Last Friday was my sonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s birthday. I made sure that I spent the afternoon home playing games with him on the computer. One game made me write todayÃ¢â‚¬â€bow and arrow. It is a simple game where you have balloons coming on one end and you need to shoot them down with the arrows until they are all down. Meanwhile, you lose an arrow if you miss. It goes in stages where balloons in different colours come but you need only shoot the red balloons.
I used to play the game long time ago when I was in college and was very good at it. This time, my son was beating me until I really got angry with myselfÃ¢â‚¬â€I neednÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t though, it was only a game.
My wife then walked into the room and could tell from my face that I was irritated. She didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t take long to figure it out because soon it was my turn and I failed miserably. She rubbed it in by laughing uncontrollably. I had to excuse myself and went outside to play with the dogs.
While playing with the dogs, I still was thinking about the bow and arrow game. ThatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s when I realised what I was doing wrong. Every time I missed a shot, I was reinforcing the idea that I couldnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t make one. And as a result, I kept missing over and over again.
I played almost every day back then when I got to my brotherÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s house during holidays. But I had not mastered the computer quite well then. So computer skill wise, there was no reason why I was better back then than I am today.
So I got to thinking: If what made me better when I was still in college was not computer skills, then it had to be mental. So, the question became: What did I do differently in college that I wasnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t doing now?
Then it hit me. When I was in college, I didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t see myself as lacking skills in computer. I was playing the game without focusing on how much skills I had on using the computer. I used to tell myself that I can do it and was doing it. Every time I played, I told myself, I like the game and I was going to win the game.
Here are the steps I took when I was shooting the Ã¢â‚¬Ëœbow and arrowÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ game when I was in college:
I made positive affirmations: Before I shot the arrow, I told myself “This is hitting the balloon” and “I am a great shooter!”
I visualised it happening: Then, I visualised the arrow hitting the balloon. Not just the part where the arrow hits the balloon but also the path the arrow travelled along the way to the balloon.
I took action: Then, I released the arrow! When releasing I kept visualising what I wanted to happen and re-affirmed to myself !”
I acted as if: After the arrow was released, my head would move along in the direction of the arrow. Something like Ã¢â‚¬ËœkudongoleraÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ (following through).
With these steps fresh in my mind, I went back into the house and joined my son on the computer smiling. And all of a sudden my shots started hitting the balloons.
I canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t tell you that I made every shot afterwards (otherwise I would be lying), but I can tell you that I was making most of them.
I learned an important lesson that day. If my attitude and mindset could help me achieve a simple goal like shooting an arrow for a Ã¢â‚¬Ëœbow and arrowÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ game, what else could it help me achieve?
Whether it is having a successful business, getting a promotion, or shooting an arrow at a balloon, we should approach each and every one of our goals with the steps above.
Sure, you may not need to do it when it comes to the small goals in life. But following these steps will not only help you achieve those small goals, they will also reinforce your habit of doing them so youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ll do them naturally when
it comes to your bigger goals.