By: Patrick K. Porter, PhD
If I were to ask you what Thomas Edison, Albert Einstein, and Steve Jobs all have in common, what would you say? For most people, the first response is that they were all great visionaries. They could see what no one else saw. But is that what really made them different from the rest of us? Can vision alone change the world?
When I was a kid, my dad was always trying to get me to try visualization. He had used these techniques to overcome alcoholism, but at fourteen years old, I wasn’t about to do anything Dad suggested. I finally did start using visualization, though, when I was a high school freshman, and it took one of my dad’s puzzling analogies to get me to try it.
I was all of 90 pounds sopping wet at the time but desperately wanted to play football. One day, when I was particularly frustrated with my plight, my dad asked me, “Patrick, do you know how you can beat the best archer in the world?”
As was often the case with my father, I had no idea where the conversation was headed. I mean, what did archery have to do with me playing football?
“The first thing you do is put a target in front of him,” he said. “Then you blindfold him, spin him in a circle, hand him a bow and arrow, and watch him try to find the target.”
I stared at my father with a blank expression. “Well,” he said, “isn’t that how most people go about life? They set goals or have a vision of where they want to be in life, but they have no idea where they are going, what they are doing, or why they are doing it. It’s as if they blindfold themselves and then set out to find a target.”
When my only response was a glazed over expression, he added, “So the key to success isn’t about having a vision. You have to manifest your vision into reality, and you do that by making sure your inner mind sees, hears, and fully experiences what you want out of life. When you do that, the unseen forces of your mind will guide you to the fulfillment of that vision.”
That one story forever changed the direction of my life. I finally understood the power of visualization, and it’s been the driving force of my life ever since.
How do you manifest your vision?
For starters, your vision must align with your values. When your vision and values are in sync, it’s like a powerful magnetizing force that draws the right people and things and experiences to you. Steve Jobs is a great example. He had three fundamental values that drove him and manifested his vision into reality—contribution, innovation, and simplicity. Without these core values—and Jobs’ obsession with them—Apple would never have become the trillion-dollar company it is today.
Does this mean you need the same values Steve Jobs had? Definitely not. What it means is that you need to know your values and how they’re affecting your life choices. For example, if one of your greatest values is helping people, but you are sitting behind a desk crunching numbers all day with no human contact, then your actions are out of sync with your values. Conversely, knowing that helping others is one of your greatest values, then using your mind’s eye to see, feel and experience yourself being that helpful person, will engage that magnetizing force.
Tonight, before you go to sleep, take a few minutes to contemplate what you value. To understand your values, simply think about what makes you to feel good without reason or cause. These are the activities that are in alignment with your values and give you an emotional payoff.
Next, you will want to learn how to eliminate mental barriers, such as the belief that you can’t leave an existing job, or it’s that nagging internal voice that’s always asking the wrong questions, such as, “What if I quit and the new job doesn’t work out?”
When you make up your mind to do what brings you joy, and reinforce those positive thoughts each day through visualization, you send a powerful message to your other-than-conscious mind, one that will manifest that vision into reality.
How did it work out for me? We’ll, I not only made the football team but also became captain. When I decided to use this same philosophy in my education, I become an honor roll student and later earned a doctorate. When I aligned my vision and values in business, I was able to build two multi-million-dollar brands and develop the technology that is BrainTap.
When you do what makes you happy, you’ll naturally help other people and, not surprisingly, have everything you need in life. If you want some help getting started, head over here and start a complimentary free trial of BrainTap. I’m excited for you to discover all that your life can be!