In an interview on the BBC, Tom Daley shared a secret to his success at London 2012. When he took to the diving board for his final dive, it was far more than just the culmination of years of hard work and training. It was a moment he had dreamed of since he was nine years old.
The 18-year-old’s dream came true on Saturday when he came third in the diving earning himself a bronze medal. Now, I know this simple little picture Tom drew at the age of 9 isn’t the only factor in creating his Olympic success, but I’ve come to learn it is a big factor.
From A Dream To Reality
When I last checked, a picture similar to this one had 86, 293 likes, 1,914 comments and 1,347 shares on Tom’s Facebook page. Amazing! But I wonder how many of those people who have seen, liked, shared and commented on the picture have really thought about how they can use the same technique an Olympian has used, to turn a dream into reality?
You see, Tom demonstrated a well proven technique called visualisation. In the wonderful Olympics we’ve all just witnessed I doubt there will be one medal winner who doesn’t deliberately use mental rehearsal techniques to help them perform at their best. It’s use is wide-spread among all highly successful people, either consciously or unconsciously. The bottom line is that it works!
The specific technique Tom used – a simple hand drawing – has a number of names but the most well known (thanks to the film The Secret) is a Vision Board or, as I like to call mine, a future photo album.
Vision boards work because they allow you to turn your dreams and vision on. They create a path that leads to inspired action. A Vision Board is like a road map for your life. It allows you to believe that you are powerful and that you deserve to live your right and best life. A Vision Board can be a very helpful tool for keeping you away from distraction and keeping you focused.
Other Famous Vision Board Stories
Tom’s isn’t the only great example of using pictures to inspire. There’s the famous Jim Carrey story when as a struggling actor he wrote himself a post dated cheque for $10 Million dollars with a Memo “For Acting Services Rendered.” He carried the cheque in his wallet everywhere. The rest is history.
Arnold Schwarzenegger, five time Mr. Universe, four time Mr. Olympia, has not only used the power of visualisation for athletic success but also credits it for his success as a movie star: “When I was very young I visualised myself being and having what it was I wanted. Mentally I never had any doubts about it. The mind is really so incredible. Before I won my first Mr. Universe title, I walked around the tournament like I owned it. The title was already mine. I had won it so many times in my mind that there was no doubt I would win it. Then when I moved on to the movies, the same thing. I visualised myself being a famous actor and earning big money. I could feel and taste success. I just knew it would all happen.”
Vision Boards have also been praised by Oprah and featured in the movie The Secret.
Why Vision Boards Work
Visions boards are a fantastic tool for helping you achieve your goals (no matter how big or small) because they activate, what I like to call, the four powers:
1. The power of visualisation
2. The power of your creative mind
3. The power of your unconscious mind
4. The power of the law of attraction
1. The Power of Visualisation
Genevieve Behrend (1881-1960) said: “Everyone visualises whether he knows it or not. Visualising is the great secret of success. We all possess more power and greater possibilities than we realise, and visualising is one of the greatest of these powers.”
You are visualising all the time. You may not be aware of it but you are always conjuring up images in your mind. When you are speaking on the telephone to someone you are often seeing in your mind what they are telling you. You also visualise when you are deep in thought. When you are worrying about paying your debt or worrying about the way you would really like to live your life you are also visualising what you want. Vision Boards use this creative force to help ‘hold in mind’ the things you want.
2. The Power of Your Creative Mind
Did you know the right side of the brain works completely different than the left side? There’s the logical side and the creative side. Brain scientists have been studying both sides of the brain since the 1950s. This study has been termed split-brain research. Split-brain research focuses on how each side of the brain functions differently and what they have discovered is quite amazing.
The left-brain is logical and deals with words, numbers and sequence, whereas the right-brain is creative and understands patterns, symbols and images. The research suggests that we think and process our experiences, feelings and emotions as images first and words second. In other words we think in pictures. Images appear to be much more powerful than words.
Creating a vision board forces us to access more of the power of the right brain, our creative side.
3. The Power of the Unconscious Mind
In terms of achieving your goals, desires and ambitions the unconscious mind is a powerful driving force that you can harness! Often it is unconscious thoughts that control the creation of things. One of the major benefits of making a Vision Board is it works on your desires (the things you want) at the unconscious level. This is achieved by sowing your goals and desires into the unconscious, which then works tirelessly to manifest.
Everything that exists is created in someone’s mind first. Everything starts with a thought. A thought is energy. Energy wants to manifest itself. A lot of thoughts in the same direction will manifest in the real world. This is the process of creation. We create by the same process. We use this process of creation all the time, often without knowing it. When we are not conscious and intentional we may end up using this power to create a negative life. Negative thoughts get negative results.
A Vision Board focuses our attention on what we want, on positive intent. Positive intents bring about positive results.
4. The Power of the Law Of Attraction
Put simply, a Vision Board helps you to feel what it’s like to be where you want to be. Your mind can’t tell the difference between what’s real and what’s imagined so it responds strongly to visual stimulation. By representing your goals with pictures and images you will stimulate your emotions… and your emotions are the vibrational energy that activates the Law of Attraction.
The Law of Attraction states that like attracts like. Much of what was once considered metaphysical, esoteric knowledge in the past is now scientific fact. Physics has shown that the principles involved in the Law of Attraction are every bit as valid as those governing the Law of Gravity.
What this means is that the thoughts we hold in our minds begin to attract similar thoughts and become larger masses of thoughts we call thought forms. The world you see is only a mirror of all the thoughts you have inside of you. Change your thoughts and you change the perception of your world.
It’s impossible to operate outside the law of attraction. Consciously or unconsciously your thoughts, feelings, and emotions, determine if this law works for or against you. A Vision Board helps you to stay focused on your success and reaching your goals.
With clarity you activate the law of attraction to begin to pull things from your external environment that will enable you to realise your dream. Just like Tom Daley. By selecting pictures that energise, you will begin to manifest those things into your life.
Fast = Slow. Slow = Fast
The challenge for many people I coach is they never slow down long enough to get clear on what they want. As a consequence, they live their lives in reaction making them unconscious creators. They go about their daily lives not knowing that the thoughts they are thinking have an impact on their outside world and the direction they go in.
A Vision Board quickly moves you into being an inspired creator of your life. The key to getting what you want is knowing exactly what you want. A vision board can help you clarify what you want and keep you focused on it. The better we do at this job, the greater chance we have to realise the life we truly desire.
Whatever your goal – whether that’s obtaining money, attracting your perfect soul mate, radiant health, success in your career, or building personal and community relationships to give back — learning to vividly imagine is the first step on the path to making them happen.Enjoy!
Lastly…. I’m sure my British readers would like to join me in congratulating Tom for being such an inspiration to us all. Job well done Tom!
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