Visualization is a powerful tool that can help lead you to serious changes in your life. You may not be familiar with this practice as a way of increasing your motivation. You may believe it seems like some sort of personal development trend or new age woo-woo (I love that term: woo-woo), but this practice has actually been around for centuries and has been shown to be effective through science. Keep reading to learn more about how visualization exercises can help you reach those big hairy goals.
About Visualization Exercises
What visualization is: Visualization is using mental pictures to imagine yourself where you are living your dreams. Instead of focusing your mind on the how to attain this dream life or any of the challenges you will hit as you pursue a particular outcome; you take time to picture yourself winning at that pursuit. This type of mental exercise has been used by people in several professions to help them excel past the average and onto stellar accomplishments reserved for only the best of the best. Visualization is common for athletes, in business and entertainment. Do you know the story of how Muhammad Ali would picture himself knocking out his opponent prior to each fight to go onto a major win? Michael Jordan was known to use this technique by seeing the shot he wanted to take before swishing the ball into the basket.
Why It Works
As you visualize, neurological and physiological functions are activated when you picture yourself in a specific situation or performing a certain act. These are the same exact functions that are turned on when you actually perform these actions, so you will receive the same results over time. The reason it works is that neural patterns are created in your brain and are strengthened each time you perform a visualization. And, thinking about an event or action stimulates your nervous system very much as actually doing that thing would. These patterns are then recognized and established within your body and brain's functioning over time!
How to Use Visualization
The key to making visualization exercises work is to support them with repetition. That means you must practice them regularly in order to establish the patterns I’ve mentioned. Sit in a quiet place, close your eyes and think about a specific situation you'd like to manifest in your life. You want this scene to be as accurate and detailed as possible, so you may want to take some notes ahead of time. Think of the physical setting, the smells, the people who are there, the feelings that arise and the reason you want this situation to become. Let the events play out in your mind as far as you'd like them to go. Let your scene play out until you feel happy with its outcome. Make time daily for your visual practice so that it becomes a habit!
Visualization really is a tool that can benefit you in ways you never imagined. Give it a try to see the results for yourself, and be patient as you learn to embrace this new practice into your life.