Thursday, 31 March 2016

Manifestation

Apparently 'manifestation' is the latest wellbeing fad. It's the new 'gratitude', which was the new 'mindfulness.'

Fans of manifestation include Gwyneth Paltrow (obviously), and Oprah Winfrey.

But, it's not a new idea. 'Manifestation' has been practised, in one form or another, for centuries.

In our lifetime, the most popular exposition of the concept was the global bestselling book - The Secret by Rhonda Byrne.

More recently, and less successfully, Noel Edmonds repackaged the same thought as 'Cosmic Ordering.'

The basic premise behind all of these concepts is exactly the same: If you really, really want something, all you have to do is visualise it.

Or, to quote The Secret: If you see it in your mind, you're going to hold it your hand.

Now, I'm a Pisces, and I'm quite open to all of this sort of stuff (especially so since I got sober, and had time and space to think), so I finally got around to buying The Secret.

(By the way, it's not a very well kept Secret. It's on Amazon).

There's a lovely, simple (naïve?) thought behind the book.

It's that since everything in the universe is comprised of the same tiny atomic particles we are all connected, and our thoughts act as a kind of magnet (bear with me).

The universe is, apparently, ruled by the Law of Attraction - like attracts like. So, if you think happy thoughts, happy things will be attracted to you, and if you think bad things, bad things happen.

Comprende?

I confess I was a little sceptical.

But then I read that all you needed to do to get rich was to imagine yourself already wealthy. Ah ha! The solution to all my problems! What's not to like?

So I gave it a really good go. I followed all the advice. I thought about money - a lot. A lot of money. I acted like I was rich, spending money I didn't have (yes, that really is one of the recommendations!).

I even bought a lottery ticket and entered those competitions on the telly where you text a number to win a brand new Range Rover and wads of cash.

Then, as suggested, I waited for the money to flow in.

AND YOU'LL NEVER GUESS WHAT?!?!

....nothing. Not a penny. Not even a magic bean.

I read through the book further and got to the section on health. They told the story of someone diagnosed with cancer who 'thought themselves well' and got well. The cancer, as if by magic, disappeared.

At this stage I started to get angry. Having just had my life saved (I hope) by surgery, radiotherapy and hormone therapy, I do think that anyone encouraging very sick people to believe that they can heal themselves through positive thinking is bordering on criminal.

However, the reason all these theories have had traction over the years is that there is something in it.

We are very often scuppered by our subconscious. However much we try to achieve something, or be someone, if our subconscious is not playing ball we will not succeed.

Also, our success is partly predicated by how other people see us. If people believe we are achievers - in whatever field - we are more likely to become so.

And that's how The Secret, and Manifestation, and Cosmic Ordering work (I believe).

If you imagine yourself being something, really, properly imagine it, then your subconscious will play ball, and the people surrounding you will help it to happen. A simple example: if you believe that you are sexy, men are more likely to fancy you.

(For more on visualisation and how it works, see my post: I am Khaleesi!)

This is really relevant to all of us, because I constantly get mails, and read blogs from people saying 'I really think I might be able to do it this time.' And I know that they're going to find it tough going. Not because they don't really want to succeed, but because you can tell by their language that they don't really, really believe that it's possible.

The way to think isn't 'perhaps I can do it, even though it's going to be hard and I'm going to be miserable,' it's this:

I have done it! I am, from this day forward, A NON DRINKER! Yippee! Hurrah! Clever me. My new life starts HERE. I know it'll take my body a little while to get used to the idea, and I know the Wine Witch'll try to throw me off course, but I'm READY for all of that.

You have to keep saying that to yourself until you really, really believe it. (And, more importantly, your subconscious gets with the programme and starts to believe it too).

When you visualise the future DO NOT picture yourself as a sad and miserable non drinker, picture a happy, healthy, sober you.

Here's a good trick. Take some pictures of your favourite sober people and stick them on your fridge. Bradley Cooper? Robert Downey Junior? Jessie J? Anna Wintour even?

Then add a photo of you from the days before you got bit in the butt by the booze. Find a picture where you're healthy, smiling, energised - doesn't matter if you were only five years old at the time - and stick it up there with the other happy, sober people.

Then, when the Wine Witch tells you you'd be happier having a drink say 'No, no, no! I am a HAPPY NON DRINKER, just like all these other happy non-drinkers you see here on my fridge door. So back off, b***h, and go bother someone who wants to listen.'

And that, my friends, is manifestation. If you really, truly believe it will happen, it will happen.

Love SM x

11 comments:

  1. V interesting SM. Love a bit of mumbo jumbo. I am with you on the sickness bit, same with curing cancer with just diet. When the chips are down you and I both know how grateful we are to modern medicine. BUT that thing about positive thinking I do think works. Its a bit like the CBT therapy if you feel down. Smile at yourself in the mirror (I think this is right but am winging it slightly). Something about the act of smiling gives the brain a shot of something which eventually does make you feel cheerful. Same sort of thing I think. When I gave up smoking I told myslf I was a non smoker and eventually I was. Now off to tell myself I am rich and 7 stone. : )

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  2. I can't agree more to this! There is so much to this way of thinking. Mainly because it's POSITIVE. When I made my decision to quit drinking (67 days ago) I vowed to never question it. I told myself it wasn't a punishment. I looked at leaving alcohol behind as the best gift I could ever give to myself (because you read it EVERYWHERE) vs "my life will be so boring/hard without it". Keeping your thoughts in the positive is essential success to anyone!! I'm pretty sure the most successful people are not saying "I'm the most horrible golfer, pianist, manager, mother, person". To Sharon's point - look at yourself in the mirror, smile at yourself, give yourself some love & tell yourself the story you want!!!

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  3. I am so not fully there yet! Last night I was so angry because we were at a great restaurant and I just wanted wine! I had a "mock tail" and that helped but I still feel like I'm being punished for not being able to control my drinking! Punishment equals no wine! I am doing this but I do not find it easy at all...even with positive thinking! I don't think that means I won't be successful though! It just means that I am struggling! A lot! And today is day 53 for me! And I am Sober at 53!

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    1. Huge congrats on 53 days! You're doing brilliantly, and it really will get easier, I promise. Socialising is the hardest part, and the bit that takes longest to crack. You will be able to enjoy nights out like that again, don't worry, it'll just take a while. Just keep reminding yourself that booze is not your friend. It won't make things easier, it makes them harder. It's the wine witch telling you you're being punished. You're not. The punishment's over - and freedom is round the corner. Big hugs xxx

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  4. Thank you for your words of wisdom SM. I am away in beautiful Charleston with a ton of amazing restaurants with amazing wine lists! I am waiting to be seated at another great restaurant and I just reread your reply to me! It is going to get me through the dinner! Thank you!!! Xo. Also...I did make my blog public...certainly nowhere as fantastic as yours but it's keeping me honest for myself!!!

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    1. I love your blog www.sobermumat53.blogspot.com
      Keep going! It'll really help you (and everyone else)

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    2. Sorry! Please excuse my English spelling! It's sobermOmat53!!!

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  5. Yes SM! Being positive about this major shift forward in my life and surrounding myself with strong sober individuals has helped me stay sober for 380 days!!!! AA tells me use what works here and leave the rest behind! So far this slogan and many others has allowed me to see my life in a whole new perspective most of the time.

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  6. This is one of your best blogs and thankyou for exploring all the ambiguities of manifestation along with its truths, particularly the end part about applying to the sober life. It"S TRUE. In fact, for the wealth thing....it does work. Keep at it. It's like Sobriety's quest in some ways. I am RICH beyond measure and it's my quiet secret.

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