This Epic 15-Minute Habit Can Change Your Life

Photo by Becca Tapert on Unsplash

Do you struggle with confidence?

Was there a time in your life that you really wanted to do something great, something amazing, something new — and yet you either didn’t try or you quit? Maybe you failed, but deep down you know you didn’t try as hard as you should have.

Because if you don’t try as hard as you could, somehow, deep-down, it makes failing easier.

I’ve been there too.

Sitting at my computer attempting to start my first business, knowing I had a good idea, but unable to grapple with the constant barrage of fear and self-doubt.

I would walk around with my head down, ashamed and scared. I would sit at my computer drowning in what if’s, self-confidence draining from me faster than it could rebuild.

All I could think about is the bad that could happen.

  • What will people think?
  • What if I lost my money?
  • What happens if (when) I fail.
  • I’m not good enough for this.

Your Brain is Trying to Protect You

Image by mohamed Hassan from Pixabay

Our brain focuses on the negative to protect us from getting uncomfortable.

Your brain wants you to survive, it doesn’t care about your happiness and success — it simply cares that you will survive and procreate.

Therefore, whenever you decide to take a step outside your comfort zone, it fires back, it shows you all the possible terrible outcomes, and it scares you out of even trying…even if that something is a dream you desperately want.

You Can’t Perceive Fake Reality

Our brains cannot tell the difference between reality and vividly imagined reality.

Therefore, when we constantly focus on the negative that could happen we believe that it’s actually happening.

We mope about, sad and depressed, shrouded in self-doubt as if we’ve already failed — when in fact, we’re just getting started.

“Losers visualize the penalties of failure. Winners visualize the rewards of success.”

I know this first hand.

When I was in Thailand starting my own business, it all came down on me like I could have never expected.

I’m extremely outgoing, probably to a fault. Yet, there were days I could barely leave my apartment, and if I did, it was with my head down, no eye-contact, and barely speaking to anyone.

In other words, I wasn’t even myself.

I was acting as if my business ventures had already failed— and yet I had just started building them.

But as you sit and let the negative thoughts flow, you begin to feel as if you’ve already failed, and then you act that out.

Let me ask you something — what do you think the odds are of success when you’re walking around thinking and acting as if you’ve already failed?

Probably not too great.

Flip the Script

“Visualize your success then take action.”
~Anonymous

But, on the other hand, if you’re going to think of future possibilities anyway, why not make them positive possibilities?

It’s easier said than done, of course, because the negative possibilities come at us constantly, without us even trying.

Unfortunately, the negative thinking is natural. It’s how you grew up and have lived throughout your life.

It’s one of those habits that we don’t want, and can’t really get rid of.

But you can make it better. A lot better.

The first step is to begin a daily positive visualization routine.

Positive Visualization

Image by Benjamin Balazs from Pixabay

Let me tell you about a famous study that you’ve probably already heard of.

It was a study about the powerful effect of visualization, this time on basketball players.

Note: There are many more visualization studies out there if you’re interested, that back up this point.

To do this, they split college students into three different groups.

Group A — would practice free throws for an hour every day for thirty days.

Group B — would visualize practicing free throws for an hour a day for thirty days.

Group C — would do nothing at all.

After the thirty days were up, the results where somewhat interesting.

Well, at least some of them were.

As you probably assumed, Group C did not improve at all.

While Group A improved by 24%.

But the real stars of the show — Group B — improved by 23%, with only visualization!

The takeaway is that visualizing is almost as compelling as the real thing.

Your New Visualization Habit

Image by Here and now, unfortunately, ends my journey on Pixabay from Pixabay

Let's discuss the best habit you can start building today, that will help you to gain confidence every day and improve your odds of success in whatever you do.

But first, I want to discuss how important your visualization technique is.

Here are a few tips that will help you improve your visualization skills and as a result, your visualization outcome…

  • Visualize out of your own eyes, as if it’s really happening to you — in the moment.
  • Involve sight, sound, and feel to really gain the benefits of visualization.
  • Staying with the basketball analogy, you have to be at the free-throw line. Feel the basketball in your hands. Feel the ball roll off your fingers and see your arms move as you take the shot. Watch your follow-through as you see the basketball float through the air and swish — nothing but net. Hear the sounds, feel the excitement as you made yet another free throw.

This can be catered to whatever it is you’re visualizing. If you’re starting a business, visualize where you’ll be in six months or a year after the business is successful. What are you wearing, driving, where are you staying? How are you feeling? How is your business doing? What’s your daily routine?

And then bask in that feeling of success. How it impacts you.

For example, one year from today, I wake up and walk to my balcony, opening the door I have a view of Rome. I make my daily cup of coffee, grab a book, and read on the balcony as the sun rises.

I then get my computer and start writing for one of my clients — from the balcony overlooking Rome.

I have two coaching calls to cap off my morning, and from there (feeling refreshed and full of energy) I go to the gym.

Once done I put on casual clothes — jeans and an athletic fit tee-shirt — and grab my laptop to walk around the city, starting with a great lunch at one of my favorite street-side restaurants. Once there I wrap up the remaining work I have for the day while people watching and eventually enjoying a nice glass of wine.

I cap off my day by getting a happy hour and meeting amazing new people.

How do I feel? Ecstatic. Successful. Happy. I’m financially free, and I travel where I want, when I want.

Do you see how that can work?

The idea is, be as specific with the visualization as you can. Feel that confidence and happiness ooze from every pore.

For example: do you have any tattoes? What watch are you wearing? Any other jewelry? How about your shoes?

Picture the color of your clothes, the scent of your perfume, the scenery around you.

Your Daily Visualization Routine

Photo by Johannes Plenio on Unsplash

Surely, make this routine your own — just try to do it every day. Make it a habit. Make it a part of your meditation routine. Or a precursor to your workout.

Anything to make it stick.

Dr. Maxwell Maltz (author of Psycho-Cybernetics) recommends thirty minutes a day.

But I understand how this can be hard at first. But once you get used to it, you may just want that entire thirty minutes.

To start off, make it easier and begin with fifteen. The important part here is that you create a habit. You can increase the time later.

“You are more productive by doing fifteen minutes of visualization than from sixteen hours of hard labor.”
~Abraham Hicks

And as you build this habit, not only are you learning how to add positive visualization to build your self-confidence, you’re also combating the negative visualization that comes so naturally and constantly.

And as you increase the positive and decrease the negative, you begin gaining more and more self-confidence, and that drives more and more success.

Here’s what to do:

  1. Find a quiet place.
  2. Sit, or lay (but don’t fall asleep) comfortably and close your eyes.
  3. Avoid distractions and background noise by playing white noise or using headphones.
  4. Take 5–6 deep breaths, in and out. Count to 5 on the inhale, hold for 5, and count to 8 on the exhalation.
  5. Now visualize where you want to be in 6 months (or 1 year, you choose). And really feel it. What are you doing in your business? How about for fun? Where are you living? Are you with someone? Are you traveling? Be very specific and really feel everything about what you’re experiencing.
  6. Once the timer is up, get back to your day.
  7. And when the negative stuff creeps in oh-so-naturally, as it tends to do, recognize it, acknowledge it, and flip it to your positive visualization for five minutes. Then shoo it away and live in the present. Do what you have to do to make your positive visualization come true.

If we stop dwelling on the negative and focus on the positive (where your focus goes, your energy flows) our odds of confidence, and therefore success, increase ten-fold.

“I believe that visualization is one of the most powerful means of achieving personal goals.”
~Harvey Mackay

What’s your positive visualization?

Let us know in the comments section.

Hi, I’m Jay Gross, a mango-obsessed entrepreneur, and mindset coach. A writer and creator focused on personal growth and business. Helping others to live their best life one day at a time. Find me at www.lifenextlevel.com or email me at jay@lifenextlevel.com.

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Jay Gross

Jay Gross

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Jay Gross is a writer, podcast host, lives to travel, with an unhealthy mango obsession. Focused on personal growth. Find him at www.lifenextlevel.com.