Using Mental Imagery to Reach Goals:
Visualization Exercise for Success
Visualization is an incredible tool for personal development. It’s a technique used by elite athletes, writers, psychologists, entrepreneurs, and successful people from all walks of life. It has also been the subject of self-help books that have sold millions of copies. There’s plenty to be said about the power of visualization.
So, what are some of the best strategies to get visualization to work for you? There are two parts essential for making visualization work.
- First – You must clearly define what it is you want.
- Second – You must practice creating the desired outcome (in your mind) on a daily basis.
There is a short phrase to summarize this process: Conceive, Believe, Achieve.
Too often though the details of how to create an effective visualization are not described. This article is going to change that. I’m going to teach you to properly build your visualization skills, and how to benefit from them.
Before we discuss strategy let’s briefly go over the benefits of visualization.
The phrase ‘Conceive, Believe, Achieve’, is very similar to an idea put forth by celebrated author, and mentor Napolean Hill – It was later adopted and given an addition by another highly successful man – W. Clement Stone.
“Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve…with P.M.A. (Positive Mental Attitude)” – W. Clement Stone.
His story is a true tale of rags to riches. Born to an impoverished family, with only the support of his widowed mother, he established a multi-million dollar insurance company before the age of 20. Within 10 years he had 1,000 sales agents working for him, which led to the creation of his insurance empire. All of this allowed him to donate hundreds of millions of dollars to charitable causes.
He knew the secret power of visualization, and wrote about it, in many of his highly successful books. We know it works.
What are some of the benefits of this technique?
1) You get to try something out before you take action. Seeing it before you try it will help you realize whether you are headed in the right direction. Practicing in your mind will let you know if you really do want the results your thinking about.
2) You save yourself a great deal of misplaced effort. Seeing yourself with the desired result helps you avoid a lot of the frustration involved with working towards a goal. Rather than making mistakes as you go, mental rehearsal allows your mind to create solutions for you before you even begin working.
3) Rehearsing in your mind creates the possibility for the desired outcome. Your mind only knows what you tell it. It cannot tell the difference between what is real and imagined. If you imagine that you are confident and successful…it might as well be true. Picturing success in your minds eye is an essential way to making that idea real.
You must have absolute belief that the power of visualization will work for you. If you still don’t believe, then I recommend going through the FREE guidebook on “Practical Creative Visualization“. In it there are examples of how people use creative visualization to achieve success. Immerse yourself in the idea of succeeding through visualization. In the next part we will talk about how to visualize, but it’s important that you firmly believe it’s effectiveness, before you begin.
Putting it All Together – Making it Happen
Now we get to the point of this process – how to create successful visualizations.
The subconscious mind communicates in a visual language. Every day, through the language you use and images you see, you’re developing a self-image. Remember this important point – how you choose to speak to yourself and the images you allow to impress upon your mind have a direct connection to your outward experience. Manage your internal expectations and reality will tend to meet them.
Your self-image is directly responsible for your current situation.
It is through efforts to recreate your self-image that you will realize the outcomes you desire.
To effectively change your self-image, you are going to have to deal with the ideas that you’ve placed in your subconscious mind. A good amount of that involves replacing the negative with the positive.
Think about how you currently view yourself. Do you see yourself as a procrastinator, daydreamer, or slacker? Now think about how you are going to counteract that ineffective view. Begin to change the self-talk you use to combat your own preconceived notions.
Is there something that you want to accomplish that you think is beyond your grasp? Well how do you expect to do it if you tell yourself that you aren’t cut out for it?
Turning on Your Success Mechanism
You must see yourself in the circumstance which you hope to achieve. Don’t worry about every little detail for now. That’s not what this exercise is about. It’s about creating a target. We know that setting goals creates success. Seeing yourself already attaining that goal is a way to begin acting how a successful person would.
Do Research – Build the Image.
Is there anyone around you that has the success which you desire? Try to spend some time with them. Seeing how they conduct themselves day-to-day is a great start to understanding success. If that’s not possible, then try to build a mental image of how that person acts on a daily basis.
What do you think the mental habits are, of a successful person? Try to put yourself in their shoes as much as possible.
If it’s simply not possible to spend time around a personal mentor. Another way to begin research is simply to dive into google. Whether it is skill or wealth which you hope to acquire, you’ll be able to seek out others who have attained it. Search through websites for their personal story. Success leaves clues.
The point of research is to build a realistic account of your desire. The more realistic, the better. If you can build a picture of yourself which falls inline with what you hope to achieve, then you’ll begin to naturally act in a way which coincides with your greater plans.
Don’t think too much of the future. Don’t fret over the details. Your brain will sort out the details naturally, providing you with clear cut answers. All you need to do now, is put a picture in your mind, so that you can begin to ‘act the part’.
The Mind’s Eye
Everything that you’ve been working to create must be imagined within the mind’s eye. It can also be called the theater of the mind, or whatever you like. The important thing is to recognize the mental facility, then USE it.
Put every detail that you’ve gathered into your mental image. As you become immersed in your own mind, the image will take on a life of it’s own. Immersion is the key. Practice for a solid ten minutes daily. Have fun with it. The exercise is meant to help you feel as if you have already succeeded. So it should be enjoyable.
Remember your brain doesn’t not know the difference between what is real, and fake. The electrical signals are all the same. If you can imagine yourself successful, then you can be successful in whatever you want.
Tip – Practicing at night before you go to sleep is a good way to create vivid images. If you allow the movie to play in your mind repeatedly before sleeping, it can help you discover creative solutions that you may not have otherwise considered. This is a great way to feel your goal within reach and inspire a positive outlook.
It will take time to perfect this technique. You shouldn’t expect to see a perfect image on your first several attempts. Just know that even if you can’t visualize it clearly you are still building focus around a goal. As you do this your mind will naturally know what you are trying to achieve. It will begin to provide answers to you based on your desired outcome.
If you don’t have a fantastic visual imagination don’t worry. Use language to describe your desired outcome. People have different strengths. If you’re more inclined to use words then by all means do so. Be as descriptive as possible.
Finding Your Stillness
The best place to do all of this work is from your inner awareness. No matter what is going on in your mind there is always one still point of awareness. It is from this still point of focus that you will most benefit from practicing this technique.
It doesn’t matter what you call it. What matters is that you find it within. When you work from this space, you are imprinting your efforts on to your subconscious mind. From this point your efforts will always be effective. When you do this, you are bypassing the opportunity for your conscious mind to pass judgement, create excuses, or sound off with limiting beliefs.
Work from the still inner space and you will find it easy to immerse yourself in visualization practice. To become adept at reaching this state I highly recommend taking up regular meditation. It will help you clear your thoughts and allow you to focus entirely on visualization.
This technique can be effective for any application. Whether you are building new skills, or erasing old habits, visualizing will help. Take some time to really get comfortable with the technique. After practice simply let go and don’t concern yourself with results. You will be amazed at how quickly natural change will take place.
Read my review of the ” Make Your Visualizations Reality” program and take your creative visualization practice to the next level!
Learn an effective system for creative visualization with this helpful ebook. “4-Steps to Practical Creative Visualization” shows you how to develop your visualization skill and use it to reach your goals.
For an in depth discussion of visualization and its benefits, please consider this book. It’s an incredible tool for understanding the capability of your mind. To learn more about self-image, managing emotions, and realizing success, you can’t go wrong with ‘The New Psycho-Cybernetics’.