Would you like to know some secret, never-before-revealed techniques to tell the future and become a visionary?
Well, I cannot help you with the lottery, sports betting or foretell where you will lose your car keys, but I can teach you how to employ tools used by great leaders throughout history to literally see the future.
Some years ago, a TV special created an uproar by exposing the secrets of magicians. Being a visionary (someone who sees the potential in new ideas and how they can become reality) is much the same thing. There are eight tools you can use to turn yourself into a visionary. The more you employ, the more effective your visioning skills will be. These are the components of what I call the “Vision 88” toolkit (so-called because each of the eight words ends in “ate”):
8. Reframiate (OK, I made this one up to maintain the pattern.)
Now let’s look at each one. Using these tools, you’ll have the amazing power to predict what your life or career will look like in the future and actually make it happen.
Pick a number between one and ten. Now guess your number. Did you get it right? Isn’t that cool? The best possible way to see the future is to envision it, then create it. Do not look past the power you hold to create your future. There will not be things outside your control taking you off course, but you have the power to steer around them.
Here’s the rub: if you do not create your future, you will be at the mercy of someone else’s vision of your future. Then your future is literally accidental. It’s hard to be a success by accident.
In our office, we have 10 values clearly posted for everyone to read. The concluding and summarizing value is, “ We are excited about our business opportunities, knowing…“The Best Way To Predict The Future Is To Create It!” Be the architect and create your vision of the future then take action to make it happen.
Rise above a problem to gain a different perspective. I live in a small town about 20 minutes’ drive from my office. When I drive in every day, I have one perspective. My part of Illinois is flat farmland, but I can’t see my destination.
But when I fly, I get a completely different vantage point. I can see my path as well as alternate paths. As a bonus, I can see beyond my goal to other places I might go.
Nearly everyone who comes to me for with problems has blinded himself or herself to the view of opportunities and solutions. They hold their problems and worries too close. This is like writing your problem on a piece of paper, then holding it so close to your face that you can’t read it. To change your perspective on a situation, step back a little to get a different viewpoint.
Stand on the beach and watch the waves before you paddle in. You’ll see how the break, where they grow biggest, where the opportunities are. A different perspective improves your ride.
When I was learning land navigation and survival skills in the Army, we used triangulation to figure where we were by using two known and visible reference points. Assume you are standing on a football field. If you had a map and a compass, then drew two lines on the map from the two-goal posts to where you stood, where the two lines crossed would be your location on the map. Surveyors use this tool every day as do pilots and boat captains.
Triangulation is an effective tool to figure out the best route to take toward your destination. Surfers use this technique, using two different points on the shore to find the ideal spot to catch good waves. Sometimes you’ll get to your goal fastest by going in a straight line; other times, you’re better off going at an angle.
Creative people surf ideas and triangulate information, ideas and even relationships. Their minds are fluid and adaptable, flexible enough to challenge status quo, straight-line thinking. Creative people are non-linear thinkers, sometimes going from Point A to Point B but making stops at Point L and Point Q along the way.
If you keep yourself educated and knowledgeable, you’ll be able to make connections beyond the immediate scope of the situation. Genius is not necessarily creating new ideas, but seeing how existing ideas can be used in new ways to address a situation.
Learn to relate the normally unrelated. Practice looking for patterns and relationships in things you would not normally associate. Jesus used parables to make complicated concepts simple. Aesop told fables to help people understand. As you train your mind, unrelated information and knowledge will lead to new insights. Some of the biggest business successes were adaptations of unrelated ideas. Nurture your desire for knowledge.
To extrapolate is to discern unknown information by building on what you already know. As you analyze the known information and carry it forward, you can predict future results. If you draw a line from point (A) to point (B) and then continue the line to guess where point (C) will be along the same line, you’re extrapolating.
If you are trying to lose 20 pounds and are currently losing two pounds a week, you can extrapolate that in 10 weeks, you’ll be able to celebrate. It’s predicting the future not based on tarot cards or a crystal ball, but on data.
One definition of insanity is doing the same thing and expecting different results. If you continue along your current path, your results will be the same as in the past. If you change your path, your results will be different. If you want to create a different future create a new path and begin to act differently. Learn from where you are and look forward with a new vision of where you want to be.
As extrapolate means to project the future with current information, interpolate means to take what is known and look inward. It’s a tool used in math to estimate or determine a value between two or more known values. Knowing 2, 4, 8, ??, 32, we can interpolate the missing number as 16.
Take what you know and look inward. Determine what might be missing or what should be added. If you have a jigsaw puzzle with a recognizable picture all put together with the exception of a couple of pieces, your mind would naturally interpolate to fill in the blanks. Use this vision skill to fill in the blanks. Based on your goals, your projected future, what skills or knowledge do you need?
Embrace your ignorance. To get smart you have to be willing to be ignorant. You have to realize how much you don’t know you so know what you need to learn. Become an insatiable seeker of knowledge. Read everything you can get your hands on. Educate yourself, learn your industry, know your company, discover trends. Learn to love discovering new information.
What good is a vision if you don’t share it? Communicating your vision to others is essential if you want to attract collaborators or inspire others to help you. Share your vision with others—passionately, specifically, confidently. To create a vision and see the future, you need to see it in your mind first. To describe it to others, you need to use descriptive word pictures and colorful and descriptive adjectives to convey the emotion and passion the words are meant to represent. “I see it, let me share my vision with you, so you can believe it!”
Reframing a situation is taking a look at a situation from a different perspective, or looking for new outcomes. Many times we get trapped into linear thinking and fix our minds on a certain outcome. Although it is difficult to see at the time, disappointments often benefit us. Could you imagine having married the first person you thought you were in love with? By reframing, we reassess the opportunities that might come from an unexpected outcome.
Your ability to reframe what other people see as difficult situations and turn them around with a positive attitude will quickly separate you from your peer group. Others may call it luck, but as a life entrepreneur, you know the power of perspective allows you to stack the cards in your favor.
This post is an excerpt from the book Carpe Aqualis! written by Kahuna Business Group’s Founder/ CEO Frank F. Lunn.
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