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The Law of Subtraction (not a misprint)

Recently I broke down and listened to something about the ‘Law of Attraction’. I am not one to believe in anything that suggests that objective, probability driven reality can be changed by anything like faith or changing your mindset or what you wish to make up in your mind to believe… but, there has been SO MUCH talk about the Law of Attraction that I decided to listen to Steve Pavlina’s Podcast 16 and see what it was all about.

Steve has a nice way of relating life and reality to computer games since he worked as a game programmer before becoming a successful blogger. I too find it easy to compare my life and most of reality here with computer games and programs. For some reason it’s an easy comparison. Let me say right now that if you are interested in the Law of Attraction and you want to hear an AWESOME podcast about it – Steve’s is wonderfully put together and almost convinced even me! I’m a serious skeptic though and my own private logic won out. You might REALLY enjoy it anyway though, download it and check it out…

So as I listened to this podcast eventually it got too bizarre for me when he told me that in order to get what you want you just need to think of that thing, goal, item, amount of money – whatever you choose, and whatever you really want… and it will manifest itself. One must be careful not to channel any negative beliefs toward the goal based on your past and what you’ve had up until that time.

Meaning, if you want to have a certain quantity of expendable cash come into your life… say $25,000 USD… you ask the universe for that. For the next 60-90 days or more you are not to have any thoughts or memories of the past that are negative and that might destroy the goal for you. You must be totally convinced that you WILL get it and that you deserve it. You can’t have any thoughts about nothing like this ever happening in the past… and that you haven’t ever received even $1000 dollars in expendable cash in your whole life for having done nothing but ask. You can’t think that it’s beyond the possible. In fact, you must think it’s entirely possible and expect it.

So next I listened to Erin Pavlina’s podcast about “Placing your order with the universe” (Steve Pavlina’s podcast 17). It was hard to adjust to Erin’s style of speaking after just hearing Steve, and I’ll likely not do it again. Erin talked about how the request you make to the universe must be what you REALLY WANT. If your request isn’t aligned with your actions then you can’t expect to manifest it as reality.

After those two podcasts I sat down to write this post. I’m calling it the “Law of Subtraction”. It’s based more on objective, scientific reality than the law of attraction and for me it just seems to make a lot more sense.

To me, the Law of Attraction fits well with a large amount of people in the USA, and across the world that also believe in some god with all their heart and soul. It’s a huge leap of faith to just trust the “universe” will give you what you desire. It’s a silly belief that I can’t imagine myself ever wasting the time to attempt. Instead of wait 60-90 days for my lotto ticket with the universe to be chosen, I’d rather spend those days working hard on the reality that exists – in order to alter it in my favor… perhaps reaching the goal of having $25,000 USD to spend as I wish. Perhaps not. Reaching the goal would be based on my own action or inaction nothing more and nothing less.

I find it stange that Steve didn’t mention anything about whether or not to continue your life and regular things you’re doing that might help you reach your goal on your own. Not one thing was mentioned his podcast about that. I know he doesn’t believe one should sit and wait for the goal to manifest just based on the belief in the Law of Attraction. He couldn’t think that, could he?

The Law of Attraction is very appealing to people that don’t want to face reality, but for myself it’s not working. Here’s what I came up with instead, and it’s really not going to be a surprise for you if you understand that Want + ACTION = Results toward your goal. You may not REACH your goal, but that’s life. Nobody reaches every goal.

Law of Subtraction

Law of Subtraction

The Law of Subtraction states… If you want something from the heart, you must work your ass off to get it. Nothing comes by hope, prayer, faith or a lotto ticket with the universe. In fact, those things give a false sense of security, which, while they are strong – make you feel great. You might feel really good for 2-3 months as you’re waiting for this gift from the cosmos. After what you wanted does not manifest either in the time-frame you wanted it to arrive, or perhaps it just never arrives over the course of your entire life… you’ll then know that it was the Law of Subtraction, not Attraction that was the better of the two laws to follow.

1. Subtract from your life the “Law of Attraction” and anything else that tells you to rely on hope, faith, prayer, or luck to give you what you want in life.

2. Brainstorm as many ways as possible to reach your goal within the timeframe you’ve chosen. Do not eliminate any possibility, everything gets added to the list of possibilities.

3. Edit down the list to a few reasonable ones that you believe will allow you to reach your goal.

4. Create a very detailed plan to go from Point A (today) to Point B (when you reach your goal). Write down things you must do for EACH DAY between now and then. Keep in mind that Tony Robbin’s phrase that is SO important… “Massive, consistent action”. Every day you must apply massive and consistent action toward your goal.

5. Review that plan with as many people as you know that have any experience in what you’re attempting to do. Revise your plan as needed.

6. Declare it a plan and get to work.

7. Subtract negative people from your life. You have no time for them as you can’t change them.

8. Subtract TV, extended radio listening, smoking, pursuit of the opposite sex, and buying the latest things.

9. Subtract any sleeping hours over 7 per day.

10. Subtract any residual neural leftover that is telling you how much easier the Law of Attraction is over the Law of Subtraction.

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9 thoughts on “The Law of Subtraction (not a misprint)

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  • at 5:17 am

    I am definitely more along your lines of thinking. I like the idea of the Law of Attraction, but practically, I just can’t buy it. It means that anyone we see who’s going through a tough time, dying of cancer, etc. is to blame for it. You have cancer? That’s your fault. The Law of Attraction sounds warm and cuddly, but it’s pretty cold in reality.

  • at 11:02 pm

    Hi Vern,

    interesting take on the Law of Attraction. I like your straight direct, no nonsense attitude towards success.

    Coincidentally, I am also writing a post on Law of Attraction, and I have linked your post as a reference. Please look out for it in the next 1 day or 2.


  • at 1:37 pm

    Hi Vern

    I’ve been thinking a while about this Law of Attraction. It seems like such a hollow wish. If I want something, then it will show up on my doorstep, but if it doesn’t show up it is because I didn’t want it badly enough. The law of attraction is more like the law of pipe dreams. Then on the other hand, I am one of those people who put faith in God. I guess if you don’t believe in God then maybe my prayers would seem like pipe dreams too. Anyhow I couldn’t agree more with you when you say that we need to do the massive, consistent action thing if we want to achieve anything. I would much rather work hard to edge my way to my goals, than just sit there and wait for them to land in my lap.



  • at 2:57 am

    You sound just like I did when I first heard of the law of attraction. I have changed my mind over time but not for the reasons, one might think. I found that LOA has a very scientific side it is just misunderstood and presented in a way that makes people think it’s all about “wishing your desires into consciousness”.

    When actually it is more about going about your day with confidence and gaining what you want because you work hard and with purpose. I could relate to this idea because of my many years of martial arts training. If you try to break a brick and you have even the slightest doubt of whether you can do it or not you are more likely to break your hand. Yet, even someone like me (5′ 1″ tall and about 125lbs) can break right through it by focusing my energy correctly. 🙂

    Just a different view of LOA you may find interesting (instead of the far fetched version).

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  • at 3:43 am

    Hey Vern! Good stuff – I think the backlash against that movie The Secret is because of this – that the work / persistence in the original texts (Think and Grow Rich, Science of Getting Rich, etc) – have been left out, making it some way for people to continue daydreaming and then feel okay about it.

    Albert | UrbanMonk.Net
    Modern personal development, entwined with ancient spirituality.

  • at 6:27 pm

    I like your take on the law of attraction and subtraction. Perhaps a mix of both faith and reality will lead to reaching a goal and destination.


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