As a life-long avid reader, I loved to raid my mother’s bookshelf when I was teenager. Trapped in a crummy marriage and riddled with health problems, my mother had an array of self-help books . Fortunately for me, a good majority of them were about love and positivity. Though I remember my mother as an extremely humorous and loving person, positivity and unconditional love from my father were elements that were often lacking in my dysfunctional household. Because of this, I held the words in purloined books like Dr. Leo Buscalia’s, Love, and Dr. Norman Vincent Peale’s, The Power of Positive Thinking, especially close and dear. While my classmates were devouring VC Andrew’s latest offerings, (which I’ll admit to also reading), I was a 16 year-old with a stack of bedside books by two older men who wrote about God, love and positive thinking. Being only slightly deeper that most other 16 year-olds, I’m not sure how much of their messages stuck with me. However, these books were written proof that all men weren’t Troglodytes and that there were people whose lives were changed by simply making the choice to love others, love ourselves, and to think positively.
I’m not sure what happened to my mom’s copy of Love, but sometime after her death, I managed to get her copy of The Power of Positive Thinking and it was often the book I fell asleep to during challenging times. At times I’ve thrived on Peale’s suggestions of visualizing success and replacing negative notions with positive ones. Other times, like all humans, I’ve put these thoughts and teachings to the wayside.
Back in 2006, a big deal was made on The Oprah Winfrey Show about Rhonda Byrne’s book The Secret. I usually love Oprah’s book suggestions, so I bought a copy and skimmed it. 2006 was a chaotic year for us, with my daughter’s illness still not fully under control. The Secrets’ message of using positive thinking and the law of attraction to manifest the things you want in your life sort of seemed impossible to me at the time. My copy of The Secret was soon hidden away among my massive book collection.
Then, a few years ago, while scrolling through Netflix, I noticed the movie version of The Secret and decided to give it another chance. While parts of the film were a little campy, the basic message of positive thinking attracts positive elements in our lives reminded me of Dr. Peale’s teachings. I tend to be a positive thinker, by nature, and the film compelled me to not only gratefully reflect on the wonderful things that I already have in my life, but to visualize the things that I want as if I already have them.
My now 81 pound weight loss is proof to me that positive visualization and thinking puts the law of attraction into play. Before I even began losing, I began to see myself at a healthy weight. Day and night, I visualized myself easily climbing stairs and stepping lightly wherever I walked. I pictured myself not winded and my joints not aching from carrying my excess poundage. In my mind’s eye I was trim and svelte. I found clothing easily and when I put it on, it was flattering and comfortable. While exercising, I’d imagine that I looked fit and confident and that I was someone who inspired other people at my gym. Often when I found myself growing tired with still minutes to go on a machine, I’d inwardly recite my mantra, “I’m feeling fit, healthy, energized and beautiful,” over and over until it was all I was focusing on.
My positive outlook with regaining my health, attracted the teachers and people that I needed in my life: a supportive family; a wonderful, dedicated bariatric doctor; a caring weight loss counselor, and an awesomely positive trainer and gym environment. Now, when I look in the mirror, I see the person that I visualized all those months ago. When I run up and down stairs and workout at my gym, I feel the health and vigor that I once convinced myself that I had. The realist in me says my success isn’t a result of “magical thinking.” It was my own hard work at sacrifice that’s gotten me to my goal weight. That may be true, but without m positive attitude and approach, would I have lost my weight so easily? Would I have encountered so many awesome people? I don’t think so.
This past weekend my daughter and I decided to further test the law of attraction by making vision boards to help give focus to the things that we want in our lives. I began my board by making a list of “I am” statements that reflect the elements that I’d like to attract. Using an “I am” statement, puts things in the present and shows that you’re living as if you’ve already met your goal. It might sound a little silly, but it puts lots of good thoughts in your head to replace any negative ones that might attempt to slip in.
Here are my “I am” statements: (They’re not in any particular order of importance)
- I am blogging several times each week and writing for pleasure and profit.
- I am enjoying continued physical, emotional and spiritual health.
- I am enjoying eating healthy foods and exercising.
- I am a loving, giving partner in my happy and fulfilling marriage. (this one’s already very true!)
- I am showing compassion to others and making a positive change in my family, community, and world.
- I am living a life of honesty, and am able to freely express myself.
- I am earning more than enough money to enjoy life and responsibly take care of our needs and wants.
- I am keeping a balanced budget and spending wisely.
- I am finding ways to continue my education, both formally and informally.
- I am using my creativity, talents, and people skills to have a stress-free career that feels like a hobby.
- I am living in a 3 to 4 bedroom, 2 to3 bath home, that is at least 1,400 or more square feet, with a pool, in a safe flood zone, in the Outer Banks of NC.
- I am surrounded by the beauty of nature.
After completing my “I am” statements, I created a board with pictures and memorabilia that reflect my words. Morning and evening, I read my statements out loud and imagine myself in each situation. I’ll wrap things up with some pictures of my board.
What would some of your “I am” statements be? What would you like to manifest in your life? Do you believe in the law of attraction?