brain can’t help but to focus on that. Why wouldn’t your brain start allowing your mind to form excitement by reminding you constantly of what you desire.
The law of attraction [Formal definition author: Louise Hay] “Our thinking creates and brings to us whatever we think about,” she says. “It’s as though every time we think a thought, every time we speak a word, the universe is listening and responding to us. Louise says negativity can keep you from obtaining the things you want in life. “We don’t want to put ourselves down,” she says. “We don’t want to say, ‘Oh, it will never work for me,’ or ‘I’m not good enough.’ Because that’s what the universe hears and returns to you.”
Instead, Louise says you can transform your life by staying positive. “You have to start saying things that you feel really good about yourself. ‘I love who I am. I love life. And you just start doing that—it’s planting seeds. You’re not going to get it the first day, but you plant a seed and you water it and you continue the affirmations, and things start to shift and change in your life.”
Now I’m positive (pun intended) people would read that and say oh that’s some hippy, woo-woo-woo crap- yeah OK…let’s queue up more real world examples…
“All I said was that my boy is going to play for the Lakers,” LaVar Ball said. “I’m going to speak it into existence. I want him to be a Laker.“
Oprah: Let us be reminded our billionaire pal did NOT start of this way, she had difficult childhood, cancelled early TV series, struggled with weight issues; however she relied on her mind ability to concentrate on her goals and viola – The Oprah Winfrey Show, O magazine, her movies, OWN network…shall I continue?
Tony Robbins: motivational teacher & coach; uses a blended approach to promote LOA for his clients and books. Tony’s work focuses concepts of visualization (e.g vision boards) and emotionally finding the feeling “state” that we want to live in.
Muhammad Ali: Another heavy hitter (pun intended) of this blended usage of LOA .
“I AM THE GREATEST”
“FLOAT LIKE A BUTTERFLY STING LIKE A BEE”;
I love Ali’s personal affirmations and clearly it bought him vast success!!
So how does LOA work? what’s the science behind this phenomenon? (For y’all still thinking this concept is hippy-talk)…Essentially it’s you vs your brain; training your mind to work for you not against you.
Much of what we do on a daily basis happens without thinking—driving a car, brushing our teeth, browsing the supermarket aisle, running a meeting. Very few people have to decide consciously which leg to put into their trousers first. These simple behaviors have been shaped repeatedly by training and experience and are now habitual. Habits, rituals and routine are formed in the basal ganglia, part of our limbic (X-system) structure. It is low energy and functions without much effort, designed to allow the pre-frontal cortex (C-system) to process new information and more complex decisions. Whenever we act or think in ways we have done in the past, we reinforce neural connections in our basal ganglia.
Changing a habit or embedding a new behavior takes effort and focused attention. This can feel physiologically uncomfortable and quite literally painful to over-ride habits. Its no wonder people often avoid change or find it hard to maintain commitment. Under pressure, tired or distracted our pre-frontal cortex can’t keep us focused and we relapse to earlier behaviors and habits.
Focused attention and mindful action can be used to push through resistance and rewire habitual patterns. This process of intentionally changing our brain circuits is called ‘self-directed neuroplasticity’. It is not enough to practice every so often. We need to pay attention repeatedly to new actions and insights over a period of time until they become part of how we operate and see ourselves. Creating rituals to embed new behaviours into daily life can be key. (Source:http://blog.langleygroup.com.au/neuroscience-of-change-what-makes-change-easier/)
Yall get it now? How can you start using this in my life?
First and foremost we must recognize and accept change does not happen instantly, so be patient and kind to yourself as you allow your mind to churn and repeat new information (e.g Statements of new intent, goals, dreams, affirmations) and soon your emotional state will catch up, your physical actions (habits, natural responses to stimuli) will start to align and thus change becomes apparent.
LOA is NOT living in state of unrealistic expectations; life is life; things will happen bumps on the road hit the rich, the poor, the happy and every single human being on earth. LOA helps build resilience to the stressors of life. Are you going to constantly wallow in shame, sadness guilt or other negative feeling–NO! Once you have processed a negative event, keep pressing on toward your goals. Plans can be adjusted and changed, lessons will always be learned but don’t let you mind ever believe it’s stagnant and your goals are unattainable – nope not true!
“I believe life is constantly testing us for our level of commitment, and life’s greatest rewards are reserved for those who demonstrate a never-ending commitment to act until they achieve- Tony Robbins
Lavar got his boy to be a Laker…let’s see how this story unfolds. Soon he may have more in common with Oprah than LOA – Big Baller Brand Billions!