If you visualize yourself healthy and fit, can you help make it happen?
We vow to lose weight, get fit, quit smoking, and hope to transform our lives.
So why do we try and fail year after year and why have so many of us just given up altogether?
I think it’s because we were setting ourselves up to fail instead of succeed.
We push ourselves too hard to do too much too soon to change habits that took half a lifetime to cultivate and expect that’s going to be ok with us and it’s not.
If we want to change long standing habits we need to look at it differently.
We need to see ourselves differently. See yourself the weight you want to be.. Feel what it’s like to be at that healthy weight.. Consider yourself a healthy person, a non-smoker, whatever.
There’s a mind-body connection that dancers and athletes are trained to tap into every day that allows them to perform with ease, fluidity and enjoyment. Your activity should provide the same type of experience and be one that you enjoy and want to do every day. These athletes live by this. It really works. And it works for everything.
Here are two mind-body techniques they use and you can use right away to help set those resolutions into motion.
Visualization: happens mostly on the right side of the brain, the part that controls emotion, intuition and nonlinear thought.
So if your goal is to lose 10 pounds you visualize yourself 10 pounds thinner maybe by wearing that pair of jeans you have been wanting to get into again.
Don’t just see yourself as having lost the weight. See yourself as that person, someone who can be and always maintain that weight.
That mental image can replace the one you now have of yourself and help you transform your behavior on both a conscious and subconscious level.
It can allow you to finally put that desire into permanent action.
Affirmations: By engaging in positive self-talk you can change what you believe about yourself. You can speak to yourself silently or out loud in short phrases that start with
And don’t be afraid to say you are who you really want to be.
Repeat several times until you are able to clear your mind of anything but that particular affirmation.
Once you see and hear how it feels to be someone who has already reached their goal, you can use the same techniques to set and achieve easy short-term interim goals.
For instance if your goal is to become fit, you can start by visualizing and feeling yourself having exercised today and affirm with “I will exercise 5 minutes today”
As long as you have plausible expectations and don’t say stuff like I’m 6 feet tall when you’re 5’6, you can make amazing changes real.
Sometimes you only need a few seconds and you feel a lot better.
Sit down and close your eyes. (If you’re on the street, duck into a doorway, stand and keep your eyes open and one hand on your purse.)
Let your muscles relax. Concentrate on your breathing.
Breathe in and hold your breath for one second, count one one hundred thousand, and breathe out.
Breathe in again a little deeper and hold for two seconds — one one hundred thousand, two one hundred thousand — breathe out.
Breathe in deeper and hold for three, then four, then five seconds.
When you get to around three seconds of breath holding, your stress level should start to drop and your mind should start to clear itself of thoughts.
After five, you should feel pretty good.
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