“A Person Is Limited Only To The Thoughts That He Chooses” – James Allen
Thoughts become reality.
That’s pretty much the summary of this blogpost. (yeah, thanks for coming eh! ;))
Usually, we let our life be defined by fluffcrap (That’s a word from now-on) that enters our head trough negative people & media that add NOTHING of value.
ZERO (IMO, That’s not that much )
We INSIST on believing that we’re not good enough.
We INSIST on believing that we’re bound to fail.
We INSIST to place others above us.
Therefore we INSIST on destroying our own lives. We simply choose it by default since we’re conditioned this way.
I encourage everyone to challenge this conditioning by visualization techniques
Our life is shaped by the vision we harbor in our mind. Every creation – no matter how big or small – originated in the mind.
“Good thoughts bear good fruits & bad thoughts bear bad fruits. See yourself as the gardener of your own mind.”
Have you planted bad seeds in your head or do you consciously cultivate supportive seeds that will flower into the life you’re looking for?
Many people (read: almost everyone) doesn’t recognize this, since we’re constantly bombarded with so much crap that we can’t see what’s bringing us down anymore. Therefore it’s essential to take some time every day to weed out the bad and nourish the good.
I’ve touched upon this topic in an earlier post on “How To Re-Program Your Brain”
What Is Visualization?
“The formation of mental images” is the most accurate way I’m able to describe it.
How does it work?
Our brains work in weird ways (more than I’ll ever comprehend probably) But for the purpose of this post I’ll limit myself to visualization;
Visualization has two awesome, practical applications;
- Changing perception
- Increasing performance
Our world is based upon how we perceive it. We don’t respond to factual knowledge but to our interpretation of that knowledge.
Huh, How so? I’m sure I don’t!
When considering a football-game. There’s always two teams playing against each other and therefore you also (mostly) have two crowds of supporters. Imagine this scenario: one team is winning and the other is losing pretty badly. The supporters of the first team are most likely ecstatic whilst the others are probably disappointed or even angry.
See the point I’m trying to make here?
It’s a very simple example: They are both watching the exact same game yet react differently. This might seem obvious if you haven’t given it second thought yet clearly proves that we most often react to our perception of reality (subjective) and not the actual reality (objective)
This is can also be found in several optical illusions;
You can look at the exact same image yet derive two entirely different conclusions (read: facts) of them, based on your perception.
Perception is everything.
Yeah yeah, all fun and games Simon. But what’s the practical application of this stuff? I don’t really care about stupid football games nor pretty pictures..
Changing your perception is critically important in generating self-image & optimism. Perception can literally make or break your life.
What perception do you have when you Face The Man In The Mirror?
What perception do you have when you look at your life?
Additionally, we also have skills and talents that can simply be developed without physical practice! Rehearsal in the mind tends to lead to the same benefits as actual practice
“What kind of black-magic is this?”
Research Quarterly ran an experiment on the effects of mental practice on performance in basketball;
Therefore Maxwell Maltz came to the conclusion in his book “Psycho-Cybernetics” that;
“Experimental and clinical psychologists have proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that the human nervous system cannot tell the difference between an “actual” experience and an experience imagined vividly and in detail.”
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“You act and feel not according to what things are really like but of the image your mind holds of what things are like.”
Also known as the “Thomas Theorem
Trough visualization we’re able to change the perception of ourselves (like I talked about before), the perception of the world around us and rehearse (and practice) skills we want to excel at. This, in turn defines our self-esteem, behavior/performance and overall happiness.
Now THAT is a bit more interesting eh?
Things it has done for me;
- Improved social relationships (dramatically)
- Shaping of my body
- Staying positive & engaged
- Increasing confidence
- Increasing performance in writing, reading, training and social skills
And it can do all of this for you too. I’m no exception.
Shaping your thoughts trough visualization is the absolute foundation of creating yourself.
How Should I Visualize?
Alright, let’s get practical now. I’ll share three different visualization techniques in the exercises below.
- Get comfortable (but stay awake)
- Set a timer for 10 to 20 minutes.
- You can add some music if you like (Recommendation)
- Slow down your breath by inhaling for 5 seconds, holding it for 5 seconds and then releasing it for 5 seconds again. Repeat this 5 times.
- Now close your eyes.
Imagine yourself floating out of your body to the back-row of an empty cinema. On the screen you’ll mentally rehearse different scenarios according to the result you’re looking for;
Alright, sit back; The movies is starting! Enjoy the ride..
Movie 1 (Reaching Goals)
Vividly and in detail imagine yourself in your current situation. Got that image? (this shouldn’t be too hard)
Good! Now visualize your desired situation,
Now vividly imagine how you’re going to fill the gap between your current situation and your desired situation. Focus on the process required. Visualize it as vividly and in detail as possible.
Many people just visualize the end result whilst that has (mostly) no effect.
You should visualize (and by the same rule, act) on the process that’s necessary reach your goal.
- Don’t imagine money. Imagine how you’re going to make the money.
- Don’t imagine yourself in a great physique. Imagine the process required to attain that physique.
If you’re familiar with the Law Of Attraction you’ll realize (or do so now) that just “thinking about it” isn’t going to change one thing in your life. By imaging and acting upon the process required you’re able to get the results you’re looking for
Movie 2 (Improving at any skill)
By the same account, you can picture yourself performing a skill you want to improve in (just like the basketball throws I talked about earlier). Again, process over end-result.
Repeat as vividly and in-detail as possible, as much as possible.
Movie 3 (Improving Self-Esteem)
Lastly, but certainly not least is the art (yes, I’ve found it to be THAT effective) of self-visualization. Imagine your ultimate self EVERY SINGLE DAY.
How would your ultimate self walk, talk, behave, interact, work and perform? Imagine every single detail and watch how your mind adopts this blueprint until it becomes automatic.
Until it becomes real. (It’s actually cool to see how people in your surroundings pick this up)
Perform this whenever necessary and condition it until it becomes firmer and firmer (and eventually you’ll auto-generate these conditions for yourself)
Because let’s face it. There’s only two options you can take;
- Let you life be defined by your own self-created bullshit and fall into depression (Since what benefits do disempowering beliefs give you anyway? Answer: NONE)
- Take Control Of Your Own Thoughts
“Act like a king to be treated as one”
Over time our heads get filled with so much negative fluffcrap (héhé) that we can hardly distinguish original thought from the crap we absorb by our surroundings.
What visualization allows you to do is take a step back from what you believe is true and create for yourself the image of what you want to be true. Since our minds act on suggested perceptions we’ll be able to change our-self, our performance and our happiness.
Note that this will take some time. Like I stated in my post on “How To Destroy Limiting Beliefs” it takes on average 66 days to replace our old perception with our new self-suggested images. So keep practicing consistently with the three exercises I’ve mentioned above and eventually they will become real.
- Visualize your ultimate self EVERY SINGLE DAY (preferably during your morning ritual)
- Visualize ANY skill you want to excel at.
- Visualize the process required to reach your goals! (This will also help you define the next step you’ll need to take)
- Read “As A Man Thinketh” and “Psycho-Cybernetics“
Leaves me with one more question;
“What are you going to use these visualization techniques for?“
If you feel like this post can help anyone out that you know, feel free to share it with your friends or send it in a mail to your mom! It helps me out a lot! If you’re having any thoughts or questions on this topic, feel free to share those with me in the comment section below.
Good stuff. I disagree on visualizing the process or the “how to’s” of your desired outcome, actually that can be a huge hindrance. Visualizing how you will feel when you achieve a desired outcome will then give the Universe unlimited ways to get you there. While there is nothing wrong with visualizing process, I feel it can limit the many possibilities that will manifest a desired outcome.
Nice post, found it quite true as I use visualization in my daily life for my next day ahead. Trust, we become what we think.Hence before my every presentation I visualize and rehearse my each action(and visualize my presentation to be always super hit ;-)).
The “football” example is just too good. Great going Simon!
It’s true – we drive ourselves by the way we see ourselves internally. What we imagine we are (within the realm of the possible and according to individual talents)
Take care & thanks for commenting
Interesting. My imagination is so poor, that it feels like a hard work for me to visualize.
But I have a couple of interesting experiences, especially the breakthrough with my shyness.
Yeah, I’ve found it powerful to change my self-perception. Basically we project ourselves the way we believe we are. Why not believe/imagine yourself to be the person you want to be. Simple yet not that easy.
Take care Michal,
I’ve used the visualization techniques before when it comes to weight lifting and it does help performance. I think that’s especially true when you get into the “zone” and your brain kinda turns off and you go on auto-pilot. I don’t know if that’s just me or not, but visualization seems to help when that happens.
I think it’s useful to challenge perceptions, especially negative ones. The thing about them is they’re often wrong and we can’t assume that our perception is perfectly aligned with reality. That’s too rigid of thinking.
Being “in flow” in the gym is nothing short of ecstasy
“I think it’s useful to challenge perceptions, especially negative ones. The thing about them is they’re often wrong” – I’d say almost always.
There’s many ways social conditioning ff’s up our brain. Too much not to do something about it IMO.
Take care Steve,