Our goals can be seriously daunting. I’m sure you’ve had those days where you just don’t feel like training, or putting in the effort to eat healthy. I get it, and you’re definitely not alone. The truth is, our minds aren’t always on board with the hard work and consistency it can take to reach our goals. So let me share a little trick with you: visualization. It helps you tune into yourself and change your brain so you can stop thinking about the worst-case-scenario and start envisioning your success.
It’s a tactic I use to help myself through tough setbacks and hard parts of my training. Visualization can help you achieve short term goals like getting through a single workout, or it can help you reach longterm goals like fitting into your dream pair of pants. But it’s not just for fitness goals, it can be useful for any life goals that you have.
Visualization: what it is and why it matters
Visualization is the process of creating a mental image or intention of something you want to happen in your own life. With repetition your mind becomes a powerful tool to change your reality and propel you in the direction of your dreams.
It does this by affecting the subconscious mind. As your visualization replays over and over in your mind each day, your mindset will slowly begin to shift. This shift will affect your habits, which in turn will help you to achieve your goals. It can also block out the negative thoughts that might be holding you back, and motivate you to overcome challenges you encounter on the path towards your goals.
Let’s do an example:
Your goal is to complete your first 10km run some time in the next two months. You’ve been training, but for some reason you’re just not feeling motivated on today’s run. You’re only 30 seconds in and you’re already panting and feeling like you have no energy. What do you do?
Firstly, you would take a deep breath, clear your mind and turn off the negative stream of thoughts coming in. As you run, you’ll imagine yourself focused and breathing smoothly. Picture the determination on your face, the road in front of you and your feet crossing the 9km mark. The finish line is in the close distance. Feel your energy in that moment. You see the flags coming closer and closer as you propel forward towards the end.
Keep your visualization going for as long as you need to. Sometimes you might find your mind falling out of rhythm with it and coming back to reality. That’s okay. Just keep practising. Step back into your successful visualization to keep you feeling confident and motivated. The more you practise, the easier it will become.
3 steps to visualizing your goal
Visualization is a simple tactic that you can use in your daily life with minimal effort and minimal time. You can do it while you’re sitting still in a more meditative way, or even just while you’re eating dinner or driving to work.
1. Create a realistic image
The first thing you want to do is create the image of your success in your mind. Add as much detail as you possibly can to make it more realistic. Then, involve the senses. Tune into what you would, hear, smell, see and feel where you are in your visualization.
2. Feel it out, then change perspectives
Think about the emotions that you would feel if you succeeded at your goal. Image your reaction, how proud you would feel, and the way you would celebrate. Next, swap your perspective. Envision what your friends or family would say, and how they would react and show their happiness for you.
3. Make it a reality
Bring your visualization to life by faking it until you make it. Dress the part, talk the talk and walk the walk. You want to transform your life to one that aligns with the visualization that you want to achieve. The more details you transform the closer you’ll be to reaching your goals.
Visualization tools to support your goals
In order to keep your visualizations on the forefront of your mind, you might want to use one or two of these tools to help keep your goals on track.
1. Make a vision board
There are a ton of different ways you can make a vision board. It can be a digital one or a poster on your wall. All you need to do is find pictures and words that inspire you stay focused towards your goals. You can cut pictures out of magazines, or print them out then just put them all together in a creative way and keep it somewhere you can see it daily. Maybe that means you hang it above your dresser, or if it’s digital, you can use it as the background for your computer screen.
2. Write them down
Writing things down makes them way easier to remember. Ever gone grocery shopping without a list only to end up forgetting the entire reason you’re there? My point exactly. So use the same trick for your visualizations. Whatever you want for yourself write it down. You can even do a weekly check in session where you write down what you did well and what you need to work on. The important part is that you’re regularly reviewing it so your visualization don’t just become lofty dreams you eventually forget about.
3. Use affirmations to support your visualizations
Before you start to think that I’m getting a bit new age, hear me out. Affirmations can be a single word, or a phrase or quote that speaks to what you want for yourself. It serves as a little internal reminder to keep you focused on what truly is important to you. The right affirmation can help fight back against negative self talk by transforming your inner dialogue, and it can help create a more confident sense of self. Using affirmations to support your visualizations helps you to attack your goals with twice the power and motivation.
Love your #innerbabe
Set yourself up for success by focusing in on yourself while you visualize. Take a few deep breaths to clear your mind, and turn off any negative self talk, then guide your visualizations in the directions of your goals with as much detail as you can. Practise visualization every day to make sure you’re keeping your mind on track with your intentions.
Feeling inspired? Share you’re goals and intentions with our community of inner babes, or leave them in the comments below!