We could use a little more magic in this world of ours, don’t you think? Well, it’s there, all around us, all you have to do is look for it.

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Science says Good Luck Charms are Real!!

Is that enough of a click-bait headline for you? I have to be honest, I hate these kinds of captions that are made to get your attention, but tell you nothing real or relevant. And just who is “Science” anyway? But that’s another topic for another day.

The fact is, this crazy-sounding claim has truth to it. Studies have shown that superstitions, religions, and other belief systems often have the effects that people expect out of them, even if the only reason is precisely because they expected it.

Every ancient culture had its myths and fables.

Then came the big religions.

As traditional faith has decreased, it has been replaced with “spirituality” and “woo.”

Why are we so drawn to the divine, the miraculous, the magic?

It seems people are searching everywhere for some kind of miracle.

Every other day there is a new method we’re supposed to follow to create the perfect life. They use words like the MAGIC of tidying up, the MIRACLE morning. Even science is treated like its own living, breathing entity in headlines like the one I wrote where “Science” (with a capital S) “says you should…”

Everyone WANTS to believe in something, even if they also want so badly to be rational and not admit superstition or illogical beliefs. It’s only natural.

Some look for the “Magic” of Tidying Up in changing their environment by organizing their house.

Others think the answer is changing their own habits with a “Miracle” Morning routine.

There’s the law of attraction and vision boards and manifesting your goals.

And don’t even get me started on all the “miracle” diets and “magic” cleaners and “perfect” planners.

Then on the flip side, there are all the self-help books and courses telling you “there’s not a magic pill” BUT if you follow this formula and put in the work, the results are practically inevitable.

But the thing is, it’s true.

It really does work.

I read the most fascinating book, Kidding Ourselves, that showed study after study of how believing in something—having faith, having hope—has tangible outcomes. Whether that something is Buddha or a lucky rabbit’s foot or “the universe.”

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It’s all the same thing really. Want something. Ask for it. Believe you’ll get it. Move forward.

Maybe it’s just giving you strength and encouragement to keep going. Maybe it’s giving you the confidence boost to do better, like Dumbo’s magic feather. Maybe it’s a placebo effect. Maybe it just opens your mind to focus on the good.

Maybe the real answer is just in the perseverance and belief gives you a reason to keep going when you’re logical brain tries to tell you it’s not going to work

It puts you in a different mindset, and mindset affects how much you can achieve.

Some say this means religion is about as “true” as myths and superstitions, but for me it adds to my faith — what God is telling us through his prophets actually works.

In fact, I’ve come to understand God differently over the last year as I have struggled with my mental health and looked to many different sources for “self-help.”

I don’t believe that God is sitting up in the clouds with a quiver full of lightning bolts ready to hurt or help us because we don’t or do worship Him. He is not that vain. That’s not what religion is about.

I believe that He is trying to guide us to the principles that He knows will bless our lives, whether those blessings come directly from Him or as a natural consequence.

Think of it this way. Imagine you hired a personal trainer to get in shape. Would you lose weight because you did what they said to do and so they rewarded you by waving their magic wand and making you thinner? Or if you did not follow their instructions would they get angry and use their mystical powers to add to your flab? Of course not.

They are teaching you the way to achieve your goal, and by following their guidance, you will be able to achieve it.

Some people may believe I’m using God to explain a scientific fact, meanwhile I’ll keep believing that mindfulness and visualizations work so well because it’s what He’s been telling us all along.

When my faith is questioned, I just think, “Honestly, I don’t care. I believe that this is true, but if it’s not, so what? It brings me joy, it helps me be the person that I want to be, it works in my life, it is right for me right now so it doesn’t matter if it’s a fact.”

But if that’s not what you believe, that’s fine, just believe in SOMETHING.

So what should you believe in then? Choose something that resonates with you. Pray for strength and have hope that you will be blessed. Meditate. Write three pages in your journal each morning. Do yoga. Use crystals. Practice affirmations.

But it has to be real for you. You have to feel it. Put some conviction behind it.

And even more importantly, believe in yourself.

Believe that it will all work out. Believe that you can do it. Believe in love and joy and happiness. Believe that you are the luckiest person in the world, then spend your time looking for the proof of that instead of the opposite.

Throwing out things that spark joy isn’t magic, doing jumping jacks and writing in your journal the second you wake up isn’t a miracle, I don’t believe creating a vision board sends out mystical magnetic forces that make things manifest, and plenty of people don’t believe that praying brings blessings from God like I do—BUT one thing that’s for certain is that taking action in your life and moving forward with hope does make incredible things happen.

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