I just saw the new movie called The Secret. While there is a bit of hype that had me snickering a few times, its central theme really got me thinking. Called the Law of Attraction, it’s basically the idea that we can become and achieve much more if we dedicate ourselves wholeheartedly to a clear vision. We attract what we imagine. It’s Steven Covey’s second habit — begin with the end in mind — on steriods. As is often the case, the devil is in the details. The lives of phenomenal success described in the movie didn’t come about from doing a few visioning exercises or wishing for wealth and success. They came from doing a few things consistently, day after day:
- Seeing clearly and concretely what they wanted to become or accomplish in their mind’s eye.
- Growing their awareness of and ability to work with the subconscious thoughts and feelings that would sabotage their efforts.
- Fostering consistent dedication and wholehearted commitment to their vision.
- Living their vision by taking real, concrete actions toward making it their reality.
The movie tends to trivialize what it takes to create a life that becomes a work of art. It takes a great deal of maturity, skill, and perserverence — perhaps even fanaticism — to pull this off. Most of us seem to have some innate sense of what it takes — and live it out to some degree of success. But most of us also feel like we could do more with our lives.
Interestingly, this entire conversation can apply equally well on the level of a team or organization. Are there ways you, your team, or your organization could do a better job with these four activities?