by Spike Marlowe
Today is brought to you by eggnog vanilla lattes.
Last week, I encouraged you to visualize what you’d like your artistic life to be one year from now, and to write it down.
So, what did you visualize?
Did you see yourself writing a regular comic?
Did you see yourself making an album?
Did you see yourself finishing your first book? Your tenth? Your first book of poetry?
Did you see yourself performing live in front of an audience?
Whatever you saw is wonderful, and you should totally for that. Make what you saw your goal for the year. (As long as it’s something you have control over and can achieve, and your success is not up to chance.)
The next question is, what are you going to do so that one year from now, your dream becomes the reality?
Well, you’re going to make some goals. Your big year-end goal may be to finish your first (or your tenth) book. Now is the time to make some quarterly, monthly and weekly goals or to make some milestones you can hit to achieve this goal. Then, over the next year, work hard to meet your goals. At the end of the year, you’ll have a book.
But there’s something else you can do to help you achieve your goals. You can visualize.
A variety of people, like athletes, performers, politicians, etc., have used visualization to enhance their performance. They regularly spend time focusing on doing whatever skill it is they want to improve and visualize themselves going through this process.
For example, a basketball player would visualize herself on the court, wearing whatever it is she wears during a game. She’d visualize and remember physically what it feels like to be on the court, ball in hand. She’d summon the sounds and the smells and everything she can remember about what it’s like to play basketball. She’d imagine herself dribbling down the court and shooting the ball into the basket, over and over again. She’d imagine successfully achieving whatever it is she needs to achieve again and again.
And you know what? Done regularly, this practice will improve this basketball player’s performance. Of course, the basketball player will also have to practice in real life, but the brain processes such visualization as practice, as well.
So, regularly (several times a week, if not daily) visualize yourself doing your art, practicing it, doing it successfully. Regularly visualize you succeeding at your end goal for the year. In addition to making and hitting your goals, such visualizing can help you get where you want to be.
Spike Marlowe has held a number of odd jobs, including working in a wild west show, as a detective, as a Bigfoot researcher, as a writer for an Internet content farm, and as a busker. These days she’s a writer, blogger, and bizarro editor for Eraserhead Press, with a focus on the New Bizarro Author Series. Her first book, Placenta of Love, is now available at all the usual locations. You can stalk her online at her website, or on Twitter at @spikemarlowe.