I tell you what, I’m at the puking stage of all the codswallop manifestation bollocks that is flooding my feed lately from a bunch of unqualified riff raff calling themselves coaches.
I can’t be doing with all this airy fairy, pink and fluffy, woo woo shit (my coach calls it woo woo – it tickles me!) about asking the universe for what you want and it shall appear. It’s a crock of shit! Ah, you’ve read The Secret too?
Now if you know me by any stretch then you get that I’m a straight talking, no bullshit, QUALIFIED exec coach, which means I’ve got shed loads of experience of getting people to ‘perform’, to achieve, to deliver…. all tangible, usually bottom line results. All that experience and my training demonstrates that you can’t just close your eyes, cross your fingers and wish for stuff.
Listen, I am in agreement on a few bits though so let’s be explicit about what I do sign up to in what they say:
- It’s about mindset. Yes. That’s scientifically correct. I’m on the same page as Buddha – what you think, you become. More on this later…
- Gratitude. Being grateful for what you already have is helpful in achieving success. The opposite, focusing on what we’ve not got, creates resentment and stress. When we’re stressed we achieve fuck all and make really bad decisions.
- Manage the inner twat. Yeah, don’t make me look like the crazy lady. We’ve all got one. That inner voice who likes to tell us we’re shit and sabotage our every attempt at happiness.
So really, we’re joined up in what the goal is and at a high level, what it takes to get there. But what’s missing for me is the practical HOW.
So let’s just do the science bit that in my book, needs to replace the spiritual garbage.
Let’s begin by going back to mindset. The reason mindset is important is because it drives our behaviour and our behaviour dictates our results. It’s that simple. See – Do – Get (as the wonderful Stephen Covey put it) If you see a situation in a certain way, it leads you to react, or hopefully respond, which means you will either have crappy actions or super duper actions that will get you results at opposite ends of the spectrum. It’s all about choices. You have to choose what you believe or think to in turn create the action and desired results you’re after. You are responsible and accountable for these – not god or the universe.
On the gratitude front this is more about focus, hormones and biases. I’m kinda good with the ‘law of attraction’ but it’s not some magical hocus pocus – it’s actually just about focus. (Ooh, I’m a poet!) What we focus on and what we dedicate our time and energy on, happens. That’s not rocket science.
What’s also at play here are hormones. If we’re feeling grateful for what we have already then the body will release the feel good hormones and endorphins like dopamine and serotonin. These enable the learning centres in the brain to work optimally meaning you’re at greater capacity to do awesome shit! On the contrary, if we’re feeling resentful or stressed at the lack of something then cortisol is released which prevents us from thinking straight and we will make an arse of our decision making. Plus, adrenaline will release triggering an amygdala hijack in the brain which is responsible for our fight or flight response…. and that feels yacky. Lastly, there’s the biases. There are hundreds of cognitive biases that affect us subconsciously daily. But a big daddy of these is confirmation bias. This is the bias that likes to prove us right (even if we are wrong). It distorts our reality, as do all biases. There’s so much ‘noise’ and info around us every day that our poor little noggins couldn’t cope if they had to process every single thing. So we filter information to look for the important stuff and disregard what we think is useless. That means in the context of this bias, we will look for evidence to prove ourselves right in terms of the beliefs we hold and ditch any evidence that contradicts it…. all without us even realising it. So if you focus on stuff you ain’t got then you’ll keep not getting stuff. If you’re grateful for what you have got then you’ll notice lots more of the good stuff happening. Simples, right?
When it comes to the inner twat there’s some science here too. And I am going to have to endorse positive affirmations here (albeit with my arm twisted up my back). But…. I sign up to them again scientifically, not spiritually. You see, neuroscience studies show that repeated action and beliefs form neuro pathways in the brain, think of them like a well trodden path. It’s then an easy path to walk and your brain knows that route well. Choosing to change and challenge your inner voice and the beliefs it holds is tough because you have to form new pathways in the brain where you are basically wandering in the wilderness without a fricken map! It’s difficult at first and that’s why most people throw the towel in and go back to the well trodden path. Repeating your positive affirmations enable that new path to become well trodden and the old path to become overgrown. But this takes time, effort and discipline.
So, there’s my take on manifestation and what the universe can do for you – jack shit! Basically, you have to get off your arse and DO SHIT!!!!….. like, yourself. It is hard. We must do hard stuff. And guess what? It’s rewarding AF when you do!