Gary Mack in his book “Mind Gym – An Athlete’s Guide to Inner Excellence” teaches us that extraordinary people live their lives backwards. They create a future, and then they live into it. Gary uses an acronym for the word ACT. “A” stands for accept; “C” stands for create, and “T” stands for take. Accept your present state; Create your desired state; Take the steps that will lead you there.
ACCEPT: You can’t leave a place you’ve never been. Accepting where you are is the first step to positive change. An honest objective assessment of your current state is foundational to achieving inner excellence. I like to use a personal SWOT Analysis.
· Strengths - What do I do well?
· Weaknesses - Where do I currently struggle?
· Opportunities - What possibilities are before me?
· Threats - What current dangers could shut me down?
Find someone to help you get an objective assessment of your current condition and ACCEPT the truth about your current state.
CREATE: As human beings, we have the amazing ability to leave our present reality and travel in our minds to a created future and a recalled past. Both places can be defined in our minds, but are in fact, fantasy. You may object, and say, “I was there and saw it. I know it was true.”
As an adult, have you ever visited a place, like your elementary school? That slide on the playground was certainly higher than that, and the stage in the gymnasium couldn’t be that little. Our recollections of the past are not accurate. We have selected recall that is influenced by the feelings we experienced at the time of the event. Much of what we recall is fantasy! We relate to the future in the same way. We create expectations and visions of a certain vacation destination. Then we get there, and the experience is never as expected. Sometimes it’s better, and sometimes worse. That’s just the way it works!
Here’s the point. You can CREATE an ideal future in your mind. That is no guarantee that it will come to pass the way you have envisioned it. However, the likelihood of you experiencing a future like that ideal is exponentially higher if you begin with the end in mind. Our brain is an amazing biocomputer. We can CREATE ideal thoughts and outcomes and program our biocomputer with those thoughts. Then our biocomputer will execute that programming instructing us to take the actions necessary to lead us to that destination. Our vision needs to be specific, clear, and emotional. Sense it. Verbalize it, Speak it. See it.
Finally TAKE the steps to move toward that desired state. You can begin today with just a single small step. Many small steps in the right direction over time will take you toward that created future.
Ready to change? It’s time to Accept Create Take. Let’s do it!