Visualization, done right, can be extremely powerful in achieving any goal. As you think about your goals for the next 3-6 months, take into consideration the following…
Using your intellectual factor of imagination see yourself already in possession of your goal. Picture yourself with the healthy and fit body you desire, and literally feel what it is like to have it. You cannot achieve anything in your “outer world” until you first see it in your “inner world.”
Is Visualization for Real?
In one of the most well-known studies on Creative Visualization in sports, Russian scientists compared four groups of Olympic athletes in terms of their training schedules:
• Group 1 had 100% physical training
• Group 2 had 75% physical training with 25% mental training
• Group 3 had 50% physical training with 50% mental training
• Group 4 had 25% physical training with 75% mental training.
The results showed that Group 4, with 75% of their time devoted to mental training, performed the best. “The Soviets had discovered that mental images can act as a prelude to muscular impulses.” 
Creative Visualization is distinguished from normal daydreaming in that Creative Visualization is done in the first person and the present tense – as if the visualized scene were unfolding all around you; whereas normal daydreaming is done in the third person and the future tense.
Using affirmations that begin with “I am so happy and grateful now that…” is an excellent way to begin programming your subconscious mind to move towards your goal.
Visualization is another tool that Olympic athletes use to get their minds in shape for competition. In this technique, athletes mentally rehearse exactly what they have to do to win.
Sports psychologists say that visualization boosts athletes’ confidence by forcing them to picture themselves winning. It also helps them concentrate on their physical moves, rather than on distractions around them .
Visualization is another tool that Olympic athletes use to get their minds in shape for competition. In this technique, athletes mentally rehearse exactly what they have to do to win. Sports psychologists say that visualization boosts athletes’ confidence by forcing them to picture themselves winning. It helps athletes concentrate on their physical moves, rather than on distractions around them.
Research proves that mental rehearsal and visualization strategies improve physiological performance.
Mental imagery strengthens neural circuits
Mental imagery isn’t just for sports stars. Professional musicians commonly rehearse difficult parts of a musical passage by performing the piece of music in their mind. It’s thought that the mental rehearsal activates the same motor, somatosensory, auditory, and emotional circuits as playing the actual instrument.
Surprisingly, visualization can even strengthen muscles. Simply imagining you’re lifting weights in the gym can increase muscle strength by up to half as much as if you’re actually doing it. The visualizing brain sends electrical signals to the muscles, which makes them stronger, even if you’re not moving.
This type of virtual workout is being used by Dr Guang Yue and his team at Kessler Foundation to help improve muscle strength in the people undergoing rehabilitation. Yue says,
“Accumulating evidence suggests that mental training without physical or muscle exercise can improve voluntary muscle strength…This finding could have significant application in rehabilitation medicine because numerous weak patients or frail older adults who find it difficult or unsafe to participate in conventional strength training, such as weightlifting programs, may now be able to strengthen their muscles by using their mind.”
Visualize to Actualize
Remember, all things are created twice – first in the imagination and then second in the physical world. Study this excerpt from Napoleon Hill’s famous book, Think & Grow Rich:
The law of autosuggestion, through which any person may rise to altitudes of achievement which stagger the imagination, is well described in the following verse:
“If you think you are beaten, you are,
If you think you dare not, you don’t
If you like to win, but you think you can’t,
It is almost certain you won’t.
“If you think you’ll lose, you’ve lost
For out of the world we find,
Success begins with a fellow’s will—
It’s all in the state of mind.
“If you think you are outclassed, you are,
You’ve got to think high to rise,
You’ve got to be sure of yourself before
You can ever win a prize.
“Life’s battles don’t always go
To the stronger or faster man,
But soon or late the man who wins
Is the man WHO THINKS HE CAN!”
Observe the words which have been emphasized, and you will catch the deep meaning which the author had in mind. Somewhere in your make-up there lies, sleeping, the seed of achievement which, if aroused and put into action, would carry you to heights such as you may never have hoped to attain.
Tips for Success:
- Create an affirmation statement and visualize yourself with your goal already achieved. Put your affirmation statement in places you’ll see it often like your bathroom mirror, car and desk. Put it on a card and keep it in your pocket at all times.
- Create a Vision Board – cut out pictures of your goal (i.e., fit bodies, athletes, etc.) and make a collage that you can view often. Get emotionally involved when you look at it.
Hope you find it useful. More importantly, don’t just read. APPLY! Experiment with your lifts in the gym, your dreams, goals, sport play and I guarantee, you will improve and you will see a noticeable difference. It’s what makes the indifference of the difference. The winners from the losers, the successful from the not so successful.
You mind the one thing that will ensure you achieve an incredible or life, or a life of being average.
It starts with one choice. Today. Now.
So what’s it going to be? Robert Scaglione, William Cummins, Karate of Okinawa: Building Warrior Spirit, Tuttle Publishing, 1993, ISBN 096264840X.  Fiona McCormack, “Mind games,” Scholastic Scope, Vol. 54, Iss. 10, New York: Jan 23, 2006
We see a lot of information, many gurus, and many companies all telling you what you need to do to be successful in life. Whether it be your health, losing weight, growing your business, being successful. Few however, focus on the essential elements which are actually preventing you from achieving your goals.
With the New Year, and the next season of New Year’s resolutions roll in, I feel this is an important time to get to the point, and focus on the real reasons why you set the same resolutions year after year, time after time.
It’s the things that are holding you back. Everything which prevents you from achieving each goal you set yourself, and it is these things you need to quit doing to achieve everything you ever wanted in life.
So yes, I’m telling you need to quit! Here are 5 things you MUST quit, and some simple tips and solutions to help you live an extraordinary life of health, happiness and success.
You were not born as a procrastinator. Procrastination is a behavior that you can instantly change when you have the right structure in place. Also considered a habit which is a behavior that has been repeated over and over again until it becomes consistent, automated and a behavior. Which prevents you from taking action, getting things done and holding you back from personal growth and success.
Tip: Get organized. The structure you need is to have specific goals, and more importantly, know the reason WHY those goals are important. Your purpose, knowing the higher cause of why you want to achieve a certain goal is crucial to overcome procrastination. Make your goals specific, have a daily action plan of exactly what you need to do on a daily basis, know your ‘WHY’ and develop checklists so you can build that sense of achievement when you tick off or scratch off your completed tasks on your checklist.
Another great tip is to be more aware. Use your awareness of when you start to procrastinate as a trigger, to change your actions onto something that is leading you to your outcomes.
Most importantly, remove all distraction. Number one on the list is social media. Set specific times for your social media activities, remove Facebook from your phone, close the tab on your computer so you’re not event tempted to scroll.
Quit negative thinking.
Your subconscious mind, your little voices will always be there telling you what you can and can’t do. Letting the negative voices determine your outcomes is what’s holding you back. Replace them with empowering thoughts, specific actions that lead you to more positive outcomes in your life that lead you towards your goals, and drive you towards success.
Tip: Create a list of your most powerful affirmations. Affirmations are little mantras or phrases that are aligned with your goals. They fuel your drive, and when repeated multiple times per day, become the foundation of your beliefs. Your belief systems are what your truth. Your truth determines who you are. When you rewire your belief systems, you become unstoppable.
Here are few examples you can use yourself, or as a guideline to create your own. Remember, when you create your own personal affirmations, they resonate with you, they become ‘yours’ and a far more powerful.
“I have all the resources I need to be…….”
“Daily exercise empowers me, drives me and gives me focus on my goals”
“I am a better me, every day, in every way”
“I am productive, organized and positive”
“I am in total control of what I eat, and fuel my body and mind only with the most nutritious food that leads me to my goals”
“I choose to surround myself with positive empowering people that help me to be the best I can be”
“I choose to be positive in all situations, and only focus on solutions”
“I am a strong leader and I lead my team with positive energy, dedication and passion to help everyone achieve their goals”
Quit comparing yourself with others.
This is another form of distraction and one that can really be detrimental to your success in life. Not only does it distract you from being proactive in aligning you with your own goal, comparing yourself against others can actually prevent you from personal growth. Allowing the door to open to negative thoughts, emotions and undoing the great work you have done to reinforce positive thoughts, a positive mindset and empower your life with positive actions and success.
Tip: Focus on yourself, your goals, and your actions. Part of your goal setting process is to know exactly who you are, know what you want to be, and just on making yourself better every day. Be 1% better every day, in just one element, and just one behavior – will ensure you have incredible growth and development every week, every month and just imagine what kind of life you will be living in 12 months from now.
Quit trying to achieve goals without a solid plan.
Random actions produce random results. And as you have probably heard before, if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. It’s a simple yet very true statement. I know very few successful people who do not plan their life, their daily actions. Whether it be your health, losing weight, getting fitter, growing your business, hitting your KPIs at work, you need to plan your strategy.
Tip: So if you want to improve yourself, grow, achieve and become better, you need a plan. A specific plan. Writing down your goals is a good first step however, you need more than just a list of goals. You need to know exactly what that goal is, with timelines, with specific action steps and know the resources you need to achieve them. Over the years I have enhanced the traditional SMART goal system to the SMARTER goal system, remove the redundant inefficient elements and replaced with power, action-oriented steps to ensure the SMARTER goal system is a successful tool, a continuous cycle of evaluation, action, and results.
Quit talking about it.
People are great talkers. Most people love to tell others and share what they are doing, what they plan to do, where they are heading, what their goals are, how much money they are going to make, what care they are going to buy. Quit talking about it and start doing it! I have witnessed so many people who have been talking for years, with little action, and very little progress in their life. I too am guilty of talking too much. For some, it is a form of accountability, to share your goals with others. However, more often than not, these statements fall short of results, because you continue talking about them. So quit talking, and start doing.
Actions speak louder than words, and remember, you have goals to achieve to increase your happiness in YOUR life, not others. Sure, you becoming financially independent creates opportunities to make others happy, support and care for your family, but ultimately, it’s for you. Reinforce your goals, write your lists and start taking action on a daily basis that leads you to better results.
Focus on the actions which will give you the greatest impact. Prioritize your goals and work on the most important steps first. Schedule time in your planner, close your office door, find a quite space to write, plan, and gather your thoughts in peace, without distraction.
Get Out of Your Comfort Zone
This is one of the key fundamentals you need to do. Which is why most people are not able to achieve their goals or become successful. Staying in your comfort zone means you are probably happy with second best, satisfied with average performance and sticking with the status quo. Forcing yourself out of your comfort zone also leads to personal growth, learning some of those hard lessons and getting back up again after those heavy knockdowns.
When you are uncomfortable, you meet problems and challenges, forcing you to dig deep, deeper, to find solutions, new and improved ways to achieve goals and build your success strategy beyond what the average person is ready to do.
Know Where You Are Going
Knowing exactly what you want is crucial in knowing how to develop your plan and knowing what you need to do to get there. Without a destination, you will simply be lost in space, lacking direction, with no specific plan of action to achieve your goals. You have probably heard of the SMART goal setting system, and the traditional model is ok, however over the years I have further enhanced its effectiveness and developed what we call the SMARTer goal system, and there are more tweaks to the system than just the ‘er’ at the end. The NEW SMARTer goal system ensures the most crucial components of a goal, the ‘action plan’ are also included, which needs to be the main focus after you have identified your specific goal. If you are still not sure exactly what you want, then another awesome tool I learned from Kane Minkus from the Industry Rockstar. It’s all about how to create your Rockstar Lifestyle.
Success leaves clues. And guess what, regardless of your niche or area of expertise, and even if you are breaking new ground, for sure, someone else has done it before. Finding your mentor, or ‘mentors’ is a crucial part of your success. You get to tap into their previous experience, learning from their mistakes, and gaining essential insight into their successes, their mindset, success processes. Mentors, like coaches, won’t be telling you what to do. They will, however, be asking very specific questions, to help you find your own answers guiding you in the right direction that will lead to greater success. Look for mentors in your industry who have already made it, already been through the failures, mistakes and have already spent years to achieve their dream lifestyle and ultimate success. It’s also important to know, that mentors cost money. They don’t share their knowledge and experience for free. However, if they are good, you will no doubt achieve tremendous returns for your investment 10 times over and over. Think of it as an accelerated success system.
Success leaves clues. Yep, believe it or not, success is a system. Hundreds of others have become successful by following someone else’s success strategy. You will find that there are many similarities in every success system. Once you know what success is defined as for you, find others who have also achieved the same level of success that you also aspire to. Study their steps follow the plan, do as they have done. And, find a mentor who has already been there, and done it!
Be Ready to Be Wrong
What, ME? Wrong? That’s impossible! Yes, sometimes we are. Perhaps most of the time you are right or give yourself the most correct answer, most of the time. The point is, you cannot be right all the time. Be humble, be open to learning, be open to new opportunities and perhaps ‘better’ ways of achieving the same outcome – or an even ‘better’ outcome. With age, experience and knowledge, sure you will be guiding yourself in the right direction, just remember, ‘we don’t know what we don’t know’ so don’t shut the door on other people’s advice or opinions. It might just guide towards a new way of thinking and even greater success.
About the Author:
Daniel Remon has been a pioneer in the health and fitness industry, developing a multitude of result driven health businesses from gyms, personal training studios, retreats, education and corporate wellness. An energetic and inspiring speaker and presenter, Daniel writes in real terms on the latest research, programming, training, nutrition and mindset success systems that just makes sense. The founder of Fitcorp Group, which includes The Aspire Club, CrossFit Bangkok, ASPATA Fitness Academy, Lifestyle Health Retreats, Asian Corporate Wellness Association