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Top 3 Visualization Mistakes

In today’s episode, Nettie Owens, founder of Sappari Solutions and Momentum Accountability, shares the top 3 mistakes people make when visualizing. She also shares whether or not she thinks it’s possible to have the wrong vision, which is something I’ve been struggling with!

If you prefer the audio version, listen here:


Ruthie: In this episode I want to talk about the connection between vision and action, in order to achieve success.

Common Beginner Mistakes When Visualizing

So the first thing I want to talk about is projecting a vision. What are some common mistakes or feedback that you get, especially from new clients? I feel like more of us would have achieved our dreams if we were doing it right. 

Nettie: If you did listen to the last segment, awesomesauce. If you didn’t, go back and listen to it, because I’m just going to build onto it and assume you heard it. 

Not Connecting Emotions and Feelings to Your Vision 

One of the common mistakes is not connecting emotion and feelings with your vision. It’s really easy to say, “I want a million-dollar business, and I’m going to bring on 20 clients at X amount of dollars that will get me there.” You could just say it and never achieve it.

If you’re only thinking about a dollar amount, you’re thinking way too small. I truly believe that we’ve been put on this planet to do something amazing. A dollar amount is just a way to measure if you’re making progress, but it’s not the end game.

The end game should be who you’re going to impact, how you’re going to impact them, and what changes you’re making in this role. But if you’re not tying emotion into that, you’re going to have a really hard time. 

Not Visualizing Frequently

Secondly, making a vision board just once a year is never going to cut it. You might see slight movement in the direction you’re heading, but it’s not going to be enough. On that same line, you might be doing strategic planning and goal setting, but only once a year.

It’s very similar to new year’s resolutions; the reason they fail is that you only do them once a year. Your ritualization needs to happen just as frequently as you take a shower. Your vision can change. It’s okay if it makes adjustments as you go.

However, if you start visualizing more regularly, you’ll notice that you’re progressing in the work that you’re doing.

Infusing Hardship Into Your Vision

Another common mistake is accidentally infusing hardship into your vision. These words should never come out of your mouth, “I worked hard and I reached my goals.” Do not say that. What’s going to happen is you’re creating hard work. Why would you want to make it hard?

Ruthie: Oh my goodness! We’ve been manifesting hard work, guys! 

Nettie: I know! Don’t manifest hard work! I know you’re a hard worker. It’s why you’re an entrepreneur, and why you’ve gotten to be as successful as you are. Don’t ask for it.

It’s the same thing as praying for patience; never pray for patience. So you should be mindful of your word choice. If you want a business that runs with ease, then ask for it. Just like that. I have clients come to me with ease. Money flows to me with ease. I’m an abundant person.

When Manifestation Works

Just like I said in the last segment, your brain doesn’t know the difference between fantasy and reality. If you pretend you’re a hard worker, you’ll get hard work. If you pretend you’re an abundant person, you’ll get abundance. 

Yesterday, I was on with a client and we were talking about how she needed to get money for a project. At that very moment, the doorbell rang, someone showed up and wanted to buy the chairs that she had set out on her porch for free

I probably wouldn’t have even believed it myself about 4 years ago, but now I understand how this all works together. Just be mindful of those slippery slopes that you might be walking down: 

  • don’t infuse hard work
  • don’t visualize just once a year
  • be sure to infuse emotion and feeling into your planning

Similarly to dressing like the person you want to be, if in the future iteration of your business you have a well-appointed office, it’s probably time to go buy that new desk. Now. This all helps you move closer to your goals. 

Is It Possible to Have the Wrong Vision?

Ruthie: This is actually something I’ve been professionally struggling with for a while. When I started my business, I was working full time and I was pregnant with my 4th child. Every day, I visualized being able to quit my job and run my business full time.

I had a few people that I would tell this to every day. They were very critical of my support network, but they allowed me to get it out and just speak it into the universe.

But in the past year or so, I reached what I had been visualizing and I was at a loss as to what to do. So how do we know that we have the right vision? I get not just focusing on a dollar amount, but is it possible to have the wrong vision? 

Nettie: The only thing that I’ve ever seen happen is that you visualize too small. In this case, the only outcome is that you might get more than what you visualized. That’s not a bad thing.

So no, if you’re concerned, there’s no right or wrong here. Everyone’s going to be okay. No one gets harmed in the making of your movie. If you feel like you’re not sure if it’s the right vision, well does it feel right? I would actually trust your gut on this one. Are you excited by it? You can plan and visualize super big. You can even take over the world if that’s in your vision. 

Ruthie: Well, I certainly visualized taking over the army while I was serving! That is true. 

Ask Yourself The Right Questions

Nettie: That’s right, so there’s no right vision. I also would ask myself why I’m questioning if this is the right vision.

What is making me uncertain?

Is it because I’m scared?

Will I have to learn something new?

Is it outside of my comfort zone?

Am I envisioning this particular thing because I want it, or because somebody else wants it?

Just be curious about it.

Ruthie: I think that’s going to be pretty valuable to a lot of people right now, as we’re faced with a lot of uncertainty. We’re going to have to work really hard to stay out of the mental traps of manifesting hard work.  So we just have to not feed them with our minds, deal with them as they come, and not labor over them anymore.