It has been said that the Law of Attraction has always existed. However, not until the last century had it really been explored by self-improvement gurus. Napoleon Hill’s 1937 book, THINK AND GROW RICH, was the first one to touch upon it. His book stands today as one of the most popular books ever written having sold over one hundred million copies worldwide.
Other self-help books came along touting the Law of Attraction after but it didn’t get much national attention until Rhonda Byrnes’ film THE SECRET came out in 2006. It is without a doubt that film made the Law of Attraction a household name. It became so popular that later the same year she released a book of the same name. Since then it has sold over thirty million copies and has been translated into fifty languages.
For those of you who don’t know what I’m talking about, The Law of Attraction is the theory that we can manifest and attract into our lives whatever we are focus on. For instance, if you consistently think of and visualize yourself becoming an actor, the universe will respond to that vibration and have it manifest in your life. Conversely, if you think negatively about relationships or that you never will find a spouse you will never attract the man or woman of your dreams. What does all this mean? That we are in control of our lives and it’s not outside factors that shape it but how we feel, act and our overall mindset.
When I first heard about this so called, “Law” I thought it was a bunch of bullshit spewed by self-help gurus to make a quick buck. Then I read the book and watched the film, THE SECRET, to see what the hype was all about and came away a believer. Why? Because I looked at the events that happened in my life and thought there was no way that luck or random chance were the sole reason for the things I’ve experienced and created.
I was six years old when my father was murdered. You can read about that tragedy here:
What helped me through that difficult time of my life and the sadness of my loss was immersing myself in the game of baseball. The game comforted me and dulled the pain. From my early years, I had always loved baseball and at a very young age declared that I wanted to be a major league baseball player one day. Now I know many kids have that same dream, but I took it serious. When I say I immersed myself, I totally was surrounded by all things baseball. I played little league, I watched the Texas Rangers nightly with my grandma and grandpa while my mom worked, I watched ESPN’s Baseball Tonight until the wee hours of the morning mimicking in the mirror my favorite players batting stances, I collected cards, I knew the stats, I went to games, I did everything baseball. It can be easily said that I was obsessed, and you know what? I never got burned out, bored; in fact, it was the opposite, baseball brought me infinite happiness.
By the time I was nine years old my desire for baseball hadn’t subsided, in fact it had only expanded. I was so fanatical with it that I began painting every MLB team’s logo on a twelve by eighteen canvas in acrylic. My mom saw this passion and in her desperation to connect with her son the way a father would, she surprised me one day with tickets to see a Texas Rangers game at Arlington Stadium. I brought my painting of the Texas Rangers logo in hopes of scoring some autographs. I raced to the Rangers side of the dugout during batting practice. I was awestruck by the size of the players as they walked by, and inspired by the confidence they exuded.
Jeff Huson, the Rangers shortstop, was the first to approach me to sign my canvas. He was so impressed with my painting he called over player after player to sign it. I walked away from that game with autographs from eleven players!
I was beyond thrilled to the point I don’t remember who won the game that night, all I remembered is how I wanted to be just like those mammoth men on the field. Since I didn’t have a father to show me what a real man was, I looked to those players to fill that void. In the car on the way home I asked my mom, “I know what I want to be when I grow up. I’m going to be a major league baseball player. Can you please buy me a batting cage, pitching machine and an automatic ball feeder for Christmas? If you do I promise when I make it to the big leagues, I’ll buy you a house and a car one day.” She responded as you can imagine most moms would, “That’s nice, sweetheart.”
That Christmas morning as my mom, sister, grandma, and grandpa tore into the presents around the tree, I sat hoping that the next gift for me was what I had asked for, but the gifts were almost gone and still hadn’t gotten what I asked for. I began to think I must have been on Santa’s naughty list somehow, this left me sad as I wasn’t going to get what I so desperately wanted. As the last present was opened by my sister, I began to cry. My grandfather walked over to me but instead of comforting me, he placed a blindfold over my eyes. My mom took me by the hand and led me towards the backyard. I had no clue what I was about to see but I was filling with hope. When my mom lifted the blind fold, my eyes spotted the batting cage, pitching machine and automatic ball feeder. Right there in front of me was what I had dreamt about, my passion, and what would become the key to my future sat right there in the backyard. Never in my life had I ever felt so much joy. I ran right into the cage and began hitting immediately. I made myself a pledge to hit two hundred baseballs a day until I graduated. I fulfilled that pledge having never missed a day. Rain, sleet, snow, or no matter how late it was; I always made sure I hit two hundred baseballs daily. Why did I do that? Why did I make that pledge to hit that many baseballs every day? Because I was going to make good on that promise to my mom. She had come through for me and I was going to come through for her. By the way, each time I swung the bat and connected with the baseball in that cage I held a vision of myself as a major leaguer hitting a game winning home run right down the right field line in a World Series at Arlington Stadium. I was that specific with my vision.
Fast forward to 2004 and I had fulfilled my dream of making it to the big leagues by signing my first big contract with the Tampa Bay Rays for three years and 15 million. A month later I called my mom and told her I’d be picking her up first thing in the morning for a mother, son day. I arrived that morning and told her to hop in her car and follow me, the beauty of it was she had no idea what I was up to. After a nice breakfast we pulled into the Dodge dealership and since she’s a proud woman from Texas, I told her to choose any truck she wanted. When she signed the papers it took everything she could to not tear up. Before she hopped into her new truck, I told her to follow me because I had one more surprise. The next stop, we pulled into the driveway of 2,500 square foot beach bungalow in St. Petersburg, Florida which sat just few short blocks from the beach. I watched my mom pull in behind me and saw that she was already crying; so much in fact that she almost ran her new truck into me. As I had planned, the real estate agent stood in the front yard next to a sign that was marked, SOLD. When the agent handed her the keys to her new home she started to cry heavily and when I say heavily, it was like Niagara Falls. Even the real estate agent began to tear up as did I; not just because my mother was happy, which was very fulfilling for me but because I had made a promise to her and had followed through on that promise I made all those years ago as a nine year old boy.
Jump ahead six years to Halloween night 2010, I was now a member of the San Francisco Giants and we were playing in the World Series. But it’s who we were playing that makes it all so amazing, it was the Texas Rangers! The very team I grew up loving, the team I had seen when I made my pledge to be a pro were now standing opposite of me and my team from being World Champions. The Rangers starting pitcher that night was Tommy Hunter. It was the top of the third inning, and as I strode to the on-deck circle, I couldn’t help but remember hitting countless balls in my batting cage all those years ago and visualizing myself hitting a home run in the World Series at the ballpark in Arlington. It was something my mind had seen clearly thousands of times with every single pitch coming at me from the pitching machine. A mammoth home run right down the right field line. I was more than mentally prepared for this moment.
Andres Torres, our spirited spark plug at the top of the lineup, had just led off the inning with a double. The score was 0-0, as Tommy started his windup with his first pitch to me. Everything was moving pretty normally, but as soon as the ball left his hand it was as if it was floating toward the inside part of the strike zone. The ball looked as big as a watermelon as it inched toward me. With my eyes wide, and my balance perfect I began to attack the pitch. When the ball met the bat I never even felt it. All I heard was that magical sound of wood to baseball, the grown of the crowd, and the jubilation of my teammates in the dugout as the ball sailed toward the right field stands. I stood there just long enough to make sure it stayed fair, but more importantly to take in the moment as I knew it was gone. The ball landed about 30 rows back right down the right field line exactly like I had envisioned thousands and thousands of times as a young man. You can watch this magical moment in my life here:
I took off, rounded first and headed for second base in a leisurely jog. I felt like I was walking on air, just like when I hit my first big league homer almost a decade before. I took in the silence of the crowd. My right foot hit second base, I looked up to the second deck, right above the third base dugout. As I rounded for third, emotions overcame me. That was the exact spot I remember sitting with my mom and my signed Rangers canvas when I was nine years old after my father’s murder. I envisioned a young me sitting up there watching my heroes play on the diamond. As I glanced up there, the memories of my mom and the sacrifices she made for my sister and I came washing over me and filled me with emotion and feelings of gratitude.
The next thing I remember I was back in the dugout celebrating with my teammates. I must have mentally blacked out because I don’t even remember touching third base and home plate. The entire experience was surreal, as if time stood still. My mind was in such a state of ecstasy and emotion that I don’t think I could have even uttered a coherent word if I tried. Many of you have no doubt heard the saying, “If you can believe it, you can achieve it.” Well, it was in that moment that I became a serious believer in those words. I had literally spent every day of my life since I was nine conceiving and dreaming big; and here I was living it now.
As I sat replaying that home run later in my hotel room, I realized something. As a kid I had visualized myself hitting that homer a thousand times but the funny thing was I never really stopped to think about the jersey I was wearing. I just assumed I hit that home run as a Ranger; good thing for the city of San Francisco that I wasn’t so specific as a kid.
What’s interesting is during that time of my life I had never heard of the Law of Attraction, much less listened to self-help gurus rave about it; yet here I was doing everything the Law of Attractions says to do if you want to succeed. I wish I had known about it then, as I would have leveraged the principles more when my playing years were over.
As you all know from reading my previous blog post:
I allowed my thinking to become negative and purposeless after I retired from the game, which resulted in me losing my wife, money, house, and sanity. For whatever reason I became a worst-case-scenario thinker. Once the excitement of baseball was over, I consistently thought life wouldn’t be fun, exciting, or profitable. I believed that I had no value or identity. Tell yourself negative things long enough and the Law of Attraction will find a way to make it so. In the last year, I’ve finally embraced that the same holds true if you use the power of positive thinking. It’s truly amazing to me, how powerful our thoughts are and how totally they can shape your life.
Now I know many in the Christian community call the Law of Attraction nothing but Satanic, or witchcraft. As a believer in Jesus myself I want to share with you some scriptures where I believe God wants us to use the Law of Attraction. Check out these verses and see if this doesn’t make sense to you:
Proverbs 23:7: For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.
Matthew 7:7: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.
Matthew 21:22: If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.
Mark 9:23: Everything is possible for one who believes.
Mark 11:23: Truly I tell you, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in their heart but believes that what they say will happen, it will be done for them.
Mark 11:24: Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.
Romans 12:2: Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
Hebrews 11:1: Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.
I truly believe the Law of Attraction is straight out of God’s word, and His best will for all our lives. We just have to believe and have faith that it will come to pass. I don’t know about you, but I’ve lived the majority of my life in a positive mindset, and I reaped the rewards of happiness, love, purpose, peace, passion, and comfort. But I also lived several years in a negative state of mind which only brought me depression, anxiety, alcohol abuse, drug addiction, and suicidal thoughts.
We become what we think about the most. I promise you that our best lives are within reach, when we allow ourselves, or more importantly give ourselves the permission, to be the person that God desires us to be. Sometimes that means being a bit selfish and doing what’s good for you, and not worrying what you think other people will think of you. Remember what the flight attendants say in the preflight safety check, “If there is a drop in cabin pressure, panels above your seat will open revealing oxygen masks. If this happens, pull the mask towards you until the tube is fully extended. Place the mask over your nose and mouth. Slip the elastic strap over your head and adjust the mask if necessary. Breathe normally and note that oxygen is flowing even if the bag doesn’t inflate. Be sure to adjust your own mask before helping others.” So why it is that we have to adjust our own mask before helping others? Because if you don’t help yourself, you can’t even think about helping others.
Ayn Rand, a great writer and thinker, talked in greater detail about this philosophy. I encourage you to read her work, but I will say this; selfishness, does not mean “doing whatever you please.” For instance, a successful business man who financially succeeds yet creates opportunity for others is sometimes classified equally as the bank robber. This is wrong headed because it lacks the depth of thought and an understanding of morality. One who looks out for himself to become better, then helps others later is a good person. So don’t fall into the trap of feeling guilty when you are taking time for yourself to succeed. We have the things around us today, you’re probably reading this on a device created by people who weren’t spending every minute of each day giving themselves or their time away.
Do yourself a favor, take stock in your life and think about the things you’ve succeeded at or haven’t. I’m asking you to be honest with yourself here. Did you not really complete that goal because you truly didn’t want it? Don’t lie. I’ve found too many people who have succeeded do so because they won’t allow anything to get in their way. They truly want it and if they don’t ever give up, usually get it. How many times have you heard someone say after failing a few times, ‘I’ve tried everything’ I guarantee that’s not true. Remember it took Thomas Edison thousands of attempts to give us the lightbulb. His was all about mindset, positive thinking and perseverance. Even when he failed he looked upon each failed attempt as a small success and along the way to creating the lightbulb invented other things from those so-called failures. When you look at the successes in your life I bet you’ll find a pattern, just repeat that pattern for whatever else you want to achieve.
In conclusion I’ll say this, statistically I shouldn’t have done what I did. I was the product off a shattered early life, where my innocence was robbed because my father had been brutally murdered. I could have easily fallen into trouble if I had given in to the negativity and had a mindset of a victim. It would have been easy to find solace in dark places where I could have made excuses for bad behavior solely because my younger years were fatherless. However, I didn’t and the reason was because I didn’t focus on the negative, I focused on something positive. I saw myself as becoming something great, then took action every day to see that vision come true. Life gives us all shit sandwiches now and then, it’s our choice how we act when those times happen. Choose life, choose positivity, and choose to be a better person than you were the day before. I promise if you exercise the law of attraction it will show itself and you’ll be the beneficiary of those gifts.