I have a vague memory of a TV trope. In my memory, it's an episode of the Andy Griffith Show. It involves Opie needing some self-confidence and Andy giving him a metal good luck charm printed with the word
Excelsior! With this charm in hand, things start going better for Opie. At the end of the show, Andy reveals that the so-called charm was just a brand name emblem that he had pried off a refrigerator. Opie's better luck was a consequence of his increased self-confidence, which was a consequence of him thinking he had external help via the charm.
The thing is, I can't find any mention of such an episode. I'm sure my brain has scrambled it. Maybe it was a different show. Maybe the charm said some other word or wasn't once part of a refrigerator. It doesn't really matter. The trope is a fairly common one. It often ends with someone saying something like
The magic was inside you all along! (That's what she said.)
And every time I hear religious folks talk about getting their morals and ethics from, say, the Bible, I just want to shake them and shout
The magic was inside you all along! People don't really get their morals from the Bible. They decide on their morals and then interpret the Bible in light of those decisions. (Both good ones about things like generosity and really shitty ones like being anti-gay and anti-women.)
So, for fuck's sake, toss the goddamn
Excelsior! charm away already! You have no external help and need to justify your actions on their own merits.
Dude, it was Gomer Pyle.