What you believe becomes your reality. When all women are bitches, and all guys are assholes, and money is nothing but stress, and business is hard, then you’re going to end up a stressed out bitch surrounded by assholes slogging through a hard business.

But it works the other way too. My expectation that the people in my life will fill me with light and energy is a self fulfilling prophecy because when people fall short of my expectation, they stop spending time in my life.

The words we use and expectations we have, both positive and negative, create the reality around us in mundane and magical ways. Believing I was capable of becoming a good painter enabled me to spend the countless hours that built up to the Labyrinthine Garden. Believing I could become a good writer allowed me the patience to write hundreds of thousands of words over the past few years, some of which are even good.

What I’m talking about are Placebos.

Placebos are the triggers, the rituals, the scripts that plant the expectation of some outcome in your mind. Those expectations can’t help but become your reality.

The expectation that a woman will dance with you makes the type of man a woman wants to dance with. The expectation that you will close a sale makes you the type of provider that customers want to buy from.

When you believe you are a creator, your creation will be that much more artful. When you believe you are a born lover, your love will burn that much more brightly.

You can see it in the drug addict who is surrounded by drugs, and the entrepreneur who is surrounded by whatever brand of business lifestyle they personally believe is the “true” one, whether that’s the leisurely brand, or the high strung brand. There’s enough for everyone.

First congratulate yourself. Look at your life and all the positive forces in it, and say thanks to yourself for attracting those things.

Now look at your life and think about the parts that don’t electrify you, and realize through to your bones that all those shitty things are mirrors. Your life reflects the placebos you give yourself by making your expectations your reality.

We don’t have a choice but to give ourselves placebos, it’s just how our brains are wired. Just make sure you’re giving yourself medicine, not poison.