This morning, while getting ready for school, my 6 year old son once again tried to get a day off. He went up to my wife and said…
“Mommy I should stay at home today to help you.”
And then with a straight face…
“I want you to think about what that would be like.”
You may think ‘okay no big deal’, but my wife spotted it and came and told me straight away what he’d said, and I was immediately impressed – I’m very proud of him.
Whether he knew it or not, he’d engaged one of the key methods in getting people to do what you want.
He effectively told my wife to imagine him being at home with us today.
Here’s the thing. When people engage themselves in an idea by imagining their situation, it primes them for accepting that as a reality.
In the early 80’s, homeowners in Tempe, Arizona were primed in two different ways about receiving cable TV. The first group received some information together with a survey in their home by student volunteers.
They were presented with plain facts about cable TV centred around more entertainment coming into the home, saving people the time and money and hassle of them going out.
The second group received the same information, but in a subtly different way.
They were asked to “Take a moment and imagine how cable TV will provide you with a broader entertainment and informational service… Take a moment and think of how, instead of spending money on the babysitter and gas, and then having to put up with the hassles of going out, you will be able to spend your time at home, with your family, alone, or with your friends.” (Source “Made to Stick” – Chip and Dan Heath.)
A month afterwards, cable TV arrived in the area. When the take up of subscribers was analysed, it was found that group 1 took up cable TV at the same rate as those people who had received no information whatsoever about it – around the 20% mark.
But group 2 subscribed at a whopping 47%, more than twice as many people, just because they were asked to imagine owning it in the first place.
Imagining something to be real gives it a higher probability of it becoming a reality.
Now, I’d like you to take a moment and let the potential of that sink in.
And now I’d like you to take another moment and look at your surroundings.
Everything you see around you was once a thought in someone’s head. They used their imagination to create it, and then later it became real.
Things only become real when you take action to make them so, but the first step is to imagine your new situation.
So why not go for it?
Spend some time imagining where you’d like to be 12 months from now, and then write it all down.
Pin it to the wall and declare it to the world.
Make a plan. It might be to run your own internet business…
Then take your first step towards making it real.