Have you ever been in the zone? Was there a time you felt as if you were invincible in business, a time when sales were up, business was booming, and everything you touched turned to gold?
How do you get in the zone? How do you stay in the zone?
Sports psychology has been around for years. Athletes have realised that physical training is only a part of their success and that mental training can make up to 70 per cent of their success on the field.
For today’s business people to stay ahead of the pack, they also need to invest time and money into training their brain. What happens on the outside is directly affected by what is happening on the inside. To control our behaviour and get that ‘winning feeling,’ we need to control our mind.
Here are some keys to train your brain to stay positive so we can stay in the “zone.”
1. Recycle yesterday's victories
One of the ways to thinking positive in any situation is to look back and recall past victories. What are the things you have achieved of which you are most proud? Make a list of every victory since you were born, and when you are under pressure, recall some of those past successes in your mind.
Sports psychologists have known this strategy for years and taught their sports stars to do this when they are under pressure. The sportsperson will look back in his or her mind and capture the image and emotion of past great shots and pull that feeling into the present with the affirmation, “I did it then, and I can do it now.”
2. Plant a garden of positive thoughts
Think of your mind as a garden. Weeds, like negative thoughts, just grow automatically. How do you get rid of these negative thoughts from your mind?
After my first trip to Bali, I wanted a little bit of Bali in my front yard, so I planted a garden. The challenge was this, how do I keep the weeds away? One day, I saw on a TV show a garden in Atlanta, US, where the gentleman covered his ground in ground cover. I decided that every weekend, I would go to the hardware and buy some ground cover and plant it in my garden. I did this for a year and filled my garden with beautiful plants and flowers, it took some time and investment but now the weeds can't grow.
If you read positive books, listen to positive videos, and hang around positive people, you are planting positive thoughts and images in your mind that can overtake the weeds of negativity. Here are my 515 Best Positive Quotes Ever to encourage you.
3. Remember the tide always turns
I love the ocean and have surfed since I was 14. When you are around the ocean, you realise that the tide affects so many things – surfing, fishing, wind, and weather.
Sometimes, in life, it feels like the tide has gone out and is never coming back. You can’t get a sale, can’t win a project, or can’t find a candidate. You feel as if the tide is never coming in again. These are the times when you start feeling negative.
The reality is that the tide will turn one day if you hold onto your hope, stay confident, and work hard. One day, your luck will change, you will win the project, make the sale, and have the right candidate.
During times like these, I like to read positive quotes from great people who have succeeded, like Thomas Edison: “Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.”
4. Fill your mind with positive pictures
Goal setting is essential for training your brain. Once you have set your goals, you need to fill your mind with an image of you achieving that goal. Your brain thinks in terms of pictures. Hear a piece of information, and three days later, you’ll remember 10 percent of it. Add a picture and you’ll remember 65 per cent.
One of the ways that the great golfer Jack Nicklaus trained his brain was before he ever hit a golf shot, he stopped for a moment and played that shot as a video in his brain. First, he saw where he wanted the ball to land, sitting up on the green, and then he saw how it got there, trajectory, height in the air, and speed, and finally, he saw the swing he needed to turn the previous image into a reality.
Spend a few minutes each morning picturing your goals as pictures already achieved. See yourself with that new home, that new client, that new employee, that income, and that success.
Training your brain doesn’t happen overnight, but it will happen if you dedicate yourself to a daily diet of positive thoughts, images, and encouragement. As Zig Ziglar says, “People often say that motivation doesn't last. Well, neither does bathing - that's why we recommend it daily.”