Visualizing your goals can be a powerful aid
in actually achieving them.|
by Anthony Galie
For the last fifteen years, I have been teaching motivational,goal-setting seminars throughout the country, primarily to the finanacial services industry. In that capacity, I have had the opportunity to interview and spend time with literally hundreds of top producers. Whenever possible, I ask them to explain to me why they think they are so successful in the business.
When I first started doing this, I was struck by how similar their answers were. Many of them attribute their success to hard work, dedication and "love of the business".Some attributed their productivity to good role models, some to good work habits.
But by far,the most common answer I got was that they could "see" themselves being a success in the business.They reported that they would sit down with themselves on a regular basis and attempt to form a clear vivid picture of what they were attempting to accomplish.
I believe that most top producers are practicing some form of self-hypnosis. The word may sound frightening, but the fact of the matter is that we spend a huge portion of our waking day in some form of trance.
Have you ever driven past your exit on the freeway or pulled into your driveway and wondered if you had stopped at the stop sign? Or have you seen someone so absorbed in a t.v. program that they didn't hear you call their name? And how many hours a day do you spend daydreaming or drifting?
Ask someone to spell a complicated work like "psychoanalysis" or remember events from the past and chances are you will notice them going into a brief trance. They will break eye contact, look out into space with wide eyes, pause for about ten seconds and then come up with the answer.
In those seconds, the person is not fully conscious, but rather in a brief trance.
We all spend large amounts of time in this state of mind, but the top producers have learned to make use of it. They regularly and deliberately enter this state to help them visualize their goals. Over time, repeated visualization can alter ones "self-image".
Many people refer to self-image, but my experience has been that few people understand it. We carry around a picture of ourself in our minds-eye. What we think we look like in relation to the rest of the world around us and this picture has some profound implications in how we will behave.
Take a moment, close your eyes and try to remember the last time you took a bath or shower. Attempt to form a clear picture of that event and if you think about it, you will probably notice that when you remember that event, there is a picture of you included in the memory. Isn't is sort of like you have removed yourself from your body and now you are outside of yourself looking at yourself standing in the shower or sitting in the bath.
That is simply not the way it happened.When you were taking the bath or shower, you were recording the event at eye level and yet when you remember it, you've included a picture of you. That is an invention on your part. If you were remembering the event accurately, all you should be remembering are tiles or the wall or fixtures on the tub because that is the way it happened.
Take a good look at that picture because that is what you think you look like in relation to the rest of the world. That is your subconscious self-image and it can affect you in many ways.
For example, if you pulled out a picture of an overweight person, you will probably have a weight problem until you change the picture. A person who "sees" him or her self as overweight will behave like an overweight person - eating large amounts of high-calorie foods. A person with an overweight self-image will typically have at least two complete wardrobes in their closets, fat clothes and skinny clothes. They lose weight, but hold onto the larger clothes because at least part of them knows they will be back at that weight again.
That picture in your mind may very well be dictating how you are relating to your clients and visualization could help you to change it.
Here is way to use imagery to enhance your productivity....if you see yourself as an average producer, you will behave like an average producer. When called upon to make an extra effort or do the extraordinary, average producers pull back or falter because once again, they can't "see" themselves being successful whereas, top producers continually generate the effort required to conform to their successful self-image.
Over time, a mediocre self-image can be enhanced with repeated visualization. First, pick a goal that you would really like to see yourself achieve within one year. This could be a production number goal, such as numbers of new members enrolled applications, a dollar amount, such as a certain number of dollars in first year commissions or to qualify for a contest such as Million Dollar Round Table or your company's President Council.
Each day for one month, go to a place where you will not be disturbed. Loosen any tight clothing, assume a comfortable position either lying down on a bed or sitting in a recliner.
Begin by relaxing your feet completely. Imagine that as you breathe, you are breathing through the soles of your feet. Progress through every part of your body until you have totally relaxed every muscle. At this point, you may begin to feel certain sensations, such as drifting or floating or maybe a tingling in your fingertips or toes.
Once you are thoroughly relaxed, give yourself a test suggestion. Tell yourself that you can feel your eyelids getting heavier and heavier. Imagine they are heavy, lead doors.
Begin to slowly count backwards from five to one and tell yourself that by the time you reach the number one, your eye-lids will be too heavy to open. When you reach the number one, actually try to open your eyelids. If they refuse to open, you will know that your mind, at that time, is responding to your visualization. (if you eyes do open - go back and repeat the process until the eyelids remain firmly shut).
While remaining totally relaxed, imagine that you have been transported into the future and that you have achieved your goal. Do your best to picture yourself looking and feeling as if the goal has already been accomplished. As you see this picture, make it detailed. Tell yourself that this is the way you want to look and feel. Spend at least five minutes picturing the goal and then slowly count forward from one to five. Suggest to yourself that as you awaken, you will feel relaxed and refreshed. At the count of five, open your eyes and proceed with your regular, daily schedule.
At first you may find your mind wandering. This will pass as you gain proficiency with the technique. Also, do not expect instantaneous results. There are cases of dramatic and instant changes with hypnosis (stop smoking in one session, for example), however, they are few and far between.
Many of the good books on motivation will tell you it takes between 21 - 3- days to create a new habit. The same rule holds true for visualization.
By taking the time to visualize your goals on a regular basis, you can gain a new mastery over your business production.
Copyright Anthony Galie. All Rights Reserved.
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