The Secret In The Way of The Secret
Bill Cottringer

I have to admit I am both a fan and a skeptic with all the hype this past year or so about “The Secret.” My “fan” perspective is a feeling one. I feel the fundamental truth of the Law of Attraction and power of positive thinking is the single-hearted path to success and abundance because that is how I believe the universe is set up. But the skeptic part of me comes from some critical thinking about this all, which leads me to the inevitable conclusion it is much easier said than done.

I think there are two main problems to conquer here if we are to be an all or nothing fan of The Secret. Here are the two obstacles in the way:

First, we spend too much time over-focusing on trying to change insignificant realities, and under-focusing on the few realities we can and should do something about. This taxes positive thinking and feeling to the max. It also results in fueling the next problem for a downwardly spiraling negative vicious circle to the nowhere zone.

Secondly, for The Secret to work its magic, you have to believe in it 100% and have unwavering expectations to be successful with attracting what you want and actually getting the results that reinforce the belief and create positive expectations that keep motivating you onward and upward. Stop—what is wrong with this picture? We all know in our heart of hearts that negative crap happens and we have to deal with it. Just like the high self-esteem nurtured entitlement generation is finding out the hard way, failure happens.

The only way out of this second catch-22 dilemma is to work on lightening up on the expectations you have on getting a certain outcome and the harsh negative judgments you quickly make when the outcomes you get aren’t what you expected. That is the only way The Secret can work to attract what you want—by stop wanting and judging things as okay and not okay. But here we really get stuck between a rock and a hard place. Un-wanting and un-judging are two intrinsic habits that have more addiction power than heroin, alcohol, coffee and cigarettes combined.

So what can you do in the meantime? Try these sensible solutions:

1. Pick your battles better—focus on a few important things you can control and gradually let go of the rest.
2. Catch yourself making premature judgments about the results you get and shift to a more tentative wait-and-see approach.
3. Start paying closer attention to the subtle negative thoughts and feelings you over-flavor your expectations with, so that you can increase your positive thinking and feeling when you need it most.
4. Begin to question where this dualistic idea of okay-not okay, good-bad, valuable-worthless originally came from. Then you can question the dualism’s own dualistic value—productive or destructive? By then you will begin to see how the language we use in our thoughts taints our hearts and the realities we end up being part of.

The Secret and The Law of Attraction represent a very fundamental truth, but the truth isn’t at the top of the mountain, but rather at the bottom of a very slippery slope. The prize at the bottom is the incomparable satisfaction you have when your get something without wanting it or expecting it. If you have already experienced this phenomenon, then you know what I am talking about; if not, keep trying to un-want and un-expect. The REAL Secret is more powerful than any one of us can come close to imagining.

Author's Bio: 

William Cottringer, Ph.D. is President of Puget Sound Security in Bellevue, WA. He also engages in photography, sport psychology counseling, business success coaching and writing in his home in the scenic and peaceful mountains and rivers of North Bend. He is author of several personal and professional development books including You Can Have Your Cheese & Eat It Too (Executive Excellence Publishing), The Bow-Wow Secrets (Wisdom Tree), “P” Point Management and Do What Matters Most (Atlantic Publishers), and Reality Repair: Fixing a Lot by Knowing a Little. Bill can be contacted with comments and questions at (425) 454-5011 or