February may be the shortest month, but it’s always reminding us how strong it is, with icy fingers and frosty breath. Never mind what the groundhog says, spring always seems at least six months distant. But this year, we’ve got the Olympics to brighten February’s horizon. Much more than the Summer Games, the Winter Olympics tend to mesmerize us, with daredevil ski champions and precision figure skating, not to mention, our once-every-four-years reminder of what “luge” is. Secretly, some of us may wish we too could pull off a triple Salchow, or glide down a mountain at breakneck speed. Never mind the gold medal, we’d just like the thrill and the appreciative applause, thank you.
But even if we’ll never zigzag down a slope or whirl around an ice rink, we can still borrow some of that Olympic stardust. Every athlete in Vancouver started with only a dream. Without the dream, without seeing themselves fly down the mountain or land a perfect double-axel, they’d be watching the Games at home, no matter how many chilly hours they’d spent practicing. Sometimes, you really have to see it to make it happen. See yourself in a challenging situation. How do you handle it? Do you come through like a winner, choosing the right words to get your message out? Walk through it again, adding as many details as you need, from the confidence-building outfit you wear to the way your customer addresses you. How can you change the picture to be sure you win in the end? Athletes thrive on “visualization”, mentally watching themselves score goals, cross finish lines, achieve victory. They’ll replay it endlessly, tweaking their performance until they see no other possibility but a win. If they falter, showing even a whisper of doubt, they’ll all tell you that’s when they lost their chance.
Practice seeing yourself win, in small conversations and on bigger stages. Like the Olympic athlete, you’ll soon see yourself strictly going for the gold.