This is one of the main points that one should learn from reading and studying this book.
How does Haanel define visualization?
Visualization is the process of making mental images.
There are three steps to making (and using) these mental images.
This is where you picture in your mind exactly what you want. It must be complete and unwavering, like a blueprint, which is an example that Haanel uses a couple of times in this section. I use the example of a business plan, which is an idealized plan for how a business will use the money it is requesting and the outline for its growth.
Here you will see your picture completely. As you use your creative imagination to create your image, these thoughts will lead to actions and those actions will lead to results.
In this step, you get what you want. It may take time, depending on the size and scope of the goal to which you’re aspiring. With persistence, daring, and work, it will happen.
Please note that one word there: work. In point #4, Haanel wrote:
Work is necessary — labor, hard mental labor, the kind of effort which so few are willing to put forth.
Is Haanel stating that work is necessary and that things will not magically manifest for us?
In a word … YES!
In point #7, Haanel expands on the process he delineated.
Thought will lead to action, action will develop methods, methods will develop friends, and friends will bring about circumstances, and finally, the third step, or Materialization, will have been accomplished.
Not only is this the process of visualization and attainment of our goals, it is also how faith is developed.
As we build our ideals and think on them, as we build our mental pictures and take actions to gather the means to attain our goals, we will experience our faith growing stronger. As our mental pictures become clearer and as we build and process the means for actualizing them, we experience a swelling of seeing how things are possible because we begin to understand more and more about how the world — and the process — works.
This is faith growing. It continues to grow as we take action and experience victories and successes.