Have you ever known someone who seemed to have all of the solutions to her problems? To whom all of the right opportunities and “aha” moments just seemed to appear? These people are not “lucky” or “blessed,” and they don't have some special gene that the rest of us lack.
Consider that they might just be better at seeing answers when they present themselves … which means that you can, too.
On an average day, there is more information flying around you than you can possibly pay attention to: conversations, webpages, people walking down the street, emails, radio announcements, etc.
What sets the "magical" people apart is that their minds can filter through all of this information to find the tidbits that they need, whereas for the rest of us, answers just get lost in the noise. (It’s like how those TSA dogs in airports can sniff out contraband in people’s luggage, amid thousands of sights, smells, and sounds.)
For example, in a career coaching group that I am leading, a client of mine was struggling to find career ideas that excited her. When she sat down in front of her computer screen, she could only think of the same five options, none of which she liked, and she would feel hopeless.
Can you relate?
I gave her the assignment to find clues about her dream career by observing moments throughout her day when she felt excited or passionate about anything. It could be that she felt excited about a great sandwich she was having for lunch! I wanted her to train her brain to notice things that got her revved up, so that she could recognize career ideas that got her revved up.
And guess what? It worked! She began to realize that she liked creative jobs. And based on something that she heard one day, the idea of being a photographer popped into her mind. We took that as a starting point and dug deeper.
Before we knew it, she was head-over-heels excited about becoming a scientific illustrator. She is now busy investigating that career. Who knows if that will be where she ends up, but she never would have thought of it if she hadn’t trained her mind to go “fetch” things that piqued her interest.
Here is a four-step guide to train your brain to bring you the answers you seek:
1. Visualize what you want.
This is exactly how those TSA dogs are trained: the TSA agent first lets the dog have a nice long sniff of the contraband so it can know what it smells like. You have to do the same thing with your dreams. Write down what exactly you're looking for, whether it’s: