Monday, January 26, 2009

Achieving Goals with Mental Rehearsal

It is the end of January and if you have not created your goals for the year...there is still time. In fact, there is always time to create goals. Once you identify what you want to acheive, there are three easy steps to make them your reality: write them down, use visual representations and mentally rehearse goals as if they are achieved. I have already explained an easy way to effectively use written goals and how to incorporate a daily visual of your goals in my two past posts. The third step to goal achievement is mental rehearsal.

Mental rehearsal is my personal favorite technique for achieving goals. I have seen mental rehearsal make a major difference in people’s lives. Mental rehearsal can keep you motivated toward your goal and boost your mood anywhere, anytime. The Life is Mental: Think Thin to Live Thin Guided Visualization CD was created to make this easy to use technique effortless. I recommend that folks new to mental rehearsal and visualization practice this right before falling asleep while comfortable in bed. This is a great way to relax your body for sleep and positive dreams.

Here is the 'how to': Make yourself comfortable in bed with your body straight and uncrossed arms/legs. Relax your body as you slow your breathing to a relaxing pace. Create a vivid picture or visualization in your mind of you at your goal weight. Create a visualization using all of your senses. See this picture including the environment or activity that you will be engaged, hear the sounds you will hear, smell the smells you will smell, and feel the textures you will feel in this picture. The more detailed and robust your visualization, the easier it is to think and behave in ways that create this visualization as your reality. This is an easy technique that offers a huge benefit.

Elite athletes have used the mental rehearsal technique for decades to improve their already elite skills. They repeatedly visualize and mentally rehearse perfect execution of their skill in vivid detail. This mental practice creates the same neural experience that physical practice creates which is why it is so effective. Think of it as reprogramming your subconscious to automatically behave in ways that support your vision. The famous pro golfer, Jack Nicklaus, has been quoted as stating that he never takes a shot at a golf ball without vividly visualizing the swing and perfect execution first. This technique is no longer reserved for the elite. Start visualizing your perfect body wearing the clothes you will wear and doing the activities you will be doing to start thinking and acting in ways necessary to make this visualization a reality. You will amaze yourself at how effective this practice is for goal achievement.

The simplicity of these techniques may be a reason that many people do not make these techniques a habit for goal achievement. If you are one of those people who think that weight loss is hard, you will fulfill that prophecy. This year, decide that weight loss is easy. Write down your short and long term goals, post pictures representing your goals, and mentally rehearse being your goal weight. Use these easy techniques this month to create your weight goals and accomplish amazing weight loss results in 2009!

2009 is your Best Year!

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