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Creative Visualization: Your Tool To Relieve Stress and Gain Success!

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Creative Visualization:


A Stress Management Tool:
Pave Your Way to Success

The use of creative visualization left the Ashram, which was a place where the gurus used to go for their religious retreats and instruction in Hinduism, a long time ago. And thank goodness for that because today, creative visualization is used in corporate settings, in sports settings and for tons of people like you and I as a way to help people move along a desired life path.

When used in conjunction with other stress management techniques such as positive affirmations and of course, positive self-talk, creative visualization takes on even more enormous power as a tool for both individuals and groups doing business as a team. This is an extremely effective tool for anyone who would like to learn how to manage stress effectively and live a happier life.


Why and How Visualization Helps Create a Positive Attitude


Medical doctors tell us that any skill requires a neural pathway be formed in your brain. Some examples of this are looking at the time and practice it takes to learn how to consistently score a free throw in basketball or the same kind of work it takes to routinely feel comfortable giving a public presentation; situations where there is also a high level of pressure. Athletic coaches have discovered that by including visualization techniques they can improve the success rate of their athletes in a wide variety of actions and they’ve proven that with their scores.

It is particularly interesting to notice that simply through the process of imagining yourself accomplishing your goal, you then get the help you need to achieve that goal. Creative visualization increases your optimism towards any goal or objective and this gives you more power to see the actions which keep you in harmony with making your goal a concrete reality.

How To Manage Stress:Use Creative Visualization ImageThis quote from CNN Health explains it well in this quote “Optimism can become a self-fulfilling prophecy. If you believe in a positive outcome, you are more likely to act toward it.” Part of the reasoning behind this is that you can visualize a perfect performance thousands of times in your mind without experiencing any physical fatigue because you are laying down. However, your neural map is taking notes of everything that you visualize and that is what moves you towards your goal in a kind of “auto-pilot” simplicity.

There are several steps you can start working with today in order to accomplish this process within your own neural map.

For the purpose of demonstrating the steps, we will use the goal of you making a successful public presentation as our example. But understand that the same steps apply whether it’s your performance on a court or a stage, your dissertation, your job interview or any activity where you would like to ensure successful results of all of your capacities.

Step One: Dissociated Visualization is the Beginning of Positive Thoughts

Close your eyes and look at your objective from a third person perspective. See yourself as a spectator would see you, giving your important presentation without getting flustered. Being part of the audience, you see how others are responding to the speaker (you) with nods and smiles. Everyone is attentive to what you are saying, your notes are in order, and your PowerPoint presentation is attractive and timed perfectly. You see yourself (from the spectator’s point of view) speaking smoothly and fluently from beginning to end. The audience applauds and moves eagerly into the Q and A session.

Positive result: Your brain (neural map) has now begun to lock into place the skills necessary for you to project this effect and feeling upon the spectators of your presentation.

Step Two: Associated Visualization Leads to Positive Thinking

Now see, or creatively visualize yourself as the presenter. Feel your confidence and surge of positive energy as you step up to the microphone! Imagine the notes in your hands, the projector next to you at the right distance, the lighting is correct and everyone is sitting attentively. You take a few deep, relaxing breaths and start speaking. Your tone is firm, smooth and fluent. Your audience laughs at the jokes you’ve prepared for them. They are clearly enjoying your talk and responding to you in a positive manner. You wrap up your speech confidently and answer questions without hesitation, accept the applause and step off the stage successfully.How To Manage Stress:Use Creative Visualization Image

Positive result: You have just trained your mind (neural map) to focus on all of the positive energy that you will emanate during your speech. Your actions will now find new focus and new inner guidance towards fulfilling that which your mind has now set as the desired result, your successful presentation.

Step Three: Intensified Associated Visualization Provides Stress Relief


In this phase you’re going to expand upon your second exercise. Take it to the deepest level of observation that you can think of, remembering the 5 senses of sight, sound, touch, smell, and taste.

In this case notice the way sound carries in the room. You might hear a cough or two, hear the rustling of papers or other common sounds. Do you tend to chew gum or a mint right before making a public presentation? Well then, taste the flavor of the gum or the mint. If you are familiar with the room you will be using, you can imagine yourself standing in that space. How does the carpet feel to the touch of the soles of your shoes?

The goal is to make the whole experience familiar, comfortable solidly imprinted in your neural map so that when you do get there, your stress level is so low that you are able to tap into this enormous reserve of positive energy you have built up while doing this exercise.

Positive result: You have solidified your neural map and your auto-pilot function now goes out to bring in everything that is conducive to your achieving your objective.

Learning How To Manage Stress In Your Daily Life Routines: Applying Creative Visualization

If you find that you experience tension or stress every time you perform a certain task, then take note of the fact that creative visualization has the power to alleviate that stress before it starts. Practice going through these steps, starting with just a few minutes for each step. As creative visualization becomes more and more of a habit, you will find it easier to stay focused on the positive picture of you accomplishing your goals a lot more easily.

Here is a diagram to help illustrate how this process works. You can double click it to read the process up close:

How To Manage Stress:Use Creative Visualization Image

Creative visualization gives you more power to reach your goals while eliminating stress and tension, as well.

As researchers on creative visualization at Vanderbilt University advise, there is no perfect right way or wrong way to practice creative visualization, so try practicing your use of this great tool in a number of different ways. You can try creative visualization practice while lying down, while sitting in your favorite chair, with your eyes open, with your eyes closed, in silence, with the stereo on. What’s important is that you practice it. Then with practice, you will gain experience in what suits you best.

It’s quite normal if at first, things like the traffic outside, your neighbor’s barking dog or even the usually pleasant sound of the birds chirping, tend to enter your mind before the sounds you are now choosing to pre-create by living your ideal situation before it happens. That’s ok, just don’t give up on it. Persist with these steps and you will find it easier and easier to block out all of the sounds which don’t pertain to your creative visualization exercise.

How Do You Stop Worrying? Use Creative Visualization

“Why spend time worrying about what you don’t want” ?

You can also look at it this way: how much time do you spend worrying about the outcome of making that presentation, giving that dissertation, or going to that job interview? A friend of mine said something that’s very true and I’d like to share it with you: “Why spend time worrying about what you don’t want” ?, which seems to sum it up in a nutshell….makes a lot of sense, too.

I don’t know about you, but most often, when I spend time “wondering about” the outcome of any given situation, I don’t always tend to see it in the best light. Often, spending time “wondering” is what opens the gateway for fear because wondering can easily turn to worrying. Creative visualization is a tool that will help you to eliminate the fear and help get you into the action of doing what you want to do. By living your actions of accomplishment first within your mind’s neural map, you have built-in images of relaxation toward your goals, instead of fear or tension.

Do you ever wonder about how some moment in time will turn out, then find yourself imagining the worst possible scenarios? I think we all do this from time to time, so this is why taking action to set up a positive path for your mind to follow will help you so much. It will kick in just when you need it!

Begin Practicing Your New Stress Management Skills Today!

How To Manage Stress:Use Creative Visualization Image
Action has always been and might always be one of the best sources you’ve got within you to defeat fear, so take positive action and let creative visualization help you by keeping you focused, inside your mind and outside by leading you to the right actions to take and the right way that you would like for your 5 senses to react. With practice you will be able to face even your most difficult challenges with equanimity, peace and vitality.

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Here’s to your creative visualization success!
P.S. Be sure to check out: How To Manage Stress 101: The 5 BEST Ways To Ruin Your Career Fast! because a part from the comical twist, you’ll find some people who used creative visualization to create success, and it might just surprise you! :-) !

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Self-Esteem and Laughter: How Do You Feel About You?

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Feel Better About Yourself With The Power of Laughter Therapy



 

Your Powerful Tool: Laughter Therapy

When was the last time you enjoyed a really good belly laugh? How about the last time you laughed at yourself? The power of laughter is impressive, but as we grow up we often forget how good it feels to laugh. Too often, we tend to get all caught-up in the regular routine of day to day life, but we can also choose to remember this important tool and take the vital steps in implementing it into our daily routine. Laughter therapy offers you an opportunity to get back in touch with your lighter side of life and it also provides you with numerous unexpected benefits as well!
 

It’s More than a Laughing Matter

A common misperception about laughter therapy is that all it means is standing with others in a circle while laughing. It is true that some of the exercises or group sessions do call for people to do exactly that, but there is much more involved. Laughter must be combined with positive self-talk, optimistic thinking, and an affirmative attitude to achieve truly remarkable results. Sure, you can practice this excercise in mnay ways, but the most important thing is to discover what works best for you. It might be that laughter yoga works best for you, or possibly, watching stand-up comedy is a good method. Whatever your method, you will gain tremendous benefits by incorporating this into your regular routine.

The Science Behind the Humor

The effects of humor and a positive attitude have not been lost on the medical community. In fact, a growing number of research studies are being conducted to evaluate the connection between humor, self-esteem and health. One such study, carried out at the University of Indiana, demonstrated a direct correlation between humor and health. The researchers reached the following conclusions:
 

• “Laughter is believed to act as a coping mechanism to relieve stress, improve self-esteem and reduce psychological symptoms related to negative life events.”
• “Sense of humor is often connected to higher levels of self-esteem.”
• “Sense of humor was also related to higher scores and quality of life in undergraduates.”
 

Does a sense of humor necessarily equal better self-esteem? No. However, the research, which is still in its infancy, indicates that people with an ability to maintain their sense of humor during a challenge fare much better than those who don’t. Furthermore, a sense of humor is vitally important for anyone seeking to improve their self-esteem. If you can laugh at yourself, then you feel less imtimidated by the world around you. In this case, no one is able to laugh at you because you have already set a platform upon which they can only laugh with you. Once you accept laughter therapy as a viable method for improving the quality of your life, you can utilize it for many areas in your life from improving your self-esteem to getting the promotion at work, or any area in your life that you seek to transform.

Positive Thinking Leads to a Positive Attitude


The first step in positive thinking actually involves eliminating negative thinking from your daily experiences. There are several steps to take.


Don’t Filter. Learn to see the whole experience, not just the bad parts. Negative thinkers tend to focus on one mistake in a collection of good choices, which rather obliviates the good choices made.

Don’t Catastrophize. If one negative experience makes you think that your whole day is ruined, you need to put things back into perspective. Too often we tend to give permanent reality to temporary situations/chaleenges.

Avoid Black and White Visualization. Few things in life are entirely good or completely bad. This holds true for people, too. Negative thinking forces you to see things in this fashion, either all good or all bad. Look for shades of gray and colors.

Once you start looking for moments where you engage in negative thinking it will be easier to replace those thoughts with positive ones:

Practice Positive Self-Talk. Learning to speak positively to yourself takes time and practice, especially if it is a new skill. Be kind and gentle with yourself. Look for small things you can start with and build up. A good rule of thumb is that if you wouldn’t say it to someone else, don’t say it to yourself.

Look for Humor. Once you take a step back from a stressful situation you can often find something funny in it. Just the simple act of laughing will make you feel better and boost your self-esteem.

Choose One Goal. Changing everything would be overwhelming for anyone. Pick just one aspect of your life you want to work on and stick with it until you feel that you have made some good progress.

By using these techiniques, you are bound to see a difference in not only your self-esteem, but also in your life and your interaction with others.

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Team You: Positive Self-Talk To Help Yourself Succeed

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Team You: Positive Self-Talk for Success



Is Your Team Targeted To Win?

Most people sell themselves short. They do everything they think is right, but still find themselves coming up short when it comes to being where they want to be in life. Positive self-talk is a way to change that pattern.

The problem is that we often fail to realize that winning is not the product of an external force but the consequence of an internal disposition.

How to manage stress with positive self talkWith a positive mindset you can transform your team from any sad streak to a glad streak. And given this fact, you can use the right focus to turn TEAM YOU into a winning team. It’s time to let positive words help you to gain the right focus.

Napoleon Hill first introduced the concept of PMA (Positive Mental Attitude) in 1937, as the result that you get from using positive self-talk.

Team You Keeps You In The Evolutionary Process of Progress

Why try positive self-talk for yourself? This is the right habit for you to employ for yourself to get TEAM YOU where you want to be in life. Positive self-talk changes the way you feel about yourself and that’s what changes the way you interact with others in the world around you. This is also the right habit that you need to cultivate in order to effectively manage stress so that you can stay in the flow of rising to new heights in life.

Positive self-talk will keep you in the constant flow of “the evolutionary process of progress”, which is a desire located at the core essence of all humanity.

How does positive self-talk work to enhance your life? As soon as you set a goal, then achieve it, you’re off to set new goals and achieve those too. So you already know how the evolutionary process of progress works. Remember when you used to measure every inch that you grew when you were a child? That’s how, even as children, we desire to stay in “the evolutionary process of progress”.

Team You, through PMA and positive self-talk, is simply your internal GPS system which keeps you on the right road. It also protects you from the detours that lack of attention to good stress management techniques can cause.

Team You is a valuable philosophy that will allow you to assess your strengths and weakness and determine how to get yourself ready to be a winner!

How to manage stress with positive self talkThe legendary football coach Vince Lombardi was a master of positive self-talk. He knew that if he reinforced certain messages with positive words, both he and his players would always be ready to handle the competition.

One of his most highly quoted phrases says that “confidence is contagious. So is lack of confidence.”

Think about that phrase as you examine your own level of confidence.

Do you have a positive attitude even when the people or things around you don’t seem so positive? Would you want yourself on your team or as team captain?

If not, it is time to make the necessary changes to transform yourself into someone you would! How do you go about this? You use the three P’s:

3 P’s To Improvement

• Positive Self-Talk

• Positive Reinforcement

• Practice

Positive self-talk is the foundation for a positive attitude; a positive attitude is the structure for positive words; and positive words make Team You a winning team!

How to manage stress with positive self talkGetting “amped” for the big game is not just something that applies to athletes, but much to the contrary. It applies to your big interview, your big meeting with your client, your big presentation, your hot date, and all of the most important moments in your life.

Anyone who regularly engages in positive self-talk can coach themselves into feeling good through the use of positive words. As a result, the better you feel, the better the quality of your life will be.

Positive reinforcement is essential to strengthening those attitudes and behaviors you want to exhibit. When Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger feels that his offensive linemen have done a good job of protecting him, he buys them new suits and takes them out to dinner.

You can use this tool to reward yourself for good behavior and increase the likelihood of doing them again. For example, set goals according to the following schedule:

• Macro:         What would you like your big picture to look like?

• Micro:          Where can you implement ideas from your big picture into your life right now?

• Mini Micro:    Which actionable steps are becoming your new habits/How are you going to start?

Write them down and every time you meet a goal, give yourself a reward because just like we state in our article Stress Relief: 8 Easy Solutions,  many types of therapy are useful for positive reinforcement.

Buy those shoes you’ve had your eye on for a while, go get that new suit or indulge in a delicious dessert! Whatever it is, exercise the self-discipline to only treat yourself when you’ve done something to make your team a better one. This way you’ll look forward to treating yourself and continually display the behaviors that will continually transform your life.

How to manage stress with positive self talkFinally, you have to practice positive self-talk. How you perform in practice is how you’ll perform under pressure. It’s all about forming the right set patterns of habit. This type of habit forming pattern is the same skill that proficient musicians utilize to go out on stage in front of great masses of people with precision and mastery.

In the same way, train and discipline yourself to practice your positive-self talk diligently, and you too, will perform well under pressure! The more often you give yourself a chance to exhibit your new confidence and positive attitude, the more you will show others that you are the coach of a winning team, and the more they’ll want to keep you around.

Remember, confidence is contagious, and you can learn by practicing your performance and by practicing positive self-talk.

Engaging in the 3 Ps will inevitably lead you to the 4th P: The Power of Positive Thinking. Having built up your attitude with positive self-talk and reinforced winning behaviors with positive reinforcement, you will have prepared yourself to understand that the power of positive thinking on a much deeper level.

These are the skills that will take Team You anywhere you want to be!

Here’s to your positive self-talk success!

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