I just started reading Da Vinci’s Ghost: Genius, Obsession, and How Leonardo Created the World in His Own Image, by Toby Lester and it’s fueling my curiosity and fascination about who this man was and how he achieve most of the things he did.This informed yesterday’s post about Da Vinci’s To-do list. However, this is just one of the few things we can learn from Da Vinci’s life and how he got things done.
As a painter, sculptor, architect, musician, mathematician, engineer, inventor, anatomist, geologist, cartographer, botanist, and writer, Da Vinci manifests the future with his ability to repeatedly visualize and then architect his innovative future. Like Da Vinci, most artists, painters,sculptors rely on their ability to visualize before going on to create as the key to artistic success.
Power of visualization
Visualization is not only an artistic endeavour, this technique has been used by successful people to create the future they want and then go ahead and bring it to reality. The old saying ‘if you can’t see it, you can’t get it’ is not just an adage, it’s rooted in science and psychology. In the psychology community, creative visualization refers to the practice of seeking to affect the outer world by changing one’s thoughts and expectations.
Dr. William Fezler, in his book Creative Imagery: How to Visualize in All Five Senses suggests creating a detailed schema of what one desires and then visualizing it over and over with all the senses (i.e., what do you see? what do you feel? what do you hear? what does it smell like?).
Successful people like Oprah Winfrey, Bill Gates (who is a big Da Vinci fan, incidentally), and Will Smith all claim to practice visualization. Actor Jim Carrey wrote a check to himself in 1987 in the sum of $10 million. He dated it Thanksgiving 1995 and added the notation, “for acting services rendered.” He visualized it for years, and in 1994, he received $10 million for his role in “Dumb and Dumber.”
Nobel Laureate Jonas Salk was asked how he went about inventing the polio vaccine. His reply? “I pictured myself as a virus or a cancer cell and tried to sense what it would be like”
Okay, but most of us are neither sages nor celebrities, so how do we practice visualization? Here is a 3 step process recommended by author Harvey Mackay:
Imagine yourself in the final stage (of your goals,products, studies,personal life, etc.).
Study patterns (of your surroundings,markets,skills,behaviors, reactions, etc.).
Practice rituals (to be disciplined about your devotion, to recover from defeats, to thrive, to achieve a higher degree of confidence, etc.).