Visualize success.

The 7 mental practices of star performers

Jeff Boss, a former Navy SEAL, understands first-hand the importance of visualization, self-talk, focus, and other critical topics. Jeff shared one of countless research studies that demonstrate the benefits of visualizing.

Before I started coaching, I served as a Navy SEAL for 13 years. While I certainly learned a lot about mental performance from training and selection, the most important lessons I learned came after I left service. Namely, that mental performance is industry agnostic. Everybody needs to be able to focus. Everybody needs to be able to think under pressure. Everybody needs to be able to self-manage. And more specifically, there are seven conditions that enable mental performance. Here they are:


Here’s why visualization works. One research study examined three different basketball groups. The first group practiced free throws every day for 20 days. They improved 24%. The second group practiced free throws on the 1st day and 20th days only. They didn’t improve at all. The third group practiced free throws on the 1st day and the 20th day but also visualized free throws every day in between. They improved 23%.

You can use visualization for how you want to show up at your next meeting, how you want to perform in your next job interview or how you see the next difficult conversation going with your colleague. Remember that the brain will find the answer to any question or any scenario you pose to it, so make sure you visualize right. Meaning, don’t imagine all the errors or mishaps that could happen. Instead, imagine what flawless execution looks—and feels—like.

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Topic: visualize success