As he approaches the golf ball the number 1 ranked golfer in the world, Jason Day; stops closes his eyes and pictures his shot. He imagines his swing, the connection with the ball, and then its flight through the fairway as its bounces, rolls, and comes to a stop.
He does this, every time.
He is not only picturing the swing and the ball but also telling himself what is the correct swing for the shot. He is pre-coaching himself with a story using is imagination.
“By telling ourselves stories of what is going on around us we learn to sharpen where our attention goes.” Charles Duhigg Author of Stronger, Faster, Better
So Tell yourself a story.
Imagine the future situations as specifically and detailed as possible. The story can be of anything; something adding unwanted stress or has importance to you. Having a conversation with your spouse or child, walking through your schedule for the day, or taking 5 minutes on your drive imagining the task waiting for you. These stories influence your attention and increase your effectiveness. Instead of taking a 20 minute rest when you first get home you’ll head straight to your errands or chores. Giving yourself a feeling of accomplishment, less stress, and extra time at the end of the day to do something you enjoy. You will begin noticing how the story in your head slightly differs from what is really occurring. This small difference would normally be insignificant since you didn’t picture them before. Now, they stand out and you can take action before they lead to bigger issues. Taking the time to imagine a script before it happens will increase your focus and attention, increasing your personal performance and desired results.
“People who know how to manage attention and habitually build robust models tend to earn more money and get better grades.” Charles Duhigg