Clarity, Vision and the Importance of Knowing What You Want

One of the top keys to success is the ability to clearly see your goal achieved. Pick a goal and imagine you’ve achieved it. How do you feel? What’s happening in this picture? Can you see it? If you can’t, that’s ok, it just means that you may not be ready and a few other things must happen before you give yourself permission to fully receive your own success.

Our equestrian facility

Our Equestrian Facility-one of my dreams!

I’ve worked with hundreds of entrepreneurs and executives to help them achieve their goals. Most of us set up blocks to our own success, myself included. The bigger the goal, the more the perceived risk. It can feel complicated. Humans love to make things complicated. But as I’ve learned from working with horses, clarity of objective is key. If you’re not clear on what you want, you will not get it.

One of the best ways to gain clarity and “see” your goal is to create a vision board, also called a dream board. Looking at a vision board on a daily basis reminds your brain what to focus on and triggers your brain’s reticular activating system (RAS) which helps filter and prioritize sensory information. You’ll begin to see opportunities and pursue relationships in alignment with your goals. Animals use the RAS to search out and capture prey. Humans can use the RAS to help “capture” a goal.

I first used the power of visualization when I was 8. I wanted a new bike so I could race my friend Angie all over the neighborhood. My small banana-seat two-wheeler wasn’t cutting it anymore and I knew exactly what I wanted – a shiny blue five-speed with black and white trim. It was sitting in the window of my favorite shop, but my family couldn’t afford it. That summer, my parents shipped my sister and me off to our grandparents in New York, a fair distance away from the bike. But I was determined to get that bike. I drew a picture of it and hung it over my bed at my grandparents’ house. I looked at it constantly and dreamed of speeding down hills with my dog Maggie and my best friend. I didn’t know how I’d get that bike, but I knew it was mine. Then my grandfather offered me a job at his drug store to help stock shelves and price products. I was thrilled! I stocked shelves with glee and carefully penned prices on everything from sunscreen to beach balls. At the end of the summer, I almost had enough money to buy that bike. My parents graciously donated the difference and I sprinted to the store. That gorgeous bike was MINE!

Little did I know then that I would use this same process (with a few more tactical details!) over and over again throughout my life to achieve big goals. Using this process, I built the equestrian facility of my dreams, found a perfect employer and created my ideal job, created my dream company, worked with world-class experts, and attracted ideal clients. My clients have used this process to achieve their big dreams, such as top financial performance and efficient and peaceful operations, and to secure and thrive in executive-level positions. Most of all, they are happy.

What is your dream? Create a vision board to keep you focused on making it a reality!


Shari J. Goodwin spent 20 years as an environmental scientist, developed three companies, and is now a business strategist, leadership coach, author, and speaker. Her innovative programs including partnering with horses for business transformation. She and her husband live with their three rescue dogs and four horses on a farm in Virginia.