Visualization has been used for decades to improve sporting performance, build confidence, and help people achieve their goals. It has become a popular technique to change mindsets and build a more positive, motivated outlook on life.
But did you know that there is a scientific basis for visualization’s success? Studies have shown measurable improvements and health benefits to having a regular visualization practice. Here are eight ways that science has shown the benefits of visualization.
Regularly visualizing a future scenario, one where you achieve your goals, can help improve your focus. When you go over and over the details of that prospective situation, whether it’s a job interview, a presentation, or a race, your brain can take in more information that it needs to ensure you perform at your best.
Using visualization to win has been most famously used by sports coaches and elite athletes to improve performance. By visualizing each aspect of the race and competition, down to each swim stroke or game point, can give athletes the edge and lead to medal-winning results.
Practicing visualization allows you to safely explore every possible outcome and to see yourself succeeding. By building a positive picture of your achievement, success becomes more tangible. It becomes the alternative reality that you can choose. Your confidence will soar, and you’ll be able to take greater risks without being hamstrung by anxiety.
By visualizing as much of the future event as you can, you can take the mystery and the stress out of it. Instead of a tangle of ‘what ifs,’ you can imagine each ossicle outcome and plan for it. Performance anxiety and associated stress will be reduced and allow you to do very best.
People who suffer from depression often find it difficult to imagine that things could be different could be better. Using visualization can help to give you a step up into a different world, one where you feel happy and able to take action.
Decreased anxiety and greater confidence lead to deeper relaxation, meaning you’ll sleep better also. Visualizing before you go to sleep will reduce insomnia and stop those waking up in the middle of the night worry sessions.
Boosted Immune System
Stress and anxiety take their toll on your immune system. Add sleep deprivation to that mix, and you’re a sitting duck for every passing germ. Visualization focuses your mind and body on being relaxed and calm. Your immune system can rebuild and strengthen.
Help with Migraines
Studies have found that visualization can even help with migraines and chronic headaches. By creating new neural pathways in the brain, visualization can help alleviate the pain of chronic headaches.
How have you used visualizations in the past?