It’s a noisy world out there. Distractions abound. Then there’s Resistance tempting us to neglect our most valuable dreams.

While visualization and affirmations are popular manifesting tools, adding visual reminders can keep you from forgetting your focus. Happily, there are many ways to add visuals to your journey.

I was reminded of this the other day when I was searching for the perfect wall calendar for 2012. At this time last year, I was settling into my new home with its treetop views and added to the pleasure with a calendar of treehouses from around the world.

Since 2011 was about putting down roots, the new year is going to be focused on growing wings. My new calendar of gorgeous scenes from Tuscany will be a constant reminder of the big wide world I want to explore.

Here are some other tried and true favorites for adding positive energy to our goals and dreams.

° Write it down. I don’t know a single goal-setting system that doesn’t begin by urging us to pick up a pen. As Patricia T. O’Conner points out, “An idea in your head is merely an idle notion. But an idea written down, that’s the beginning of something.”

° Put yourself in the picture. Several years ago, my daughter asked me to visualize her driving a red Honda CRV. When we happened to pass that very car parked at the Pasadena Flea Market, I asked her to stand beside it so I could take a picture.

She and I both posted that picture where we could see it frequently. Within a few months, Jennie was standing beside her very own red Honda.

Whether you want to see yourself speaking to enthusiastic audiences or trekking through Nepal, find a picture of your ideal situation and paste yourself in it. Or, if you’re handy, photoshop yourself in.

° Carry a talisman.When I was visiting my sister in Athens, Greece, she took me to a shop which sold small metal plates embossed with a variety of pictures. Nancy told me that people used these to enhance their prayers.

If they were praying for a healing, for instance, they’d buy one of these plates with a picture of the body part that needed aid.

Ralph Charell is an enthusiastic advocate. He wrote, “Putting aside any consideration of the supernatural attributes or powers of talismans, they provide a convenient, portable, three-dimensional, concrete focus for galvanizing goal-directed thought into productive action.”

I once met a young man who was wearing a stunning crystal necklace. He told me about an exciting opportunity that had come to him.

”Do you think your necklace is responsible?” I asked.

“No,” he smiled. “I think it’s my talent. The crystal helps me remember to use it.”

° Join the vision board fan club. As your vision grows and changes, create a poster to reflect those new directions. (If you need help getting started there are several good books including Joyce Schwarz’s The Vision Board.)

Almost everyone I know who regularly creates a vision board reports coming across one from the past that they’ve tucked away and discovering how many things they’d posted that are now a regular part of their lives.

It’s a fun exercise that has the built-in bonus of helping you edit out things that you’re less than passionate about in order to make room for what matters most.

Barbara Sher once said, “When you think your dreams are impossible, that makes them invisible.”

Quite simply, adding visibility before dreams manifest, increases the odds that they will arrive—perhaps when you least expect them. So gather words and pictures of what you’re working for and keep them in sight.

You might just amaze yourself.

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Ready to up your commitment to the Joyfully Jobless Journey?  Here’s a great power tool. Join Terri Belford and me in Las Vegas on January 28 & 29 and get 2012 off to a successful start. Early Bird enrollment ends on 12/31/11.

 

 

You don’t have to be a math whiz to put numbers to work for you. Assigning a number to a project can help you focus and, also, give you a finish line.

Open-ended goals have a way of never reaching completion, but attach a numerical addition and getting started is much easier. Here are a few ideas to borrow.

Pick a number under ten and use it as a goal setting guide.

For me, it’s the number five. You might prefer three or six. Then instead of thinking, “I need to get more clients,” set a short term goal to get three (or whatever your favorite number is) new clients.

Of course, you can repeat this exercise as often as you like, but your chances for success increase enormously when you work with a smaller number.

Years ago, when I was floundering around trying to get my speaking  business launched,  I met a successful, but unhurried, seminar leader who told me her business plan was, “Do one, book one.”

As soon as she finished a program, she’d spend time marketing her services until she’d booked just one more. It’s been a policy I have used ever since with great success.

Stumped about your next steps?

Challenge yourself (and your subconscious mind) by asking a idea-generating question such as, “What are three ways I can grow my business right now?” Or “Who are four people I could collaborate with?”

Write a tip sheet.

Don’t forget how useful numbers are in writing tip sheets which can be turned into articles. Six Ways to Get More Exercise is an easier article to write than one called How to Get More Exercise.

Using numbers also is a reminder that when you write a tip sheet the intention isn’t to tell everything you know.

Numbers work equally well for subtracting things from your life that you no longer want.

Instead of trying to unclutter your life all at once, for example, get rid of nine things a day until the job is done. It’s far less overwhelming if you break it down into bite sized chunks.

Go through the junk drawer and throw away nine things or toss out nine magazines or find nine things in your closet you never wear and put them in a bag for the thrift store.

Assigning a number to necessary, but not necessarily pleasant, tasks can break through procrastination and get positive momentum going.

Pick a number, any number, and then pick one of the projects listed below.

*  Ways to get into the conversation

*  Books to add to my library

*  New profit centers to design

*  Things to study

*  New adventures to schedule

*  Self-bossers to invite to  breakfast

*  Fresh marketing tools to create

*  Media interviews to book

*  Nonessentials to eliminate

*  Ways to support other entrepreneurs

*  Articles to publish

Or add your own projects to the list—and then get busy making them happen