Visualisation is a process of building a positive mental picture of yourself achieving your goals or overcoming obstacles or challenges in your life. It is one of the more powerful tools in your toolbox to help with self-motivation to achieve what you want to achieve. Visualisation is one of the principles of Appreciative Inquiry where it is said that 'Images Inspire Action' in that people move forward in the direction of their images of the future and that the more positive and hopeful the image of the future, the more positive the present-day action.
Visualisation is also well documented in sports performance coaching where it is used to improve motivation, concentration and coordination and boost success. Visualisation can also reduce anxiety, fear and stress.
Some approaches merely propose that you visualise the desired outcome. However, sports performance coaches have found that a two-stage process is more effective.
The Combination Method of Visualisation
Process Visualisation involves building a mental image of yourself successfully completing each of the stages required to reach your goal, rather than just the goal itself. If your goal was to lose weight for example, you might picture yourself cooking delicious but healthy food; successfully saying ‘no’ to a cream cake; enjoying taking more exercise; looking at the numbers on the scales get lower and lower and seeing buying yourself some new clothes.
This involves picturing yourself having achieved your goal. It might involve picturing yourself confidently speaking in public; starting work in the new job that you want; or in terms of the example above, picturing yourself slimmer and wearing your new clothes. You need to really focus on building a detailed picture in your head – imaging seeing your target weight on the scales - how will you feel about yourself? How confident will you feel? What positive things will other people say to you?
If you struggle with creating a mental picture, you might find that describing what you would see and feel works better for you.
Through visualisation we get a mental picture of ourselves achieving what we want to happen. When we do this, we not only become more motivated to pursue it, but also more confident that we can achieve it.
Last Updated Tuesday 21st August 2018
About Hugh Asher
Hugh is an author, practitioner, trainer, researcher and consultant.
He keeps rare breed sheep and cows.
He also shares his house with the world’s largest puppy, called Charlie.
Although he was told from a young age that “Life isn’t fair” he has refused
His vision for a better world involves giving people the skills and