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How you can use visualization to see the future.

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The more real your visualization, the better it works.

 

In a study that examined how people visualize their future, researchers compared two groups of people:

Group 1:  visualized their future based on abstract, “flawless” images, such as magazines or movies.

Group 2:  found role models who were living the lives they wanted to live. They based their imaginary future on real, albeit flawed, people.

Who ended up happier and more fulfilled? Group 2.

People who used real-person role models were happier because their ideals were real, flawed, imperfect, and human.

The role models were “better” than the people imagining them, i.e. they were living the lives and having the experiences that the imaginers wanted to have, but not unattainable or “perfect”. The imaginers could see that their role models struggled too.

 

Role models also confronted challenges, fell down, screwed up, and had bad hair days.

The take-home here: Visualization is powerful but it has to be “real”.

And it’s a lot more effective to imagine being just a little bit better than to imagine “perfection”.

 

Gee, doesn’t that sound familiar?

 

Find a real-life role model

Today, end your week of visualization by finding a real, “imperfect” health and fitness role model.

Maybe that’s a trainer or coach or another PA Coaching client. Maybe that’s someone in your gym. Maybe that’s someone else you know.

Maybe that’s even you on a superstar day.

Athletes and other performers use visualization to imagine — in detail — the point at which they will inevitably get stuck or have trouble.

Then, they imagine how they’ll work through those challenges. They practice problem solving before they even move a muscle.

Their brain makes it “real” for them — and this practice has real effects.

On game day, they’re totally prepared for anything.

Top athletes know: Visualization works.

 

Whatever it is, make it real.

Visualize yourself doing what that role model person does, and feeling what they feel.

Visualize how they might confront challenges and overcome obstacles.

Visualize what they do in their average day — how they are committed to living a vibrant, nourishing, active, healthy lifestyle or dedicated to top athletic performance.

Visualize yourself moving just a little bit closer to that role model’s lifestyle today.

What’s one real thing you can imagine doing to be a tiny bit better today?

 

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