Tuesday, September 10, 2013

The Power of Visualization for Actualization: Personal Leadership

We all have dreams but we fail to see the future view of ourselves as part of our dreams. Most of the time our dreams are short lived and don’t make it to a vision. Why is so? What is limiting us to go for it and fulfill our dreams? 

“Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you this strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the starts to change the work” - Harriet Tubman

In order to persevere towards your dream with a vision, the key differentiating factor is how strongly you believe in yourself and your vision. With a powerful purpose, you can do anything. But you have to have that knowing inside you, in a deep and resonating way. Visualization technique is a process that allows you to connect deeply with your purpose, and you will be able to persevere through any obstacles you encounter. Not only that, it helps and guides you to taking small steps as you go along and build your vision into a reality.

The technique of visualization according to me is a process that helps to drive your vision into a  reality through intention which creates Focus, attention that gets you Committed and manifestation to see Possibilities.

I happen to learn visualization technique and process while attending the Happiness Advantage: Level 1 program delivered by Institute for Advanced Human Performance (IFAHP).  Recently, I had an opportunity to have a very exciting conversation with Braco Pobric founding member and Chief Happiness Officer of the Institute. And it led to unleash some very grounding research on how this visualization technique came to existence and understanding of power of visualization to actualize your vision and dreams.

In late 1960, it all began with the extensive research by Dr. Ira Progoff who then developed the Intensive Journal Method to provide a way to mirror the processes by which people become dynamic and develop themselves. The fundamentals around this method focuses on ability to connect to your true self and then to become immersed in your own growth, drawing forth your unique potential and unfolding life process. 

It was in 2001, when Dr Laura King after extensive research in field of positive psychology, personality processes, meaning in life, motivation and folk theory of good life who really put forward the power of intuition, magic and meaning. She pioneered the first experimental study of optimism by having a group of participants do what’s come to be known as the "Best Possible Self" exercise.

And the research publication by Dr. Sonja Lyumomisrky on “How to increase and sustain positive emotion: The effects of expressing gratitude and visualizing best possible selves” in 2006 gave us correlation around visualization of best possible self, positive emotions and well being.

Question: What is the first step to be done for applying visualization technique to achieve your vision?
Braco: The vision is not a single statement or a thing that magically presents to you. It is something you want to become or achieve in finite period of time. You must first find what is it and then write it down of what you want or become in next 5 years. The key to visualization technique is ability to see, feel and experience the vision coming alive through minds eye. And then taking action towards it as you find the opportunities.

Question: Why do you think visualization plays the vital role in achieving the vision?
Braco: There is science behind the visualization technique. As per neurosciences, the brain releases a neurotransmitter called dopamine which enables us not only to see rewards, but to take action to move towards rewards. Thus, the very act of providing the detail picture of your end goal is enough to release the same dopamine as to actually meeting success to steer you towards success.

Question: What is the impact of visualization on NP (Neural Programming) of brain?
Braco: Brain undergoes changes throughout the entire life like body goes through changes. The changes are based on what you think, act and experience. This can be related to Neuroplasticity which is ability to create new neural connections throughout entire life. And as research suggested that with visualization of best possible self it generates positive emotions to induce positivity and optimism which translates brain to reorganize its responses to new situation and environment of greater belief in yourself.

Question: How does visualization help mind to drive toward the goals and vision?
Braco: If you don’t see goals being achieved, then you may end up into negative mindset and your mind will give you responses of it cannot be done. But with visualizing that your goals are being met, you are seeing them happening through mind’s eye. And it has been studied and researched that mind does not like the gap of what you see and what is the reality. So it helps you to steer and  take action for inching forward towards your goal and vision.
Question: How does visualization help in connecting deeply with the purpose and feel strongly about the vision?
Braco: The first level where you can apply the visualization it by setting goals with defined objectives and seeing it happening. The second level is seeing yourself in let’s say 2, 5, 10 years of what you become on the broader scope and building that vision into reality. The third level is dream which is at much larger level encompassing long term vision. As you visualize yourself beyond goal, vision and dream it helps you to realize with underlying purpose of your thoughts, actions and beliefs. You then slowly evolve in connecting your vision and dream to larger purpose which becomes internal source of motivation and drive to fuel yourself. 

I have undergone a transformation as I continue to practice visualization through visioning meditation for my goals and vision. With seeing myself successful in my vision of what I plan to become in 5 years, I am able to see and unlock the doors of opportunities to build upon in a way that otherwise would not be even come close to thinking of the possibility. 

The visualization technique can help you to overcome obstacles and difficulties as you march towards your goals. It helps you go beyond your self-limiting beliefs about yourself and move you beyond current circumstances. It instills the strong belief of your ability to achieve your goals and thus if makes you ask questions like “what if’ or “what else” and thus opening doors of possibilities and opportunities.

The power of visualization to actualization according to me is nothing but power of believing yourself. The only enemy of oneself is self. You need to look, feel and experience beyond your personal circumstances or limitation to achieve what you vision and dream about. 
The vision to see, the faith to believe, and the will to do will take you anywhere you want to go.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Why routine matters?