One of my favorite sayings has long been that by Napoleon Hill, "whatever the mind can conceive and believe, the body can achieve" which is often remembered as I'm riding up a memorable hill on my mountain bike. This quote starts the book I am currently reading "The Answer" by Allan and Barbara Pease.
Napoleon Hill's saying is supported by medical science and is the secret of the Reticular Activating System (RAS) which is located in the brain stem of the mammalian brain, so most humans have one. The RAS plays a part in our key functions, sleeping, waking, breathing - you get the picture. It has a GPS installed and is the reason we can find our way to where we want to get too when we are driving our cars, and is the reason why you see your car everywhere you go.
Essentially the RAS is the computer inside us that filters the 400 million bits of information a second down to the 2,000 bits of information that our conscious brain can process consciously – it is the mail room say.
So "The Answer"? Well that is to program the RAS with our self-talk and expectations. Make a list, hand write that list and focus on the "what", not the "how" – that's the RAS's job mostly done by the unconscious part of our brain. Research suggests that we are 42% more likely to achieve our goals by hand writing them. Using a keyboard involves only 8 different finger movements, whereas handwriting can involve a range of up to 10,000 movements and creates thousands of neural pathways in our brain. Typing it is a bit like reading a text about how exciting driving a sports car is.
So "The Answer"?
Hand write a list of your goals
Quantify your list based on your personal values – what really motivates you? Your goals should be out of reach but not out of sight.
State your goals in the positive, in language which allows your mind to see positive images.
Put your list where you can see it daily.
Keep adding to it and rewrite it as your goals change.
- Jane Evans, Evans Doyle Accountants