Friday, November 30, 2012

The Power of No

Here's a paragraph from my book. I wrote these words in 2005, but if anything they feel even more relevant today:

The “Power of No” should never be underestimated. Any time a connection fails to be made, or an acquaintance is ignored, or an opportunity is not taken, potential fifth-dimensional paths are being closed off. Discussions of “free will” often focus on the paths that a person deliberately takes, but paths that are not taken due to choice, or indifference, or ignorance have effects that can be just as far-reaching in a person’s life.

A direct link to the above video is at

With this project, and most recently with my vlog entry "Imagining the Fifth Dimension", I've tried to show how, for each of us, our unique "now" is really a moving point within a fifth-dimensional probability space. Imagine, if you will, that this probability space is like when you're in a building with spotty cell-phone coverage: sometimes moving just a few feet to the left or right is all it takes to get a good connection. Likewise, sometimes all it takes is a small attitude adjustment to change your trajectory within your probability space, to make connections that move you to a better or more fortuitous version of "you".

Attitude affects outcome. Is that phrase just wishful thinking? Creative visualization is a technique used in competitive sports all the time, because it really works. Business consultants advise their clients to project confidence and optimism, even when things are not going so well, because attitude affects outcome in establishing new business connections. Healthcare professionals know that the patient with a negative or depressed attitude is less likely to recover quickly.

Here's an article published in the New York Times a few months ago that puts an interesting nuance on this idea: "The Positive Power of Negative Thinking". It talks about studies that show people who have visualized themselves as already having reached their goals can actually become less motivated! If that's the case then there are an awful lot of self-help programs out there that have not been as successful as their creators would want us to believe.

But what we're talking about here does align with those studies. Saying "No" to something is fine if it's really not a path we want to travel. However, when we realize that sometimes we exercise the Power of No through inaction or failure to understand the implications, we begin to see how we could be closing doors and windows that would have taken us to important opportunities.

And how many times in a day do we miss the little synchronicities, the surprise connections, the golden circumstance because we weren't paying attention, we were distracted, we were bogged down in the day-to-day problems that never seem to end? Finding ways to become more engaged, more excited by the wonder and novelty of this world and the universe around us has always been one of the central themes of this project.

Enjoy the journey!

Rob Bryanton

P.S.: Speaking of making connections, I'm thrilled to report that my YouTube channel has now passed 28,000 subscribers and is about to hit 8 million total views. Thank you all for your kind support for this project.

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