Imag(in)e. It's impossible to do it without an image in mind.
All day we're playing out imaginary scenes in our headspace. Mostly about what meetings/appointments/obligations lie ahead. Some have visionary longings of where they'd rather be. Perhaps bright lights big city and pumped for action. Perhaps a hammock swinging in the sunset with a cocktail in hand. For many the dream is as simple as how close beer-o-clock is. Essentially, for the majority of us, each day and its imaginings are the same. Picture the movie Groundhog Day.
Raise things a notch to enter the mind of a focussed athlete and the film on rotation is more likely to star Bill Gates than Murray. There you will find the imaginings of a goal-oriented individual who has the strongest of convictions with no trace of doubt. Theirs is not a 'fantasyland' style of dreaming. Despite their visions not having been actualised, what is happening with the image in their mind is reality in the making. It's not a maybe. Nor a definitely maybe. It's 100% taking shape. They completely believe that what they see in their mind will come true. You can bet on it. There's even a science around it with Sports Psychology.
I've been giving this a lot of thought lately. Why does an athlete find it so much easier to declare their aspirations than Joe Public? Why don't we adopt that strength of conviction in what we envisage?
Doubt in the human psyche is such an extraordinarily large part of our everyday existence. Playing it safe is more than acceptable, it's strangely considered wise.
I have taken this topic of discussion in multiple directions and I always end up at the same conclusion.
The reason the average person doesn't declare their desires is not because of a fear of failure, but because they are afraid of being wrong.
We do not commit to striving for our dreams, and we certainly will not pronounce what we believe we can achieve, for fear of being ridiculed. For fear that we'll be thought the idiot. And that makes me so sad. I'm deep down sorry in thinking 99% of the population holds back the very best of their wonderful character, uniqueness and the individual offering they can bring to the world because they'll be 'wrong' if their vision doesn't become reality.
In the past this has been referred to as a fear of failure, but I don't think that's the case at all. We fail by not even trying. So it can't be that. The fear lies in being called out as wrong.
Pride has a lot to answer for.
Personally, I don't mind how seemingly crazy or far-fetched your image in mind is. I would love to hear about it and share in what you believe will happen to you. More importantly, I want you to stop being afraid to admit who you are. It's time to tell the world what it is that you desire, and place your faith in it eventuating. There is no shame in being authentic, no matter how distant that vision is from you who are today.
I encourage you to be brave and declare the image you have in your mind. What's going on upstairs? Do any of these resonate?
"I'm fit and healthy and I walk 7km every day."
"My golf swing is shit-hot and I'm going to win two tournaments in the next year."
"I'm going to turn our garden into the oasis we've always wanted."
"We're going to finally fall pregnant in the next six months."
"I'm going to make the Olympic Team."
"I'm going to be a picture of health, better than I've ever been before."
"I'm going to resign from the work I've done for 20 years and do the job I know nurtures my soul."
Oh, hang on a minute. That last image in mind is mine. Yes indeedy, I'm now a photographer and a writer. Is it scary to admit? Yes. Might people call me the fool for all I've given up in order to follow my image in mind? Completely. Do I doubt that it's the right thing to do? No, never.
I've declared mine. It's over to you. What is your image in mind?