As I do almost every year at about this time, I listen to Napoleon Hill's, “Think and Grow Rich.” Every time I do, I have another epiphany.
I was in Chapter 2 and Napoleon was talking about transmutation and visualization. Once, many years ago, while I worked with one of the top advisers in the nation, he told me about this book. I asked him, “What is the one thing you wish your advisers would do to become more successful?” He did not even pause: “Visualize the close.”
If you cannot see yourself doing it, whatever “it” means to you, you will never, and I mean never, achieve it. Have you ever seen the Winter Olympics? Well, some of you might not, but watch a downhill ski racer. They are visualizing every turn before they even put on their skis. Do you visualize the close before the meeting? Do you visualize applause and appointments being set after your seminar? Most of you do not.
We are professionals like any other, but why, why don't we learn from others? Many of you are reading this and saying, “Yeah, I know all this.” But, why aren't you doing it?
We can achieve levels of greatness and success. It is within your grasp. All you have to do is see it, taste it, feel it, believe it can come true and put in the work. You have to put in as much as you want to get out of this dream. It will not just happen with thought alone; it is thought plus action.
Napoleon — I hope he would not mind me calling him that, considering I have listened to and read his wonderful book more times than I can count — says this is the key to success. Seeing yourself with what you want, then programming your mind, through repetition, to convince yourself you will have it. It is not a “Secret” (purposeful jab). It is as simple as all of those negative thoughts that play in your mind all the time. Take control of those tapes and make a positive one of your own.
This year, when you are planning for 2014, create your five-year vision. Where do you want to be in five years? I am working all of my clients through this now, and it is yielding some interesting results. It is amazing how much resistance I get from them. They cannot or will not visualize where they want to be, because why? Deep down, they do not want it to come true. Do you want to live your life the way you want and have the things you desire? Start with a five-year plan.
Sit in a quiet place with your computer, yellow pad or whatever and start writing. In five years I will ... Take yourself on an experiential journey. What does it look like, your success in five years? Who is with you? How do you feel? Try to experience this to its fullest. Then record your voice reading it. Every smartphone on the planet can do a voice memo. If not use, your Dictaphone. Listen to it every day on your way to work. Or, better yet, when you pull into your parking place, pause and play it to get your mind right for the day. When you get home, pull into your garage, play it again. This is straight from Napoleon himself, with some tech upgrades.
As a huge fan of Napoleon Hill and very grateful to the person who introduced me to his work, this is a great time of year for you to sit down, read the book, get ready, start planning for 2014.
Matthew Halloran is a certified coach for advisers. He wrote "The Social Media Handbook for Financial Advisors: How to Use LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter to Build and Grow Your Business."