How to Overcome Your Fears and Limiting Beliefs with Creative Visualization
What if there was an easy way to overcome your fears and limiting beliefs?
If I told you there was one tool that could help you achieve your goals and dreams much faster, overcome your fears without even having to face them in real life, boost your willpower, stop self-sabotage, and basically accelerate your path to success in all areas of your life, would you be interested in learning what it is and how to use it?
Well, that’s what I want to share with you in this article.
Several years ago, I went through a training called The Silva Method, which is a series of seminars and programs that blend various mind-training techniques, such as meditation, hypnosis and Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP).
There’s one tool, among the entire set of tools that I’ve learned to use, that is simple and particularly effective.
It’s a tool used by almost all world-class athletes and many other people who are highly successful in their fields, such as Jim Carey, Tiger Woods and Oprah.
“If you expect to achieve your goals, if you expect to reach your potential, if you expect to have your dreams come true, you must become a master at visualization. Visualization is an extraordinarily powerful skill.” — Mel Robbins
The Main Scientific Reason Why Visualization Will Accelerate Your Path to Success
The main reason why visualization is so powerful is that the brain doesn’t differentiate between something real (something that actually happened to you) and something imagined with emotion.
Brain imaging has shown that when we visualize an action, the same regions of the brain are stimulated as when we perform it in real life, and the same neural networks are created.
This means when you imagine something with emotion, your brain’s chemistry changes as though the experience is real.
If you repeat this process a few times, it becomes encoded in your memory as something you experienced in real life. That’s why visualization is part of almost all world-class athletes’ training.
Because of this aspect of the brain, you can use visualization to overcome fear and shift limiting beliefs, simply by visualizing your goals (and ideal life) being achieved. By doing so, you’ll program your subconscious mind into believing that it’s possible to attain these goals and safe to pursue them, because you’ll have “successfully done it in the past” (although only in your mind).
Without eliminating unconscious fear and shifting beliefs in your mind, it’s possible you’ll experience some form of resistance that will slow your progress.
Some common ways this resistance shows up is in the form of negative self-talk and procrastination. If you can regularly visualize your goal being attained, you’ll be less likely to experience this resistance.
4-Step Formula to Visualize More Effectively
Find a quiet place and make yourself comfortable, preferably in a sitting position. Close your eyes and take a moment to relax your body and mind.
When you feel relaxed, think of the outcome you want to achieve. Imagine a specific situation or some key elements that represent your success.
Make the scene as real as you can, like a simulation, using your five senses. If you can’t see the images in your mind, focus on your other senses.
What do you hear? How do you feel? For example, if your goal is to be in the best shape of your life, you could imagine that you are running up a hill in the woods. Feel your legs moving and feet touching the ground with each step. Feel the air on your face, notice the smells around you, and the sight of nature. Perhaps imagine that you pass another runner with whom you exchange a smile.
This step is the most important. You must feel as though your vision has already come true.
This is the secret for a successful visualization. Without strong feelings and emotions, the event visualized will probably not seem real enough be recorded in your mind as a real memory.
Lastly, visualize your goal often, if possible daily and for a few weeks, until you notice a change in your behavior, skills, and confidence. Also, make it a priority to observe and notice the evidence in the environment confirming the positive change.
If You Want to Go Deeper
The reason I’m so passionate about visualization and convinced of its effectiveness is that I used it myself to overcome years of social anxiety.
I created a short course on science-based creative visualization in which I explain the science behind it in more detail. The course also contains five guided visualizations for different goals.
You can learn more about the course here.