With the end of exams and graduation fast approaching, it’s understandable if you feel overwhelmed and a little apprehensive about the future (whether that be working life, personal relationships, travel plans etc). You may have certain aspirations or goals, but you may also lack direction and motivation. It’s often difficult to know where to start and to overcome obstacles you face along the way. The end of university and beginning of the graduate job-hunt/ adult life will test your resilience, motivation and determination (we’re still getting there ourselves…). But there’s a great technique to use in order to stay focused and positive and it’s called visualization.
Visualization is a technique that is widely used in the sporting world, but is also being used more frequently in both professional and personal contexts. It involves you mentally identifying with a future version of yourself; a version of yourself which has achieved your goals and leads the life you wish to emulate. It’s a technique which encourages us to define our goals, strategies for achieving them and to maintain focus and determination. It can enable us to achieve success, remain positive and stay healthy.
Visualization works when you imagine yourself performing a task perfectly, how that will feel and what you will do to achieve your desired result. Physiologically you create neural patterns in your brain, just as if the event had physically happened. This stimulates the nervous system in the same way the actual event does. You’re effectively rehearsing future success.
As mentioned before, this technique is popular with sporting people. For example, Wayne Rooney has stated that he lies in bed the night before a football match and visualizes what it will be like to score the winning goal, what he will be wearing, how he will feel and how the crowd will react. This prepares him physically and emotionally for the match. However, visualization can be used within professional situations too. Richard Branson has often stated how he uses the technique to ascertain the results he wants from business meetings and deals.
It’s a technique that can therefore be used when preparing for interviews, meetings, applying for jobs and dealing with difficult/ stressful situations.
By visualizing what you want to achieve you will be focused, motivated and prepared for success. Here’s a step-by-step guide to visualizing your future achievements…
Find a quiet space where you can be alone and undisturbed
Set your goal/ target
Regulate your breathing and relax
Imagine the situation and your performance. What is the result? How did you achieve your goal?
Add as much detail as possible such as colours, smells, emotions etc
Spend around 10 minutes focusing on this
Repeat twice daily
Written by: Henry Aspinall
Sources: http://www.essentiallifeskills.net/visualization.html & http://addicted2success.com/success-advice/5-ways-to-manifest-your-reality-with-the-power-of-visualization/