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The Power Of Visualisation

The Power Of Visualisation

Lately, I have been reassessing the benefits of self improvement advice that is available these days. Self improvement is huge. In America it is a 12 billion a year industry. The products range from the books, DVDs and seminars of the big toothed Anthony Robbins, possibly the most well known self improvement gurus in the world, to “The Secret”.

I must admit that an Anthony Robbins book was an essential tool in awakening me to the idea that if you changed your thinking, you change your life. I consider this to be very valid, very true.

However, I am less convinced these days by the detail of his books. I see that when it comes to self improvement, often the only person who is successful from all of the products sold to an eager public is the self help guru. I don’t actually know the figures of success for the purchasers of self help products, but I do know it’s very low.

The people who market self help products have naturally analysed their market and found that the number one indicator of whether someone is likely to buy a self help product is that they have previously bought another self help product.

Now that begs the question.. if you have previously bought other self help products, why are you buying more? Clearly your position in life didn’t improve much if you are still seeking further help.

To me it is reminiscent of the bodybuilding product roundabout that I have described before. It’s basically all the same. New supplements promise incredible gains. They don’t deliver. You despair of that supplement and move on to the next new supplement that promises incredible gains. You repeat this cycle until you get wise.

Returning to  self improvement products, something that’s big in the 21st century is “The Secret”. In case you have been living under a rock for the past 20 years, let me summarise the message of the book in a sentence. The secret is the idea that if you imagine what you want, there is a universal law of attraction that will allow you to get it.

So if for example you want a nice car, you imagine the car you want in as much detail as you can and imagine yourself possessing it and driving it. Then the universe feels your want and this car magically comes into your life.

Frankly that is an utter load of rubbish. You’re sitting in your bedsit in a bad part of town, living on the dole and you imagine a Mercedes. Then things happen and voila! You have a Mercedes. Yeah you got it.. it’s not going to happen.

It’s a seductive lie though. People love seductive lies. It’s like if you believe in this god, you will be rewarded with eternal life in paradise.

But let’s not throw out the baby with the bath water here. There is indeed something of benefit in “The Secret”. The visualisation of what you want is something that does work.

Arnold Schwarzenegger is a great believer in visualisation. Naturally when I looked for the exact wording of what Arnold said Google failed me.  However, the sentiment is thus. Arnold visualised everything that he wanted in great detail. He got to the point where he believed he already had what he desired and as he said, all he had to do was go out and get it.

I recall a female acquaintance making a disparaging remark about Arnold years ago, saying he had a “room temperature IQ”. She was a supremely ill informed person. A man who goes from complete obscurity to being world famous and a truly self made man, unlike so many who claim to be self made yet had surprisingly well off parents. Arnold had none of this. He came from a town of 200,000 in Austria that most people outside of Austria would never have heard of if it wasn’t associated with him.

Also, When Arnold talks about what made him successful, he isn’t selling a product. I think it’s a good idea to take free advice from someone who isn’t selling you anything and is clearly super successful.

Another prominent person who extolls the virtue of visualisation and in fact “The Secret” is Conor McGregor. This is a man who 4 years ago was on the dole and now is a multi millionaire. He visualises his success and then makes it happen.

But what is the difference between someone who just dreams and someone who can create success through visualisation?

Three things that I can see. Firstly they set goals. Secondly they take massive action in the direction of their goals. Arnold trained like a man possessed to become Mr Olympia, as did Conor McGregor to become the biggest star in the UFC and one of the few fighters who people who don’t follow the UFC have heard of.

Finally, and I think this is a very important distinction, they are visualising achievement, not things. That guy sitting in the bedsit dreaming of the Mercedes is visualising things. Arnold is visualising his body in its most perfect form, being on stage and being victorious. Or later on, he’s visualising being a movie star. And even later on, he’s visualising being the governor of California.

So we have two further things to look at. The importance of goal setting and action. These will have to wait for another day, because I still have to briefly explain how to visualise.

Firstly, the ability to meditate is a prerequisite. Fortunately I have already explained how to meditate, how to fast track meditation using binaural beats  and the benefits of meditation.

I recommend that before you attempt visualisation, you get used to doing meditation for about a month first. It is my opinion that is essential to be in a meditative state to visualise.

Once you are used to meditation, you simply start imagining what you want. As I have already recommended, focus on visualising achievement.  I truly believe this is key. If you run a business visualise the business booming. Visualise the work rolling in, visualise the phone ringing constantly, visualise getting more and more clients every day.

If you compete in a sport, visualise being successful. Visualise the training you will do, visualise the competition, visualise victory.

And that’s it. Not much to it really. As with all things really powerful, the execution end is really simple.

for more –  Conor McGreogor’s views on visualisation.

Image Source:  Moyan Brenn from Anzio, Italy – Dreaming, CC BY 2.0,




About The Author


A guy obsessed with stripping down whatever field he studies to get the optimum return from effort expended. Sort of like Tim Ferriss, except with zero fame.

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