Either you, or someone you know, will have seen or read “The Secret” – an inspirational work that teaches us that the law of attraction really does work and that positive thinking really can bring us success and riches. So presumably, the law of attraction applies to business as it does to every other field of our lives? Is it really as easy as sitting in our armchairs and visualising our business raking in the money, or is there more to it than that? Are we misinterpreting how the law of attraction applies to business?
The essence of the law of attraction
The fundamental principle behind the law of attraction is that we, and everything around us, is energy and as a result we are all connected. That means by emitting positive energy, fuelled by our own desires, we can attract towards us anything we want.
Science proves this to be true. For many years, athletes have practiced visualisation techniques to mentally prepare for races. Science has shown that those who are adept at visualisation perform better for having mentally rehearsed their performance. We also know that our mental attitude can affect our bodily responses. Anyone who has done a firewalk will have been amazed how the power of positive thought can prevent their feet getting burnt. Quantum physics is also now starting to explain this connection between us all and add credibility to the law of attraction and positive thinking.
But is positive thinking alone enough?
I’ll put my cards on the table now. I am a proponent of positive thinking and regularly practice the law of attraction with great success. However, I am also not naive enough to think that I can sit at home all day and positively think my business into an overnight success story. That tells me there must be more to it than just positive thinking.
Try it for yourself. See whether you can make an object defy the law of gravity through positive thought. I know of no one who can do this, because the law of gravity simply exists. It is an immutable law.
There are immutable laws of business too
In the same way that the law of gravity is immutable, there are certain immutable laws of business too with which you must comply if you are to have a successful business.
If you go to any bookstore and head down to the business section you will see a multitude of books which discuss the laws of business. Some are good, others not so. Some contain good ideas for improving your business, others discuss immutable laws.
What are the immutable laws?
A discussion of the immutable laws is beyond the scope of this article and some are still being discovered, but I want to discuss two which I believe are so fundamental to your business success (or indeed any success) that you cannot afford to ignore them.
The first is discussed by Jim Collins in his book “Good to Great” (which I would recommend every business owner reads) that is: confront the brutal reality of your present situation when you set your goals. Only by confronting the brutal reality of your present situation can you have any appreciation of the road you have to travel to achieve your goals. That’s not to say that you aspire for less, simply understand what needs to be done to make those goals happen. So many people set big goals without this appreciation and then can’t understand why success seems such a long way off. The practice of that law in itself tells us that you cannot just sit in your armchair and positively think your way to success. Obstacles will not evaporate unless you take action to remove them. That leads me to the second law which is actually contained within The Secret itself.
To achieve success you must take action
One of the fundamental principles of The Secret (but one often overlooked) is that in order to achieve your goals you must take action. You cannot just sit and visualise, but you must move towards your goals with desire and passion.
Successful business owners will relate to this: the long hours spent in the early days of your business with minimal initial reward, but building a solid foundation for future success; getting your hands dirty with the menial tasks before being able to afford to employ others to do them on your behalf.
You can’t short circuit this process without spending lots of money, and often those who do, don’t see the long term success necessary for creating an endurable business. You see, if you rush towards your goals, then some of the immutable laws may get overlooked and that in turn can lead to business failure.
That means not winging it
Taking action means not “winging it” and not adopting a “she’ll be right” attitude to building your business. You must put in place a solid foundation of systems, documentation and processes to ensure stable growth as you move towards your goals. For example, if your goal is to climb Mt Everest you will not leave ill equipped for the challenge. You also don’t expect to reach the summit overnight. When building your business, make sure you have the key agreements in place with your partners, employees, suppliers, customers, agents, distributors and so on and then back those up with documented systems and processes. Then add your positive thinking and business success will be yours. That is the real secret of business success, but don’t expect it to happen overnight – it takes mental fortitude, planning and patience.