Visualization is critical to staying the course on your journey to accomplishing your goals. It’s a powerful skill that you can learn. At first, it may sound like a far-out, space-age idea, but once you get started, you’ll likely get hooked – just like I did!
So…why practice visualization? Why is it so important?
By learning and practicing positive visualization, you can change your beliefs about yourself. It can give you confidence and make you believe you’re fully capable of doing what it takes to be successful and achieve that long-time goal of yours – that dream you’ve kept inside of you for so many years!
How do you visualize?
Go to a quiet place without distractions.
Close your eyes.
Put 3 – 4 images in your mind of your life when you’ve reached your goal.
Focus on the 1st image and layer in the positive emotions you would be feeling in that image.
Then repeat with each of the other images.
It can take only a few minutes a day.
For example, your goal may be to have an online business selling gift baskets. You love being creative and have been making and giving personalized gift baskets as holiday and birthday gifts for years and you’ve always desired to turn it into a real business.
To visualize this, go to a quiet place. Close your eyes and picture yourself being successful at this. What do you see? Are you reviewing customer orders and placing items into pretty decorated baskets? Is an assistant wrapping the baskets, boxing them, and then taking them to UPS for shipping? Are you seeing yourself reading the excellent customer reviews and seeing the deposits in your bank account?
Focus on the images one by one. For each image feel the positive emotions. Let the confidence and joy run throughout your body. Feel yourself standing up tall and being so glad to have taken action and started this business. Feel how proud you are that you are so capable of managing the details and you have made this a successful business!
Based on research described in her teaching videos, Mel Robbins states that visualization is actually reprograming your brain’s beliefs. She explains that your mind doesn’t distinguish between images and emotions that are real events or imagined ones. When you visualize, you are encoding a real memory into your brain. The more you visualize, the stronger the memory becomes. This actually increases your confidence in your ability and your fear dissipates as you gain certainty about handling the steps it takes to accomplish your goal. You also begin talking and acting like someone who has already reached your goal – which in the above example, would be having built a successful online gift basket business!
When you’re at the end of your day and find yourself finally getting around to thinking about that decision you’ve been putting off, the advice of ‘sleep on it’ is not just an old wives’ tale. Scientific research confirms that a person should not make an important decision at the end of the day, but instead wait until morning, following a good night’s sleep.
Two reasons this is good advice:
Firstly, at the end of the day we experience “decision fatigue.” According to the American Medical Association, this is a state of mental overload that can impede a person’s ability to continue making decisions. The average person makes over 35,000 decisions by the end of a day, says Dr. MacLean, a psychiatrist, which takes energy and can result in brain fog. In addition, the wear and tear on our brains leads us to make more reckless decisions, such as impulse eating and shopping.
Secondly, the most accurate decisions are made early in the day, according to a study published in the journal, Cognition. Not only is this because decision fatigue has not yet occurred, but can also be attributed to adequate sleep, which is linked to better productivity, concentration, and cognition – the mental ability to acquire and perceive knowledge or concepts.
So, the next time you find yourself at the end of the day with your head spinning and you asking yourself, “What do I do?” The answer is to get a good night’s sleep, knowing your decision-making ability will be improved in the morning and your decision more accurate.
Studies show being sleep deprived leads to consuming an average of +285 additional calories per day!
When you’re sleep deprived, cortisol levels are high and serotonin levels are low. This makes you crave starchy, sugary and fatty foods to help boost serotonin and calm you. At the same time, lack of sleep increases the hunger hormone, ghrelin, and suppresses the satiety hormone, leptin, which signals when we’ve eaten enough.
6 Tips for a Good Night’s Sleep
Stick to a schedule. Going to bed and waking up at the same time each day creates a rhythm that your body will naturally try to maintain.
Create a night-time routine. Doing the same tasks each night signals to your body to slow-down, sleep is coming soon.
No big meals before bed. Stopping eating 3 hours before bed gives your digestive system enough time to complete its cycle, so the digestive process does not continue after bedtime, disrupting your sleep.
Morning exercise. Exercise releases stress, making you fall asleep faster. It also produces growth hormones, which help your body to repair and revitalize itself. Best to exercise early in the day, however, because if you are exercising too close to bedtime, the adrenaline may prevent you from falling asleep easily.
No late night drinks. Alcohol actually prevents you from getting your much-needed deep sleep. It also dehydrates you and can wake you up during the night.
Go outside each day. A little Vitamin D every morning regulates your body’s production of melatonin and lifts your spirits. Dr. Michael Breus, PHD, advises getting outside for at least 15 minutes every morning.
Live your best life by following your own true BEAT.