Fire Up!

The Vision Thing

One factor affecting motivation is confidence. When confidence is high, you feel energized to take on the challenges of the day. But when confidence is low, you're ready to give up. How can you give your confidence a boost when you're running on empty? Visualize.

"Many people spend their lives `window shopping,'? says Denis Waitley, a renowned keynote speaker, member of the International Speakers Hall of Fame and author of Empires of the Mind (William Morrow, $23, 800-393-8309). "Visualization is not window-shopping--wishing you could have it--but knowing you can." How to put visualization to work for you? Waitley offers these tips:

1. See desired results through your own eyes. Visualization doesn't mean sitting there like a spectator, watching yourself make the sale or give the speech. When you visualize your goal, Waitley stresses, picture it through your own eyes. "[Visualize] looking at the audience or hearing the prospect say `yes' to your proposal," he says. "See it exactly as you would live it."

2. Focus on success, not failure. "When things aren't going well, go back and replay your best `performance,' " advises Waitley. "This way, you draw upon previous performance to reinforce the feeling of success."

3. Use all your senses. "Close your eyes and recreate a sunrise or sunset, feel the wet sand on the beach between your toes, or smell the newly mown field," says Waitley. "This exercise will strengthen your imagination, making you more effective in visualization. The mind can't distinguish between real experience and vividly repeated, simulated experience."

4. Rescript. "When you make a mistake, your immediate response should be `That's not like me. I'm better than that. What can I do to correct myself back to the target?' "

Sean Lyden is the CEO of Prestige Positioning (a service of The Professional Writing Firm Inc.), an Atlanta-based firm that "positions" clients as leading experts in their field-through ghost-written articles and books for publication. Clients include Morgan Stanley, IFG Securities, SunTrust Service Corp. and several professional advisory and management consulting firms nationwide.

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This article was originally published in the November 1998 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: Fire Up!.

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