I am not the best at resolutions. But every now and again, I will set my sights on a new endeavor or reset my attitude about something and go for it.
In my time, I’ve noticed that there are some folks who are more adept at changing and self-improvement than others. This group is not letting life happen to them willy-nilly. Instead, achievers live life as a game of adventure, first identifying some targets and then plotting, assessing, and refocusing efforts toward their ambitions daily.
You’ve probably heard of vision boards. If not, a vision board is a tool used to help you clarify and concentrate focus on a particular goal. Any kind of board will do, and the idea is that you display images of people, places, and things that represent what you want to be, do, or have in life.
Now, I’m not suggesting that we all go out and buy a corkboard to hold pretty pictures from magazines, but I do believe that visualization works.
Successful athletes are really good at visualizing. Just watch Olympic silver medalist and Greenville native Sandi Morris as she sprints, carrying her pole, determined to throw her body over a crossbar that is nearly three times her height. I guarantee she never imagines herself knocking the crossbar off as she approaches the launch point.
Surely a corollary to visualization is “fake it ’til you make it,” something that I have found quite useful from time to time. Here is the simplest example, with credit going to my husband (who will read this and expect to be acknowledged). If you are feeling blah or overwhelmed and need a little cheering up, start singing to yourself “Happy Days Are Here Again.” I used to harrumph and protest that a silly little song would not have any effect on my (rare) bad mood—and then I tried it. It works! It’s like how you can’t help but smile when you see a puppy or hear a baby giggle.
To the extent you can control anything in your life, you must believe you can be successful in order to achieve success. Otherwise you’re just lucky or unlucky, back to living life willy-nilly, doomed to repeat mistakes, allowing choices to be made for you and never enjoying the feeling of success when you have accomplished a goal.
A quote attributed to Aristotle says this: “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” Sounds to me like Aristotle had a vision board.
So, now, let’s sing a song of cheer again, happy days are here again!
I’m here if you need me. Until then, y’all behave.