Let your mind show you how focused it is in a tiny experiment.
Think about an apple. What image does your mind create when you imagine an apple? Do you see a colour? Do you see it on a tree or do you see the apple being held in your hand? Now imagine how the apple tastes and smells. Is it crunchy or soft? Is it sweet or sour? Is it ripe or green? How long can you stay with that image and experience it before jumping to another thought or memory about an apple?
When your mind jumped to a memory about an apple, what connected it to your experience of holding one or tasting it? A day walking home from school in the cool autumn air? A outdoor farmer’s market? A day with your grandparents? Watching others pick them in orchards? A day with friends. Picking an apple from a tree and the crunch of a first bite?
All of these memories and mental images will tell you how the idea, the image and the experience are connected in your thoughts. How long you can hold onto the apple image in your mind will give you insight into what your starting point is. So…how focused are you right now? How vivid and sustained are the images you hold in your mind? Often we are bombarded with ten second subliminal ads and information. Our cell phones and lives are permeated with data and energy transmissions that are distracting. Being able to break that ten second hold by focusing on something that you want and intend is very powerful and healing.
The next step to mastering visualization is about learning to secure an image or idea, hold it there in your mind and then, deliberately mould it into something that you can feel and imagine. It takes playful practise and child-like curiosity. An example would be imagining yourself running with strength and vitality. You feel the ground, your steps, your feet and muscles, how your clothes feel and the weather, the smells around you from plants, ocean etc. Where this gets very interesting is that the visualized experience of running has the potential to create a memory and results as if one has already practised. This has been used by elite athletes to shift their physiology and to gain a winning edge. For the rest of us, this practise is an incentive to learn this skill to shift and encourage wellness on a totally new level. Science supports it. But because every person’s skill will vary, it is dependent on practise and natural abilities.
Einstein was a master at using his focused mind to visualize details in his thought experiments. Before his “miracle year” that transformed the world, Einstein became very skilled at using his imagination; imagination that literally shaped our reality and the way we live.
Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a persistent one. Albert Einstein
Your own imagination moves beyond daydreams to helping you create another level of mental focus. Experiment with different images and memories to see what holds you in that experience longer. And, discover how real you can make the experience and sense how something feels as if you were actually there.
Daily meditation is useful for clearing the mind and allowing the body to relax into imagining. Deliberate visualization with a desired outcome can be learned by imagining the end as clearly as possible. If you can hold the ideas and feeling as if it were already achieved with as much detail as possible, you will start to see a positive shift in your daily meditative experience.
Visualization is a skill that some will find easier that others. But from my experience, using a memory to hold that experience and that desired image there for longer will help you to gain mental focus and skill at visualizing over time. The more practised you are, the more present you will feel in that experience.
Mastering visualization is about really about discovering a new level of self-mastery. It is a progressive skill that will offer you benefits beyond your imagination.