These words come from the profound quote by R. H. Jarrett in his “little red book” called It Works. This innocent seeming, sixteen-page pamphlet has been in print for more than a century and contains what I believe to be wisdom for all ages. “To get what you want is no more mysterious or uncertain than the radio waves all around you,” he writes. “Tune in correctly and you get a perfect result, but to do this, it is, of course, necessary to know something of your equipment and have a plan of operation.” Of course, it’s not as simple as just turning a dial in your brain. But it is as simple as changing the habit of the way you think. Using the analogy, being tuned in to a limited channel has become a powerful habit for most people. It’s like every time you “start your car,” (begin thinking), your radio could default back to that frequency that has been limiting, running and even ruining your life. I won’t kid you—it will take repeated tuning and retuning of your thoughts before you begin to create a new habit, which is why you need to have patience and persistence.
And so why do we do this to ourselves—repeatedly go back to the same negative frequency? I’ve thought a lot about that question in the course of my life. And the answer I’ve found is this—most people’s mental and emotional radios are tuned to channels whose programming and content have been created by their past. Maybe the voices of their parents are speaking constantly on their private airwaves, telling them what they should do, what’s possible, what life is really about. Others hear the voice of a childhood religious authority, or the chatter of their own self-doubt.
What this means is that our brains are running on someone else’s program. Our habits—and the neural pathways that they’ve created—were written by someone else. Subconsciously, we’ve all absorbed messages from the environment we grew up in and the culture that surrounds us, and these messages are running our lives, like the hidden programming that organizes your computer. That’s one reason why, even when we think we want something else, we end up creating lives that perpetuate the same patterns we see all around us. And the essence of all the messages we receive, whether from parents, society, or the media, is the same: fear. Life is not safe, and when something seems good, it’s not to be trusted.
These messages of fear and mistrust that we receive from our parents and our society embed themselves in our subconscious, or unconscious, minds. Psychologists, from Freud and Jung to more modern scholars, broadly agree that human beings form as many as 90 percent of their habits by the age of seven—in other words, these ways of acting and thinking become subconscious. And this subconscious is what is operating your radio and tuning your frequency. To change your life and harness the “mighty power” within you, you have to re-train your brain to think new thoughts.