I have heard in many different ways and in many different forms that you must know where you are going in order to get there. Huh? You must visualize the end result to accomplish your goal.
For example, my neighbor is 22. He was going to college, but dropped out to work because he had no clue what he wanted to do. He can easily get stuck in his current job, working at a tire store, for a very long time, trying to figure out what he wants to do or just sustaining life (barely). He can also take some action. He needs to look at a “map,” talk with an academic advisor or take some career tests. He won’t get where he wants to go unless he knows where he is going.
I know a lot of people who want to lose weight. I recently saw a new “program” for weight loss that included “brain training.” The idea was that we do better with goals if we can visualize what we would look like at the end. I like the idea of visualizing your end result. Buying a program for it, not so much. If you want to get fit and healthy, what does that look like? Are you thin, tone, a certain size, lower blood pressure, healthy eat habits? There are so many ways to look at it! Any way you do it, you have know what the end result looks like or you will never get there.
With my clients I ask what they would like to accomplish in therapy. The answer is often the absence of something negative, like depression, anxiety, troubled past or relationship. Very few people have a good understanding of what they would like their happier alternative life to be. I often ask “what would that look like?” What is your end game? When it is said and done, what would your life, as a movie, look like? If you don’t know, you will never get there.
CREATING YOUR VISUALIZATION
Do you have a goal in your life? Anything, lose weight, clean out the closet, finish school, eat healthier, learn gardening.
You can start with an easy one. Let’s choose organizing a space (ok, easy for some).
- GOAL: Organize desk (yep, that is what I am looking at)
- What do I want: Clean, less cluttered, easy to find things, more work space
- What does that look like: Organized files, colorful folders, shelves… create a mental picture here. You can research spaces you are interested in for inspiration.
Research is your friend. Once you choose your goal, you will need to create a map. That map will show you how to get to that goal. Often times you will need some professional help to get there, like school, books, nutritionist or doctor. When you can see what that end result looks like, you can put one foot in front of the other to get there. Remember the Reward and keep the visualization in your mind (or pinned to your bathroom mirror).