Visualization can be a powerful tool. Many top athletes swear by its ability to help them win championships, and business leaders often begin their days with meditation. Some people believe the effects occur thanks to the mindset adjustment, while more metaphysical sorts believe in directing energy. Either way, millions of people rely on the benefits.
However, there’s more to visualization than simply seeing something in your mind’s eye. For the most impressive results, you have to engage all your senses and feel your dreams in your soul.
It’s not always easy to muster the correct emotional state. That’s where engaging touch, sound, scent, and taste, along with sight, comes into play. Here’s how to utilize your senses to connect and visualize.
The word “visualization” itself implies sight. However, this vision doesn’t always refer to what you see before your closed eyelids while sitting in meditation on a yoga mat. It also refers to what you choose to see with your eyes open.
For example, tuning into inflammatory news stories that incite fear can fill you with so much doubt that you hesitate to pursue your dreams. Make choosing your viewing consumption wisely a part of your self-care routine – it will decrease your anxiety.
When visualizing to manifest something you want, it often helps to have a guide. While you can find fabulous guided meditations on YouTube, what’s to stop you from recording some yourself? Hearing you speak your intentions while you lead yourself on a journey toward your goal is a powerful technique for motivating yourself to take the necessary steps in real life.
Think about the last time you drove around aimlessly in your car. Did you do so because you had to finish the song that was currently playing? Sound has an incredible power to impact your mood and motivation. You can use sound to connect and visualize when you feel caught in the grip of overwhelming emotions.
Are you enraged at something your supervisor did at work? While it’s probably not advisable to scream at them if you value your position, what can stop you from taking a break and belting out some death metal at the top of your lungs in the privacy of your car? If it lets you return to work having dissipated some of the stress hormones, you’ll enjoy a more productive afternoon despite your overall mood.
Sounds can likewise serve as focal points during meditation. Many practitioners enjoy installing a small fountain in their zen spot for the sound of running water. Another alternative is the sound of a crackling fire, soft Native flute music, binaural beats, or solfeggio frequencies – you can find all of these for free on YouTube or SoundCloud.
Your sense of smell often gets neglected – at least, until your co-worker microwaves leftover salmon. However, you can employ it in more pleasant ways to connect and visualize.
Scent can be a focal point during meditation while helping you create the right mental state. For example, lavender essential oil is fabulous for inducing relaxation, and science now supports the benefits. Nerve sensors in your nose carry the fragrance to your brain’s limbic system, a brain region known for regulating your nervous system and bringing a sense of calm.
You might not think of using taste to connect and visualize. However, millions of mindfulness students participate in eating exercises that help them wring more enjoyment from food and appreciate the flavor.
You can try this exercise nearly anywhere if you have a square of chocolate. Before indulging in your treat, observe the shape and texture. Tune into your body’s sense of anticipation. Is your mouth watering? Instead of chowing down on your bar full-bore, nibble and let a bite dissolve on your tongue as you savor the flavor.
Touch is a frequently overlooked tool for connecting with your goal as you visualize. It goes beyond surrounding yourself with sumptuous blankets and fuzzy pillows while you meditate.
For the best results, try to generate the feeling of accomplishment you’ll enjoy upon reaching your goal as you sit on your mat. Let your body live each sensation as you circulate at the congratulatory party in your honor, or simply bask in the rosy glow of all you’ve achieved. Let hope blossom in your chest and use that driving force to motivate you to action.
Utilizing Your Senses to Connect and Visualize
It’s natural to think of sight in connection with visualization. However, your other senses also play a role. Heed the above tips for utilizing your senses to connect and visualize. You’ll get closer to your goals and feel better after each mat session.
Mia Barnes is a health and wellness freelance writer with over 3 years of experience covering nutrition, natural living and holistic healing topics. Mia is also the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Body+Mind Magazine.