By Dr. Victor S. Sierpina

Thoreau once said, “All change is a miracle to contemplate, but it is a miracle which is taking place every instant.”

What kind of changes are you going through? More importantly, what kind of changes would you like to see in your life in order to achieve your best and highest expectations of yourself?

A “secret” formula to this last question is found in Rhonda Byrne’s short but very wise and practical book, “The Secret.” It is overflowing with useful, succinct quotes and stories from philosophers, holy men and women, thinkers, metaphysicians, mystics, poets, psychologists.

“The Secret” is one tool I have found to help myself and others to get unstuck in their lives, to live their dreams, to invite and accept what they have always wanted. It gives a philosophical and self-help psychological approach to renewal and growth in our lives.

It is easy enough in life to get into a rut of routines and habits, including habits of thought and expectations that no longer serve us.

Change is difficult and we often resist it because of that and because change brings the unfamiliar and is frequently uncomfortable.

But think about it. If we are not satisfied that our life is what it could be or should be, what option do we have other than change?

We must begin sailing the ship of our being from the shores of what is known to the limitless horizon of the unknown.

The Frenchman André Gide, winner of the Nobel Prize in literature, once said, “One does not discover new lands without consenting to lose sight of the shore for a very long time.”

So let’s go back to “The Secret” for a formula to help out here. An essential aspect of this book’s theme is that we have a choice, a choice to consciously change our thinking and feelings.

Such choices will also be in harmony with what it would look and feel like to be the kind of person we hope to become, to have the kind of relationships, prosperity, work, health and so on that we truly desire.

In line with Thoreau’s quote above, some would think such change or any change a miracle, yet change is always a conscious choice, exerted in the present moment.

Here is a simple process that “The Secret” proposes for you to move from what you are and have now, to what you wish to be and have happen:


This is the opportunity to become clear and specific about what it is you want. Who do you ask? You put out this request to God as you know him or the universe at large.

Some people just call this prayer.

Others refer to it as creating a consciousness of attraction. By making yourself available to the unseen resources ever available on an infinite scale but not yet in your life, asking prepares you to receive them.

Remember the quote from the Good Book, “You have not, because you ask not.”


This involves imagining that you have already received what you asked for. Think, talk, speak and act like what you have asked for is already yours.

Thus, you create an open vessel to receive the abundance of your dream and already have changed your attitude from one of lack to one of gratitude.


This involves practicing feeling the way you would feel if all you asked for were yours. This is about feeling good, now. Feeling grateful, now. Feeling content, now.

Your dream is here, live it, appreciate it. Decide to feel good now, as if you are already in possession of your desires, whatever your outward and apparent circumstances.

This approach changes your attitude and your view of the world. It also supports the arrival of the changes you are creating and accepting.

“Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve,” said philanthropist W. Clement Stone, whose life was the inspiration for Napoleon Hill’s best seller, “Think and Grow Rich.” Stone also advised us, “Regardless of what you are or what you have been, you can still become what you may want to be.”

And one final thought by John Lennon, “You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one.”

May your best dreams become your reality.

Dr. Victor S. Sierpina is the WD and Laura Nell Nicholson Family Professor of Integrative Medicine and Professor of Family Medicine at UTMB.