Posted by on 1/26/2020 to Let's Talk: Relax, Soak and Unwind after Work
The Power of Visualization for Both Success and Balance in Your Life
What is Visualization?
Visualization, according to Merriam-Webster, is simply "the act or process of interpreting in visual terms or of putting information in visual form."
How Can People Use Visualization to Help Achieve Success?
The way in which I think about visualization is as a form of mental imagery. It's wanting something, or believing in something, even practicing something over and over in your mind. Overtime, this mental imagery and the repetition you put into this way of thinking starts to shift and reflect into positive energy and direction in your life.
When I was younger, I played baseball (specifically I was a catcher), and I remember going over and over in my head how to properly block a baseball thrown in the dirt (the technique, hand placement, glove placement, footwork), and foot mechanics when trying to throw out runners at each base. This way of thinking for me and practicing things in my head that I really believed in strongly goes back as far as I can remember.
I believe using mental imagery altered my mindset in significant ways and allowed me to achieve much more in sports then I would have without them. Now I'm not concluding that everything that I have ever perceived or thought about has happened the exact way I wanted it to, however I would say that anything I have ever truly believed in and practiced over and over in my mind has given me a great chance at achieving that goal.
For instance, how often have you practiced an interview, or went over in your head how an interview may go? I find myself, that this way of mental imagery and thinking has increased my confidence at job interviews and has made me less nervous because I have already tried to put myself there, in that pressured situation.
According to Huffpost (2015), mental imagery has been something that has helped countless individuals achieve fame, such as Oprah, Bill Gates, Jack Nicklaus and Jim Carry. The Journal of Consulting Psychology also released a study that found potential job seekers who used visualization techniques over ones that just used traditional interview techniques had a higher employment percentage 2 months later (66% to 21%).
The mind, according to HuffPost (2015), has a difficult time distinguishing between reality and imagination, and our body stimulates the same neural networks. Psychology Today states that, "brain studies now reveal that thoughts produce the same mental instructions as actions." The point here is the more you practice at success in your mind, or believe in something, the better the chance you have at achieving that in reality.
Practicing the Power Visualization & Moving Forward with this Technique?
Here are some simple steps to follow:
- Be Purposeful: Don't just go through the motions, really concentrate on focusing on things you actually want to have happen. This is not just a daydream. Focus on influencing your life, and habits within it.
- Change your mindset/start thinking in a different way: Easier said then done and this takes practice. You really have to start to think about the positive's in life and cut out all the things you don't want to happen & think about the good things you do want to have happen. It's hard to retrain your mind and even I have to constantly remind myself to turn negatives into positive thoughts. For me visualization takes constant focus and practice, but it gets easier as you do it.
- Focus on a Goal: This could be anything from a sports related goal, to a job interview, to simply living a more stress-free life. The main thing here (for me anyways) is believing what I want to come true and practicing it in my mind.
- Become your own Best Friend: What do I mean? Well simply put, everyone goes through stressful times, and most of us work a lot of hours a week at our job, many of us raise children, so start being kind to yourself. Start thinking positively for all you do in this world and really work at cutting out all the negatives.
- Be Detailed in your Approach: For instance, when I was younger and would think about proper foot work and glove work behind the plate (when playing baseball), I would think about things down to a tee. The angle of my glove, the angle of my body, the positioning of my head as I went down for a block. Be specific in your approach, not only what your goal is, but how exactly are you going to get to that point. Actually visualize yourself in a situation that may be difficult and then think about challenging yourself to get through it, it's called prepping.
- According to HuffPost (2015), "visualization is actually a way of getting your mind back on track when you feel out of balance." So this is a technique that we can all use to try and reduce stress. No matter how positive you try and become, there will undoubtedly be challenging times you face in your life, but the more you practice with this technique and the power of visualization the easier you may find it to get back on track or the better you may be able to deal with that stressful situation.
So Why do We Include this Blog Post?
We have tried to use this blog as a way of creating a platform for people to reduce stress in there lives, whether that be with certain tactics which we have posted about (like simply becoming a more organized person), certain products that help with relaxation, and now onto mental practices like visualization.
The great thing about visualization is that it is free to use. All you need is your mind and a couple of minutes to yourself to focus. However, within this time frame you can use this form of guided or mental imagery to imagine yourself living and practicing a more stress-free life.
Is this way of thinking going to take all of your problems away, most likely no, but it has certainly had an impact on my life and it can certainly make you more likely to achieve your goals and aspirations, even if those aspirations are simply to be more carefree.
Thanks for stopping by and sticking with us. We appreciate all your feedback. Please feel free to share our posts across social media to help us share our way of thinking! See you next time at RN to Zen.
Adams, A. J. (2009, December 9). Seeing Is Believing: The Power of Visualization. Retrieved from https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/flourish/200912/seeing-is-believing-the-power-visualization
McNaney, J. (2015, April 14). 5 Benefits We Can Reap From the Power of Visualization Immediately. Retrieved from https://www.huffpost.com/entry/5-benefits-we-can-reap-fr_b_6672638?guccounter=1&guce_referrer=aHR0cHM6Ly93d3cuZ29vZ2xlLmNvbS8&guce_referrer_sig=AQAAAMGlob0hkvlr2UZZM2l22a20PNxCasW0BgB93CMGVBAqtN7
Stein, M. (n.d.). Many athletes use visualization to prepare for the big game. Learn how to use this method for your next interview. Retrieved from https://www.monster.com/career-advice/article/interview-visualize-success