Here’s the deal. Visualization is great. It can be motivating. It can be thrilling. It can be inspiring. Visualization is like going to the movies, but the plot is your life and you are the star. Oh, and whatever you want to have happen is the action. So you can be caught up in a Zombie Apocalypse (um…you want this?) or you can be immersed in fulfilling work with a wonderful romantic partner and close friendships and…and…and…you get the idea.
This is visualization. You see it and then you add in your other senses so that little movie of your life is so vivid you are somewhat surprised that it’s not actually in place yet when you open your eyes. The thing about visualization? It’s not an instant gratification kind of event.
You can lie on your couch and visualize for ten minutes a day, every day, and you can lie there waiting. Yep. Waiting for the moment that your visualization will come true. Because that’s what it’s all about, yes? Dream big dreams and let them find you?
Well. Maybe it’s about something more. Maybe it’s about dreaming big dreams…or whatever sized dreams suit your mood and your moment and your motivation…and then, instead of fluffing the pillows and looking expectantly at the front door, waiting for the dreams to march on into the living room, getting up. Yes, get right up off of that couch and keep your visualization vividly stored in your mind and start the baby steps that will lead to it.
You have a role in this, beyond the visualizing part. You, wonderful dreamer, get to not only think up the dream but you get to help make it manifest in your life.
I love this quote by Harriet Tubman.
Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.
Oh, yeah. Way to say it, Harriet.
You, dreamer, get to start moving towards your dream fulfillment. Because it takes action, you know, and you are the action figure in this dream. You don’t have to know everything. You don’t have to even know what exact direction to take. Just get up and do something, go somewhere, head off in pursuit of it all and by golly, you’ll make manifesting magic happen.
Because it’s not magic. But it is manifesting.
So take, for example, someone who dreams (vividly) of losing twenty pounds. This person visualizes it with all the wonderful details. What she or he would wear once the weight was gone. What she or he could do once the weight was gone. How things would be different. How things would be better. The visualization includes views from all sides and the appropriate emotions that would go along with the weight loss. Maybe there’s a specific reason this weight loss is needed. Maybe it’s a health thing or a pregnancy thing or a want-to-fit-in-those-jeans thing.
Our dreamer conceives of every detail and creates a wonderful visualization. And then what? Sometimes, then, the dreamer starts talking about maybe kinda sorta pursuing the visualization. Someday.
“I’m going to lose that weight. Yes, I am. In the spring I’m going to join a gym. I just need to get the right clothes and the right shoes and figure out what gym I should join. But I’ll do it. In the spring.”
Or maybe they’ll do it when they have a workout partner. Or when things settle down and they have more time. Maybe it’s overwhelming, because twenty pounds seems like a lot.
You know what? Twenty pounds IS a lot. So how about starting with two pounds? How about starting by getting out and using the shoes you have and the clothing you have and going for a walk. A fifteen minute walk. Every day.
Don’t hold onto the idea that a fifteen minute walk every day is not going to make twenty pounds disappear from your body. Hold onto the thought that you are starting. You are taking action. Go, you! And then start. Take action. Seriously. Go…you.
Because nothing happens if we sit still and wish for it. And everything happens when we rise up and take action. Sometimes it’s not what we thought about initially. Sometimes once we’re going, we head off on all kinds of other roads and explore other paths and oooh, what’s that door over there and wow, guess what I discovered. Or guess what I’m learning about. Or guess what I just tried.
So for the weight loss dreamer, getting up and getting out and simply moving is a start. Who knows where that start will lead? Maybe someone else will be walking and then there will be company. Maybe that someone else will mention that they have wanted to try Zumba at the rec center but don’t want to go alone. Maybe, three weeks after starting with a simple fifteen minute walk our weight loss dreamer is now walking thirty minutes, but only every other day because Zumba was so much fun it’s become part of the schedule.
And the two pounds become five pounds. And the five pounds become ten.
All because the visualization turned into some kind of steps (literally, in this case) to achieve it.
This example can be used for someone who visualizes a new relationship. It can be used for people who visualize a new job. Start with the dream and then pursue it. We all, like Harriet Tubman said, have the strength, the patience and the passion to pursue our dreams. We just need to get started.
Oh, and that happy panda photo? He looks like he gleefully visualized his favorite snack and then found himself living the dream by eating it. Not that he didn’t have to take steps, you know. He meandered right on over to the pile of bamboo. And then he sat on it.