Visualisation is a method of focusing and targeting your mind towards what you want. It is commonly used by sports people, business people and actors to enhance performance.
If you can learn how to use this technique successfully, you can positively alter many things in your life.
It’s great for helping with fitness and health.
There is considerable evidence behind this, including findings that your experience through certain senses can be as real when visualising, as in an actual situation. Or at least ,close to it.
Therefore, you can visualise any target or future position, and play with it through visualisation techniques, as if you were in the future position already.
This helps with confidence and personal self- management as you move towards a goal.
For example, if you want to explore running a half marathon, and you are not a runner currently, then you can create visualisation sessions where you see yourself crossing the line at the end of a run. You can use the session to see what you look like, what the terrain around you is, how you work through any periods of tiredness or strain whilst you are running, and the sounds and smells around you during the run. The more you can stimulate the senses, the better.
Various visualisation techniques and how they can be used:
Creating a movie in your mind
One of the best ways is to think of yourself in your own movie. So, if you have a grand quest to achieve something – maybe becoming a public speaker – then create a movie clip in your imagination of you as a master public speaker. Run through the scene or scenes with yourself as the main character, and your journey through to the position you are targeting. Try and visualise all the steps and moments, the people you meet, the hours and days you spend learning, where you have to go and so on. Run through your mind as a movie reel, and develop this over time. You can apply this to anything, changing job, starting a business, getting fit, traveling, meeting new people and more besides.
In that way the mind should calm, lose its distractions, and clear out. This allows for a new state to arise, which should be holistic, benefiting both mind and body. Use whatever focal point works best for you, it could be an object like a candle flame, your breath or a sound, even soothing music. Find somewhere quiet and start focusing, practising over time to improve this, so you can do it for longer and longer, deeper and deeper.
Using a vision board
Vision boards are a classical way to use the power of visualisation. The board needs to be created and then placed somewhere you will regularly see it. It is best used for specific goals, say weight loss. There are many ways you can construct your board, an example would be to get a picture of yourself, in the middle of the board and surround this with further pictures, showing images that will stimulate you to act towards your goal.
Maybe pictures of healthy meals, a runner, quotes from well-known people, a photo of an inspiring role model, a weight machine with your target weight on it, and fruit, water and vegetables.
Write out your goal or objective every day
If you have a goal, then one way to try and imprint it into your psyche is to write it down every day, fresh each time. This works for both the general and the specific.
For example, you can write down “I am highly energised and getting younger each day” to bring you renewed youth and vigour. Or for a more specific target something like “I am running three miles per day, four days per week”. Just write it down, every day, even if it is a future goal, as if you are doing it now, and have already achieved it.
The act of writing it fresh once or twice per day is a trigger that slowly embeds the new habits required to meet the target.
Creative visualisation of the desired outcome
This is especially powerful for helping you to visualise yourself to resolve conflicts and difficult situations. You simply project in your mind a position where the conflict or problem has disappeared. You see yourself on the other side of the situation, happy and relived it is no longer in your life.
It is important in imaging this, not to include how it is dealt with or resolved, all you are aiming to do is imagine the position when it has been. Where are you? What room are you in? Who are you talking to? What are you wearing?
See it all, see yourself in as much detail as you can once you have reached this improved position.
This is a slightly different basis to the others, because you use an external voice, not your imagination or your own initiative, to steer or guide you.
From reliable sources these audio recordings can be incredibly helpful at stimulating your mind to find new places to go and to engender new states and experiences.
Some key tips about using visualisation:
- You cannot practice once or twice and expect amazing results. This really is something you need to persist with, and to practice over and over.
- As with many other forms of exercise, you should try and experiment and find the ways that work best for you.
- In most cases, the key is to put yourself into your targeted future position, now. And to work in the present tense.
- Although you may be way off your objective, you consider it a given, you move there in your visualisation straight away.