With the increasingly demanding lifestyle these days, it is a daunting task to achieve what we want. We often relate achievements with luck or a particular set of skills. The answer to the existential question is simple but most of us fail to see. There is no special formula for becoming successful, one just has to work hard and believe in oneself. Don’t waste your time trying to decipher the correct formula because it doesn’t exist. The reason why the world’s greatest innovators can do what they do is because they never gave up. They didn’t wait for that holiday in the sun for two weeks or attended every social gathering their friends invited them too. The purpose is a sign of life. However minute it might be if one couldn’t attach a purpose to their life, one never lived.
So how can one manifest the life of their dreams? While the Internet is flooded with motivational quote posters portraying colorful sunrises amidst the mountains and the self-help book category has transformed into a million-dollar industry, the secret behind achieving what you desire boils down to one thing alone- YOU!
If our desires and intention are truly aligned, we can begin to ‘manifest’ the life we want by engaging all our senses in the imagining and visualization of it. In this way, our dreams begin to feel tangible to our brains. In finding this focus and fully identifying it in our mind, two physiological processes are going on in the brain simultaneously that explain this powerful cocktail and why manifestation has real effects. These processes are ‘selective attention’ (filtering) and ‘value tagging’. Let’s explore them in more detail.
Built-up of over 86 million neurons, our brain is the most complex and ingenious organ of our body. Despite all the progress that the humankind has made in their existence, the brain remains an enigma to us. Such is the remarkability of the brain. But like most things in the world the brain has a stumbling block, it is distracted too easily. We are bombarded with millions of bits of information every second and our youthful brain is easily carried away. If one is not laser-specific about what they want to achieve in life, they are engaging in a passive goal setting. When one does not set their goals actively, one loses purpose and direction. To enable us to focus on what is necessary to us at that time, we must help let our brain fade a few things into the background. The cognitive process in which the brain attends to a small number of sensory inputs while filtering out what it deems unnecessary distractions is known as Selective attention. The communicative abundance present in the modern world makes selective attention essential for manifesting our ideal life. It is a powerful reason to take charge of what you pay attention to and what you don’t. It is human nature to want to have everything, but not all that we desire has a purpose in our life. A person who tries to go in all directions ends up going nowhere.
Having discussed the pivotal role played by selectivity in manifesting one’s ideal life. It is essential to elaborate on value tagging as it is the driving force behind the principle of selectivity.
Value tagging is the importance assigned by the brain to every piece of information. It is an unconscious activity that precedes every action in response to a stimulus. Although it might sound like we have no control over it, there are logical and emotional elements to value tagging. The logical element is literally about tagging all the data our brains are bombarded with in order of value to us and our survival. The emotional element has more to do with assigning value to our levels of ‘social safety’, which is our sense of belonging in our community and purpose that builds up our personal and work identities. Because of this process, it’s easy to assign a disproportionate value to things we care about or a negative value (aversion) to things we fear or where we feel uncertain.
For example, if we try to adopt a healthier lifestyle but believe that we won’t be able to keep it up, we can find ourselves easily giving in to temptation and making bad choices. This is because strongly emotional experiences that have shaped our brain pathways can derail our value-tagging system, skewing it towards what we think keeps us safe even if this is not conducive to thriving in our current life.
The indispensable solution to the problem is setting one’s priorities straight. Quite simply, when you do allow your brain to be conscious of and focus on what you want in life, the raised awareness that results will work in your favor to automatically bring opportunities into your life.
Visualization is one way that helps our brain assign the correct value to a task or a piece of information. Visualization and active goal setting seem to be pivotal in achieving one’s dreams.
This could be considered the first step in transforming one’s dream into reality. Creating charts, setting goals, and revisiting every once a while is what helps us be selective in life and tag values appropriately. It is important to notice that setting up goals does not equate to setting deadlines. One must make sure that the chart is like a roadmap, an action plan laid in great detail. Do not underestimate the importance of a thorough action plan. At the start of the journey, one is often riding high on motivation, one confidently sets out on the road that will lead to the destination. But this road is seldom taken by many and is rocky. One must be mentally strong, determined, and obstinate to stay on it. If one doesn’t have an all-encompassing plan to finally accomplish what they want, then your efforts will go in vain.
What is a road map made up of?
Short term goals- Goals that are pragmatic, achievable, and lay the foundation to achieve your actual goal. And hence are the first step to achieve that ultimate goal.
Long term goals- Goals that are a bit tricky to achieve and test one’s commitment. These are identifiable stepping stones that help one pave their way to the ultimate goal.
The ultimate goal — The ideal goal that is a part of one’s dream life. The accomplishment that motivated one to toil tirelessly. Ideally, the ultimate goal is something that we are always progressing towards and is revised along the way as we achieve greater success and dream bigger.
Revisiting and Revising — Not to mean to bolster one’s procrastination, revising goals in this scenario simply getting in touch with reality. Running high on motivation one might underestimate the complexity of a task. Revision of goals helps regulate stress and leads to efficiency. As exemplified by the molecules around us, a change that occurs quickly is reversible. It is not a day’s job, it takes time to instill habits detrimental to achieve one;’s goal. Going one step at a time oneself slowly yet surely leads to better results in the long run. It is achievable and practical. Consider a crash diet, people tend to regain their weight once it is over hence a change in lifestyle is what we are aiming for.
Milestones- Another step that is essential for staying motivated and on track throughout the year is to visualize one’s progress in a distinguishable manner. Choose photos to represent each goal that you can look at every day on your vision board and be constantly reminded of what you’re truly striving for. I also added a couple of photos of some of my biggest role models to keep me inspired as well.
It might seem a bit odd to say this but currently, we have the luxury of being restricted to the domain of our homes. What better time to start one’s journey. Alongside the company of your chaotic headspace, visualize. Ponder, brain-storm, decide and build a roadmap for yourself. While most people are enjoying their ‘leisure time’, get a headstart. Every cloud does have a silver lining, so make the most of the time and start manifesting. We can’t do anything about the pandemic, but at least we can take control of our lives.
Although visualization is pivotal, in reality, it gets one nowhere. Execution of the plan and walking through the roadmap in real life is indispensable.
“Ideas are always welcome but the execution is worshiped” (Confiding in oneself)
Stop procrastination and work towards achieving your ambitions. Don’t let the visualization board rot in the dust. Confide in yourself and remind yourself that one is only as strong as one imagines to be.
By the term, “confide in yourself”, I mean believe in your capabilities and do not ever doubt that you won’t be able to make it in the end. Do not let the doubt take over or fear to control you. To truly manifest one’s ideal life one must go all in. Playing it safe is just an illusion because life is not about that. One will never evolve if you don’t take risks and you won’t grow if you don’t fail and start from the bottom. Being able to take control of your life, regardless of what’s happening in it is going to take you to the next level. Everyone has the potential to be great but many don’t because they’re just not willing to put in the hard work. They wait for the right opportunity to come knocking on their door. The great Les Brown once said, “You don’t have to be great to get started but you have to get started to be great”. There will never be a right time, you just have to start and do it. Don’t wait for things to be perfect, because they will never be. Perfection is simply an illusion we create to trick ourselves into something that isn’t attainable. Do not let anyone fool you by showing a short cut or changing your dreams. Irrespective of the setbacks, with confidence, you get up and move ahead. If you want it badly, you would always find away. Perseverance is the key to success.
So you are the driving force behind your own life, and you need no one’s validation but that does not mean that connections are not important. You could be the best at what you do but if you are not well recognized, you do not exist. So prioritize relationships.
Prioritize Your Relationships
They say it’s not what you know but WHO you know and that remains to be 100% accurate. Sometimes it doesn’t matter how hard you work, if you don’t have the network or good relationships, your shot at success will be significantly more difficult. Prioritizing networking and maintaining strong relationships is essential to achieving one’s milestones. Make it a point to check out a networking event at least once a month to build a few new connections. Surprise a co-worker or acquaintance with an extra coffee you picked up. Cold email and reach out to LinkedIn connects or brands you’re interested in partnering with or speaking to. Whatever you got to do, put people first, make the value you offer known, and show that you care.
While doing so, do not forget about the relationships that matter to you the most, because they are the ones who will help you the most in times of hardships. Having someone who believes in you puts things into perspective. So do not bundle yourself in your work to an extent where you become a distant memory to the others.
These are what I believe to be the components detrimental to manifesting one’s dream life, there are some generic sub-components that one must focus on. Although they are a part of the main component, it is essential to focus on them the most. SO let’s dive deep
Work Smarter And Harder
The person who said work smarter, not harder underestimated the power of hard work. So why not amalgamate the best of both worlds. Be creative, confident in your work methods, and innovative in brainstorming sessions.
You don’t want to be the audience anymore. To get noticed, you’ll have to do your homework before others reach that chapter; you need to identify and keep the solution ready beforehand. Dive into every opportunity head first.
If you prioritize what’s important to you and sacrifice the things that don’t serve your long term goals, the road to your success suddenly becomes a lot clearer from obstructions.
Efficiency and smart investment are your secret weapons. I’ve heard a lot of people say they can’t do something because they don’t have enough money to yet or they’re ‘not ready to’ for whatever bullshit reason. But if you want something, then why wait? Let’s figure out a way to get you there no matter what your current life situation is at the moment. One way to be resourceful is to never stop learning and grabbing every opportunity. Think that a scalable website will go a long way but do not have the money to hire a web developer. Just take up a course and build a simple static website. Every job does not have to be perfect, it just needs to be executed.
If you know exactly what you deserve, no one can stop you. It might seem difficult at first to stand your ground while talking to authority. Be strong-willed and confident while putting your point of view. If you cannot attend a social gathering because you are cramped for time, it’s fine
Ask and It Will be Given
Ask yourselves what makes you really happy. Align your vision with reality. Most of us shy away from asking. You can’t lose what you never had and you would not achieve without first asking. Be specific while asking, do not never beat around the bushes! Be confident while asking for that position you deserve or the raise you want.
Pick Up and Start Over
Never be affected by roadblocks. Be encouraged by small setbacks. Never give in to the circumstances. Fall down seven get up eight. We have more setbacks than success, but undoubtedly these setbacks make the success sweeter. Because of all struggles, we tend to celebrate our smaller wins. Reward yourself quite often. We should never fold our cards easily.
Try a Different Route
While walking on the same path day in and day out, you would arrive at the same place. If you are not able to achieve your goal, it’s time to change your path. Take a different route to arrive at your destination. Einstein’s well-known quote adds up to this point. “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.” Change your approach, take an off trodden path. Life may surprise you. We must never be stick to the humdrum, rather mix it up a little.
And Be passionate
At the end of the most successful people rich in passion and joy for life. These two qualities will take you further than any amount of money ever will. If you want something you have to first be passionate about it. In doing so, you will have the right intention for it to make it happen. Everything that comes from the heart, is genuine and this brings out possibilities. Passion keeps your dreams alive and your vision steady. When you are passionate about what you want to do, you know it’s possible. And if it feels impossible, you will break the barriers to make it happen because that’s what true authenticity flourishes.
Well, I hope that you have gathered the essential components detrimental to manifesting one’s ideal life, but do not forget about the indispensable component. The one that makes it all happen, you. The voice you always need to listen to is your own. Listen to your inner voice and follow your intuition. You know what’s right for you. Keep your dreams to yourself, you are the only validation you need. Focus your attention inward and realize that you are the only person who needs to give you the go-ahead on where you are going. If you really think about it, you know deep down what you are good at and what makes you happy. Don’t lose track of that feeling and direct your energy on what feels right for you because once your energy is aligned with your vision, the dreams start to transform into reality.
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