What do you want out of life?
For me, it’s a balanced life with my depression. For others, it’s personal improvement. We’d like to lose weight, become stronger and more physically able. Maybe we’d like to achieve something in the world of sports, by winning a race or even running in one.
And for a lot of us, our goals have to do with our jobs. We want a coveted position, or to seek out something that satisfies on some deeper level. Or maybe it’s to create something, such as writing a book or learning how to paint.
Whatever it is you desire most, the question is, how do you intend to go about getting it? The key? Visualization.
Visualization takes a goal and makes it concrete and even attainable in our minds. This process is how we bring it about in our lives. How?
Figure Out Your Goal
You’ll go nowhere fast if you don’t know where you’re heading. It’s a lot like getting in a car and expecting to get somewhere without a destination. All you’ll do is wind up driving aimlessly and getting nowhere fast. In a way, I had done that for over 45 years. By not facing my depression, I wasn’t able to construct a way to reduces its influence on me and my decisions. To find your goal, ask yourself what you’re passionate about. What’s the one thing you want to do more than any other?
Explore the Details
Next, you’re going to want to explore the goal in depth. Thankfully, after my time in 5 East, I have an idea of how to proceed. I can visualize my goal of leading a balanced life with my depression. I experience it thoroughly by using all of my senses. So I ask, what do you see when you envision it? How does it feel? Can you describe what it smells like or even taste like? What do you hear when you think about it? What emotions come alive in you when you think about reaching this goal?
Plan for Roadblocks
It would be silly to think a goal could be achieved without any kind of trouble along the way. What are the problems you’re most likely going to encounter in this journey? How can you solve them? Include this in your vision. This portion of my daily plan I had never even considered before I faced my depression. I would kick the remainder of a depressive event under the rug and never look back. Calling depression what it is, has helped me to visualize a better version of me.
Visualize it Repeatedly.
You need to be familiar with your dream if you wish to achieve it. Visualization is something you need to practice several times a week. Make a daily practice of visualization. Be consistent in this. I will not say that I practice this consistently, repeating my dreams to myself many times daily. But I am fully aware of my depression and its unhelpful thinking. Plus, I have coping statements that I use to destress situations. This helps put events into perspective.
Boost Your Success
Still floundering? Try starting visualization with a relaxation exercise. Make sure to cut out distractions, whether internal or external, and layer in a little pep talk to bring up your energy. Your best success comes from setting yourself up to succeed from the start.
By using these tips, you’ll quickly master the fine art of visualization. My quickness is a learned habit. Using tools I have picked up along the way, I can recognize what my depression is up to before it can get me circling the drain. So, remember, visualization only works if you’re consistent. Stay the course, and soon you’ll be finding success in whatever it is you wish to pursue.