Inspiring Leaders harness the power of visualization to picture the future, and convince others that working together, they can bring that vision to reality.
Here are a few examples of leaders, who inspired by their vision of a better/different future, inspired others to get involved in their dream. Because of that, together, many ordinary folk created extraordinary results:
- Betty White - "Peace in Northern Ireland"
- Mikhail Gorbachev - "We need Star Peace not Star Wars".
- JFK - "Man on the Moon".
- Emily Murphy - "Women shall be counted as persons"
- Ghandi - "Be the change you want to see".
- William Wilberforce - "Outlaw the slave trade"
- Rachel Carson - "The mother of the environmental movement"
- Martin Luther King - "I have a dream"
- Steve Jobs - "A computer for the rest of us".
- Amelia Earhart - "Women can do whatever they set their minds to"
And, even though when they first started on their journey, it may have seemed 'the impossible dream', by tapping into the power of visualization, they built the belief within themselves, and others, that their impossible dream was worth striving for.
Don't discount learning how to visualize as wahoooy mumbo jumbo - everything in this world started as a thought. Your thoughts have the power to create worlds.
For example, say you decided you wanted to build a table. Then all you visualized and thought about were chairs. You read books on making chairs, you spent time discussing with others chairs. (Yes visualizing isn't confined to just happening in your mind ... it does begin there ... but it doesn't stop there!).
You focused all your attention on the 'how-tos' of making chairs. Now I have to ask you 'how good a table will you build??' Okay a silly example, however, can you see how it illustrates the power of thought. If you think about and focus on chairs, you definitely are not going to create a very good table.
You can use the power of visualization to enhance everything from your self-image and self-worth to pursuing ideas and ideals that rock worlds!
Elite Athletes Understand The Power of Visualization
In 1983, Australia won the Americas Cup (in sailing). For 132 years prior, there was a belief that the Americans couldn't be beaten. In preparing the Aussie team for their challenge for the Cup, the coach of the Australian Team did something very interesting.
He got a tape of the 'Masted Sailing Ship', which is just like one of those relaxation tapes, with the noise of a sailing ship on it, gliding across the water. Then over the top of that music he recorded a narration, of how he visualized the team winning the Cup.
Being a sports psychologist, and understanding the power of visualization, he got the team to listen to that 12 minute tape, twice a day, for many months, so that by the time they finally raced the American's "Liberty" team, they actually had beaten them thousands of times before - if only in their minds.
So strongly was this visualization embedded in their psyches, they simply couldn't imagine not winning. That is the kind of discipline that you need.
As you are leading your team, anytime you get them thinking about the future you are tapping into the power of visualization. So why not up the ante, and make it really powerful.
Use All Five Senses And
You Will Make the Visualization Explosive
Whether you are working with your team visualizing something the team is going to create in the future, or you are quietly at home visualizing some personal dream, the more vivid you make it in bright, living, moving, color the better.
For optimum results, put all five senses to work. By combining the elements of sight, smell, sound, taste and touch to visualize your desired end-result, it becomes more real to your imagination. Your brain does not differentiate between vividly imagined events, and real events. Visualize often enough and with plenty of emotion attached, and your brain thinks 'this is real'.
Which is great when we are plugging positive stuff into ourselves.
Not so terrific when we are plugging negative stuff! And, unfortunately most people are poorly disciplined and spend the vast majority of their life fussing over and fuming about -- and thereby visualizing -- those very things they don't want.
How many times have you been involved in meetings, where a new way of doings things is being introduced, and the majority of the time is spent focused on the problems/challenges ahead, rather than on the great things to look forward (remember the table and chair above?). Now, I'm not saying ignore the challenges, I'm simply saying you will do yourself, and your team, a HUGE favor, if you focus more on where you are heading and how good it will be than on the difficulties ahead.
Visualize the result of what you want. Say for example, you want to remain calm and supportive of your team members when they are fighting against a new procedure. Then, in your mind, you need to visualize your team up in arms about a change that you are proposing, and you staying calm and supportive, as you lead them toward the outcome you desire.
The Most Powerful Times To Visualize with Deliberation
Whilst you can, (and in fact do), affirm and visualize at any time of the day, the very best two times are when you first awaken, and when you are just falling asleep. At these two times of the day your brain is moving through the Alpha state, which is when your brain is actually at its most creative, and most receptive, to suggestion.
In the morning when you awaken refreshed, your mind is more receptive to thought patterns and better able to concentrate and receive new stimuli. Affirming is a terrific set-up for how you will be during the day ahead.
The major benefit of the evening session is that you will continue your visualization, on a subconscious level, during your sleep.
The last half hour, before you go to bed, is critical. You are more receptive to messages than at any other time during the day. Science tells us, that when we go to sleep our conscious mind clicks off, and our subconscious mind clicks on, and begins to entertain itself for the rest of the evening. Studies have also shown us that, we go over what we recorded during the day 3-5 times during our sleep that night. But this is the really exciting part - what we did in our last 30 minutes we replay 15-17 times during the night.
The third time that is very effective is at lunch-time which is kind of like your mid-course correction.
Have fun with your visualizing. I hope, with the affirmations and the power of visualization, your world is rocked in both small and major ways.