“Great Leaders live Life Backwards”

Call it a vision. Call it a purpose or calling. Call it an aspiration or a dream yet to come. Call it your future.  Whatever name you elect to call it, you must be able to imagine what could be if you want any chance to choose your destiny.

People often wonder, what separates the great from the average?

It is the discipline of using their imagination.

The absolute skill of seeing a positive future and the absolute faith in their God-given abilities to achieve it is what divides the bottom from the top.

Most of us think of imagination as child’s play. It is something we did as kids and not really a necessity as an adult.  When you were a kid, you used your imagination every chance you got. Especially if you didn’t grow up during the age of the smart phone.  You pretended you were a famous actor, or dancer, or singer. You pretended you were a teacher, a doctor, or the president.  For most, it was only when they got older that they stopped imagining that they could be anything they wanted, do anything they wanted. We let life tell us there was only so high we could reach, only so much we could do.

Then, why did those crazy dreams come true for others?

The most powerful people know that the ability to ”see” a future better than today is not just a fun activity, but a skill to be harnessed and developed.

In the book The Leadership Challenge, (probably the business  book I have read the most times), says that great leaders live life backwards. They first imagine what could be and then they work tirelessly to make the dream a reality.

It is scientific fact that your mind can be tricked into thinking you can do something or not do something.

Unfortunatley, many of us have tricked our minds into thinking are goals for the future are unattainable or just pure fantasy. People say “get a reality check” when you dream too big.

Think of the hynotists who gets a strong weightlifter to believe that he can’t lift his own hand off a table? Or the mental practice Olympic athletes go through to gain their elite skills. It is commonplace for athletes to practice mentally as part of their training! Even my college football team has a mental trainer for the trainers. Go ODU!! The best startup football team in history!

But, this is not a skill reserved for the rich or athletically inclined. It is not reserved for the most intelligent or most charismatic.

You and I can do this. You just need to dust off the cobwebs of your mind.  Be a kid for a minute! Find your imagination and then use it.

Here is an easy way to start using that wonderful imagination.

I bet if I said think of something blue, you could see it. Close your eyes and try….go on stop reading and try.

Did you see it? I did. My imagination held a striking blue flower.

Now, picture your happy place.

Maybe it’s a cabin in a peaceful wooded area where rolling hills and picturesque views surround you or a valley full of lavender swaying in the breeze.

Ever since I became a mom mine is a beautiful white sandy beach with turquoise blue water with gently rolling waves.

Once you have a picture in your head you can add details.

In my happy place, when I really close my eyes and concentrate, I can hear splashing water, my kids giggling, and I can actually smell the saltwater and feel the warm sun on my face and my husband’s hand in mine.

I swear, it kind of feels like magic when it’s a cold dreary day and I put my imagination to use.  And, because what you focus on becomes your reality. This happy place came true for me a few years ago. And, now we do a beach trip every year.

what you are imagine you can become


So, this is a simple example how imagination can transform into reality.

Another example happened when we bought the house we live in now. We flipped a house and own a profitable rental, but we had moved away from our local area for my husband’s job. Because we didn’t know how long we were going to be there we were renting.

When it came time to move back, we didn’t know how we were going to be able to afford the neighborhood we wanted to move back to.  We had almost resigned our self to renting until we could afford to purchase in our desired area.

Instead, we started touring homes and scouring the internet. We talked about it constantly. Some were way above our budget, but the very fact that we were “seeing” ourselves in these homes, made us not lose hope. And, very quickly we found a home and got it for way under asking price!!!

See yourself where you want to be. You can physically put yourself in the place or you can imagine the place or you can look at pictures of the place. And, I mean place not necessary as physica,l but also where you want to be in your life, who you want to become.

Again, I repeat it is vision and imagination that separate the good from the great!!

So, where do you picture yourself?

Aim high,



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