I wasn’t always a transformational speaker, coach and an expert on energy flow. In fact, just a few years ago, I was living a double life. Picture a woman who outwardly seems to have it all together, a great job, earning more than most of her friends, a happy relationship with a successful good looking young entrepreneur, a new house in a great area of town, good friends, a good social life, good health, the works. You think that woman must be pretty happy, right?
Now take that woman and put her on medication for anxiety and depression, make her work 60 hours a week, give her a few wrinkles and lines between her eyes from scaling on the time, make her wake up every morning with a bone deep sense of anxiety, and sore jaw muscles from grinding her teeth all night, make her worry about her weight and spend each weekend feeling tired, burned down and fragile.
Give her about $18,000 worth of personal date and a relationship that seems happy yet strained around the edges from too much stress and not enough fun. And that woman was me, just 12 months ago.
See, I had a decent job and I worked hard. I was raised to believe that good things come to those who work their asses off and opportunity looks a lot like hard work. So that’s what I did. I worked. I struggled. But on the inside, I still felt like something was missing – something vitally important that I couldn’t quite put my finger on, because no matter how hard I worked I just couldn’t get ahead. I didn’t want to be Donald Trump but I was tired of slaving for every last dime. I was tired of giving a 1000% at work every day and that bothered me deeply the way I just couldn’t turn off the work stress and money worries racing through my head at night. And what really drove me crazy was when I looked around and saw other people basically sitting on their butts, working much less than I was, yet still having more than me.
Take my boss at the time, Megan, as an example, she owned three companies and had her fingers in at least four other pies. By right, she should have been working 80 hour weeks and slaving her butt off, yet while I was working weekends, late nights, and worrying myself sick, she barely seemed to work at all. In fact, she actually seemed to enjoy life. Money and support just seemed to flow to her and she always seemed to have more than enough. It just felt so unfair. I tried not to be bitter but I couldn’t help wondering.
How come other people are living lives of abundance while I’m slaving away for tiny little rewards! I didn’t want to be a millionaire or live like some crazy aries but it just didn’t seem right.
So one day I cornered my boss after work and begged her to tell me her secret. She laughed and said, “Heather, you wouldn’t believe me if I told you”. But I wouldn’t let her go. I had to know what her secret was, so I could use it in my life the way she used it in hers.
So finally with a side smile, she said, “Wait there”. She went to her office, rummaged around in a drawer and came back holding a book. It’s pretty famous. You might have heard of it. It was all about the Law of Attraction and how to use manifestation to get the life you want.
Then she told me, “Heather, all you have to do is read this book cover to cover and do exactly what it says”.
Now I am, by nature, a pretty skeptical person and I definitely don’t have much time for hocus-pocus and wishful thinking. But I figured what have I got to lose. So I read the book and then I followed the instructions step-by-step. Three months went by. Then six months. I was following all the instructions right down to the letter yet nothing was happening. And every day I was scraping by on the skin of my teeth while all around me – others getting rich while doing less work than I was.
I went to my boss and said, “Megan, I did what you said, and it’s not working. What am I doing wrong?”
She asked me a bunch of questions to make sure I was doing it right. And when we were done, she was baffled. “I don’t know why it’s not working”, she said, “I’m sorry, Heather. I just don’t know. Maybe you just need to try harder.”
I felt like my head was going to explode from frustration, because I was following the instructions perfectly. Yet it still wasn’t working for me. And in my heart of hearts I knew I was close. I knew manifesting could work if only I could do it right. But for some reason I just couldn’t connect the dots and make it work for me.
So I asked other people I knew who were fans of this book. There were plenty of them. I think it was featured on Oprah’s Book Club or something and I was shocked to discover that many of them felt the same way I did. They too had believed in the law of attraction. They too had done everything they could to make it work for them. They too had spent hours of their lives struggling to manifest, visualizing and meditating and working for success. They truly believed in the power of the universe to change their lives for the better. Yet nothing had changed for them either and just like me, they were left feeling foolish, disappointed, gypped and honestly a little bitter. With that sinking heart, I felt I had reached a dead end.