I want to talk about a very powerful tool that has helped me out that I call visual motivation. This tool is something that has kept me moving towards my goals every single day, whether I feel like it or not. In this article I want to tell you what it is and give you some examples of how it can help you in your life.
If you know me, follow me on Instagram, read my blog posts ,or listen to our podcast then you know that I love to read. I have set a goal to read a certain number of books each year that I have achieved and have subsequently set the goal higher and higher each year. One tool that I discovered early on in my life that has helped me in achieving these goals is visual motivation. I do this with reading books by always keeping a stack of books that I haven't read in a place where I see it frequently. I started this at a very young age (probably because my eyes were too big for my stomach, so to speak) when I would go to the library and come home with a stack of books. This has continued throughout my life as I have always had a stack of books that I want to read in my room. Right now this stack has probably 20-30 books in it and it is in my room. I walk by it every morning and night at least 20 or 30 times and every time I walk by it my eyes are drawn to it. This accomplishes a couple of things. First it reminds me of all of the books I want to read. Every time I walk by it I am motivated to pick up the books I am reading so I can move on to a book or books in my stack that I am excited about. It also keeps me humble. It reminds me that no matter how much I learn there is still so much out there that I don't know. It keeps me from getting big headed.
So how can we apply this principle to other goals? I want to give you some examples of how you might apply this to your life. The first step is to pick out the goal that you think will have the biggest impact on your life at the current moment. For me that is reading a lot of books. For others it might be losing 30 pounds, or paying off a credit card, or doubling your income. Whatever you think will have the biggest impact should be what you focus on. You don't want to overwhelm yourself by trying to do too many things at once. Pick one goal at a time to throw all of your energy into. Once you have picked out your goal then think about what will be a result of you achieving your goal. For me it would be the books on my dresser now put away on my bookshelf (one of my favorite moments of reading but that's for another day). If you want to lose 30 pounds it might be being able to wear a size smaller t-shirt. If you want to pay off a credit card it might be a picture of a statement that says balance $0. If you want to double your income it might be a picture of a nice car that you have always wanted to drive. The important thing here is to pick something will be the result of achieving your goal, NOT the goal itself! We are going for emotional attachment here. Emotional attachment is going to keep you motivated for much longer than some words on a piece of paper. Once you have your visual representation figured out then place it in place that you pass by constantly. The most logical place would be the bedroom. Hang a shirt that you want to be able to wear on the wall by your bed or at the front of your closet. Put a picture of the car you want to drive or a $0 credit card balance on your mirror. You want to see this visual representation constantly. Every time you walk past it your eyes will be drawn to it and it will make you think. Am I doing what I need to do to achieve this goal? Can I be doing more? Am I on the right track? It is amazing how motivating this can be.
Let me tell you what is going to happen. You are going to put up your visual motivation and you are going to be fired up for a while. It could be 3 months. It could be 3 days. But somewhere along the line you are going to falter a bit. You might go a few days without eating well. You might make a big purchase with your credit card. You might have a setback at work. The tendency is going to be to avert your eyes when you walk past your visual representation. You won't want to look at it. You will feel ashamed. You might even want to take it down because it makes you feel like a failure. DON"T DO IT! This is all part of the process! The path to success is never a straight line. I have gone weeks without reading hardly any. I felt like I was way behind my goal. But I have always been able to get back on track. You can to. Just be prepared for the hard times and don't be discouraged by setbacks. If you commit to this then you WILL achieve your goals. It is only a matter of when, not if.
I hope this has inspired you to try out this tool. The power of visual motivation is real and it can help you do incredible things. Give it a shot in you life and let me know if it works for you. Good luck!