When I was at school our gym teacher has an old Mercedes sports car in blue. I loved it and have always wanted one.
The Secret says that to get your dream car you must believe you already have it. You must visualise your hands on the steering wheel and smell the leather. It says that you should do whatever it takes to make the vision feel real – including taking the dream car for a test-run.
So today I did this:
Well, the chapter got the thumbs up from my lovely, clever agent and is being emailed to book editors across the land as we speak. Fingers crossed, what will be, will be etc. I got myself in a state fretting and analysing over the last few days but I’ve now tired myself out. It’ll happen how it’s meant to happen.
The Secret which tells you that you must have unwavering faith and certainty that whatever you want is on its way. It says that anything in the world can be yours with these three steps:
1 ASK – Sit down and write out what you want on a piece of paper. Write it in the present tense. You might begin writing I am so happy and grateful now that… And then explain how you want your life to be in every way.
This might be the first time for many of us that we really work out what we want. Now that you know you can have, be or do anything and there’s no limits, what do you really want?
The book says that ‘it’s like having the universe as your catalogue, you flip through it and say I’d like to have this experience and I’d like to have that product… Place your order with the universe. You don’t have to ask over and over again – it’s like a catalogue, you just place the order once.’
I just sent off the first chapter of my book to my agent. There are several ridiculous words in that sentence: ‘first chapter’, ‘book’, ‘agent’ – but most ridiculous of all is the word ‘my’.
I have spent most of my life wanting to write a book but never thought it would happen. Not clever enough, talented enough, yadda, yadda.
I read my favourite authors and I marvel at their turn of phrase, their humour, their ability to capture tiny details. The sheer audacity of even trying to join their ranks seems like an insult to them.
But despite all that, I would love to write a book. And now it looks like there’s a good chance that I will.
Hello hello! Do I need to apologise again for my absence? This whole juggling real life and being a self-help disciple is challenging. Not in a bad way – I’m very, very happy – just busy.
Turns out I’m a very bad multi-tasker. I might do a productivity book one month but I’m not sure how exciting it would be for you to read my to-do lists.
Anyway I’m back and my next book is… drumroll please…. and a big welcome to…. The Secret by Rhonda Byrne.
Now I’ve got to be honest, this book has brought out my cynical, scoffing, critical, miserable side.
First of all it’s brown and ugly. The pages look like they’ve had coffee spilt on them and they have this stupid scrolly font that’s trying to make everything look old and scholarly but in my humble opinion makes everything look naff and crap. Sorry if that sounds snooty. This book is also bringing out my snooty side.
Secondly, it costs £14.99 for a very small book. The Secret to getting rich indeed.
For anyone who doesn’t know, The Secret is one of the fastest selling self-help books of all time. Since it was published in 2006 it has sold 19 million copies and been raved about by Oprah, Will Smith and Nicole Kidman.
Well, it’s time to wrap up the money love story. Has it worked? Am I now rich? Or at very least less broke?
The answer to the last two questions is no – I am in exactly the same financial situation I was a month ago: £12,000 in debt. But the major difference is that I feel OK about it, which means that yes, I think it has worked. I don’t mean OK, I’m in denial way, I mean I can see how I got here and I know that I will get myself out of it.
Also, the fact that I even know where I am with my finances is a major step. At the start of the month I didn’t have a clue what the situation was.
But most important, I think, is the fact that for the first time in my life I also understand why I am the way I am around money. I was brought up with extremes – extreme wealth and then an extreme fall from grace. I have recreated that same yo-yo in my own life. If you give me money, I feel rich and blow it like I’m Ivana Trump, then a few days later, I’m back in overdrafts and panic.
Sorry for the absence but I hope you’ll be happy to know that it was partly because I was doing actual paid work – hurrah! I wrote a piece about the geography of dating (why you’re hot in some countries and not in others) and how to make a biscuit that looks like a Wedgewood plate. I also got naked again, this time for a magazine. No, not Playboy.
Yup. Between that and the ‘I’m a money magnet’ mantras, life continues to be weird. In the best possible way.
So my money month is almost over (I’m running behind schedule, surprise, surprise) and I celebrated with a wardrobe clear out.
Kate Northrup suggests selling old clothes you don’t wear because a) it’s a source of cash and b) in Feng Shui clutter is bad because it blocks your capacity to get new things.