Visualization has long been seen by some as akin to wishing on a star or a four-leaf clover-with a rate of return somewhere in the neighborhood of a Powerball ticket.
It turns out the odds are a lot better than that, in fact hard science has proven that visualization is a real and powerful tool that each of us can easily use to shape our lives and create better outcomes – personally and professionally.
There is now more breakthrough evidence that indicates visualization has the ability to affect us and cause changes at our very core – right down to our genes and how they function or “express”.
In a previous post “The Secret About the Secret” we looked at the science around visualization and discovered that it is truly a transformative force – one that can both help and hinder your progress toward your goals depending on how you use it (yes, there is good visualization and bad visualization).
We saw that visualizing our goals as “finished” – i.e. imagining that you are floating around your champagne-filled pool, or flying your G650 down to Rio – seems to create a drag on our progress for reasons that are not well understood. Perhaps convincing the mind that the goals have been reached decreases the motivation to pursue them. Whatever the reason, the science clearly bears this out.
On the other hand, visualizing ourselves doing the hard work, solving the problems, and overcoming the barriers seems to increase our chances of accomplishing the goals. Looking at our goals this way may prepare us for challenges and setbacks and helps us to formulate strategies that will improve our chances of success.
Gene Modification at Home in Your Spare Time
Even more fascinating information has been recently presented by Dr. Herbert Benson, a respected researcher at Harvard Medical for more than 40 years and the discoverer of the “Relaxation Response” – the physiological opposite to the “Fight or Flight” response.
In his newest book “The Relaxation Revolution”, Dr. Benson presents a study he conducted showing that test subjects who used a short daily program of deep breathing and visualization, experienced more than 400 gene expression changes during the 6 week period of the study (compared to a control group)!
Not all of these gene-expression changes are well understood, but many are, and they are for the most part associated with health, immune system function, longevity, and overall well-being.
So how can you get started and take advantage of the benefits? It is very simple.
Dr. Benson uses the “Benson-Henry Protocol” in his research, which starts by creating the relaxation response (a relaxed, restorative state where the mind and body are receptive to suggestion) for 12-15 minutes using a simple breath-focused meditation. That is followed by 8-10 minutes of visualizing yourself achieving the desired outcome in your life.
It is absolutely fascinating to watch as science continues to show us that the reason many of these mind-body techniques – such as breathing and visualization – are still with us today is because they work (which is also why we emphasize them in our trainings)! They have real and immediate effects on us, and the power change us on the most fundamental level – even down to our genes!
Need help with this? That’s what I am here for!
Would love to hear your comments, questions, and experiences!