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The last few issues of Insights have dealt with setting and achieving goals. If you read last week's article you will have seen Bill's tip about 'dreaming in Technicolor'. This week, he goes into more depth on this subject.
I admit to having been pretty nervous some years ago when I started up my own business after 27 years working for others. And yet, I felt an undercurrent of excitement at the prospect of being my own master in a business for which I felt genuine passion.
Calm without, unease within
I remember waking up one beautiful calm autumn day. The stillness of the air contrasted sharply with the incessant fluttering of butterflies in my stomach as my emotions flitted back and forth from excitement to trepidation about what lay ahead.
I decided to take the advice I had learnt during coaching and take a break from my usual environment. I put on my shorts, T-shirt and running shoes and headed off down to a rocky stretch of coastline a few kilometres away. As I sat on the rocks, feeling invigorated by the short run and soothed by the sound of crashing waves, my eyes fell upon a small white feather and a pebble, nestled together in a hollow in the rock.
Imagining a positive future
I picked up the objects and gazed out at the azure sea. Suddenly I found myself transported to a future place. I was imagining, in great detail, a very positive future for my newly established business. Then a train rumbled past, hugging the False Bay shoreline, and I was jolted back to the present. My watch showed that 20 minutes had passed but it had seemed much longer.
Freedom, Confidence, Growth
I looked at the feather and pebble in my hand and thought back to the strong visualization that I had experienced - and three words came to me: Freedom, Confidence and Growth. I decided then and there that these words should form the cornerstone for my new business.
The act of visualization had a very positive effect on my outlook and left me with a feeling of inner calm, knowing that there was nothing to fear and everything to be excited about.
Today I find myself using this technique whenever I start to feel stressed, uncertain or doubtful and I can recommend it as a way of helping you to achieve the goals that you really desire.
Harnessing the subconscious mind
Visualization works by harnessing the power of the subconscious mind, which fails to distinguish between reality and that which is imagined with sufficient clarity and detail. If you imagine a situation vividly enough, your subconscious mind will assume it is future reality and will work behind the scenes to bring it to fruition.
The problem that most of is experience is trying to find time to give rein to our imaginations. We are all so busy dealing with the many demands of our day to day lives, which our conscious minds and egos insist should take precedence.
Inbuilt defence mechanism
An added problem is that our egos are constantly on guard against anything that may dent our self esteem or cause us embarrassment or loss of face. Change is the great unknown and represents a threat that our egos must deal with. By filling our minds with 'worst fears' about the changes we may be contemplating, it attempts to preserve the known or status quo.
So, the little time we do spend imagining the future tends to be crammed with confusing and often fearful 'what ifs'.
The solution is twofold.
Firstly it is necessary to recognize the self-defence mechanism that you have for what it is. Acknowledge it - then humour it! Don't allow it to control your actions.
Secondly, you need to be disciplined in giving yourself the time and space to visualize effectively. It's essential that you remove yourself from your day-to-day environment. Go for a walk, find a quiet place somewhere away from interruptions. You don't need long - just twenty minutes or so.
Invoking the Law of Attraction
When you start visualizing remember that by experiencing what it will be like to have what it is you want in your life, you are invoking the Law of Attraction. The clearer and more detailed your imagination, the more powerful the force of attraction.
Even if you don't know all the specific details of what it is you aim to achieve, you can imagine what it will feel like. Let these feelings percolate up from your inner being and allow yourself to feel the excitement and vibration that comes with those feelings. Experience the joy and satisfaction - the positive vibrations - associated with achieving your goals or your dreams.
If you are able to develop a regular habit of visualization, the sheer volume and intensity of positive vibrations you emit will attract the people, things and resources you need to bring your visualizations to reality.
You're only human!
Don't forget, you're human. Occasionally you'll slip back into feelings of doubt, insecurity and perhaps even mild fear as your ego tries to reassert itself. The key is to trust in the process and in your ability to visualize and attract what it is you want - and slowly the path to success will become clear.
When opportunities materialize, keep an open mind. The path to success that opens up to you will not always follow the route you most expect.
Warm regards as always
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