By Lisa Earle McLeod
Keynote Speaker and Author
McLeod & More, Inc.
Psssst, I’ve got a secret.
And only 40 million other people know about it.
Remember “The Secret” phenom? The book and movie has been featured on “Oprah,” landed on magazine covers, and was the hot buzz around watercoolers and carpool lines back in 2007, and in the years since.
I think it’s safe to say that “The Secret” is not a secret anymore. And truthfully, it never really was.
In case you’ve been living under a rock, the premise behind “The Secret” is that your thoughts and feelings create your reality. Your thoughts have physical power, they go out into the universe and the universe sends you back exactly what you put out. So even if you want to be rich, thin, and loved, if you keep thinking about how poor, fat, and lonely you are, that’s the way you’ll stay.
It’s like the world is one big drive-through window, and every thought you have is the karmic equivalent of shouting your order at the guy in the paper hat.
Many call it the law of attraction.
It’s how like attracts like, and successful people have been consciously using it to their advantage for centuries.
However, thanks to the creative packaging and slick marketing behind “The Secret,” the rest of us bottom-feeders are finally getting the message.
A Newsweek commentary on the movie version suggests that “The Secret” isn’t really a secret and that the “teachers” in the film are “mostly motivational speakers and writers who have been selling the same message for years.”
Yet Oprah Winfrey, who devoted two entire shows to it, says, “It’s life-changing” and that it enables you to “make more money, lose weight, fall in love, or find your dream job.”
They’re both right. It’s not new information, but it has the power to change your entire existence.
So why haven’t more people embraced it? The movie implies that “The Secret” was purposefully kept away from the rabble because it would give us too much power.
I think people have been trying to share it for centuries, they just never packaged it right.
Any of these adages ring a bell?
- “Pretty is as pretty does.”
- “If you keep making that face it will freeze like that.”
- “You get what you give.”
- “What goes around comes around.”
- “You reap what you sow.”
If you’re like me, you’ve probably had hundreds of teachers, preachers, and motivational screechers telling you that stuff for years. But a droning lecture from an authority figure isn’t nearly as captivating as a secret revealed with music and high-res graphics.
Secret or no, the law of attraction is about operating from a place of love and gratitude rather than negativity and fear. It sounds great when you’re rich and thin, but it’s harder to think that way when you’re 30 pounds overweight and the electric bill is overdue.
However, according to “The Secret,” it’s not your circumstances that are creating your attitude, it’s your attitude that’s creating your circumstances. It’s a universal law: Until you’re grateful for the life you’ve got, you’ll never get a better one.
To be fair, in the spirit of full disclosure, while I understand the challenges of creating positive thoughts in a negative environment, I’m also one of those annoying people who sees the bright side of everything, and who is eternally convinced that life always works out great for them.
I was never clever enough to package this perspective as a secret. But having watched the DVD of “The Secret” and read the book, I’m sure glad somebody did.
Attracting what you want by being positive and grateful has never been a mystery or a secret.
That information has been available for centuries. The secret is getting the masses to pay attention to it.
So if timeless truths presented via slick marketing is what it takes get 40 million minds moving in the right direction, I’m grateful that the secret is out.
About Lisa Earle McLeod
Lisa Earle McLeod is a sales leadership consultant. Companies such as Apple, Kimberly-Clark, and Pfizer hire her to help them create passionate, purpose-driven sales forces. She’s the author of, “Selling with Noble Purpose: How to Drive Revenue and Do Work That Makes You Proud,” as well as, “The Triangle of Truth,” which The Washington Post named a “Top Five Book for Leaders.”
She has appeared on “Today,” and has been featured in Forbes, Fortune and The Wall Street Journal. She provides executive coaching sessions, strategy workshops, and keynote speeches.
Click here to learn more: www.lisaearlemcleod.com.