Have you ever started a project with high hopes, only to get more and more anxious as you got further into it? Or as the launch or completion day approached? I certainly have!
Here’s a story about one hard-working couple, who started with an exciting dream venture, slipped into anxiety and worry and then managed to bounce back up and create miracles. Read on to find out how they did it.
Silvia and John Pelham had a dream to create more retirement income. They had some success renting their two modern flats in Lisbon. Now they wanted to rent their rambling family home in the countryside of northern Portugal. It seemed, at first glance, implausible that holidaymakers would want to stay so far from everything.
Despite this, they were determined to invest in their country home with new plumbing, drainage, roofing, electrics, attic conversions, walls and even a swimming pool. They set the date of August 15, 2014 – for two rooms to be ready to receive paying guests.
Two weeks before their deadline, they were becoming more and more anxious. What if nobody comes? What if too many people come? What if guests are disappointed? What if they complain about the church bells? Silvia and John felt desperate for some money finally coming in.
This undercurrent of negativity threatened to sabotage all the hard work they had done.
Fortunately for Silvia and John, they had a visit from their daughter Jessica. She knew exactly what to do to turn the peaceful holiday home into a money-making machine.
The key to their success was changing how they felt about their country home – in a curious and playful way!
Here’s the story as told my client
– Jessica Pelham:
“I started talking to my parents about how to shift their thoughts deliberately — and their feelings — from desperation to appreciation. I suggested they could think of the guests arriving like this:
“We love this village, we’re thrilled to share it with others too.”
This is a much more steady approach to whether guests arrive or not, one that speaks of confidence and trust.
How Would It Feel?
I asked my mother to imagine her reaction of excitement and joy (and that of my father too) at receiving the news that the houses were all booked solid from August 15 to August 31 this summer.
“That would feel marvelous.” I then asked my mother to just stay in that feeling of marvel, and to deliberately compound and add to that fabulous emotion with a vision of my father turning to her and saying
“Isn’t it marvellous? Just wonderful? Remarkable?”
He would say this without having to explain what the ‘it’ stood for, perhaps mention this in passing in the car, or over a cup of tea. They would both know he was remarking on the houses being perpetually full.
Imagining the Ideal Outcome with What-if-Up
I scripted how it would be if all the rooms were booked, with a ‘what if…’ exercise to build momentum. I even detailed how much they could potentially earn in 15 days = Euros 8,000. I then extrapolated that to a monthly, then perpetual yearly income.
“What if…” I wrote, “What if…there were a waiting list? What if there were just too many people, so camping and caravans joined us too?”
I showed this script to my parents and asked them to re-read it, and better still rewrite it, so they could enjoy, as I did, the imagination and anticipation of this being the way things would now be. An additional Euros 8,000 arriving every fortnight, and how many wonderful things they could do with that constant flow of extra cash. I asked them to rewrite it imagining all the while exactly what they wanted to experience, enjoying the process of that imagining as much as possible.
After this, things started to move quickly.
First, the garden was tidied up. There was a flurry of activity, an urgency to get things ready for August 15. It was infectious, contagious, and fun. Everyone got involved, reception rooms were cleared, paintings dusted, sheets and blankets aired. We photographed the house from many angles.
We updated all the google places around the house, uploaded photos to Facebook, registered with Airbnb and other online property listings.
Manifesting Magic: Bookings Pour In
First, the small studio in Lisbon started to become double, triple even quadruple booked as the texts flooded in to my mother’s phone. A waiting list emerged and my parents were generating USD39 a night. And it wasn’t the 15th of August yet…
Then, the other flat in Lisbon started booking up. Advance bookings came in for August 15-31, and suddenly both properties in Lisbon were full. And it wasn’t the 15th of August yet….
Finally, there was a message for Casa dos Arcos, our home in the countryside. The first guest to book was a holy man; he wanted to bring 7 pilgrims with him on a retreat. They would meditate over the long weekend of Our Lady of Conception. He arrived early on the 14th of August. And…it wasn’t the 15th of August yet…
After this first booking, the house was booked solid, with several overlapping bookings from a group of 8, then 5, then 3, then 4 and on and on. Agents got in touch with my parents wanting to advertise the house as a platinum ‘property of the week,’ opening up markets in the US and China.
On the August 31, I got this email: “In two weeks in August, we invoiced Euros 8,000 through the company. We are so happy! There was even a booking for August 2015, 12 months out from now, for 3 whole weeks to book the entire property.”
Manifesting magic is easy when you live a creative, playful existence, in a world where you are open to endless positive possibilities. Each moment flows easily to the next, each day is perfect, and it is fun to make believe and experience a better feeling world.”
If you would like to stay at Casa dos Arcos, visit