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10 Ways to Boost Your Imagination and Achieve Big Things

10 Ways to Boost Your Imagination and Achieve Big Things

We all want to accomplish goals in our lives, right? Whether they are huge achievements or small victories, getting that promotion at work or making time for people close to you, attaining something you’ve aspired towards feels great. Of course, for some this can also be a little overwhelming and it’s easy to find yourself wandering off into the back of your mind where things are less daunting. But that is exactly what this article urges you to do. It’s time to tap into the goal-accomplishing powerhouse that is your imagination.

An article from Dumb Little Man explores the important role your imagination can play in achieving real life goals. By empowering your mind you can empower your reality. Here’s how:

Imagination is more important than knowledge” ~ Albert Einstein

The reality is you can be anyone or anything you want to be; it just takes a pinch of confidence and a spoonful of imagination.  Do you want to write like Hemingway?  Paint like Michelangelo?  Or become the next big discovery on the Dragon’s Den?

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Guess what?  You can be any of these things; you already have all the tools you need right now to tap in and let yourself shine.

That’s what this article is going to teach you.  I’m going to tell you how.

1.  Realize your potential

Do you think Ernest Hemingway set out to be one the greatest writers of all time?  He was following his passion and with that came huge success.  What you think you become.

2.  Locate our thoughts

During meditation and exercise we can quiet the mental chatter and access a new part of our brains.  When you begin to experience stillness you can start to throw away the logic of the conscious mind and tap into the super conscious mind – responsible for unlimited creativity.Don’t underestimate the power of meditation and exercise.  Both will send feel good endorphins to your brain and release pent up stress and anxiety which is clouding your true potential.

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3.  Throw away preconditioned notions of you

What is it that you have always told yourself, are you lacking in creativity or originality?  Stop these thoughts, your mind is telling you things that aren’t true.  Remember impermanence?  Every moment is like a refresh, you are a blank canvas.  Choose what you want to fill your canvas with.Tap in and experience your truest form, you are a rich, alive and buzzing and nothing will change that.

4.  Decide where to channel your energies

Decide on an imaginative path, or decide on a few.  If you want to be a great painter, visualize yourself as Picasso, walk through your day pretending you are him.  What you think you become, if you imagine success you will create a path for success to find you.

5.  Research and ask questions

Always be inquisitive and most importantly listen to others without trying to form a reply.  You have so much to learn from your fellow peers.  Carry a Notebook and write ideas down; you might be surprised where inspiration finds you.

6.  Observe

Have you noticed what’s going on around you or are you still stuck in your racing mind?  Pay attention to what other successful people are doing.  Talk less and listen more.

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7.  Practice mindfulness

“Mindfulness means maintaining a moment-by-moment awareness of our thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and surrounding environment.”

With this practice come vivid colours and heightened senses; use this new way of looking at the world to tap into your creative juices.  Venture out into nature and feel the aliveness of the forest.

8.  Take time to explore your passions

Music is one of mine; with my favourite song playing I visualize stepping out at dawn to snap a picture of the mysterious fog hovering over a still lake.  Read poetry, have fun with crafts or go to an art gallery, whatever gets you inspired; take a double dose.

9.  Understand that hesitation and doubts are normal, don’t be too hard on yourself

When the mind does take over and tells you you’re not good enough, and it will, let these thoughts go like clouds in the sky; acknowledge them and watch them pass by.  Thoughts will always arise the key is not reacting to them.

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10.  Always take time for yourself.

Don’t become so consumed with finding imagination that you have forgotten how to take time to just be.  Life needs to be a balance of all things.

Make a commitment right now to find your imagination – to be the most magnificent version of you. Every human has limitless potential, you just need to tear away the layers of doubt the mind has tightly wrapped.  Realize every second you are a brand new person and can make brand new changes.  Right now, now, now now!  Go ahead, do something amazing.

’10 Ways to Ignite Your Imagination and Accomplish Big Things’ – Dumb Little Man: Tips For Life

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Siobhan Harmer

Siobhan is a passionate writer sharing about motivation and happiness tips on Lifehack.

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Last Updated on August 12, 2020

When Should You Trust Your Gut and How?

When Should You Trust Your Gut and How?

Learning how to trust your gut, otherwise known as your intuition, can keep you safe. Your gut can guide you and help you build your confidence and resilience. My own gut instinct has saved me on more than one occasion. It has also guided me into making sound career choices and other exciting, big decisions. I’m also aware of the times when I’ve gone against my instincts and really regretted it later, wondering why I didn’t tune in to that valuable internal voice that we all have within us.

In this article, we’re going to explore why and how you should listen to your gut, as well as some concrete tips on how to make sure you’re making the most out of your gut instincts.

How to Listen to Your Gut

The key when making any big decision is to always take a minute to listen well to yourself and your inner compass. If you hear your actual voice saying yes while inside you’re silently screaming no, my advice is to ask for some time to think, or simply take a breath and pause before the yes or no escapes your mouth.

Use that moment to breathe, check in with yourself, and give the answer that feels congruent with who you are and what you want, not the one that always involves following the herd. Trusting your gut means having the courage to not simply go with the majority. It can be about holding your own. Here’s how to hone that skill for yourself and reap the rewards.

1. Tune Into Your Body

Your body gives you clues when you’re faced with a big decision. There are many visible and obvious symptoms that we feel in uncomfortable situations. Our body’s reaction is often something that we might try to hide, for example, blushing, being lost for words, or shaking. There are things we might do to try and hide that physical reaction, whether it’s wearing makeup, having a glass of wine or coffee to perk us up a bit, or learning to control our nerves.

However, paying attention to your body when you experience these feelings of anxiety can teach you so much and help you to make sound choices. Some people will experience an actual “gut” feeling of stomach ache or indigestion in an uncomfortable situation.

Ask yourself what’s really going on here, and explore what is happening behind your body’s response to the situation. What can your reaction or instinct teach you? Understanding that can be a clue and can help you either learn something about yourself, the situation, or other people. The answers are often within us.

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Sometimes we’ll get this “something’s not right here” feeling and cannot quite put our finger on it or explain it. That can still be incredibly useful and really guide us away from danger, even if we don’t know the reason.

In his book, Blink, Malcolm Gladwell also argues this, making the point that sometimes our subconscious is better at processing the answer we need, and that we don’t necessarily need to take time to collect hours and hours of information to come to a reliable conclusion[1].

2. Ensure Your Head Is Clear Before Making a Decision

Energy, sleep, and good nutrition are so vital to nourishing our minds, as well as our bodies. There are times when your instinct could lead you astray, and one of these is when you are hungry, “hangry” (angry because you’re hungry!), tired, or anxious. If this is the case–and it may sound obvious–do consider sleeping or eating on it before making an important choice.

There is, in fact, a connection between our gut and our brain[2], which is where terms like “butterflies in the stomach” and “gut-wrenching” originate from. Stress and emotions can cause physical feelings, and ignoring them might do more harm than good.

3. Don’t Be Afraid to Say What You Think and Feel

Listening to your gut and really paying attention to it might involve standing up and being counted, calling something out, or taking a stand. As someone who works for myself, I’ve become used to following the less-travelled road, and that’s given me the chance to strike out on my own in other ways, too.

As they tell you in the planes, “put your own oxygen mask on first,” and part of that self-reliance is knowing what you really want and like and what is safe and good for you, including what resonates with your personal and business values. Making good decisions with this in mind means making choices that do not go against your own beliefs, even when it may mean taking a stand. This is part of trusting yourself and trusting your instincts.

This does not always mean taking the “safe” option, although keeping ourselves safe is an important part of the process. This is how we learn and grow, by following our own inner compass. When you do take risks, go outside of your comfort zone, or choose the less popular option, spending some time researching the facts can stand us in good stead, too.

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4. Do Your Research If Something Feels Off

As well as listening to our instincts, we can also back up the evidence for our chosen course of action before taking the leap. I had a gut feeling about the need for a learning and development network when I noticed my clients getting stuck with the same problems. I set up and now run such a network, but instead of simply going for it, without evidence, I followed up on my instinct with research.

Having confidence in your gut instinct through these kinds of tests can help to minimize your risks, as well as spur you on. It will encourage you to trust your gut again in the future and trust that you are an expert with foresight and experience. You are!

5. Challenge Your Assumptions

When you look at the assumptions your making, this could be the clue to mistakes you are making.

In order to check that our instincts are wise, we need to ask ourselves what blanks we might be filling in, either consciously or unconsciously. This is true not just when it comes to our own decision-making. It’s also true when we are listening to someone explain a problem or situation, and we’re about to jump in and give some advice. If we can learn to be aware of our own assumptions, we can become better listeners and better decision makers, too.

A useful tool to become more aware of your assumptions before making a final decision is simply to ask yourself, “What assumptions am I making about this situation or person?”

6. Educate Yourself on Unconscious Bias

Unconscious bias is something we all have, and it can trip us up big time!

There is a vital caveat to bear in mind when wondering about whether you can trust your gut and the feelings your body gives you, and that’s having an awareness of your unconscious bias. Understanding your own bias–which is hard to do because it literally does happen in our subconscious–can help you to make stronger, better, decisions instead of re-confirming your view of the world over and over again.

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Bias exists, and it’s part of the human condition. All of us have it, and it colors our decisions and can impact on our performance without us realizing.

Unconscious bias happens at a subconscious level in our brains. Our subconscious brain processes information so much faster than our conscious brain. Quick decisions we make in our subconscious are based on both our societal conditioning and how our families raised us.

Our brains process hundreds of thousands of pieces of information daily. We unconsciously categorize and format that information into patterns that feel familiar to us. Aspects such as gender, disability, class, sexuality, body shape and size, ethnicity, and what someone does for a job can all quickly influence decisions we make about people and the relationships we choose to form. Our unconscious bias can be very subtle and go unnoticed..

We naturally tend to gravitate towards people similar to ourselves, favoring people who we see as belonging to the same “group” as us. Being able to make a quick decision about whether someone is part of your group and distinguish friend from foe was what helped early humans to survive. Conversely, we don’t automatically favor people who we don’t immediately relate to or easily connect with.

The downside of that human instinct to seek out similar people is the potential for prejudice, which seems to be hard-wired into human cognition, no matter how open-minded we believe ourselves to be. And these stereotypes we create can be wrong. If we only spend our time with and employ people similar to ourselves, it can create prejudices, as well as stifle fresh thinking and innovation.

We may feel more natural or comfortable working with other people who share our own background and/or opinions than collaborating with people who don’t look, talk, or think like us. However, diversity is not just morally right; having a mix of different people and perspectives that can be genuinely heard is also a valuable way to counter groupthink. Diversity stretches us to think more critically and creatively.

7. Trust Yourself

It is possible to learn how to truly trust yourself[3]. Like any talent or skill, practicing trusting your gut is the best way to get really good at it. When people talk about having great intuition or being good decision-makers, it’s because they’ve worked at honing those skills, made mistakes, learned from them, and tried again.

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Looking back at decisions you’ve made, what you did, what the outcome was, and what you’ve learned can help you become a stronger decision maker and develop solid self-trust and resilience. Making a mistake does not mean you are not great at decision-making; it’s a chance to grow and learn, and the only mistake is to ignore the lesson in that experience.

If you are in the habit of asking others for their input, then the trick here is to choose your inner circle wisely. Having a sounding board of people who have your best interests at heart is a valuable asset, and, combined with your own excellent instincts, can make you a champion decision maker.

The Bottom Line

The above tips are all actionable and easy to start immediately. It’s simply about switching your thinking around, slowing down, and taking great care of this amazing machine that is your body and mind!

Learning how to trust your gut is one of the most fundamental ways to make decisions that will help you lead the life you want and need. Tune into what your body is telling you and start making good decisions today.

More Tips on How to Trust Your Gut

Featured photo credit: Acy Varlan via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Science of People: Learn to Trust Your Gut Instincts: The Science Behind Thin-slicing
[2] Harvard Health Publishing: The gut-brain connection
[3] Psych Central: 3 Ways to Develop Self-Trust

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