You Have to Believe It to See It


In the middle of talking about something, I misquoted a common phrase. Instead of saying you have to see it to believe it, I said, “sometimes you have to believe it to see it.” 

It wasn’t what I meant to say, but the thought resonated with me.

Belief is a critical first step in the manifestation of progress toward a goal. I’ve often found it challenging to work on projects or with clients if I don’t believe in the mission, cause or person. When writing a story, I tend to ask myself will my reader believe this character or plot. As I dream up crazy “I don’t know how I’m going to accomplish that but I will” tasks, it is my belief that allows me to see the guideposts and the ultimate result. 

When you’re blessed with a vision for the future, a mix of emotions will likely overwhelm you. It’s a little exciting and the ideas and thoughts pour out. You may know some aspects of it for sure, but other parts are trickier…scarier! What’s known in part has to fuel the fulfillment of a dream. If you wait around to see certain aspects, who knows when you’ll begin to believe in your destiny. 

I’m naturally a visual person and as much as I believe in myself and my purpose, the going gets tough EVERY DAY. Here are two ways I strengthen my belief consistently and buffer myself against the distractions and distress:

Envision it. My mind runs 110 mph a lot and all of it can make me feel like perhaps I’m dreaming “too big.” To help keep me centered, I’ve begun to do guided meditations each morning (and sometimes in the afternoon). Also, when I began planning for my business years ago, I went through the Right Brain Business Plan’s 15-minute guided Big Vision Visualization which encourages you to imagine the details of your future success. You can also create a more tangible visual for your future with a vision board. I’ve done so many of these throughout the years–big ones, small ones, heck even one page mock-ups of the type of media coverage I want to achieve for my clients (it pushed me to get a perfect NY Times article btw). Grab a stack of magazines or start googling. Go with your gut — if an image or a phrase speaks to you cut it out and paste it. Place your board or one-pager somewhere visible. I usually like to keep mine near a mirror so that I see it daily as I’m getting ready.

Experience it. When I began working in Atlanta, the interstate traffic scared and frustrated me, so I took the “street route.” Even though it was a little longer (and sometimes just as congested as the highway), my journey home every evening became a mini motivation. My drive included neighborhoods of GORGEOUS homes. Ooh, I’d like my house to look just like that! I would think to myself. Granted I KNEW I couldn’t immediately afford the apartments in that area, let alone the homes based on my $10 per hour internship. Still, the sight of what could be inspired me. If there are certain experiences you hope to have one day, try them out now. It doesn’t have to all be materialistic “window shopping” either. Say you want to open your own restaurant one day — visit your local chamber of commerce’s website for info. on the next ground breaking or grand opening. Be in the midst of the success you seek. Soak it in and believe, “that’s going to be me one day.”

What things are you believing even though you have yet to see them come to fruition? 

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