The practice of visualising or mentally rehearsing future events is a powerful one. As sports psychologists have known for years, the brain cannot distinguish between what is real and what is imagined therefore if you train your brain to visualise success in a given situation it will be primed and ready to deliver.
Visualisation comes naturally to some but less easily to others. The key is to practice this regularly and to find a form of visualisation that works for you.
In Hal Elrod’s The Miracle Morning, visualisation is one of the six key habits he suggests you practice each day.
One method is to begin the morning by visualising your ideal day. This really helps to sharpen your focus on your priorities and get you primed for a calm and productive day. In my vision board workshops I take my clients on a journey through their day, from the moment they wake up the moment they go to sleep, visualising every aspect of the day from their environment, what they are eating, how they are spending their time and who they are with. This really helps my clients to set their intentions for making their vision boards and helps to put them in touch with what is really important.
Creating your own vision board is time well spent. Once you have set your intentions, selecting images and words that inspire you and represent what you want from your future is very powerful. As part of my morning routine I use my vision board, looking at each image, thinking about why I selected it and the emotions it produces. Again, this clear visualisation helps me to keep focused on my goals, on what is important and helps me set my intentions for the day as well as giving me the motivation to take action.
One tool I use with clients is the Future Pacing exercise. This works by first taking yourself back in time by five years and describing your life in the past tense. You then repeat the exercise in the present tense and finally take yourself five years into the future, still describing your life in the present tense. I’ve used this exercise with teenagers and this is incredibly powerful in helping them to understand how quickly time passes and that they what they are doing in the present will impact on what happens in the future. Similarly, using this exercise with mothers of very young children is impactful as it transports us to a life pre children when life was very different and projects us into the future, taking us out of the immediate and all encompassing moment of life with tiny children. As a tool to focus yourself on what really matters, this is a good one.
One of my favourite visualisations is by the amazing Gabby Bernstein. I often use this early in the morning and fills me with positive energy, ready for the day. Another excellent visualisation is from Tara Mohr’s Playing Big in which she uses a visualisation which projects you twenty years into the future, in which you visualise your future self and use them as a mentor to guide your actions in the present.
Finally in her confidence coaching CPD for The Coaching Academy the wonderful coach and trainer Pam Lidford teaches a visualisation to prepare you for an important event such as an interview or delivering a speech, in which you visualise approaching a confidence role model and request that you can borrow their outer body or protective shell, literally step into their shoes and visualise the event taking place in which all goes to plan.
Which of these visualisation techniques would you be prepared to try? Do you believe in the power of visualisation to create the future you desire.
My next vision board workshop details here
Group coaching programme including creating a clear vision, finding your core values see here
If you enjoyed this please come and join my wonderful coaching community here.