Visualization is a powerful tool that can help lead you to serious changes in your life. You may not be aware of this practice as a means of increasing motivation. Perhaps it seems like some sort of personal development trend or new age woo, but this process 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 lofty goals.
About Visualization Exercises
Visualization is merely using mental pictures to imagine yourself in a situation where you are living your dreams. Instead of focusing your mind on all the challenges that face you as you pursue a particular objective; you take time to picture yourself actually winning at that pursuit. This type of mental exercise has been used by people in various professions to help them excel past the average and onto stellar accomplishments reserved for only the best of the best. It’s common in such fields as athletics, business and entertainment. You may be familiar with stories of how Muhammad Ali would picture himself knocking out his opponent prior to each fight to go onto a major win. Michael Jordan is another athlete known to use this technique by seeing the shot he wanted to take before swishing the ball into the basket.
Why It Works
Neurological and physiological functions are stimulated when you picture yourself in a particular situation or performing a certain act. These are the same functions that are engaged when you actually perform these actions, thus you will receive much the same results over time. The reason it works is because neural patterns are created in your brain and are strengthened each time you perform a visualization. In addition, 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 reinforce them with repetition. That means you must practice them regularly in order to establish the patterns we’ve discussed. Sit in a quiet place, close your eyes and begin to 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 wish to take some notes ahead of time. Consider the physical setting, the smells, the people who are there, the feelings that arise and the reason you want this scenario to play out. Let the events play out in your mind as far as you’d like them to go. Allow your scene to occur until you feel content with its outcome. Make time daily for your visual practice so that it becomes a habit.
Visualization truly is a tool that can benefit you in ways you never considered. Give it a try to see the results for yourself, and be patient as you learn to embrace this new practice into your life.
Resolutions Change Over Time and That’s Ok
You’ve probably heard all your life that you should never give up. You’ve listened to parents, teachers and coaches throughout the years as they’ve encouraged you not to quit and to go after what you want until you get it. While it’s good to be persistent and reaching a goal takes follow-through, this all or nothing type of advice can have its pitfalls. Sometimes our goals no longer suit us for various reasons, and continuing to pursue them can have lots of negative results. Read on to discover why it’s okay that your resolutions change over time and how to handle it when they do.
First, it’s important to go into setting resolutions with a flexible mindset. Know that there’s a chance you may find the thing you resolve to do now may not best the best thing for you three months from now. Our lives and our needs evolve. So should our resolutions. Sometimes we may even choose the wrong goal. This could happen due to peer pressure, misaligned expectations or simply due to poor timing. Knowing that goals aren’t set in stone will allow you to revise them as needed to serve you well.
Review and Assess
Next, remember to review your resolution regularly, especially if something doesn’t feel right. We all hit rough spots while pursuing a goal. It can be hard to overcome a plateau or to motivate ourselves to move past the challenging parts. However, if a pursuit starts to feel like it doesn’t fit your lifestyle or interests, perhaps it’s not the right place to focus your attention. Take time to assess your objectives if something feels off. It’s also wise to schedule periodic check-ins on a regular basis to be sure you’re on track and to look at whether certain tweaks can be made to help make your journey an even more productive one.
Make Some Revisions
These tweaks can make a huge difference in your level of satisfaction. Perhaps your goal is to write a book. Maybe you’ve established a realistic timeline for completing each step. That’s a great start. It’s possible, however, to discover that you’re actually ahead of your game or going off course when you sit down to assess your progress. If you find yourself way ahead, this may mean you can add some extra steps to make your book even better, such as a trip to a historical registry to uncover some unique tidbits pertinent to your story line. If you find you’ve veered off track, now is the time to brainstorm ways to bring your goal back on course so that you can maintain your productivity and motivation. You may even find that you want to revise that goal a bit or change it completely. Maybe you realize at your assessment point that you’re really not passionate about your subject matter at all anymore. It might not make sense to pour your energy and resources into something your heart’s no longer feeling. Perhaps it’s time to choose another book topic or to let that idea simmer for a while.
There’s no harm in admitting that a resolution is no longer serving you, as long as you’re being honest with yourself. Giving up simply because it’s the path of least resistance is rarely the answer. After some soul searching, it’s possible you’ll come to know that allowing your resolution to change might be your best solution.