“Fortune favors the prepared mind.” – Louis Pasteur
On a recent business flight, I struck up a conversation with a career coach who is the wife of one of the world’s leading musicians and the mother of a rising star in the world of classical percussion. Her son had recently won first place in a snare drum competition and attributed part of his success to his visualizing winning prior to the competition.
The young artists’ focus, discipline and imaging techniques work for him and according to psychologists he is not alone in achieving success through imagining positive outcomes. Research suggests that using your imagination can lead to a release of endorphins which may even result in more rapid healing, reduced stress and even help you increase your chances of success in a competition.
From marathon athletes who imagined themselves winning a marathon to dieters who imagined themselves as thin, imagining your success can be an effective strategy in helping you reach your goals. Experts say that envisioning your dream outcome may lead you to believe in yourself and enable you to perform better leading you to actualize your goals.
Einstein said that the imagination is more important than knowledge. The more vividly and accurately you imagine your success, the easier it will be for the rest of your self to follow through.
If you want to make sure you enjoy the greatest benefit on your journey to success, be sure to keep a strong focus on the following:
1) Find the purpose or goal of your life. Identify the things you love to do and that you are good at doing. Use this information to help steer your efforts in finding a suitable career.
2) Gather as much information as you can about the area you’ve chosen. Become knowledgeable about the issues that affect people in this field.
3) Find a mentor or a career coach to help you network, troubleshoot and strategize.
4) Study successful people and surround yourself with successful people: The culture you live in will affect your outlook. Bounce ideas off others who are successful and get inspired by people who are driven, motivated and successful.
5) Set clear goals: Consider the small steps you need to take in order to reach your primary objective. Break down each objective into tasks (or smaller goals) and streamline your ideas. Then start tackling each goal one at a time: Don’t procrastinate: Get started working towards your main goal by chipping away at your smaller objectives.
6) Continuously expand your vision of what is possible for your life. A successful person is open to believing that they are capable of expanding their skills and abilities. They may start with smaller objectives to get your feet wet, achieve some success and then build on those goals. Eventually cumulative success builds confidence. Your limitations are not fixed and can be overcome with persistence.
Be sure you’re always thinking about ways to expand your horizons, and try to do more than you previously thought you could. Keep your focus on the point just beyond your known capabilities.
7) Take calculated risks.
8 ) Identify the skills/things/education/materials you’ll need to accomplish your goals.
9) Set a timeline to achieve your objectives.
10) Stretch beyond your comfort zones at every possible opportunity. In addition to believing you are capable of more, you should strive to prove it as often as you can. Don’t just dream big and plan big – act big! Take bigger risks and trust your intuition to lead you to the most beneficial opportunities.
11) Don’t allow yourself to become defeated by setbacks: Expect that there will be obstacles along the way. Learn from your mistakes and develop a new course of action to realign your goals if necessary.
With every giant step forward you take, your confidence and self-mastery will grow in proportion.
A truly successful person never has to say a word about their accomplishments, because it’s written all over them. Typically people know when someone is successful as many have benefited from knowing them and from the support (services or skills) they’ve provided. Their actions/behavior/performance speaks louder than their words!
At each juncture visualize your success in accomplishing that specific goal. When you are faced with an obstacle, imagine overcoming it and envision a positive outcome. The end result of imagining a successful outcome will likely be achieving it in real-time; Success is more likely to follow when you focus your energy in the right areas and avoid unnecessary distractions and negative thoughts that diminish motivation.
Beth is Founder and President of Get Hired, LLC. She advises students on how to bridge the gap from school to career. Beth is the co-author of From Diploma to Dream Job: Five Overlooked Steps to a Successful Career. Her coaching assists students and career changers to successfully match their needs, interests, passions, skills, and personal goals with the needs of a sustainable industry in a sustainable location. She is a resource for print and online media and offers workshops for University Career Service Departments, Executive Recruiters, Outplacement Services, College Guidance Counselors and College Alumni Associations. See website for more details about Beth’s services www.fromdiploma2dreamjob.com. Beth’s Webinar was sponsored by George Washington University’s Career Services Dept. for their worldwide alumni association: Leverage Your College Diploma. You can follow Beth on twitter @BethKuhel