Can one transform ideas into achievements? Of course!
In nature, a seed does not analyze why or how it will turn into a tree and a caterpillar does not hold a think tank about the benefits of becoming a butterfly.
Nature functions effortlessly.
By working with the simple laws of physics, humans can do the same thing, but we can achieve the results we want consciously, using the power of our mind.
Whatever you’d like to achieve this week, here are 8 steps to help you succeed:
1. Be for something, not against it.
MRI data show that thoughts are packets of energy that have no choice but to obey the laws of physics. Energy cannot be destroyed, only converted into matter.
A thought such as, ‘I want to quit smoking,’ can result only in the experience of wanting to quit smoking.
The first step to achieving that wish is to convert your thought into something that represents the positive thing you are for. Think about how better off your body and life would be without nicotine. Think about being able to climb a flight of stairs without gasping for air. Then your thought becomes something like, ‘I am fit, healthy, and can climb any hill or staircase effortlessly.’
When those thoughts convert, your brain’s focus on a need for nicotine falls away and is replaced by a need for fresh air.
2. Imagine your success as already achieved.
The latest neuroscience data show conclusively that the brain cannot tell the difference between what is real and what is imagined.
In a recent Harvard study, volunteers who practiced the piano and those who simply imagined practicing the piano both experienced growth in the same area of their brain associated with motor skills.
Take advantage of this.
Just after you wake, and just before you go to sleep, imagine what you desire as already achieved. Imagine how it feels to have that perfect job, business, or relationship. Imagine yourself in the situation, and use all your senses to experience it mentally.3. Belief is not necessary.
The laws of physics do not need you to believe in them for them to do their work effectively.
Even if you don’t have faith, your life changes.
What this means is that you can dispense with all those goal setting techniques that recommend baby steps. A simple seed can become a giant oak without ever stopping to think about it.
Success is the same. You can achieve it in spite of yourself.4. Strive for a sense of knowing.
Knowing something is achievable is a higher level of thought than believing something is achievable.
We arrive at a state of knowing by imagining what we want in our lives in specific detail. To improve the detail of the imagination, we use visualization techniques. We window shop on life, visiting the best hotels and taking a coffee in the lobby, test driving our dream cars, visiting open houses in our dream location.
The greater the detail, the higher the sense of knowing… and eventually we become so familiar with our target we are not surprised when it shows up.5. Set an intention, not a goal.
Instead of setting a goal, which is something we don’t have that we aim to get, set an intention, which is a goal but with all the doubt about its attainment removed.
State your intention as if you’ve already achieved it, with lots of specific details. For example, ‘After a year, my beautiful, new, sun-filled shop in the trendiest part of town swarmed with excited customers. I’ve repaid all my startup loans and I made a nice profit.’
Speak your intention out loud.6. Don’t ask how.
One of the keys to succeeding at what you want is to be open to surprises and serendipity.
When I look back on my business successes, I can plot a chart of how everything that happened fitted in perfectly. It is like a road map through life. I could never, however, have predicted any of it, and if I had stopped to ask how something would come to fruition, I might have stopped that flow of synchronicity.
Set the intention and let life fill in the details. Don’t ask how, and you don’t need a plan.7. Think bigger than what you desire.
If you set your intentions much larger than your core desire, the more modest desire starts to feel extremely attainable. So if you want a raise, imagine instead that you got a promotion and a new office too.
This is a psychological trick that helps you accept and invite success.8. Remain self-interested.
Most of us are familiar with the standard warning given by flight attendants to put on our own oxygen mask first, before attempting to assist someone else.
Self-interest is placing one’s own needs above the needs and desires of others. It doesn’t mean being unkind or selfish.
However, in order to achieve success, you have to focus on controlling your own behavior and destiny. You cannot achieve much success if the decisions you make for your life are based on the desires and demands of others.
Don’t take my word for these things…
Try it and see what happens.
A version of this blog is also published on medium.com