Once a goal is defined the next step is to visualize it.
CEOs of major corporations and star athletes attribute their success to visualization. Walt Disney died before he ever had a chance to step inside Disneyworld, but by using visualization he knew exactly how the complex would look when completed. At age 12, golf pro Tiger Woods visualized himself winning the Master’s Tournament and embarked on the necessary training to achieve that goal.
Begin the visualization process by finding a comfortable and quiet place to sit (don’t lie down, you’ll fall asleep). When comfortable, take a few deep breaths to relax yourself. Close your eyes and raise them toward your forehead. Imagine you are in a theater, standing in the middle of the stage. The goal setting process begins by visualizing yourself in your desired state or situation by answering the following questions:
What will I see, hear, feel, smell and taste?
If you don’t know what you will feel when you reach your goal, you won’t know when you’ve reached it. Visualizations should be as specific and vivid as your imagination will allow. Tiger Woods visualized himself winning the Masters Tournament by picturing sinking that last putt. In his mind he saw the ball rolling toward the cup. He heard the crowd roar as the ball fell into the cup. He felt his father hug him. He pictured himself receiving the trophy while wearing the green victory jacket.
Do the same for each of your goals. Record your specific feelings and visions. If your goal is to have a large multi-doctor practice, visualize yourself standing in the middle of the business area observing six receptionists answer the phones. Picture the office decor and hearing the music playing in the background. Experience the office environment in your mind.
As you visualize each goal, open your eyes and record the details of your goals in the “visual image” section on the blueprint, devoting a different page to each goal (see Figure 1).
If you are unable to perform or are uncomfortable with the visualization process (maybe, as a child you were constantly whacked in the head by your teachers for daydreaming), you can import an image from an outside source. Suppose you have a goal of spending your retirement fishing. Find a picture of a fisherman on a boat in a lake and paste your face in the picture. Paste the composite picture in the visual image box on the blueprint. If you have a goal of a busy, cutting age practice, peruse dental trade magazines for pictures of offices that fit your vision. The visual image will act as a constant reminder of your goal(s) and help you remain focused on their realization.