Each and everyone of us has dreams and desires. What we would like to own, what we would like to do, or who we would like to be. I would like you to stop and think for a moment, I would like you to choose one dream or goal that inspires you. And I would like you to imagine and ask yourself: how would you feel if you were to achieve this goal, or if this desire were to become a reality at this moment.
Some people find it useful to ask themselves the question: how would you act if you knew that you would never fail in anything, that your efforts would always be successful. Allow yourself to visualise and imagine what might surround you; allow yourself to hear what you might hear. Allow yourself to experience how you might feel if you were actually to realise and achieve all your desires.
You have just begun to think in the way that successful and creative people think, and you are experiencing how they visualise and imagine “for real” everything they wish to achieve. Some people call this “creative planning”, others describe it as “the visualisation of goals”.
Albert Einstein called this “an experiment in cognitive thinking”
In business many “hallucinate” what can be achieved with regard to their development. Naturally they subsequently assess what is possible, what desires and goals can actually be achieved. They call this “strategic planning”. In actual fact it is of no importance what we call this process of how we act in the future to turn our dreams and desires into reality.
Throughout the entire course of human history all the great creative minds have made use of such a creative state of thinking in order to realise their creative ideas and make their contribution to the world.
The genius Nikola Tesla who invented and gave the world alternating current, was able to imagine the design of a car in his own head before making it for real in the physical world. Michelangelo, Mozart, Popov, Walt Disney – all these great figures would find themselves in a state of creative dreaming, that altered state of consciousness where it would seem that ideas simply came to them. What they engaged in was in actual fact simply one of the forms of an altered state of consciousness. Why then is this so important? The answer is as follows. Prior to appearing and coming into existence in the physical world, any creation thought up by mankind must first of all appear in the mind of its creator in the world of imagination. Just take a look around you and you will see that everything around you at some time came into existence as an idea in somebody’s head. All the wonderful things which today provide us with pleasure were once the product of somebody’s imagination.
Victor Frankl, an Austrian psychiatrist, psychologist and neurologist, former prisoner of a Nazi concentration camp described his experience of living and his secret work as a psychiatrist in concentration camps during World War II. In his books he comes to the following conclusion: those who survived the camps were not necessarily the most healthy, the strongest or the most intelligent. They simply had a goal to live for. Such goals were what helped them to survive, to keep the power on, to retain their equilibrium and not to fall into despair. Without a goal the human life force simply ebbs away and fades.
Research has shown that on average a person dies two years after becoming a pensioner. Human beings simply must have something to strive for. If you wish to change your life it is best first of all to set well-defined goals. Unfortunately, for many people that goal is to overcome a series of difficult life situations. They are unable to stop and think about the very type of life they would like to have in reality. An a overall many fail to clearly set specific goals, and fail to record them their goals. They fail to realise just how important this is, and as a result they simply go with the flow. Consequently, having washed up “nowhere” with the tide, they find themselves in the depths of disappointment stemming from a life lived for no purpose, for nothing.
I am sure that in the past you previously heard about various mean of setting goals. And although it is clearly nothing more that common sense, nonetheless only a miniscule percentage of people note down their goals. And what about you, do you fall into this small percentage?
In the 1950’s researchers at Yale University asked their students about their plans for the future. Only 3% of those asked had noted down any plans for the future. 20 years later research showed that the aforementioned 3% exceeded in financial terms all the other 97% taken together. It was also discovered that these 3% were happier with life and more content than the other 97%. It is astonishing that such a small percentage of people note down their goals! It is like a boat without oars that is tossed in various directions by the waves instead of being controlled effectively and navigated in the direction you desire.
Many people make a list of things to buy when going to the supermarket. But for some reason they fail to devote time to make a list of what is actually important in their lives. Surely your future is an interesting thing to consider and think about, one to which you should devote attention, since it is there in the future where you will have to spend a significant part of your life. Setting goals is no more difficult than putting together pieces of Lego. Anyone can do it.
So, let us get started:
- Think about what you want in life;
- Imagine you have already achieved this. How do you feel? What are you doing?
- Check to see whether and to what degree what you started actually suits you.
- Check to see just how much you like the very thing you desired;
- Think about whether this will happen, whether you will achieve your desires.
- Regularly focus on your goal.
Now you have a fundamental understanding and knowledge as to how this works, let’s go step by step on the path of successfully setting goals. After every step stop reading and carry out all the tasks in full, devoting sufficient time to every step.
First of all ask yourself: “what am I actually capable of, what can I achieve?”
Note down everything that comes into your mind. You will be able to add more details, analyse and organise your notes at a later date. If you have encountered problems in knowing where to begin, then once again ask yourself the question: “How would I act if I knew exactly and for sure that everything will work out fine no matter what?” And do not be too surprised as to what may spring to mind. And under no circumstances should you ever think or question “How could such a thing ever happen?”. Simply allow your creative capabilities to reveal themselves. Think about the most important elements of your life: your family, your relationships, career and spiritual development.
- What would you like to learn, what spheres of knowledge would you like to master and gain a high level of proficiency?
- How much money would you like to earn?
- What personality traits would you like to develop?
- What would you like your contribution to the world to be?
- Would you like to improve your health, your quality of life, your character?
Choose things which truly uplift your spirit and inspire you.
It is sometimes useful to ask oneself the question: “What would I do if I knew that the world might soon come to an end?” This allows you to focus on what is actually important to you.
Imagine and visualise your goals in great detail. It is essential that you should visualise your goals vividly as if they were real.
Concentrate and pay attention to the sounds, feelings, smells and tastes – create a rich and all-encompassing experience of the sensations and feeling of living your goals.
You should never underestimate the power of your ideas. Money does not create ideas, it is ideas that create money. Einstein said: “The power of imagination is more important than knowledge”. Some people still say: “The power of imagination controls the world”. So, you should stop at this point and conscientiously carry out and fulfill everything written above.
The following passage deals with priorities. Determine your most important goals. Which of your goals belong to your Top 3?
Go through your goals, then determine and prioritise those which are the most important. Once you have done this then you may embark upon the next step.
Now I would like to ask you to image that you have already achieved one of your important goals. Now ask yourself: “What does this goal give me?”. In this way you will discover for yourself what qualities drive and motivate you, and you will also discover what is truly very important for you.
So behind the desire to have large sums of money there may hide the need for security and respect. And as soon as you satisfy this need for security and respect, then money will soon come your way, you won’t have to wait long because it will appear very quickly.
- What is particularly important about this goal?
- What need will the achievement of this goal fulfill at this moment?
For example the following may spring to mind – security, achievement, a feeling of collaboration etc. Such characteristics will determine your values. For in actual fact as with any goal – a goal exists in order for us to fulfill our needs in relation and accordance with what is important to us personally.
Some people’s goal is to help others – because what is important to them is to make the world a better place. For some people their goal is to win a gold medal at the Olympics – this is because what is important for them is achievement, the achievement of success.
Let’s discover what’s truly important to you, what you value above all else!
Imagine that you have realised one of your goals. Now imagine, visualize and experience:
- What do you see, hear, feel?
- What you have gained from this?
- What is particularly important for you about this goal?
Make a note of which particular words and phrases come to mind. Continue to do this until a whole list of such words and phrases have fixed themselves in your mind. These are your values, namely that which is important to you.
And now, ask yourself the question: “In terms of their importance, what do all these qualities give you?” The answer to this question will indicate what is most important to you, what you prize and value the most – and what guides you through life.
So you now have a list of your most important goals (home, wealth, promotion at work etc.). What do you gain in having all this? What are your values, what qualities do you value above all? Confidence, security, strong self-esteem or recognition?
Life is something which is predetermined. To have goals is a good thing and knowing your values and qualities is important. But how are these linked with what is already your destiny.
Many people view money as a goal: “When I have enough money, I’ll be able to do whatever I want”. Ask anybody approaching the end of their life “What would you have liked to do more or less of in your past life?”. No one will say to you: “I would have liked a different Mercedes”. They will more likely answer: “I would like to have loved more and to be more loved”, “I would like to have suffered less”.
Money is merely a symbolic representation of prices; in itself it does not necessarily make you happy – only you yourself know what you actually want in life.
You can come to an understanding of your true self by asking yourself the following:
- “What do I love doing so much that I am prepared to do it for free?”
- “What am I truly passionate about?”
- “How would I occupy myself and fill my time if I had infinite wealth?”
- “Which historical figures do I admire and why?”
- “If I could achieve whatever I wanted over the course of my life, what would that something be?”
By answering these questions you will gain a clear indication of your goals and values in life. In order to better understand these goals and values you may ask and refer to your own intuition to gain some indication and help. But for now take a short break and ask yourself the following questions.
How will you know when you have achieved your goal?
Some people lack a daily schedule ar plan to indicate whether they are on course, whether they are on the right path or not? In such cases the solution is simple – you should be detailed and concrete in your sensory feelings and emotions.
- “What will you see when you achieve your goal?”
- “What will you hear?”
- “How will you feel?”
- “What tastes and smells do you experience?”
The answers to these questions will help you to understand whether you are approaching your goal, or whether on the contrary you are moving further away from it.
Some people distance themselves from maintaining a judgement process (check) as to whether they are following their course (or deviating from it). They see only the end result (for example, a large house) and they put aside and postpone moments of happiness for the future. It is essential for you to have tangible, recognisable indications of success on your path, indications which bring you on the true path. So now at this moment think up some steps on the path to the achievement of greater goals, and after that continue reading.
And now carry out what might be called a check of the appropriateness, suitability and ecological nature of goal in relation to yourself and to others.
- Sometimes on the path to the achievement of a goal we forget important factors, for example: “What is the point of success in business if it damages your health?”
- Also check to make sure that the achievement of your goals depended on you alone and that it did not suppose changes from other people in order to make you happy. That is to say, your goal must be something that you yourself need to achieve for yourself.
- Now you need to check to make sure that no hidden benefits are present in the event that you do not achieve your goals. Make sure and be certain that these are truly your goals, since some people, let’s say, choose a profession or career in order to please their parents, and not themselves.
Continue reading after honestly and truthfully answering the following questions.
In future it is important to draw a “timeline” of events which occur and lead to the achievement of your goals. Think of that time in the future when you will see a result – it may be a month, two months, half a year or a year from the present moment. Imagine you are already there, and moving backwards from that point, count the steps you needed to take to get there and achieve your goal. Make a note of them. “Live through” and truly experience these stages. Notice and be aware of everything you see and hear at each and every stage, feel just what a great feeling it is at every stage of the process that leads to your fundamental goal. Get a precise, clear, bright picture of each and every stage.
After you have “lost” the final result and the steps leading to it we shall conduct an experiment to reveal and uncover the “timelines” in your consciousness. Doctor Richard Bendler, one of the founders of neurolinguistic programming, developed a remarkable method for this. It is his technique that we shall use.
Think about some act or activity that you carry out every day (you get washed, get dressed etc.). Imagine that you are doing this tomorrow:
- Where do you see this image?
- Is it in front of you, to the right, or to the left?
Now imagine that you are performing this activity a week later.
- Where does your mental picture form?
- How close is it to the previous image?
And now imagine yourself performing this activity six months from now.
- Where is your mental image?
Depending upon the position of these mental images you will be able to establish the position on the timeline in your consciousness.
- It moves forward, from left to right, or from right to left or perhaps in your case it moves in a specific direction?
- And where for you is the past? Behind you or somewhere else?
Find the time to establish the direction of your own “time line”. And where for you is located the present moment?
Only a very small number of people do not have a specific direction for their timeline. For such people everything simply lies in front of them.
I would ask you to discover your own timeline of your success through self-training.
During this stage ask yourself what obstacles might arise on the path to the achievement of your goal and which might distance you from the achievement of this goal. By being aware of those in advance it will be far easier to overcome them:
- Do you have sufficient confidence to achieve your goal?
- Do you always complete every task to the very end?
- Do others take you seriously? And is this important to you?
- What other hindrances might arise to interfere and distract you from your path?
Write these down. By foreseeing possible pitfalls and problems you already have an advantage in achieving something.
Continue reading after you have written down on paper everything which might hinder and be an obstacle for you.
Then ask yourself:
- What must I do in order to avoid and overcome those things which interfere and distract me from my path.
- What type of person must I become in order to deal with such obstacles?
- What aspects of my character must I develop?
It is really important to carry out and deal with these tasks as soon as possible. This will allow you to be more certain of your triumph.
Compose a list of those qualities essential to achieve your goal now.
Now think about that time in the past when you displayed these qualities. Or imagine what would it be like if you already possessed these qualities. For example, if the quality is confidence, think about what it would be like to have total confidence in oneself. A confidence enhanced by inner strength and optimism. Now imagine the difference in your attitude and behaviour.
When you have done this, please carry on reading.
Now you need to decide and determine what resources you already possess. You might compare this with going on holiday and you are making a list of things that you need to take in order to enjoy your journey.
The list of resources may include your knowledge and skills, your experience, your connections, your friends, finances, time, health, character traits, place of residence etc. Also include your potential, future resources. Having composed these two lists – your current, actual resources and those possible in the future – you will to your surprise suddetly discover that you can achieve anything you wish.
Now imagine the perfect day when you have achieved your goals:
- How does that day begin?
- What people do you find around you?
- What places do you visit frequently?
- What possessions do you have?
- How good do you feel?
Do everything you can to ensure that you like and enjoy the feelings you experience when you live your perfect day. What is it that enables you to realise just how successful you really are?
Carefully and in great detail allow your subconsciousness to realise what you wish for, and “prescribe” for yourself in your mind. (This facilitates the formation of new neuro links with the brain).
Remember that everything that happens in your life must initially happen in your conscious thought processes.
All the best athletes use the technique of mental training: in their mind they imagine a game, competition or event which occur within them in the way they wish them to happen. They imagine the outcome they desire. They imagine the outcome they desire. The reason this works is based on the simple principle that your nervous system cannot distinguish between real events and imaginary ones.
Your powers of imagination are far stronger than your will power. Try ordering your heart to beat more quickly.
Nothing will happen.
But if you imagine yourself walking down a small dark street and you hear unknown steps behind you, then your heart rate will increase. This reaction can also be used to achieve our goals.
The usual, standard affirmations (every day I am getting better and better etc.) have little effect. In order to convince yourself that you will achieve your goal you must create the appropriate conditions in your nervous system. You should at least twice a day visualise these as if “for real”, by fully taking upon yourself the experience of living and achieving your goal. For example of speaking in public when I want to rid myself of the fear I rehearse over and over again a successful, confident speech. And when the time comes to give the actual speech by that time the nervous system will be able to draw upon your already existing success and upon the feelings experienced when speaking in public.
Therefore, remember that in life you achieve those things upon which you focus.
So focus on your goals! Your subconscious mind wants you to be happy! So tell it and allow it to understand time and time again exactly what it is that you want. Every day we all become the very thing about which we are thinking for the greater part of the day.
Consequently, always focus and concentrate on your goals! Morning, day and night. Make your goal a part of your everyday life. Make a booklet or poster with pictures or symbols to help you focus and concentrate on your goals every day. And finally, last but not least, act in such a way that your thoughts might become a reality! I wish you joy, happiness and success every day.
P.S. The self-training audio recording part of the article will help you “prescribe” and inculcate your goals deep in your subconscious, enabling you to focus like a laser beam precisely on those things which you wish to achieve. Use and listen to the audio recording every day for at least a week.