As we look for ways to get healthy and happy and live our lives in peace we often can come up with many options. From aerobic exercise to bring down blood pressure to yoga for opening up internal pathways to health, the available methods seem to be limitless. It is so easy to get caught up in a sea of studies or in the newest best-selling book that sometimes it all just becomes a confusing mess. Taking time out to focus solely on the success of our endeavor may be the solution to getting to our end game. And guided imagery may just be the key that opens the door to success.
Getting its start as a tool for dealing with the extreme and chronic pain associated with cancer treatments, the self-relaxation technique of guided imagery is now being used by athletes and just about anyone who is working toward a specific goal. More specifically, a form of guided imagery termed mental rehearsal.
The basic principle of mental rehearsal is this: Focus on what you want and you will be more apt to work towards that goal, that end game – towards what you consider to be your success.
Mental rehearsal is a process that allows you to simply focus on your success and that is it – no planning or commitments required; just a visualization of how or where you would like to be in a certain amount of time – your goal. It is a picture of you at what you consider to be your best. It is simple, doesn’t take much time and can be done just about any place where you have a moment to yourself.
- To begin, choose what you want to focus on: health, new job, new business, new car, old car, new baby, etc.
- Now select three (3) time periods in the future, for example 6 months, 12 months and 5 years.
- Get yourself in a location where you can be peaceful. It doesn’t have to absolutely quiet, just a place where no one will try to hold a conversation with you. The park bench on your lunch break could be an excellent place!
- Now, take three (3) deep slow breaths releasing as much built up tension and negativity as you can with each exhale.
- In your mind’s eye see yourself as you are at the current moment.
- Now, thinking of your focus point, for this exercise I will use weight loss, see yourself at the first of the three (3) time periods. Imagine how you will look and how you will feel. Stay here for as long as you like.
- Move on to the second time period and see yourself at the weight you want to be. How do you feel?
- Move on to the final time period, some time several years in the future. See your success. Stay here for as long as you like.
- To end, again take (3) deep slow breaths and let that great feeling of success carry you through the rest of your day.
Get to your success with this simple, effective technique of guided imagery.
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