Visualization and visualization meditation are powerful tools that can help you reach your personal, health, career and relationship goals. During visualization meditation, you fix your mind on a place or object to help you focus and relax. During visualization, you picture yourself achieving a goal as if it’s already happened. Both can help you improve your mindset and reach your goals.
What is visualization meditation?
“Visualization meditation is a form of active meditation,” says Dennis Buttimer, M.Ed, CEAP, RYT, CHC, a life and wellness coach at Cancer Wellness at Piedmont. “It’s active in a sense that your mind is activating pictures and images you can benefit from.”
What is visualization?
Professional athletes, for example, have used visualization exercises for years. They picture scoring the winning shot, hitting a home run or achieving their personal best in the pool.
“These exercises are powerful because the mind has a hard time differentiating between something real and something vividly imagined,” says Buttimer. “This can work in your favor by ‘priming the pump’ of your mind to take inspired action.”
How does visualization work?
Visualization works because it helps you plan for your goals and take action when opportunities come along.
“You’ll take more skillful actions because your mind is relaxed,” says Buttimer. “You’ll also be subconsciously drawn to the positive thing you want in life.”
For example, if you visualize yourself starting a yoga class to improve your health, you may suddenly notice a yoga studio near your home that you never paid attention to before. If your goals involve managing your money, you may find yourself drawn to sources for financial advice.
“In everyday life, when you think about your goal, you may focus on how you haven’t achieved it,” he explains. “Visualization is about lining up with the thing you want. It’s getting relaxed and positively imagining what success looks like. You’re bringing your goal to a higher level of consciousness and reducing the blocks you have in your way.”
How to practice visualization in your life
Here are Buttimer’s tips for practicing visualization meditation:
Relax your body. Take some deep breaths; clench and release your muscles. Picture your favorite place, such as a cozy cabin in the mountains or a beautiful beach. Bring as many sensations into this visualization as you can. Think about what you see, hear, taste, smell and feel.
Visualize your goal. Then, picture your goal, such as better health, a promotion or a loving, reciprocal relationship. Again, be as specific as possible and consider all five senses.
Buttimer suggests following a guided visualization if you’re new to the practice. You can explore various options on YouTube or through several smartphone apps. It doesn’t have to take long – just five minutes can get you in the right mindset to achieve your goals.
“If you dedicate five minutes a day to getting relaxed and picturing yourself having success in a specific area, you’ll be more open and receptive and believe that you have the ability to bring forth this goal.”
Learn more ways to reduce stress and improve your well-being.