Wednesday, September 23, 2009

YOU CAN'T ALWAYS JUDGE A BOOK BY ITS READER

Several people told me about the book, "The Secret" in a way that turned me off. They gave me examples that seemed silly.

The other day someone described it in a way that was similar to what psychologists call self-fulfilling prophecy. That means that our expectations can shape what actually happens under certain situations. For example, positively expecting to win the lottery will not, in my opinion, influence your winning it. The lotto is a random proccess, immune to human thinking and expectations.

However, medical outcomes have been found to be tied directly to our expectations. Anticiapte much pain, scaring and a long reciovery and the odds are that will happen. Expect some, but minimal pain, little scaring and rapid healing and the odds are that will happen. Similarly, expect to do well on a test or in your golf game or whatever performance issue and you will increase the probablility of your doing well. Expect negative outcomes and you increase the odds of them happening. This is precisely why people have been preaching positive thinking ever since Dr. Norman Vincent Peale wrote the book long ago.

Observe yourself in various settings and listen to your inner voice. Is it positive or negative? If the latter try moving to to a more positive view. If you can't get there, try to get to neutral. That is, "I don't know what will happen,but I am hopeful...".  Eventually, with effort, we can move our minds to more positive expectations.

As for me, I am going to read "The Secret".  I anticipate that much of it will be worth my time and helpful. I will let you know.

Bye For Now,


Bill

http://www.williampenzerphd.com/


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2 comments:

  1. About "The Secret"... living in the here and now, the existential position where we attract that which we desire, through optimism and effort; whether it be recovering from a serious illness, mending bruised relationships with significant others etc. finding a positive perch, remaining on top, seeing the world and all the things in it as opportunities for growth, strength, becomming more compassionate toward ourselves and others; is the essence and goal in "The Secret" offerings. It strongly suggests that how we perceive life and all of its' force, gives us the tools and materials to build a postive, predictable experience. In "The Secret" it is believed that there is a land of plenty and pleasure to be received and enjoyed once we embrace positivism and faith (your choice of genre) "The Secret" also supports our cognitive stance that perceptions and experiences can be redefined and received, wrapped in a beautiful gift box with a big red bow on top, if we initiate and practice the fundamentals of what we call, "learned optimism".

    As Melissa Etheridge, the popular pop/rock gay/lesbian activist and performing artist was recovering from breast cancer, she wrote probably her most poignant work to date. Until this point in her life, her lyrics were recorded in a strong, dictating way. Her music demanded and commanded that you listen and accept what she writes in a take it or leave it manner. Until faced with the possibility of loosing her life, she was cavalier and careless at times, about what she put out there.

    In her post recovery of breast cancer, she found a place that both humbled and strenghted her.

    Today she writes, " All there is, is science and stars" which leads us to think that there are universal forces which we cannot control, however our journey and the uptake of it, and through it, is. She concludes:

    "There are no secrets, there is no magic, we all begin this race at the start, but I have found my strength through the truth of the heart".

    Couple that with the development and practice of optimism, ongoing cognitive restructuring/reshaping and faith, we essentially "get" and recieve "The Secret".

    For me, the book reinforced one of my favorite existential beliefs which is Life ain't always beautiful, but its' a beautiful Life. That is, of course, if you are looking for the beauty in it.


    Mimi Gegg
    Tranquility Center Director
    William Penzer, PH.D and Associates.

    I post my comments in the anonymous profile as the other options wouldn't allow me to post my comment. You see, there is always a way.

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  2. If "The Secret" readers are fascinated with the laws of attraction; check out "The Spontaneous Fulfilment of Desire" by Deepak Chopra. It isn't as fun as "The Secret" but provides a broad base of medical, scientific, and phenomological perspectives as well as facts on what has become current pop psychology media.

    Chopra has wrapped up the laws of attraction into practical use in his recent work, The Laws of Direction. Dr. Penzer has weaved this in his work over the years, and come to think of it, before Chopra wrote it.... phenomena I guess.

    Mimi
    Tranquility Center Director
    William Penzer PH.D and Associates

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