Visualise Your Way to a Healthy Weight
Your idea about who you are shapes way more about you, your diet, your health and your life than you could ever imagine. We all have ‘factual’ statements about who we are “I’m the kind of person that… or I’m just wired this way..” As a result of who we believe ourselves to be, we have played out that role, just like an actor on a stage and everything in our life right now reflects that. If we are not happy with our current weight and health, then we know we need to start changing the script! Rewriting our story can be scary but can be exciting too.
We need to create a strong vision around where it is we want to go and keep focused on that vision. Have you ever pulled out images of you at a lighter weight – wedding pic or holiday pic and placed it on the fridge or somewhere to remind yourself of what weight you want to get back to? (If not, do!) Your vision is about that but more – its about getting clear on what it is you want to achieve and staying focused on that image. In this way your thoughts and feelings are centered on where it is you want to go, rather than where you are now.
For example, I encourage clients to start to seeing themselves as a slim person who is temporarily in a body that is too big! Shifting your mentality like this is really powerful as you start to feel how life will be when you get to your ideal weight and those feelings of confidence, happiness etc. can be powerful motivators.
Start to really experience and live like the ‘new’ you, for example, stop buying clothes at your current size as you know that soon they will no longer fit. Let supportive people know about your intention to recreate yourself will cement your commitment and make you accountable too! It’s time now to start seeing yourself from a difference perspective and looking forward with hope and optimism.
As best you can keep try to keep your thoughts and words in alignment your goal. Affirmations and Visualisations are a great way to help you with this. Repeating positive statements or affirmations can sound a bit ‘woo woo’ but you can sculpt your brain the same way that you sculpt your muscles in the gym. The science of Neuroplasticity tells us that nerve cells that fire together wire together – so the more we do something the stronger that we are wiring that pattern. Its like if you keep taking the same path though a field of high grass, the path gets more and more defined.
So affirmations seriously can help reframe your thoughts…if they are done right – they need to be realistic and specific. The purpose is to remind you of your goals and replace old patterns of thinking – I feel myself getting thinner and thinner everyday is a big vague whereas – I enjoy eating salad with my lunch everyday is clear and specific. And to take up them another gear – you connect to the feeling of what you are saying and how doing that action will make you feel – then the sparks fly! Affirmations allow you to take control, harnessing your thoughts, making them work for you, not against you – allowing you to re-wire your brain.
As well as keeping your thoughts on your goal, research tells us that imaging yourself achieving your goal is really helpful too. Mental imagery or visualisation has been used for decades, particularly in the area of sports. The Soviets were amongst the first to use it in the training of their athletes and now it has become much more mainstream. One famous Russian study divided Olympic gymnasts into 4 groups, all doing different amounts of physical versus mental imagery training. The group that performed the best in the Olympics was the group that did 75% mental imagery and 25% physical training! Another study in US divided basketball players into two groups – one group practiced free throws an hour a day and the other imagined themselves doing successful free throws for the hour. Those who did the practical training improved 24% but those who visualized improved nearly as much – 23%! Brain scanning research shows us the reason behind this – the same areas of the brain used for normal perception or action are also activated by mental imagery.
In terms of applying it to weight loss Jon Gabriel has really popularized it as he lost 220lbs and attributes much of that to visualization. What is even more amazing about his story is that he visualised himself with a 6 pack with no excess skin which is exactly what he has now.
So, it does seem worthwhile to really focus on your ideal weight and to use affirmations and visualisations to support this. To help you get started I would like to share my Morning Meditation track from for my new CD ‘Visualise Your Way to a Healthy Weight’ – just click on the link here to download it. If you are interested in finding out more about the CD and how it can help you click here.