Seeing Yourself as a Success

How visualization helps you nail your goals

Visualization is daydreaming with a purpose. It’s the process of rehearsing your goals mentally. You can use it for anything — like perfecting your golf swing, acing a job interview, giving an important talk in front of an audience of professionals, even getting yourself to spin class, or making sure you get through a break-up talk comfortably.

Science has proven that when you imagine yourself completing a task from beginning to end, you are training your brain and muscles in the same way as if you were actually physically pumping iron, racing a bike, taking a test, or making a sales call. Athletes, surgeons, musicians, actors and more all count on mental run-throughs to help them perfect their performances. You can combine visualization with actual practice to reach your full potential.

Set Your Sights on a Goal
On the road to reaching your goals, picture how it all happens. You may even want to write this down. Set your goal then use your five senses to determine what it will feel like. What are your surroundings? What will you hear, see, smell, or wear, for example?  If any of your visions bring about stress or other roadblocks, imagine how you will deal with them. If you see yourself getting nervous, imagine taking deep calming breaths, or adding an affirmation like, “You’ve got this!” into the visualization.

See Success
Remember, this is not wishful thinking. Visualization calls for taking the time, about 10 minutes a day, to see yourself experiencing your goal as if you were doing it for real. The process trains your brain and body for success. Imagine going through all of the motions necessary to complete the task, rather than watching yourself from a distance.
The Real Experience
Visualization alone won’t get you where you want to be. You also need to do the real physical work of getting to your goal. You know, like taking practice exams for a test, running and working out at the gym to prep for a race, or having friends put you through practice job interviews for the real thing. You’ll find that the combination of visualization plus practice is powerful preparation for success.

Daina Hulet spent ten years as the west coast editor for Glamour magazine covering beauty, fashion and lifestyle. She has also written freelance articles for national publications and created content for corporate fashion and beauty websites.

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