Very well put Lark. You have to go after what you want... you can't simply do some spells and expect the same kind of effect than if you put effort into getting what you want without physically doing things to better your life.
Another way that magic affects your life so much in a positive way is to embrace the journey. With magic, you can't just jump in and expect all of your spells to work, there for, you have to study, meditate, open your mind, try to learn/understand how energy and nature works, learn how you work and what you need to work on to draw the things in life that make you happy. Along the journey you learn to embrace and appreciate nature, yourself, others, others' beliefs etc. Just the journey on its own will make you a better, more open and understanding person that has more of an appreciation for life and everything in it.