The Myth of Quantum Leaps

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There is a misunderstanding, a myth, in personal development that might be what is causing those who try it achieve it, angst. Angst is an interesting sensation and one that I believe has quietly infected many of the students (and some leaders) in this industry. Angst might be described as a mix of being anxious and frustrated while also feeling hopeful. It’s usually fairly chronic in those who feel it and is often described by saying, “I have this feeling in my gut. It doesn’t feel very good but I don’t know quite how to describe it. I’m a positive thinker but I also have this nasty feeling of dis-ease in my stomach a lot.”

Angsters realize this feeling most profoundly in those quiet moments of pause throughout our day like while sipping coffee at breakfast or as we crawl into bed at night. Nighttime can make the angst feel more intense and some days we just want to have a beer or stare at the TV, anything to ignore it.

Imagine that you’ve been caught in an avalance. You and two other people are huddled close in a snow cave with no apparent way out. The other two people experience full fledged anxiety and panic as they claim, “We’re all going to die!!” You, on the other hand, as an expert “angster” can feel the realness of your situation but harbor a mix of anxiety, frustration, and hopefullness. You might be scared but you can focus beyond your current reality (and emotion) to think about escape and/or rescue. You’re not so intoxicated with your current reality that you don’t believe things can’t, or won’t, change. You’re oddly able to focus your mind and stay outwardly calm while looking for a solution.

However, you are aware of that sickening feeling in your gut. It’s there, the whole time, yet you can still move forward, accomplishing what needs to get done. You have long been practicing forced action. Your Dad taught you to, “Suck it up, son.” when you were seven and he turned out okay so you follow suit and hope for the best. This is a lot like what you do in your everyday, normal, not stuck in an avalance cave days, suck it up despite the knot in your belly.

I’m going to let the cat out of the bag here. I am very familiar with this feeling. I’ve had it for years and was also taught to, “Suck it up.” and “Put on a brave face.” Only recently have I found the right word to describe this weird feeling. It’s been quietly living in my gut as I slowly make progress on all the goals and projects I love. You can live with angst, yes, but there is another way. The different way is filled with more ease and less emotional writhing. But it will require you to step away from the belief that you can (and should) make huge jumps in your growth and results.

In attempting to ignore “it” (the angst) and instead concentrating on making “quantum leaps” as leaders in the industry suggest, we are shooting ourselves in the foot. I bought into the idea, personally, but I could never line up with it. Something always seemed off. I figured I could somehow defy the laws of the universe, the proven laws of success, and suddenly “jump” from where I was to where I wanted to be. “Just take more action! You must act now because if you don’t, you might never you lazy thug. Hurry, Hurry, Tick Tock, Tick Tock!!” is the most prevelent advice in my industry. (The best kept secret in life is that if you did nothing, not one action, you’d still be worthy … simply because you were born.)

Just to clarify something, I have made wonderful progress in “creating success” in the last fours years. I started a business, began public speaking, wrote a book …. blah, blah, blah. Lots of action going on in my world. If someone was looking in to my world from the outside, they might even be inclined to label me a “quantum jumper” as I have been inclined to label those I look up to in my industry who appear to take big leaps in success.

So, what should a person do and think, for example, when (s)he is hearing others who have reached the summit, the peak of their success, say, “Just trust and believe that you, too, can make a quantum leap, moving from where you are directly to the summit!”

Boy, I hate to be the bearer of sobering news but this just made my angst worse. Why? Because intuitively I know this theory is flawed. If I try to imagine myself “on the summit” but emotionally I’m at base camp, it is nearly impossible to take a step. I’m awash with angst trying to figure out why it’s not happening. Am I not worthy? Am I not taking the “right” actions? Enough action? Am I not working hard enough? Am I not one of the gifted ones?

Why am I awash with these kinds of thoughts? Because that’s all I have access to in that vibration. Like attracts like remember? Law of attraction works in the realm of thoughts as well as in the physical realm of tangible experiences.

Quantum leaps, as I’ve understood them and as they have been described by others in personal development, implies:

1) “an expotential improvement in your performance” (Price Pritchett). Dr. Pritchett even says on page 1, “You don’t have to be content with improving things incrementally or gradually.”

(Huh? Why is it then that we tell the young athletes and musicians to practice, practice, practice. Isn’t it so that they can make incremental, or gradual, improvement eventually making it big? Is there a law of quantum jumping that only applies to a special few humans in certain industries but not “regular” people such as normal artists, writers, athletes, chefs, bankers, small business owners and children in second grade? Should I tell all the streams that they can, in fact, become a river in one big swoosh if they just push hard enough?)

2) says, 1. (physics) an abrupt transition of an electron, atom, or molecule from one quantum state to another, with the absorption or emission of a quantum. 2. a huge, often sudden, increase or change in something.

But here’s where I get stuck. I can see how an electron can make a shift instantly from one state to another. It’s an electron, after all, and sudden shifts from being the potential of fire to being the actual flame is part of its structure. It’s designed to be a shape shifter. But electrons don’t have to abide by the emotional scale of resonsance. Humans are not designed to be shape shifters and are governed by laws of physics that state we gradually change shape (loss or gain weight or muscle, age, get sick or well, etc.) This emotional scale governs humanity’s creative abilities, not an electron’s creative abilities, as far as I can tell. Comparing the two doesn’t seem logical to me. Yes, yes, I understand that we’re really just a mass of energy vibrating at a very fast rate. But the laws of our universe states that there is a time and space distance between me and the shape that I want to take. And it is all governed, or directed, by how I feel.

I’ve never met a human who can “quantum jump”, in other words, make a huge, sudden change, from depression to joy, from angst to pure elation, from anger to trust. I’ve never met a lottery winner who doesn’t lose it all. They must walk, step-by-step, up the scale and it’s this scale that is determining the coagulation of our physical realities.

We can take action as creative humans being, massive action, in fact, and many of us personal development junkies and strivers for more love the thought of this (it excites us) but …. sudden, morph-ish, big changes are exceedingly rare. People who have near death experiences seem to be able to quantum jump into heath but the rest of us take the step-by-step, thought-by-thought, one feeling at a time approach from what I can tell.

It’s not action that causes big changes in our results anyway.

(Can you feel the awkward silense after that last sentence? The readying of millions to defend their beliefs in taking actions? Put down your swords, s’il vous plait, if only for just a moment and allow me to explain that last idea.)

There are many, many people taking action all day long yet … they’re remain a good distance from achieving their desired goals despite their massive action plans. They are putting in a tremendous amount of daily effort and action only to see small results, not quantum. This will be very frustrating if you have emotionally invested in the idea that you can, and will, have a quantum jumps in your results. So these incredible people, who want to be one of the lucky ones who quantum jump into success, buckle down and try even harder believing that tomorrow might just be the day they quantum leap into their huge success. That they will wake up to have that million dollar in their account. These are logical, hard working people, by the way. Not “crazy” ones.

Here’s a novel theory I’d like to propose: It’s not the efforting, the actions, that causes what appears to be quatum leaps for some in success. What I am proposing is that it is the small, micromovements up the emotional scale that get them from where they are to where they want to go. It is the lining up emotionally with what you want that produces the results, not all the physical movement, not all the hustle and bustle.

Let’s compare personal development to baseball, for a second. If you were coaching little league it would never occurr to you to suggest to little Johnny that he could go from little league to pro ball without daily, constant, small improvements and small tweaks in his form and effort. Yet, in personal development we freely talk about the idea that you can, in fact, go from where you are to where you want to be in big, gigantic, unexplainable leaps.

There’s a movie called “A Quantum Leap: Unleashing the Power of Your True Nature.” In this flick, the scientists talk about the nature of reality, the illusion of separation, etc. Dr. Dispenza talks about “the quantum being something we do internally that produces external changes”.

Wait … what? That’s not what everyone else is saying. Most others are implying that I can get to where I want to be in one feel swoop, in a big huge jump based on my actions. Send more emails, tweet, text and take your potty break all at the same time, talk to more people, work more hours, get out there and do, do, do!! is the most common heard battle cry.

Did Dr. Joe say internal changes produce external changes? But what are you changing internally?

How you feel.

And how you feel can not be turned on a dime. Go ahead. I dare you to try and pivot from being pissed off in one moment to happy in the next when you’re in an argument with your spouse or parent. Try to go from, “I’m so frigg’n mad.” to “I feel so happy.” in a quantum leap … meaning a huge skipped all the steps inbetween … jump.

What if most people haven’t been defining quantum correctly? What if we’ve been misunderstanding it’s true definition in order to motivate others into believing the can improve their results fast? (This idea certainly helps sell products. We love the idea of instant results. It’s very appealing to us right now.)

I looked up the definition of quantum and this is what I found:

noun quan·tum \ˈkwän-təm\

physics : the smallest amount of many forms of energy (such as light)

plural quan·ta \ˈkwän-tə\

a :  any of the very small increments or parcels into which many forms of energy are subdivided

b :  any of the small subdivisions of a quantized physical magnitude (as magnetic moment)

Are you thinking what I’m thinking? There ain’t nothing about huge jumps in that definition. It’s all about small movements, tiny increments. Just like the little league coach was saying …. practice tweaking your form little by little every day.

For those of us who feel angst, this is like letting the pressure out of the rice cooker. Man, doesn’t it feel better to understand that quantum does not mean that today because I feel crappy, like I’m “nobody” and that in order to see improvement I need to when I wake up tomorrow feeling all sunny and rosy so that I can finally be “somebody”.  Now this … I can do. This feels like a pill I can swallow. Small emotional changes, little by little feels really good. Soothing, actually.

Wait … did I just “quantum jump” to feeling a little better?

For those who are interested, I am sharing the scale of emotional resonance here. It’s also in my book The Power of Focused Attention on page 143.

Why is this scale the most important part of your goal accomplishment journey? Because we’re actually taking two different journeys: an emotional journey and an action journey. And where you are on this scale is YOUR POINT OF ATTRACTION. Period. Your point of attraction meaning …. your goal achievement, meeting the “right” people, gaining clients or customers, losing weight, gaining health, being in the right place at the right time, finding the perfect partner, making your current relationship better … it’s all about how you feel.

This goes against everything you’ve been taught since the day you were born, by the way. That’s why your having trouble assimiliating this information. Your belief that it’s about how hard you try, how much you can get done in 24 hours, is trying to filter this information out. Doing less to achieve greater success does not match vibrationally. They are not harmonic ideas for most people. How do I know? Try taking a day off without feeling guilty, without thinking that you’ve “lost” time and that you aren’t getting enough done. Why do you feel that way? Because your belief and how you really feel are arguing and you just got in the middle with your sense of awareness.

(Drum roll please …)

It matters less what you do because law of attraction is managing all your rendezvous with people, places and things based on how you feel, not on what you do, anyway. This is not a law you can “out perform”. (Do not misinterpret that to mean that sitting on the couch watching movies all day will help you become a rock star at work.) You can enhance it’s work on your behalf by taking more inspired action and less “this is a pain in my ass, I don’t really want to do this now I feel bad” action. That last action is called resistant action. It’s like being dragged across the ground with your heels digging in. It feels really hard and makes you very tired. Ever feel really tired after a day at work? Resistance, emotionally.

Inspired action is the most powerful action in the universe. There is a massive difference between forced action (meaning you feel like crap but you’ll do it anyway and which usually leads to resentment) and inspired action (meaning you feel really good right now and this action feels like the perfect thing for you to be doing right now).

Keep in mind that language is limiting in nature and that the words used to describe the emotions below are approximations only. You might have different words for your feelings. Where might you place your angst?

Emotional Scale of Resonance

How you feel = Where you are in life (i.e. your point of attraction; what you experience)

allowing= freedom

joy, knowledge, empowerment, freedom, love



enthusiam, eagerness, feeling pretty good

positive expectation or belief





frustration, irritation, impatience









hate or rage


insecurity, guilt, unworthiness

fear, guilt, depression, despair, powerlessness

fear = bondage

Let’s say you’ve got a fun goal in mind. You want to write a book that changes the lives of millions but every time you think about writing this book you secretly feel despair because you don’t think you have any good ideas to write about …. or you struggle to make progress or … you feel jealousy when you think of Jane who did just write a book (you read it and you didn’t even think it was very good) and to make things worse she became a best seller and got gigs out of the deal. In fact, you saw her making the rounds to local TV stations (she posted it on FaceBook) and that felt like salt in your wounds. You felt unworthy every time you glanced at one of her posts but you were taught thinking positive thoughts was the real power behind manifestations. “Good for her.” you think but secretly you feel, “What am I doing wrong? Why do I suck so badly?”

To you, all this feels really unfair and every time you think of your book you feel something on the scale that you’d place in the lower (“unacceptable”) realm. I hate to tell you but if this is how you’ve been feeling and you have lots of momentum going, you’re not going to quantum leap into feeling joy and passion tomorrow. It won’t happen. Like a train heading in one direction at 200 miles per hour, if you try to “try it around and just be positive” it’s hard on the contents of the train. If you hit a tree going 80 mph, it hurts more than when you’re going 5 mph. In other words, if you’ve been practicing unworthiness and jealously about your book you’re going 80 and in order to live through this experience you need to take your foot off the gas (not stomp in the break) and gentle turn the wheel away from the tree (not jerk it aburptly to the left).

On the opposite end of the scale if you honestly feel happy and grateful about your own work and progress, then Jane’s success will not bother you emotionally. You will resonate with the belief that infinite abundance is truly infinite, meaning there’s enough of it to go around, and you will expand more of that good feeling and get an equivolent result … which might appear to others as a “quantum jump” because frankly you didn’t work too hard to make things happen.

As crazy and odd as this sounds, Law of Attraction is a hard core, draw the line, take no guff kind of manager and it always bring you experiences (successes, results, situations, triumphs) that are in harmony with how you (“secretly”) feel. Law of Attraction translates how your feeling the majority of the time and camouflages it in the form of situations, experiences, and circumstances, successes and “failures” (Failure is a human word. There are no failure in the eyes of the universe, only sameness). It’s up to us to see through the camouflage and uncover a deeper awareness of how we really feel.

Back to the bottom for a moment …

You can move up the scale making incremental progress by going from pissed off to jealous. My friends, that IS progress. And I will add to that … appropriate emotional progress. You do have a “good” attitude when you are making your way up, emotion by emotion. You don’t need to be happy all the time to “have a good attitude”.

Society (parents, teachers, magazines, friends) tells us that we need to improve our attitude if we want to get better results. I’m saying that when you’re moving from jealousy to anger you are improving your attitude! You don’t want to hang out there, in anger, forever but that quantum of change will produce more results for you than all the efforting you do from a chronic place of jealousy.

Why? Because we create our realities based on how we FEEL, not by what we do. This might take some time to digest. You will not make a quantum jumps in your paradigm just from kicking this idea around a bit from 1 blog post. Why? Because words don’t teach. You must play with this in your own world and see if its true for you. Listen to the words you use. Is is easier to talk about what’s wrong in detail? Can you explain the good that is happening in your life IN DETAILS … or do you find yourself talking more general or maybe speechless?

In conclusion, the myth of the huge, mind boggling, how’d he do THAT quantum jump is just that … a myth, a falsity, a misunderstanding. And if knowing that brings you some relief from your angst, then I am glad I wrote this post.

If we change “quantum jumping” to mean making consisant micro movements in our emotional state up the scale as often as we can and acting from inspiration when we can, then quantum jumping, meaning quantum (micro) leaps in success, is real.

If and when you can, I would like to encourage you to become more openly aware of where you are on the emotional scale of resonance on any given topic. It’s not about what you say, it about how you feel. Don’t bother giving lip serve to an idea because you think it’s what you should say. That does neither of us any good. You might be honestly able to feel joy about loving your kids, but might be practicing jeaously about your writing or career. Everything you feel is appropriate.

If moving from depresssion to anger is where you are, then make that move and feel good about it. It is not humaly possible to make huge electron-like quantum leaps … meaning to go from lower emotions directly to joy and gratitude in one feel swoop. You are not an electron, you’re a slow, sloppy, creatively endowed human. You will make more progress moving inch by inch and allowing yourself the grace to do so rather than thinking you should be making huge “quantum leaps.”

Play with this scale and see if it helps? If you’re one of the 40 million people who struggle with feeling angst about not being where you think you should be in your life or in your work, it might help to start believing that where you are is perfect … even if you’re frustrated or angry. It really is exactly where you should be and there in nothing inappropriate about it, or how you feel.

My angst feels a little better now. You?


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