The Secret Won’t Work Without Asking the Magic Question

By Bill Harris in Manifesting Dreams on June 20th, 2007 / 3 Comments

This is part two of the article “Without Two Important Principles The Secret Won’t Benefit You”.

Now here’s a really easy way to focus your attention on what you want. I call it the Magic Question, but again, it really isn’t magic. To focus your attention on something you want to create or attract, ask yourself, “How can I create X?” whatever X is, or “How can I get X?” Sometimes, if you’re in what seems to be a particularly bad situation, you might say, “Given that I’m in this situation, what can I do to get X?” For instance, if you just lost your job and you have a lot of debts, you might ask yourself, “Okay, given that I’m in this situation, what can I do right now to create a new job and create enough money to pay all these debts?”

When you ask this type of How Can I? question, it focuses your attention on what you want, and in doing so you enlist your mind in finding an answer – in other words, to figure out what you could actually DO to begin creating or attracting what you want.

Then, as you get ideas, you have to act on them. Sitting there wishing and hoping for a miracle, or hoping that a coincidence will slam into you is what NOT to do. Dr. Phil, if he were here, would be asking such a person, “How’s that workin’ for ya?” I know a lot of very successful people, including nearly every teacher who appears in The Secret, and believe me, none of them sit around waiting for a miracle to land on them.

Even the few of them who actually, and in my opinion mistakenly, teach that focusing on what you want is magic, when you watch what they’re actually doing, they are taking action. How they can miss the fact that they are is beyond me, but a few of them – who shall remain nameless–do teach people to just “put it out to the universe” and that no action is necessary. They too, though, take action, but I guess they somehow fail to see the connection between the action they take and the results they get.

If you look around at successful, make-it-happen people, you won’t see any of them who don’t take action.

It only looks like they’re not taking action

Now I’ll admit that sometimes the results can look as if they are coming to a very successful person awfully darned easy and awfully darned quickly, but these results are still coming from action, preceded by focusing on what that person wanted.

My friend Gay Hendricks, along with his wife Katie, have been bestselling authors of books about relationships for over twenty years. Another friend, Jack Canfield, is also a bestselling author. Either one of them can pick up the phone, call a book publisher, tell them an idea for a book, and get a book deal instantly. If some other person wanted a book deal, it could take them years to make it happen. If their idea didn’t have value, based on what the publisher wanted, they might never make it happen.

To someone who did not understand the principle of taking action and the principle of creating value, it might look like Gay or Jack made something happen as if by magic, without taking action. However, in this case the book deal happened quickly because of actions they’d previously taken. In fact, Jack visited scores of publishers with the original Chicken Soup for the Soul book, and was almost ready to give up, when he finally found a publisher willing to print his book. But now, after selling well over 100 million books, he’s already proven that he can create a bestselling book. He’s already taken the action necessary to get a book publisher to send him a contract and a check. The same goes for Gay Hendricks.

I can create a new course or a new product, and Centerpointe program participants will buy it tomorrow, in droves. This isn’t magic, though. It’s the residual of thousands of actions I’ve already taken which have convinced my customers that when I create something, it’s going to be worth it for them to buy it in order to get the benefits. I’ve already taken the required action, and sometimes that makes it look as if little or no action is being taken in order
to get a certain outcome.

Will the Wish Fairy Give You a Raise?
Let’s take this down to a more mundane example. If you work in an office, and your boss approaches you and offers you a better job in the company, with more pay, why does he do this? Is it magic? Is it because you’ve been sitting in your cubicle putting it out to the universe that you want a better job with more money? I doubt it. If your boss offers you such a promotion, I’ll bet you anything it’s because of past actions you’ve taken that have convinced your boss that you’re worth the raise, and because he’s pretty sure that your future actions will make it worth his while to give you new responsibilities and more money.

Now, let’s look at the third principle, the idea that the action you take has to benefit someone, that your action has to create value.

Think of it this way. From time to time you give money to other people, right? You pay your electric bill, you pay your car payment, you give money to the supermarket, you give money to the clothing store, or the gas station. Why do you do this? Is it just because you like these people? Is it because they put it out to the universe that you would stop by and give them money?

Well, you might like them, and they probably did sit down and focus on how to get you and other customers to give them some of your money, but when it comes right down to it, you gave them money because they have something you want more than you want the money. Like everyone else, unless it’s just because you love them, you give money to others if you get something valuable in return. What’s more, you’re the sole judge of whether what they have is valuable. It doesn’t matter who else thinks it’s valuable – if you don’t think it is, you don’t give up your money for it.

The ONLY Reason People Will Give You Money
Other than money you might give to someone just because you love them, this is the only reason why money changes hands. This means that if you want money, someone else is going to have to give it to you, and they’re going to use the same criteria you use. If giving you money gets them something they want more than the money, they’ll give you the money. In order to get more money, then, you have to figure out a way to create more benefit, more value. This is really the essence of the Law of Attraction. The amount of money you attract is equal to the value you provide.

This applies to more than money, of course. As the Beatles said in one of their songs, the love you get is equal to the love you give. I’m only talking in terms of money because that’s what most people think of when they think of The Secret and the Law of Attraction. But whatever you want–love, respect, friends, or anything else – you’ll receive it to the extent that you put out, through your actions, something of equivalent value. Be a good friend, and you’ll have friends. Act in a way that invites respect, and you’ll be respected. And so on.

The main point, though, is that for you to get something in this world, you have to give. As Emerson said, the universe’s books are always balanced – which, by the way, also means that you can’t fail to receive when you give, and if you have to wait, you build up interest, you might say, while you wait.

Now, some people struggle, at least partially, because they haven’t found a way to offer very much value, so they don’t make much money. If you’re flipping burgers, it’s probably because you don’t have the skills that make you more valuable to someone else, which means others aren’t willing to trade very much money for whatever you provide. The burger-flipper needs to be reliable enough to show up, smart enough to follow directions, and be able to get along with the other employees, but not much else is required.

It’s also possible that you have something that would be of value to others, but you haven’t found a way to let others know about it. In that case, you have a sales and marketing problem, and you need to find a way to convincingly let others know about the value you could provide for them.

The more valuable you are, the more money you make.

But there’s a solution to this, and it isn’t wishing and hoping. If you don’t have a way to create very much value for others, you can always get more knowledge or more skills. I have people who work for me who know how to take orders over the phone and enter them into the computer, and they do it well.

However, a lot of people can do such a job, so it isn’t a very lucrative job compared, for instance, to someone who knows how to manage people, or who knows how to run a computer network, or who knows how to create an advertisement that creates a lot of sales. Such people end up getting more money because they provide more value. And, they can provide more value because they’ve paid the price to have those skills and that knowledge.

So if you aren’t making as much money as you want, you need to figure out a way to create more value, and you need to figure out a way to make sure people know you have this value. The value could be your ideas, it could be your labor, it could be a product you create or sell, or it could be a service you provide. If it has value, and if you can find a way to make sure people know about it, you’ll make money equivalent to the value you provide. And, of course, none of this will happen unless you take action, and you won’t take action–or know what action to take – unless you begin by focusing your mind on what you want and asking yourself how you can get it.

But please don’t think that you can just wish for something or “put it out to the universe,” and then, without taking action or providing any value, expect to get it. In fact, let me clue you into another aspect of the Law of Attraction. If a random event brings you something, for which you haven’t provided value – something you haven’t paid the price to have – I hate to tell you this, but you still have to pay in some way.

If you win the lottery, you’ve received a bunch of money without having provided value in exchange. You know what happens to nearly all people who win millions in the lottery, don’t you? That’s right. They almost always lose all the money within a few years. Unless that person does something with the money that provides value to others, they’ll find a way to lose it.

And, by the way, this is the way debt works, too. If you go into debt in order to have something before you’ve earned the money, you end up paying more for it. There is a price for everything, and when you pay in advance the price is lower, and when you pay in arrears the price is higher. One of the big secrets to success is to find out what the price is for what you want and pay it, in full, as fast as possible. The price might be money, but it also could be time, experience, learning, work, or something else. Sometimes the price is a series of events that look like failures, but are really preparation for success. But whatever the price is, the faster you pay it, the better. This is what the second two principles are about.

Who wants $100,000?
Okay, let’s take an example to see how you could use these three principles to get what you want. Let’s say that you do want more money, and you realize right away that you don’t yet have a way to provide additional value to others, which is what would qualify you to receive more money. For that reason, no one is giving you money. What do you do? The first thing to do is to use the first principle, the principle of focusing your attention on what you want. “I want more money,” you say. You ask yourself, “How can I get more money?” Notice that I’m using that “How can I?” question again. It’s always a great question to ask because it focuses you on what you want.

It would be even better, though, if you were more specific. I might say, then, “I want to make $100,000 a year. How can I do that?” Or, I might say to myself, “Okay, how can I make $100,000 a year? Many other people do it, so I know it’s doable. How could I do it?” I would keep asking myself this question, and I would focus my attention on discovering a way to do it. Knowing the other two principles, I’d know that when I get an idea, I’m going to have to take action, and the action will have to benefit someone, so I’m keeping that in the back of my mind.

So, what happens? First, you start getting ideas. Right now, off the top of my head, I’m just going to share with you the ideas that come to me, as if I was the person wanting to make $100,000 a year. The first idea that comes to me is to see if I can find out who else is making $100,000 a year. What professions make that much? Well, certainly a lot of people who have their own business make that much. A guy who owns a McDonald’s makes more than that much for each store he owns. Someone who owns a couple of dry cleaning stores probably makes that much. I could probably go online and find through Google a whole list of types of jobs that make $100,000 a year.

People who sell certain products online, or through the mail, probably make that much. Certain professional speakers, or authors, make that much. Someone who sells real estate can make that much, or more, and so can insurance agents. So one idea that came to me was to check out who’s actually making this kind of money, because that might give me ideas for how I could do it. By finding this out, I could at least save myself from doing something that I think will make me a lot of money when in actual fact few if any people actually make that kind of money doing it.

For instance, I see a lot of people in certain MLM-type businesses, but rarely do I see anyone who even makes $1000 a month, let alone significant money. I’m not trying to bash MLMs in general, because some of them are great, and I’m not saying it isn’t possible to make good money in MLM, but if you’re looking for a way to make a lot of money, wouldn’t it make sense to avoid something where nearly everyone who does it fails?

If you want to start a business, do a little checking before you act and find out what other people in that business are making.

To be continued…

Bill Harris, Director Centerpointe Institute

For more information please visit: The Centerpointe Institute

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3 Responses to “The Secret Won’t Work Without Asking the Magic Question”

  1. steve Says:

    Great article. The vision must be created, energies must be aligned, and action must be taken to consciously create your experience. All of it must be done to acheive success.

  2. Ruth Says:

    Be careful how and when you ask the magic question. A few months ago I asked “How can I self-move my household and my car to another state without relying on someone else to take the time to drive with me?” It turned out that the answer is, you don’t have a car…my car was stolen three weeks before I moved. In the wisdom of The Universe, this actually turned out to be a good thing as it set in motion a series of other beneficial events and decisions, but at the time I sure was thinking, be careful what you wish for.

  3. Geo Says:

    Bill,

    Who do you know in mlm…obviously not the people I know. I know people in two different companies and they are making at the low end 7,000 per month and the upper end 40,000 per month. Theses are not people I have heard of just people I know.
    Needless to say I am giving it a go…I’ll be happy to keep you posted!
    Not everyone makes a lot of money but just like the “secret” you have to take action (may I say massive action) not just join!

    I love all you do for the world, Bill, Mahalo!

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