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HOW TO BECOME WHAT YOU WANT TO BE ("IMPRINTING")
(from Advanced Formula for Total Success
, by Dr. Robert Anthony)
Deciding to change a habit, attitude or personal situation does not automatically bring about the change desired. The decision to make the change is only the first step. Further action is required in order to effect a change in your subconscious self-image. We have learned that your goal is the mental picture of what you want. When you write down the goal, it becomes an affirmation. An affirmation is simply a statement of fact or belief that is written out in a personal, positive, present-tense form as though the goal were already a reality. When you write out your affirmations, you deliberately control the programming of your subconscious by directing the visual picture to the end result you want.
The process of doing this is called imprinting. Imprinting is the deliberate control and direction through the vivid use of imagery of the kind of changes we want to make. The imprinting occurs when our subconscious mind accepts the new visual image of the end result. Imprinting is a three-step process:
1. You affirm your goal.
2. You picture the end result.
3. You feel the emotion that goes along with accomplishing the goal.
Step 1 to Imprinting
Letís talk about each step so that we are absolutely clear on the procedure. The first step is, Affirm Your Goal. The best way to do this is to write your affirmation down on a 3 X 5 card and carry it around with you. Make several copies and keep them by your bed on the nightstand, at your desk at work and in your pocket or purse. You can substitute the cards as you complete your goals. Imprint your affirmations by reading the words of your affirmations several times a day, especially in the morning upon waking and in the evening just before going to sleep. Repetition is essential to successful imprinting. (for more, click here)
Step 2 to Imprinting
The second step is, Picture the End Result. Picture and experience in your mind the accomplishment of the end result. See yourself actively involved in the accomplishment. This is called constructive synthetic visualization. It works on the theory of displacement. You are displacing the old picture and old self-image with the new. Remember that you and I are teleological in nature, so we will move toward the goal that we picture. (for more, click here)
Step 3 to Imprinting
The third step is, Feel the Emotion That goes Along with Accomplishment. The subconscious responds to feelings more than it does to words. It doesnít respond any better to good feelings than to bad feelings. It just responds to feelings. The more emotion or feeling we can put behind an idea, the faster it will manifest. So feeling and emotion are very important for impact. It can be said that our affirmation will manifest in direct proportion to the frequency with which we use picturing and emotional involvement. See yourself accomplishing the end result while feeling the joy and satisfaction of the accomplishment.
Ö The challenge is to change the way you see yourself to be. Our past mistake was in trying hard to be different from our picture. Using imprinting, the "like me" is itself changing little by little. Change the picture firstóa corresponding change in your performance or behavior will follow naturally. The biggest mistake that most people make is that they try to outrun their picture.
More on AFFIRMATIONS
The first tool in programming/imprinting is the use of affirmations and the most effective way to use affirmations is to direct them at your being level. This is known as the "I am" affirmation*, such as "I am confident," "I am successful," "I am easy to get along with." Those statements about who you are rather than what you do. It is important to understand this. The "I am" centers directly on your being, which, as we have learned earlier, determines what we do and what we have. If you will concentrate and affirm, at the being level, the specific things you want to be, the doing and having will follow automatically.
Affirmation literally means to validate or confirm. So when we think a thought over and over again, we are validating or confirming it as the truth. What we are doing is firming up our belief by making a tape in the neuron structure of our brain, which is processed through our subconscious aspect of mind. Once our subconscious mind has accepted a belief, it is an idea whose time has come.
The most effective time to use affirmations is in the morning and in the evening. The morning is a good time because the affirmations set the tone for the day. And affirmations used in the evening, before we go to sleep, strongly influence what our subconscious mind dwells on during sleep, since this time just prior to sleep is the closest we come in the normal course of a day to the alpha state, which is a state of relaxation where the subconscious is most receptive. We experience the alpha state just prior to being fully awake and right before going to sleep. The closer you are to this semi-dream state the better the imprint. Affirmations imprint the best when we are most relaxed. Any time is okay, but the morning and evening are the best times.
Use words that trigger movement. We are creating a moving picture in our mind, not a still snapshot. Use words that trigger feeling and emotion. Your subconscious responds to feeling and emotion. Put as much excitement as you can into your affirmations. Use words and phrases such as "I warmly," "I lovingly," "I joyously," and "I enthusiastically." Affirmations must be as specific as possible. Break down the characteristics and skill levels you need to perform a specific job or task. For instance, affirm the specifics of the tennis game you wish to improveóyour swing, your follow through, your serve. Balance is the key. If you just affirm for your business or career, your relationship with your family or spouse may suffer. Plan your affirmations so that you grow in all areas of your life at the same time. Balance of another sort is necessaryódonít put your goal too close, or else your will not be sufficiently motivated to work toward it, because it will look too easy. And donít put it so far away that you canít imagine it or accept it; your will be intimidated by the goal and wonít get started. It is wise to break our goals down into realistic little pieces, pieces that, when accomplished, will make up the total goal. The goal must be exciting enough to go after, but not so far out or so big that it is unimaginable.
*(see Exodus 3:14 and D&C 29:1)