Like a proud kindergartner, I gave myself 19 smiling faces; one for each goal I have accomplished so far in 2018. I earned my first smiling face in January 2018 when I hosted “This Woman and Her World” Vision Board gathering, and that experience laid the foundation for most of my successes in this year. Here are my reflections on success from that experience:
1. Success Requires Being and Action
“The mind is everything; what you think you become.” Socrates
Success begins with a state of being where the images of success are present and align in our thoughts and feelings.
Neuroscience shows that our brains can generate ideas and thought patterns. These can be ideas and thoughts patterns of success. The patterns evoke feelings. We act on these feelings. Our actions are our self-expression and creations based upon our state of being.
My thought was to bring women together as they readied for the upcoming year and to create something more meaningful than a list of resolutions. As I sat with the idea of vision boarding, I felt love, individual power, and the empowerment and support of other women. These feelings grew as I went about the planning the event. In the end, the gathering had the feel of belonging and meeting old and new friends over a cup of coffee for conversation. The feminine kinship and bond were palpable.
2. Reinforce Success Until It Becomes Habit
As we act and create, we reinforce our thoughts, ideas, and emotions; we become more familiar and comfortable. The cycle loops and repeats. Repeated actions becomes practices. Practices become habits. The habit of the success state of being is formed.
I hosted the first vision gathering. Then I hosted one for a work team, then I hosted one for a larger work team, and then I hosted one for a non-profit organization. I have a practice of hosting vision board gatherings. I have themes and activities to complement the desired outcomes.
3. Expansion Creates Opportunities
Success build confidence, boldness, and opportunities and willingness to expand. When we choose expansion, our ideas become bigger, our actions become bolder, and our successes can be more impactful. The ideas, actions, and results reflect who we are and how we relate to ourselves, others, and circumstances. There are no guarantees of success, but more and greater opportunities for success present themselves.
As I experienced success with vision board gatherings, I have tried things that there were not on my list, including: hosting the inaugural “Lifting As We Climb” annual brunch to honor women who positively impact their communities, hosting the Motown Men Brunch on Father’s Day Saturday, and organizing the Women With Wisdom and Courage virtual group. I get extra smiley faces for these.
”We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence is not an act, but a habit.” –Aristotle