Why the Law of Attraction Doesn’t Work

Law of AttractionAs I wrote the title for this article I felt a bit of trepidation. After all, I know many people will disagree with me, and that’s okay. Actually, that’s great because I want people to think about their own truth when it comes to the Law of Attraction (LOA) and what works for them. What I’ve found in my sales coaching practice, though, is that people are frustrated behind the scenes because the LOA hasn’t worked for them, but they are too frustrated or ashamed to tell anyone.

Well, I’ll tell you, the LOA hasn’t always worked for me either.

But it has worked sometimes. Why?

First, though, what is the LOA? The LOA is the Universal Law that states like attracts like. It has been talked about for hundreds of years in different ways. It became more popular in the positive thought movement in the early 1900’s. Most recently, it became mainstream due to the bestselling book and movie The Secret.

Before I share my theory, I want to tell you a quick story about the LOA in my own life. I can feel you at the edge of your seats.

After The Secret came out, I was just as excited as everyone else about applying the LOA. Oh, wait; in case you were under a rock, The Secret was a movie and later a book talking about the LOA. There were many thought leaders and self-help authors and speakers who were featured in the film. For several of them, the movie catapulted their careers all the way to Oprah.

I had written Selling with Intention by the time The Secret came out and I had even talked about the LOA in my book. As I mentioned, people have been talking about the LOA for hundreds of years and in many different ways. So The Secret wasn’t really a secret at all, but Rhonda Byrne was one of the best marketing geniuses of all time. However, I don’t want to take anything away from The Secret because I believe that it helped a lot of people see that they had more control over their lives than they had ever imagined and it got people dreaming again.

But when it didn’t work, it also depressed a lot of people and probably had a tremendously negative impact on their businesses, sales, lives, etc. Someone wrote recently that they didn’t think it was a coincidence that the economy collapsed right after The Secret came out. Now I think that’s extreme. The economy was going that direction anyway. But The Secret might have caused people to take risks they might not otherwise have taken. I would put myself in that category.

I had been using the LOA, but after I saw The Secret I was super motivated to take more risks because I figured I could handle it, especially armed with confidence from the movie. Tim, my husband, and I then purchased a lot of real estate. I purchased countless coaching programs and more, creating a tremendous amount of debt. At the same time, I was under pressure to write more books, grow my business, and take care of my clients, while managing that debt. All self-imposed pressure, of course, but I was learning from all of these coaches and I had a list of things that I now HAD to do.

If I would have stopped for a minute, I might have realized that all of the pressure I was putting on myself wasn’t healthy and wasn’t necessarily in my best interest or in the best interest of my business. It felt like very masculine energy, like I was forcing things to happen. Even though I was using what I thought was the LOA, it still felt like I had to put a tremendous amount of effort into everything I was doing. It felt like I was running through quicksand. I could see the goals right ahead of me, but I was going to have to work really hard to make them happen.

The good news is that LOA motivated me to get a lot of things done and to believe that they could happen. And a lot of things did happen. What I didn’t realize then, though, was why certain things happened and others didn’t. As I’ve shared in my books and at speaking engagements, my husband and I lost hundreds of thousands of dollars when the most recent recession hit. I know we weren’t alone in that. I also know that I wouldn’t have taken as many risks if it hadn’t been for my belief in the LOA. And, unfortunately, that was how I learned that the LOA was only part of the strategy that I needed to understand. If Tim and I had been able to change some of our limiting beliefs sooner, I don’t think we would have lost as much money in the recession as we had. I also think my business would have grown with much less effort (like I experience now).

Would I change what happened and what we lost? Absolutely not, because it gave me the real world experience to now help my clients in ways that I couldn’t have before. Would I want to live it all over again? Absolutely not!

In my opinion, when the LOA doesn’t work, it’s because your belief system isn’t consciously in alignment with your goal.

There. I said it. And that’s basically it. Simple to say, harder to change. When your belief system is in alignment with your goals, the energy to achieve your goals will feel softer and more feminine. Things will flow more easily to you. It’s not that you won’t put effort in or take inspired action, but you definitely won’t feel like you are slogging through quicksand. I wrote a lot about that in Selling with Synchronicity, so definitely check out that book if you want to go deeper there.

I was reading another book recently (yes, I read a lot) and the author was talking about the LOA. The author gave a specific example of how someone they knew had attracted a very expensive car (let’s say a Bentley) because they had it on their vision board and did whatever they needed to do to bring it into reality.

And they did.

But it wasn’t in alignment with their belief system, so they couldn’t afford the repairs and ultimately couldn’t keep it. Another example is lottery winners. We hear about lottery winners all of the time and how they ultimately can’t hold on to their wealth. The money wasn’t in alignment with their current belief system. Their subconscious belief might have been something like, Rich people are greedy. And maybe they believed that if they were greedy, they would lose their family or friends. So they had to get rid of their money before that happened.

Think about your own sales, business and life. Are there times when you have attracted something and then it quickly disappeared? Maybe the LOA worked to help you get things but not keep them.

More frequently, though, I work with people whose belief systems don’t allow them to even attract the things they desire in the first place. In my work, the first place it often shows up is in sales. My clients want to attract more sales, but there seems to be something blocking them. They practice all of the strategies they’ve learned through the LOA, but it’s not enough. What they don’t realize is that they have subconscious beliefs blocking them.

That’s why in all of the training I do (from Sales Camp to private coaching) I always begin with my client’s belief system. If I can figure out what you believe about sales and selling, the negative beliefs, I can usually help you release the old beliefs and create the sales you desire. Plus, once you create the sales you desire, the money won’t just disappear because you will have new beliefs in place and a plan for it.

Are you ready to play with your own sales goals?

First, think of your current stretch sales goal. (Note: It should be a stretch but feel believable at some level). Write that number down.

Then ask yourself, What do I believe about that sales goal? In other words, you do believe it will happen? Or do you feel like it won’t happen? What are the negative beliefs that are showing up that might stop you from reaching your sales stretch goal?

Next, write down those beliefs. Perhaps you have written, I would love to reach that sales goal, but I don’t believe there are enough prospects out there.ö So you can see that the limiting belief is, There aren’t enough prospects out there.

To begin to break through this belief, you can then write down three things that aren’t true about this belief:

1. There are billions of people on the planet. I know there are more than enough prospects for me.

2. My competitors easily sell to my prospects every month.

3. I have lots of leads I haven’t closed and they are actually great prospects

As you start to write down what isn’t true about this belief, it begins to release its hold on you. As the hold is released, you will begin to feel lighter and you will often see opportunities that are right in front of you, or you will feel less afraid to pick up the phone and make your sales calls. (That’s what you are going to do, right?)

My guess is that the prospects you have on your desk to call would get you to your monthly sales goal. Am I right?

The LOA is a powerful tool, but it’s only part of the picture. Begin now to notice your beliefs about sales and selling so that you can more easily grow your sales in 2014.

  • kristi camplin says:

    Great article Ursula. I love that you say your beliefs have to line up with what you are saying you want. I think many people say they want what other people have but it isn’t what is best for them or the place they should be. great advice on breaking the limiting belief as well!

  • Sharon Ballantine, Life Coach says:

    The Law of Attraction ALWAYS works, just as the Law of Gravity always works: they are laws. These natural laws do not discriminate, they just work.

    Typically when people say the Law of Attraction isn’t working in their lives what they really mean is they have not been successful at applying it to attract what they want.

    This is where your statement “In my opinion, when the LOA doesn’t work, it’s because your belief system isn’t consciously in alignment with your goal” comes in, in my opinion. Absolutely true–if our subconscious does not believe that something is possible, or that we do not deserve it, then we will not get (or retain) the experience that we want.

    Part of learning how to apply the LOA is to change our subconscious thought patterns. LOA is more than repeating positive mantras–especially if you are repeating negative affirmations even more often, negating the effect. Fortunately, there are many tools that can help us shift our mindset and attract the magical life we want and deserve.

  • >